Team STIHL's Tom Dropik and Remi - 2011 DockDogs World Champions in Speed Retrieve - 3rd best Iron Dog team in the World
Team STIHL

SportMutt


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Stark County Fair
Canton, OH
September 1 - 5, 2011

The 2011 DockDogs World Championships were held at the Stark County Fair in Canton, OH. The Biggest jumping dogs the sport has to offer came from across the U.S. and Canada for 3 days of action packed Dock Jumping and competed for the Title of the Best of the Best in Big Air, Extreme Vertical, Speed Retrieve, and Iron Dog. And Team STIHLs Tom Dropik and his Star Athlete Remi were there competing in their Best Events Speed Retrieve and Iron Dog.

Team STIHLs Tom Dropik, a Dog Trainer and Founder of SportMutt, an organization dedicated to improving canine performance through education, got his start in Dock Jumping in April of 2001. Back then it was Tom's black Labrador Retriever named Tucker. Tom and Tucker became innovators and ambassadors in the sport after competing in 5 ESPN Great Outdoor Games. From there Tom continued training and competed in 10 National Championships and 4 World Championships. In the summer of 2004 Tom joined Team STIHL. STIHL is the #1 selling brand of handheld outdoor power equipment in America. "STIHL has been a HUGE supporter of me and my dogs" says Tom "It's because of STIHL's support that I'm able to do what I do."

In August of 2010, Tom's dock jumping journey took an unusual twist. The folks at Midwest Animal Rescue & Services approached Tom. They said they were looking for a home for a High Energy, Beautiful, Young, Athletic Labrador/German Shepherd mix named Remi. Remi had difficulty finding a permanent home because of his Size and his High Energy. Tom had just laid to rest his best friend of 14 years Tucker that spring and was entertaining the idea of rescuing his next dog. "There are so many Athletic, High Drive, Water Loving, Excellent dogs out there" says Tom "so many of them are Awesome dogs that, with a little work, can not only become an Athlete, but a wonderful, loving pet.". Tom fell in love with Remi the minute he saw him.  Remi and Tom instantly formed a Bond that would keep them together forever. Tom adopted Remi and took him under my wings full time. Remi immediately became Toms Work In Progress dog for the Sport of Dock Jumping. "I knew he had something special but it was going to take some work." says Tom. Through hard work and dedication, Remi was able to go from Rookie to World Class.

The journey was not an easy one. Remi was very High Strung, had absolutely no obedience and could focus on nothing. "The trick to the sport of dock jumping is to keep that High Energy at it's peak and learn to channel it and focus it" says Tom. Tom and Remi began to work the focus and were slowly able to channel the Energy in a positive manner. Remi started taking in a few Dock Jumping events and slowing began progressing. It wasn't until a DockDogs event in Fargo, ND in February of 2011 that Remi started showing his true Athletic Skills. The event was a Worlds Qualifier and Remi won the event with a 7'2" grab in Extreme Vertical.

From there Remi's true abilities really began to shine. Several Dock Jumping events later Remi becam the #1 Ranked Dog in the World in Speed Retrieve. He also became the #7 Ranked Dog in Extreme Vertical and Iron Dog. All this work and progress earned Team STIHLs Tom Dropik and Remi an invite to the 2011 DockDogs World Championships in Speed Retrieve, Extreme Vertical and Iron Dog. Tom turned down the Extreme Vertical invite so he and Remi could focus on what they do best, Speed Retrieve and Iron Dog.

Tom and Remi already had the Worlds competitors buzzing about the #1 Ranked dog in Speed Retrieve coming to town. Many believed Remi could actually challenge the world record of 4.85 seconds.  Remi came close on a couple of attempts posting a 4.98 and a 4.87. "Remi's Speed Retrieve was on Fire all weekend" says Tom. "He never faltered and always gave it 100%". When the finals came on Sunday, Remi found himself in the #1 position going against the current 3 time world champion Jordan. Jordan edged out Remi in the first run with a 5.2 second run, leaving it all up to Remi on his final run. The tension was high and Team STIHLs Tom Dropik and Remi were up to the challenge. Remi turned in a 5.03 second run to earn him the title of 2011 World Champion.

Tom and Remi also competed against the Best of the Best in Iron Dog, a discipline where the Top Athletes compete in all 3 disciplines, Big Air, Extreme Vertical, and Speed Retrieve. Again, Remi gave it 100% all weekend and was able to earn the title of 3rd Best Iron Dog in the World.

"Atta Boooyyy Remi" says Tom.

"STIHL has been a HUGE supporter of ours over the years. I want to thank STIHL for all their support."
"We couldn't do this with out you STIHL"
says Tom

 

 

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