Ashley Whippet International Championships

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Nike Park is the site of an exciting annual championship featuring dozens of our furry friends showing off their skills with the frisbee.

“Today’s the 2022 Ashley Whippet Frisbee World Championships and this is a year long group of people that have competed across the world that have qualified for today’s event,” said Co International Series Director Tom said Wehrli.

Naperville native Tom Wehrli and longtime friend Alex Stein run the international event, which features a wide range of dog breeds from all over the country.

“There’s all these dog clubs around the country and we ask them hey do you want to on one weekend in the summer do want to do an Ashley Whippet thing with your 35 dogs and they go absolutely we wanna do it,” said International Series Director Alex Stein.

Who is Ashley Whippet?

The tournament is named after Ashley Whippet, the dog Stein began raising back in 1971, who went on to perform fantastic feats worldwide.

“There weren’t many Ashleys back then in 1971 when he was born. Then obviously the breed Whippet nobody knew what a Whippet was back then. I’m walking him. People ask why is your dog so skinny and I go, excuse me, it’s a four hundred and fifty year old pedigree between a greyhound and an English fox terrier and it’s like it’s a Whippet,” said Stein.

International Competition

Despite the tight knit connections developed over the years between the participants creating a local feel, people come from across the globe to collect high scores with their dogs and frisbees.

“There’s people here from Japan, there’s people here from Mexico, there’s one person from Columbia, so those winners decided hey come on let’s fly to Naperville and compete for a world championship,” said Stein.

More to come

If you missed out on Saturday, day two will take place on Sunday, September 4th. The final round of scoring will be determined in events like the freestyle and long toss competitions as well as the overall champion.

“Tomorrow’s the finals, we’re going to crown a World Champion in different divisions and it’s very exciting. It’s very exciting because at the end of it we start counting up the points and people don’t know if they came in first or came in 15th so it’s always an exciting time. People always stick around and we have plenty of bleachers for people to sit in and they stick around pretty much all day,” said Wehrli.

Naperville News 17 Patrick Codo Reports.