by Drew Callan, Press Officer


Fougeres 2016

For the first race of the 2016 campaign members had to wait an additional 24 hours due to the weather conditions through France and out in to parts of the channel. The following morning we were greeted with a much better prospect of having a race as the conditions were much better along the line of the flight well up in to England itself. There were some showers moving across the Midlands and these were predicted to be heavy in places but scattered and moving through quickly. With this ‘thumbs up’ along the line ‘Cock Crow’ Kelly called for strings to be cut and the convoy were up and away in to good sun shine and a light SW wind, with these conditions expected to prevail over much of the route home. With the wind remaining light the convoy took full advantage and the provisional results indicate that they came straight up the Cherbourg peninsula and cut out for home maintaining fairly straight line. As you would expect the Section B boys were in the right place at the right time and have taken 6 of the top 10 positions. This race saw competition to top the new sections and I am pleased to say all sections were topped on the night on what turned out a tight race for some members from the North Midlands northwards so well done to those members who topped the new sections in their maiden season.

1st Open, 1st Section F

Top of the heap in a close finish we have the father and son partnership of J and P Parker. I have spoken to James on a few occasions over the past 4 years following national successes and I believe that on each occasion it has been a hen that has done the damage for the partnership. The young lady that came to do the damage and claim the glory for the Reading loft now goes by the name of National Beauty and as with all national winners she is most definitely bred for the job with some top pigeons close up in her pedigree. The sire of the Hen is a Gaston Van De Wouwer ( Kaasboer lines ) and the Dam is a double granddaughter of The Machine ( bird of the year in both the up north combine and the north east homing Union 2010 ).
The Hens this year have been put on a Widowhood system based on the Frank Bristow system and in the closed season the loft has been changed to benefit the limited time that James has. The partnership share the workload, with James racing team of 16 hens and his dad Pete taking charge of the cocks. James will be the first to admit that he prefers hens as they respond better to the limited time he has available and thrive on it. The Hens were trained three times at approximately twenty five miles and then sent to two inland races and one short channel crossing as trainers
I was taking to Pete, the senior partner, and he was telling me that this was the first competitive race of the season for the birds as an administrative error on his part saw the wrong birds wiped of the ETS system and they were only put back on the week before. He said they had no worries lifting them in to the national as they were the picture of health and were ‘bouncing’ at home and exercising well they were telling the Parker boys that they were up for the job. The impression I get from speaking to James previously is that he really does his homework and has travelled far and wide to learn about nutrition, feed systems and how to achieve optimal health and he has put what he has learnt in to practice.  He now has the philosophy of watching the birds to see what they want and to adjust and tweak it daily if need be. The birds diet is determined by work rate and the appetite the birds are showing. To this end, James mixes what he needs to meet his requirements from a range of Van Robaeys corns. Alongside this he has always sourced the best bloodlines available and my memory suggests that it was the Jos Thone birds that were winning well for him previously and these are still very much abundant in the loft. However, over the past couple of years he has made it his target to upgrade the blood in the loft and to this end he has brought in some top drawer bloodlines.

If you wanted any evidence about whether the hard work and obsessive attention to continually improving their knowledge of health and nutrition then come along to a national marking day at Steventon. When Pete turns up with the team for that race they are immaculately presented, the hens are set up to a tee and as you put them through they pulse with nervous energy. Their quality is unreal and each one is in the same condition, set up and fuelled right to do the job being asked of it. The partnership would like to congratulate all the section winners and the National Flying Club on returning the birds in good condition.

To demonstrate how we all need a bit of luck to win a national, James was concerned in the run up to the national that the hens were not eating well and were just picking through the grains without any gusto. On the morning of the basketing he had them out at first light and they flew their hearts out, so much so that James had told his dad just to send cocks to the national as he did not think they would drop. However, as he was getting in his van to go to London he noticed a few of them dropping. These 10 hens then went to the national and the rest is history had they flown for 2 minutes longer James would have been left for work and the winner would not have been at the race.
Finally James and his dad would not have been able to realise their dream without the help from Ian Stafford and Charlie Ward. They would like to thank everyone that took the time to phone and send messages of congratulations, especially Mark Gilbert and Roger Lowe two very sporting gentlemen.

