• Wizard Boy Speaks Out - The Merlin Interview

    In an extra special coup today, Merlin the 'Flyball Dog Advanced' Greyhound star of DogStar has agreed to his first and last interview with this esteemed publication. Self styled gentleman of Flyball, voted 'Flyball Rear Of The Year' three years running and with the style and panache that only Merlin can pull off, we bring you Merlin - The Interview......

    So Merlin, obviously you've come a long way. Congratulations on the Advanced award.

    Thank you, it's a pleasure to be here. I don't normally speak to humans, but obviously there is a lot of interest in this award, so I've made an exception this time.

    Much appreciated it is too. So, it's taken 7 years to get to this point - you must be very pleased.

    Indeed, you know us Greyhounds, take life as it comes and we prefer a slow pace. Unfortunately they don't do 'comfy sofa ball' so one does have to put in the effort sometimes.

    Yeah, I get that. What do you put your success down to?

    Well, obviously there's Julie and Keith and the rest of my entourage that have run me over the years. This award is obviously for me, but they deserve a little bit of thanks. Special thanks though to Lesley who brought me out of retirement and back into flyball, so she's played a big part in me getting this award.

    That's very gracious of you. Do you have any words of wisdom for other Greyhounds in the sport?

    Just do it your way baby! Seriously, it doesn't require a lot of dedication, just a bit of training the humans. If you train them right you get hot dog sausages for throwing a ball at their feet. Just watch out for the early starts, sometimes you have to run at like half eight - I mean who's together by then, you can still taste the kibble.

    You seem to run for a lot of teams in DogStar?

    Well, when one is as laid back and cool as me you're in demand. The reflection of my sunny disposition shines on the other dogs and makes them feel good. You have to go where you're needed. I'm like the littlest hobo of the DogStar team.

    So do you have a favourite snack?

    One is partial to a bit of hot dog, who wouldn't be. And squeezy cheese. And if you're really lucky they leave you alone with the poppets and venison sausages.

    And how about home?

    Well, I have a comfy bed, my whippety friends and my owners Julie and Keith who I wouldn't be without. I get food, water, a field to run in and Keith to train. Life's good.

    People still talk in hushed tones about 'the day of 18 runs'. Any recollections?

    Well, while I'm usually a part time runner, sometimes one has to step up to the podium and make one's mark. When unforseen circumstances meant I had to run, I had to run. It was the least I could do. Even when the Smeg Head at the box end loaded the ball in the wrong side once or twice, I forgive him. I'm very magnanimous like that.

    And afterwards?

    I don't really remember anything before Wednesday. You have to understand I'd packed 6 flyball competitions into one day. One needs one's beauty sleep.

    So what next?

    Well, one intends to grow old gracefully, in the flyball lane and out. It's important for me to have some down time though, and I've already picked my deerstalker hat and walking cane ready for when Keith and I go for some jolly good rambles.

    Well, thanks for taking the time out to talk to me

    It's been a pleasure dear boy. Let yourself out, I'm off for a quick nap, one has to make sure one has enough energy for one's main evening snooze you know.


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