Araki Fabulous Willy
Willy after winning the Crufts competition (2007)
|Species||Canis lupus familiaris|
|Born||25 April 2001|
|Died||4 December 2008(aged 7)|
|Title||Best In Show at Crufts|
|Predecessor||Am Ch. Caitland Isle Take a Chance (Australian Shepherd)|
|Successor||Ch. Jafrak Philippe Olivier (Giant Schnauzer)|
|Owner||John Shaw and Neil Smith|
Ch/Am Ch. Araki Fabulous Willy (25 April 2001 – 4 December 2008), also known as Willy, was a male Tibetan Terrier who won the title of Best In Show at Crufts in 2007. He was also the top of his breed in the UK for four years consecutively, and the top of the Utility group in 2003. Willy was the most successful of his breed of all time in the UK.
At Crufts between 2004 and 2006, Willy won the title of Best of Breed each time, and placed third in the Utility Group in 2006, winning the group in 2004. After winning Best in Show at the Birmingham National Dog Show in 2006, Willy became the most successful Tibetan Terrier of all time in the UK, having amassed 40 challenge certificates, breaking a record which had stood since 1970.
In 2007 at the age of six years, Willy qualified for Crufts and took first place in the Utility Group after winning its own breed group. Willy went on to take the title of Best in Show, the runner up in the final was a Wire Fox Terrier named Ch. Travella Show Stopper, with the other breeds who had qualified from winning their groups were an Alaskan Malamute, a Bloodhound, a Maltese, a Flat Coated Retriever and a Bearded Collie, and was judged by Zena Thorn-Andrews. Owner John Shaw said of the victory, "It is unbelievable. This dog has done so well. It is the biggest accolade you could wish for. We may think about retiring him now because there is nothing left to do."
Claire Balding was the presenter of the Cruft's coverage for the BBC, and her dog Archie was the grandson of Willy. She said of the Tibetan Terrier's victory, "I got quite emotional. The critical thing is the X factor and he's got that." Another of Willy's grandsons, Notoriety Moonwalker at Tetsimi, took first place in the class of Special Junior – Dog in 2009. Following his victory at Crufts, Willy attended the re-launch of the Purple Hotel at Birmingham Star City, after it was rebranded from being named the Sleep Inn Hotel. He was retired after his win, and did not compete in the following year's Crufts. His breeder Ken Sinclair said that he was busy "playing with his girlfriend and digging up holes in the orchard".
Willy had been the top Tibetan Terrier in the UK for four consecutive years, and in 2003 became the only Tibetan Terrier to be the highest ranked of the Utility Group. He died on 4 December 2008, from a severe kidney infection.
His final tally of wins was 45 CCs and 15 groups.
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- Pidd, Helen (7 March 2008). "Fur flies as Hollywood glitz and dog discos arrive on the scene". The Guardian. p. 24.
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- "A dog's life for hotel chain". Birmingham Post. 23 February 2008. p. 26. Retrieved 29 August 2011.
- "Top Dogs 2004". Dog World. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
- "Top Dogs 2006". Dog World. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
- "Top Stud Dogs 2006". Dog World. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
- "Top Stud Dogs 2007". Dog World. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
- "Shock death of Fabulous Willy". Dog World. Retrieved 16 August 2012.