2ND Open, 1st Section E

Taking Bridesmaids position in what was a tight scramble for top honours we have the ever present Winkfield lofts of Mark Gilbert. As you would expect from Mark this bird will have been bred right for the job being asked of it. The first bird over the pad pigeon Mark got was a yearling cock, he topped the BBO federation the previous week from Portland against 3200 birds so was clearly on his toes. When I talked about being bred right have a look at this. The father is of Southfield Champ the Saintes National winner in 2010, when paired to a hen called Joy a daughter of Dirk Van Dykes Kanibal that Peter Fox from Syndicate loft kindly loaned him. The mother is direct from Jan Hooymans, from a brother of the famous Harry called Rooney when paired to a daughter of Harry. As you can see the section winner is jam packed with the top middle distance lines available. Mark would like to congratulate the overall winners and all the section winners in the race.

Mark Gilbert

3rd Open, 2nd Section E

For the next spot we travel back to Reading to the loft of a man who is always dangerous at any distance Roger Lowe. Roger is almost as well known for his choices of headwear as he is for his performances and also for making Eamon Kelly more famous than he already was good work Roger. Sending 30 birds, 19 widowhood cocks and 11 widowhood hens Roger had 28 arrive home on the day. First bird to the loft is a yearling cock and he is  already a winner of 11th  fed 2236 birds.
His sire is bred by Freddy and Jacque Vandenheede, and is now named new kid on the block being a grandson of their Trigger Finger. He is sire of many winner Inc 1st sec, 3rd  open BICC Le Mans 1936 birds, and  3rd sect 7th  open NFC Ancenis 5710birds. These birds are having a big impact at the Lowe lofts. The dam is Orbital Delight, full sister to Fast As Lighting winner of the BBC national by 25min.
She is a winner of many prizes including 2nd  sect, 3rd  open CSCFC Carentan 1946birds,
4th sect, 5th  open NFC fougeres 5408birds. She is a Janssen x Lou wouters both parents bred by Sheldon Leonard.
Roger would like to congratulate James and his father Pete on winning the race and the race advisor Eamon Kelly on a good lib under tricky conditions.

Darling and Ede improving their stock.


1st Section B, 4th Open

Taking top spot in Section B and finishing up in the top end of the result from Fourges for the second year running we have the partnership Darling and Ede. These two guys have only been together for a short while and Darren feels they are still in the process of getting a team together to allow them to be serious contenders at the top level. So far their results have been impressive and they are definitely a loft to look out for on national days. Darren and Tony would like to congratulate the winning Loft... Close but not close enough...They  was leading the Fougeres National for the 2nd year running,  last year finishing 2nd and  this year 4th.. 3rd time lucky next year? Their section winning pigeon was is an Andreas Drapa, and the Mother was bred by the man in 2nd place none other than Mark Gilbert. Unfortunately the mother was sold late last year when they were reducing numbers so someone’s loss is another's gain. The partnership race on roundabout and the National was only the birds 2nd race of the season so hopefully signs of things to come. The boys would like a special thank you to Tony's son and their silent partner Harry. With Tony backwards and forwards to London all the time Darren with a young family in the middle of a house move, Harry is always on hand to help out. They know couldn't have done it without you Harry, and Darren says you will get a raise in your wages as a result of the work you put in.

Roger Lowe

5th Open , 2ND Section B

Taking second spot is the loft of M Collins. When I was speaking to him to get information he was sat enjoying a picnic lunch whilst waiting for birds from the CSCFC race, sounds like an ideal afternoon to me. The bird that got him the top 10 finish is a blue 2 year old cock that was racing natural this year as he hadn’t the room to have all the birds on widowhood so needed a plan B. The cock took to the system very well and was sent to Fougeres covering 10 day eggs. He is bred down from a top Hession stock cock when paired to a daughter of Tony Mardons ‘Toey’. He has flown two races this year - from Portland and Kingsdown and went fresh to the first national race of the season.

Maurice Collins

6th Open 3rd Section B

Staying in Section B we have the former national winning loft of Mr and Mrs Waterhouse. This is a team who are always at the front of any national or classic race and are consistent throughout the programme at any distance and at national or domestic racing.  The first timer is a yearling cock now called Harry’s Boy. He is another one bred for the task being asked of him and is a half brother of the partnerships recent National winner from Saintes  - sharing the same father. Harry’s Boy was a consistent young bird last year and has continued in the same vein this year and has been on the fed result. Dave tells me that Harry’s Boy is really looking forward to NFC Messac.

Dave Waterhouse amongst the winners again.


