-The Swedish Cold game/Working test championship 

- Ingemar Borelius

Stig Olsson with his NORD UCH INT UCH SE JCH Gunhills Gallant Girl

The headline refers to the fact that the set up for this championship has changed over the years. It’s an unofficial event that is based on the official rules for Cold Game tests and Working Tests, mainly being judged by official judges from the Nordic countries. Gradually, due to the growing number of entrants, the Cold game set up has been changed to Working tests on dummies.

Michael Melin and SE JCH Bobby being the winner in four consecutive years 1983

The first event was organised in 1979 outside Stockholm with 50 Flatcoats entered in three different classes; Youngdogs, Open and Elite and the great Dual Champion O’Flanagan Free-as-Air being the very first winner. The year after the number had grown to 132 and it should continuously grow. The greatest achievement during the 1980: ties was no doubt the dog SE J Ch Bobby winning the title for four consecutive years, a merit that will probably never be beaten. In 1987 the first non-Swedish winner was seen in the Finnish dog FI JCh Taka-Tapiolan Roi.

Lena Bratsberg and SE UCH FI UCH NORD JCH Searover Shanty winning in 1996 the first and probably the last time this special event was settled at a Field Trial

In 1996 the setup of the test was quite unique starting with a Cold Game test, the finals in all classes were executed at a proper Field Trial for the first and probably the last time. The finals for the Young dogs, Beginners and Open classes were settled on ducks. The final for the Elite class dogs was settled in two rounds, on partridge and ducks. The event was organised by the great Stig Olsson, the founder and head designer of the Swedish Flatcoat club. But most sadly he passed away a few months before the trial which turned out to be a great tribute to this far-sighted man.

Numbers were quite high over many years but in 2003, 229 entrants forced organisers to change to a full working test set up with different stations during the first rounds and finals that were more freely designed. In 2004 the numbers exceeded 300 and for the first time a non-Swedish dog was the winner in the Elitclass, being Reltub Black Velvet, born in Britain and owned and handled by his Danish owner Annika Christiansen. In 2005 the Sweden bred bitch Duckstream Cragganmore and her Norwegian owner/handler Bjarne Holm conquered the unofficial Flatcoat Champion title (Flatmästare) repeating the success for three consecutive years.  

In 2004 the number of entrants exceeded 300 for the first time and during the last ten years or so the numbers of entrants have frequently exceeded 400. The setup of the event has changed over time. During the first three years it was organised in Stockholm but since then it’s been organised by the local FRK sections all around the country. Due to the overwhelming interest among Flatcoat owners and the gradually growing numbers it was for a while organised with local qualifying rounds and common finals for a limited number of dogs. During the last years however, all dogs have been welcomed to this impressing event. Dogs from the other Nordic countries are frequent guests. In 2002 19 entrants from The Netherlands, Germany, Denmark and Finland made the journey to the far north, to Umeå being 1300 km north of the southern Swedish border.  

Anders Eriksson handling the winner  SE JCH Kecas Tjuvskata and the runner up SE JCH Matsbokurvans RC Monark as a team                   in the 2000 finalsBjarne Holm and NO JCH SE JCH Duckstream Cragganmore winning in three consecutive years 2005

Factbase: the frk.nu homepage and the story about Flatmästerskapet written by Gunilla Lefwerth

Winners of the Swedish Cold Game/working test Championship over the years: http://www.frk.nu/aktiviteter/flatmästerskapet/flatmästare-och-klassvinnare-genom-åren-11901061

 Cold Game/working test Championship 2017 Final.pdf

       © Alex Faarkrog 2017