Team Finland

Team Leader Anna Savolainen

I’m Anna Savolainen and come from Central Finland. For my job, I’m the sales director at an insurance company. My family includes my husband, my son, border collie Venla and japanese spitz Minttu.

I have practiced rally obedience with four of my dogs, even before the sport became official in Finland in 2014. Three of my dogs are Finnish Rally Champions and two are also Swedish Rally Champions. The biggest rally achievements are with my late border collie Pipsa, we got team gold and personal 4th in Nordic-rally Denmark 2019 and team bronze and personal 5th in Finnish Championships 2020.

I think it is awesome to get on a trip as a team leader. Finland has a great team! It makes me happy to help them succeed in the competition. I want to help everyone to do their best. I think we’re all going to have a great trip, at least I’m doing my best for it.

Eva-Lotta Halonen & Hilla

I live in Central Ostrobothnia which most people consider to be in the northern part of Finland. I have two border collies, almost 10 years old Hilla (name means cloudberry in English) and 2,5 years old Vimma, and two shetland sheepdogs, 11,5 years old Tinja and almost 4,5 years old Liekki (flame in English). Besides rally obedience we train and compete in traditional obedience, working dog trials and agility.

My strengths: I like my dogs to be a little “wild”, so I concentrate more on training attitude and good spirit than just technical skills. I have a good relationship with all my dogs and I know my dogs well. I think one of my strengths is also that I do so many different dogsports. All of them offer a little different angle where to view a dog training so it’s a great opportunity to learn and improve my skills in training.

Hilla’s strengths: Hilla is a very calm dog even though it is hard to believe when you look at her when she is on a rally obedience track. Hilla has nerves of steel. She always listens carefully to commands and she is able to move fast and with precision. Right now she is highly motivated to do especially well, because she is super annoyed with younger dogs taking her training time (and all those wonderful toys to play with..!).

Our merits: Hilla is Finnish obedience and rally obedience champion. She has competed also in tracking trials (open class) and agility (class 3). Hilla was in 3rd place in Finnish rally obedience championship in 2020, 2nd in nordic rally obedience championship in 2019 and 7th in finnish obedience championship in 2021. My older shetland sheepdog Tinja has won the 1st place in Finnish rally obedience championship in 2018 and was in 3rd place in 2016.

Carita Kuparinen & Hurja

I live in southern Finland with my husband. We have three border collies and one cat. In addition to training dogs I enjoy spending time in our family cottage in the country.

My strengths: I believe that doing things you love makes you happy. And I love training obedience and rally-obedience with Hurja <3

My dogs strengths: Hurja is just fantastic to train and compete with and I love him to the moon and back <3
Hurja does everything with great gusto, and we really love playing and competing together. Hurja is very intelligent and is excellent at distinguishing between different verbal cues. He is also good at reading my body language, so communicating with him is easy.

Our merits: Hurja’s main career has been in obedience. He has won the Finnish Championships (2018) and the Nordic Championships (2016) in obedience. Hurja has also won bronze in obedience World Championships (2016), bronze in Nordic Championships (2017) and several team gold metals both in World and Nordic Championships. We are fairly new to rally obedience, we only started rally obedience in autumn 2019. Hurja became a rally obedience champion in straight 12 competitions in February 2020 and qualified for the Finnish team in spring 2021.

Liisa Parviainen & Indy

I live in Kangasala near to Tampere area with my three dogs. My all dogs are danish-swedish farmdogs and Indy is the middle one of them. Besides training rally obedience and other dog sports, we love to hike and make adventures in the forest together.

My strengths: I enjoy playing and training with my dogs and it is easy to me to forget everything else in the ring. We are a good team with Indy and our aim is always to have fun together.

My dogs strengths: My dog Indy is very motivated to work with me and he always want to do exercises right. He is also very talented in technical work in rally obedience.

Our merits: Indy is Finnish rally obedience champion. We have participated in the nordic rally obedience championships also in 2019 in Finnish team.

Marika Ruottinen & Maissi

I live in Nokia with my two dogs. Both are labrador retrievers. Maissi is almost 6 years old and we compete in rally obedience, blood tracking and field trial with cold games.

My strengths: In rally obedience my strengths are good coordination and exact commands. This helps Maissi do its best.

Maissi’s strengths: Maissi loves to work and always wants to do right. She very rarely does something else than is asked and she ignores temptations very well.

Our merits: Maissi is Finnish rally obedience champion. We have won silver in Finnish rally obedience championships in 2018 and 2019. We won the Nordic Championships in 2019 both in individual competition and team competition.

Oona Tuormaa-Soikkeli & Wau

I’m from Äänekoski, Middle Finland. I started in rally-obedience after it became an official sport in Finland, and my first competition in it was in 2015. I’ve competed in rally with six dogs (3 of which have been my own and 3 have been borrowed for competing). At the moment I have two dogs of my own competing in rally-obedience and both are Finnish rally champions. I coach rally-obedience and obedience and run a dogsport hall for a living.

My strengths: I want to be fair to my dogs and let them know well in advance what I want them to do.
My strenght is timing the cues on course and that I don’t have much anxiety in trials. My background is in competitive sports, which also helps in dog sports.

Wau’s strengths: Wau is a very consistent performer. She has great concentration to tasks and she’s willing to please. Rally- obedience is a great sport for her. She doesn’t get too excited about jumps or tunnels and doesn’t care about temptations. It doesn’t make a difference for her what tasks come up on any course. Wau loves to heel most of all. She wants to co-operate and do precisely what I ask her to.

Wau’s merits: Wau is a Finnish champion in rally-obedience and obedience. Wau collected the required results for championship in just a few trials and has gotten over 95 points in almost all of her trials. Wau is a member of the Finnish rally-obedience coaching ring.

Csilla Bakos & Ham

I live in Nokia with my dog, Ham. My daytimes goes at working in a kindergarten and in my freetime, I live a life of a ”crazy dog lady”. I had my first dog when I was 18, and now it would be impossible to live my life without a ”paw-friend”.

My strength: I am a perfectionist in dogtreenings. I love to challenge myself even though it is always very thrilling. As a doghandler I try to understand my dog help him when it needed.

Ham’s strength: He never failed to try his best in every situation and always ready to do something new. He is quite sensitive but he can be also a little bit stubborn sometimes.

Ham’s merits:  1th place at 2019 Finnish Rally Obedience Championship. 3th place at 2019 Nordic Rally Obedience Championship. 3th place at 2021 Finnish Dogdance Championship in freestyle category.