7TH Open, 4TH Section B

Wearn Brothers and Neilson are once again up amongst the lead birds. I was unable to get any information from the before going to press.

8TH Open, 5th Section B.

We move to the Isle of Wight now for the next bird, to the loft of Mr E Rann. This family have a fine tradition of racing on the island and have a performance  pedigree that is impressive. Unfortunately I was unable to get in contact with Mr Rann in time to include his bird in the report.

9TH Open, 2nd Section F.

Taking runner up spot in Section F we have one of the most consistent small lofts currently competing at National Level- Cosmin Talas from Oxford This year he started the season with 24 widowhood  cocks, half old ones and half yearlings. The breed he keeps is only one and that's "Cosy's Rockets" which are doing well for me at the moment.  these have been put together using the best bloodlines available and using the basket to select the best. Cosy sent a team of 9 pigeons from which 5 had been over the water previously and 4 were going over for the first time. Cosy would like to congratulate the winners of the race James and Pete Parker. He would  also like to say a big thank you to Jill and Alan Webber for running the marking station, they are doing a fantastic job, and  well done to Eamon for a brilliant job he is doing. He has a kiss for one of the three of you but won’t say who you will have to wait until Messac marking to find out!!

10th Open, 8th Section B

Finishing off the top 10 we have the loft of J and T Austin. Unfortunately I was unable to get in contact with them before the report went to press. If they could get in contact with some details I will include them in another report.

Cosmin Talas and his loft manager.

Around The Sections.

Section A

Topping the section from Fougeres we have the partnership of Skidmore and Goble  from Havant. The section topper is a cheq pied hen with plenty of previous and a few miles under her belt in 5 years of racing. The little lady has previously won 27th and 33rd open from Bergerac with the CSCFC, this year she is starting in a similar vein and has drawn on her experience in classic and national racing to get to the front and stay there. Well done gentlemen.

Skidmore and Goble.

Runner up is one of the gentlemen of the sport and someone I look forward to talking to Mr Lou Severe. The first timer from Fougeres is a Vandenabeele cock bred for him by Richard Horton who Lou describes as his favourite drinking partner. Since having a few very bad outbreaks of YBS a few years ago the decision was made by Lou not to breed any young birds again himself, but instead to bring in a small team of around 20 each year. For the past few years the bulk have come from Richard and this is the case again this year with 12 coming from Richard and an additional 6 being purchased from Peter Reeves. Lou has a philosophy now of making things a s easy as possible with the birds and to help this the team is raced celibate and the cocks have 90 minutes in the morning, followed by the same for the hens. Then the young birds have a couple of hours in the afternoon and everything is done and dusted by 4.00. All birds get Versela Laga corn and all old birds get a good work out in the nationals and classics. Lou sent 25 to the race and had 18 in the loft within 30 minutes. The section cock was on the subs bench for a bit recovering from a broken toe he picked up at the start of the season, but showed he was match fit by winning the club from Coutances the week before  Fougeres.

W Woods.

Section C

Topping Section C is the Shaftesbury loft of W Woods. Bill won the section from Cholet last year and comes up trumps again this year from Fougeres. The bird to take the honours is a 2 year old widowhood cock, and like te rest of the team he is given an open loft twice a day and left to come and go?if they fly they fly?it certainly isn’t doing them any harm. Bill has built a family based solely on the basket and confesses to not being a great keeper pf records he says that he won his first race in 1953 and wrote down the ring number, distance, wind direction etc of the winner and lost it off the lost it off the loft 3 days later so hasn’t bothered with detailed records since!! However, the family he has today has in the mix somewhere some wildermeerch and some Houben along with some blood from his brother who also flies a tidy bird. Bill has been a member of The National Flying Club since 1958 and admits to being one of the remaining old guard in the clock station a sign of the times I think.

Stuart Laws

Runner up in Section C is the consistent loft of Stuart Laws. This is a loft that isn’t afraid of the big boys and punches well at national level. Stuart had national success the first season I took up the post of Press Officer and is amongst the top birds again. The pigeon is a Hartog x Vandebeele Hen. The sire came from Mr Hartog himself John Gerard. The dam was Vandenbeele, with the bloodlines originating from Colin Crowe in Scotland.
Stuart would like to thank John for taking my birds to Frome for the marking. He feels that since John has been a member of the Upton Flying Club it has really livened the club up with plenty of fun and banter. He has organised 2 breeder buyers and been a great worker for the club. Stuart is going to name the bird "DJ" after John who is also known by the members as "Donkey John"?not sure I want to know why!!

P and D Clarke

Section D

Topping Section D on a day when the birds had to work to get in to the area we have the Taunton loft of P and D Clarke. The section D winner is a 2 year old roundabout hen . Her sire is a direct son of Dave and Vince  Padfield’s BICC  St Vincent national winner and the dam is  a direct daughter of 'ffion' 9th  open Barcelona for the Padfield boys. This was clearly a day that suited these birds as the Padfield loft topped the new Welsh section on the same day. These bloodlines form the basis of the Clarke loft and have been responsible for a few national results lately.  The section topper was sent to Poole and Chale with the DCWS flying club as training races only. The partnership would like to say well done to the winners and also their own club members for some great results in the section.

Graham Wilson.

Taking the wooden spoon in the hotly contested Section D we have the Exeter  loft of Graham Wilson. The timer here is a blue checkered white flight hen and the strain of the bird is a Jan Aarden based Anton Schutz, with the parents of this yearling pigeon being bred by Louella Lofts. She didn't receive any training for three weeks prior to the race, so she really exceeded Graham’s expectations.  All the pigeons in the Wilson loft are flown on the roundabout system. Graham would like to express his sincere thanks to the national flying club convoyers for the excellent condition of his pigeons on their return home.

Section G

Taking top honours is the Bristol based loft of Nigel Templar. Nigel is no stranger to success at this level, and in fact in the first race I covered as Press Officer he made my job very easy indeed by doing a demolition job on the section and open. He houses the best sprint/middle distance bloodlines from Holland and Belgium and races these right along the line in the middle distance nationals and classics with devastating results.

Janet and Ken Wilcox.

Runner up in section G we have the ever present loft of Janet Wilcox, ably assisted by husband Ken. This   5 year old blue widowhood cock has been a very consistent prize winner in club, combine and national races. In 2013 he scored 118th open NFC saintes , 2014 230th  open Saintes NFC, and in 2015 118th  open Messac  .  THE parents are both bred by Geoff kirkland from his old Alfons Bauwen family which over more than 30 years have given the wilcox loft much success. The cocks grand sire was "Thermal King ", 3 times Pau on the day 556 miles and he in turn was bred from pigeons they had from Geoff in the mid 80’s. This family continues to produce very consistent birds, the kind you can sit and wait for in confidence if nothing befalls them enroute . The partnership mostly  race their birds their on widowhood  from the age of 2  onwards as they  find they become more mature and race very well up to the age of 7 or 8. The team is fed on a standard widowhood mix in evening, with a teaspoon of depurative with Carrs oil added each morning, the birds are never broken down.

Section H

Topping the section is a new member of the National Flying club, but definitely not new to winning- Mr Pete Chamberlain who races in leafy Northamptonshire. He certainly broke his NFC duck in style by topping the section and having the birds fall in from Fougeres. The topper is a 3 year old Van Reet x Janssen hen raced on round about. The birds are basketed off the perches for channel racing so that they travel calmly and can have all the fun they want when they get home!! The Chamberlain loft is very must middle distance focused and Pete likes to compete right out the line up to 400 miles at classic level. Pete was very pleased with the condition of the birds and had 6/8 home. Welcome aboard Pete.

John Black.

Runner up behind the Chamberlain loft is the consistent national loft of John Black. The bird clocked from Fougeres was a yearling dark cheq widowhood cock bred by Paul (Eddie the eagle) Loom from Wyboston Bedfordshire. These two lofts  swapped 6 young birds last year and this is the second one from the batch to get 2nd section in a national, not a bad average I think I would be asking for 12 next year John. The loft sent 12 birds and clocked 7 in just over half an hour and his overall returns were good, John commented that they were in excellent condition when they returned so thanks to the NFC team that looked after the birds, He would like to say a special thanks to Kevin Grace and his team at the Brassingbourne  marking station. Finally, well done to J&P Parker on winning the national and congratulations to all the section winners.

John Hambidge.

Section I

Taking the honours this week is a man who is getting quite a taste for national racing Mr John Hambidge from sunny North Oxfordshire. John was top of the heap twice last year and is continuing on from where he left of. John has been putting together a distance family based on a few Denny birds and in to these he has put some Van Reet blood to ‘gee’ them up a bit. The pigeon that topped the section is one of these crosses and this two year old widowhood cock is at the age where John will be asking a few questions of him in the channel races. This isn’t too bad a start I should think. John had a 2 year old hen less than a minute behind this guy and this little Jos Thone hen is what John describes as ‘a handy little bird’, winning him some money last year from Bergerac.

Next up is a loft with nothing to prove at any level of competition Clive Yates of Tamworth. The loft has recently moved up to the challenge of 500+ mile racing and whilst the old family is still the base of the loft there has been heavy but clever investment in new blood to help compete at the very top. The cock that came for Clive is a widowhood cock with a bit of performance already under his belt. He won the RPRA west midlands rose bowl best performance over 450miles last season, winning 1st section NFC Saintes 478mls, 12th open Bordeaux MNFC 546mls 16th  section Messac NFC and many more prizes including winning the club from 51mls. His sister was Ace pigeon last season in the MNFC so it’s a strong family trait.

His sire is bred by Mark Gilbert and his dam is the good Dutch hen bred by Batenburg, two new families brought in to do a job and they are succeeding at this. The cock came home with pink ceres and wattles where he had battled through some heavy rain to get back. Clive would like to congratulate all the winners in the race.

2nd Section I for Clive Yates

Section J

Top of the pile this week in Section J we have the West Midlands loft of R Gelder and son.  Richie and Dan clocked a yearling Gabby x Hooymans. The section topper was a consistent young bird for the loft, winning a few prizes, and has carried this over in to the yearling stage of it’s career. The bird was raced on roundabout and if this result is anything to go by it has a good career ahead of it.

R and G Gelder.

In runner up spot we have the Herefordshire loft of Joe Baker. The bird was flying to the far West of section J just 12 miles from the Wales border between Hereford and Hay on Wye, and I don’t suppose she had much company. She is medium build of Vandenabeele breeding the loft is 80% Vandenabeele with the rest longer distance birds, most of the birds are from M&D Evans but this one is out of a cock bought in 2005 from Jutla Brothers and a Louella hen all the grand parents of the hen were bred by Gaby. The hen was the fancied bird and has been the most consistent from the NFC over the last 3 seasons she was 2nd club Niort as a yearling 400miles and was second club last week from 110miles. She is raced on roundabout as is the rest of the team. 6 birds were sent by Joe and he had 4 on the day with the section hen’s yearling daughter arriving at 8:30pm with the last 2 before 7am on Monday to give full returns. Joe has been a club member for just 3 years and this is the first time he will make the published result so he is understandably over the moon to get a bird out in the wild west but as he says its special birds that you need to fly in the NFC and this is her 3rd season so she must be getting the hang of it. The plan now is to get more of the same to support her. Finally, Joe would like to pass on his congratulations to all the other prize winners.


Joe Baker

Section K

Topping the longer flying Section K we have the Mansfield loft of Mr and Mrs Wright. The team sent 4 and had all 4 in 1 hour. The sire of the hen was a late bred cock, out of a pigeon called De Hollander from Howard Jackson, which was brought by Michaels good friend Pete Lee of Warsop  and he was paired to a hen from the lofts old established family. The nest mate has 5th section 11th  open Carentan  with the N.F.C. and the hen has also claimed 7th  section, 23rd  open Messac. Not a bad nest pair? The 3rd bird home  is a good bird which should have topped section K at saintes last year for the partnership but came home without ETS ring on. The loft have topped section K at saintes and Acensis before, and have said that they will keep on trying their best. They like the design of the N.F.C crates because the birds have water on 3 sides and always housed in good condition. Michael was going in to hospital last week for surgery and like any true pigeon man was complaining about it being during racing and hoped it didn’t interfere too much with the racing programme!!! I am sure all members wish you a speedy recovery.

Mr and Mrs Wright partnership.

In runner up spot we have the partnership of B and N Neal. Their first bird is a blue Hardy Kruger hen which comes through Premier Stud stock with Tiger Woods on both sides of the pedigree also Da Vinci, Catwoman, Nelly and Bailey in the mix as well. She set out to impress from an early age and she was Jim's favourite youngster in the team last year. However, she took a knock late on in the young bird season so was never sent across the water so Fougeres was her first crossing at 365 miles, but that didn’t hold her back. She came back a little tired but looked fine an hour later. The partnership got four from ten on the day two next morning, all had worked hard a couple looked like they had gone around some bad weather but were in great condition.

B and N  Neal.

Section L

Taking the bragging rights this week and doing it in style we have Lol Gant of Stockport. Lol is another new member this year who has gone and topped the section at the first attempt. At a spritely 70 years old Lol has been a committed channel man for all of his racing career, and the recent change in partnership arrangements has given him the impetus to try competing with the National Flying club and guess what he loves it. Lol had a great baptism and had 5/5 including 3 yearlings who were getting a bit of experience for later in life. He has been taken under the wing of local long distance ace and good friend Brian Littlewood and you could ask for no better mentor. Lol is having a few details and a photo put together to be sent to me and I look forward to writing about this achievement later.

Taking runner up spot is the partnership of Gavin and Glyn Buckley who are always a time you need to know at this level and of course won the National last year. And as if that wasn’t good enough they collect my mate Pete Hackings bin up in Halliwell in Bolton and he really rates them as binmen!!. Their bird on this occasion is a Braspenning 2 year old roundabout hen with a bit of previous form. Her best positions so far is 1st  fed, 3rd Amal Cheltenham against 2614 birds, 8th  fed, 16th  Amal Yeovil 2556 birds and the week before the NFC  she was 6th  fed Portland. She is a very consistent hen inland always being in the first 5 back to the loft this was her first ever channel race and was their main pool bird she is also provisionally 1st  Lancs York 4bird club. Her dam was a 2003 bred Braspenning coming from the lines off De felle,  she also bred 2x1st   Amal winners and is also the grand dam of 2nd  L fourgeres and 3rd  Section L, 3rd  open fourgeres. Her sire is a 2013 bred Belgium cock who is starting to make a mark. The hen returned in excellent condition as did all their birds but all had pink wattles where they had meet some rain nearer to home. The partnership would like to congratulate the overall winner and Loll Gant the winner of Section L.

A touch of class 2nd Section L

Section N

Having the honour of topping another new section in the first race id a partnership from The North East who are no strangers to competing in the NFC. The partnership of Driver, Dawson and Driver have raced a few tidy birds at the distance and seem to have a knack of getting hens to perform for them. "Section N is one of the latest new Sections created by the NFC for the
start of the 2016 season. The partnership were top prize winners last season in the Sportsman FC. The partnership stopped club racing a couple of seasons ago to concentrate on National racing and already have a 1st Section K from the Old Hens race in 2014 however this win will mean a great deal
more to the partnership. The loft entered a strong team of 24 well trained birds and timed their Blue Pied hen now named "Wor Lass" at 20.48 pm doing 1187.81 ypm and flying 458 miles 381 yards. Absolutely top racing in the conditions that some of those at the top end of the club had to face on the day. ’Wor Lass’ was bred by the partnership in 2012 from a pair of birds which originating from McCardle & Archibald of Liverpool she was a very fast young bird and consistent old bird but after an accident in the loft in early 2015 when she damaged a wing was rested for the season. This year she was despatched to Fougeres with confidence sitting 14 days on eggs after a tough training programme where she had excelled. Robert Dawson is a hard task master and feeds his birds on top quality feed and minimum supplements. He is a strong advocate of mixing his feed from the Vanrobaey Premium Range."

The 1st section topper in Section N

Runner up on a trying day was the partnership of M Anderson and .The partnership are no strangers to distance racing and have been competing in the old Section K for quite a few years. They thought the 3 birds that made it on the day were all good pigeons and congratulations to the owners of the other 2.  A few more turned up for them  the next day none the worse for the experience, and of the 15 they  sent they ended up with 13 home . The first bird has been to in excess of 520 miles and so far hasn't had a night out in either the NFC or BICC. He is always flown on widowhood. The partnership don't compete in NEHU organisations apart from sending young birds for the experience to 150 miles. They much prefer to do their own thing and have been doing so now along with their good friends Brian Hicks & John Rumney for the last 11 years. 

Pete Robinson the history maker

Section O

This new section encompasses some of the hardest terrain to try and race pigeons in to so I take my hat of the select band of men who have stepped forward to take up the challenge. I only hope their actions inspire others. The history maker on this occasion is Mr Peter Robinson, and the bird who put his name in the history books is a very experienced 5 year old cock. He is home bred from birds gifted by the late Harry Densham of Stanley Co Durham of mainly of Staff Van Reet bloodlines. This cock has been a very consistent performer at the distance, he has flown the English channel at least 12 times and scored nine very good positions in his 12 crossings. Always flown on the widowhood, for this race he was given his hen on Tuesday evening and was basketed at 4-45 am on Thursday. His hope is that more Cumbrian fanciers will support the National Flying Club and make this new section a success. If this happens then hopefully the N.F.C. will look at marking stations to help the Cumbrian fanciers.

Taking Bridesmaids spot is a loft that is no stranger to success and has been  household name for many years I refer off course to Ian Parsons. Ian sent three birds to the race and got two on the second morning. His first bird is a two year old grizzle which flew the channel twice as a yearling. She is a Jos Thone bird with both parents bred by Ian Stafford and purchased from Border Lofts. She was clocked at 5.38 on Monday morning after flying 436 miles. Richard Hodgson, who forwarded the information on behalf of Ian would like to personally congratulate both Ian and Peter Robinson on their performances and hope that these endeavours up here in section O will give others the will and hope to have a go at National racing. I will second that.

Team steptoe

Section P

Taking the top honours is the father and son partnership of R and N Steptoe.  The section topper is a 2 year old blue pied widowhood cock, a previous winner of 2nd Truro and  4th kingsdown as a yearling.
His sire a son of their top racer/ breeder "41" 1st SMT Combine and g/s of 1st  NFC Carentan. His dam is   ‘Dicks Dream’ -  1st NFC Carentan, and she is also dam of 1st  South Coast fed 1st  Wessex combine Carentan 1830 birds, 1st Surrey Fed etc. This guy was definitely bred right and stepped up to the mark when asked.

Colin Fagg

Runner up is the former NFC winning partnership of Fagg and Nicholas. Colin and Linda clearly have the birds for this type of racing and once again a Frans Laermans comes to the front and writes the partnership in to the history books of The National Flying Club again. The history maker this time around is a direct Frans Laereman, one of a batch purchased in 2013. She has had two club races up to 100 miles and two channel races from Boves (129 miles) with the East of England Championship Club prior to going in to Fougeres with the NFC. She is raced on the widowhood system with the cock always there on arrival.  Like all the race team, she is fed a combination of Versele-Laga and Vanrobaeys widowhood mixes.

Section W

Topping the new Welsh section at the first time of asking is a partnership who are quite good at this sort of thing and have set a few records racing pigeons in to Wales Dave and Vince Padfield. The section winner is a 3 year old cock who was sent to  Maidstone(166 miles) off the loft  without any training just getting fit around the loft and then lifted in to Fougeres and he came to win the new Welsh Section. This is a system that has evolved at the lofts from necessity due to the high levels of losses and casualties from hawk attacks when they tried to road train.
Last year as a two year old he was clocked at 5;10 in the morning of the 3rd
day  from Pau International when the lads had the first 3 birds into
Wales and he was the third he won 5th Single bird National Pau 2015.He also claimed
55th  open BICC Pau International.

On the Sire’s side he is from a son of DAVE, he was 1st and 3rd National
Tarbes and won the Gold Cup for bird of the year. The dam is a Daughter of Padfields Invincible, 2nd   Barcelona now with Steve Wright at the house of Arden.

They had a second bird close up who will not be far away in the section, and this 2 year old had the same preparation as the section topper. Now take a look at this or breeding - Sire is son OF INDY 1ST  and 8TH Open NFC Tarbes for Matt Rakes, and the dam is the mighty ''IRON LADY'' -  what  a racing  machine. She has won -2009 39th Open, 2ND West Section BICC Pau International 2nd  WDGCC. 2009 61st West Sect BICC Alencon.  2011 Barcelona BICC 11th Open, 3rd Sect. 2012 Barcelona BICC 35th Open, 4th. 2013 Barcelona BICC 8th open, 3rd sect. She is the first pigeon to fly 3 times over 750 miles in to the UK in race time in the Barcelona International. So we will expect big things from this young man in the future.

The team were raced on roundabout after rearing round of young birds, and were run together for a couple of hours prior to basketing. They had 30/40 at the time of talking to Dave.

Dave and Vince Padfield

Stepping up to the mark for provisional 2nd Welsh Section is a man who is always dangerous in what ever organisation he chooses to compete in Mr Derek Jones of Wrexham.  His first timer is a Blue hen, with her  sire being a double RPRA award winning Staf Van Reet, purchased at Mr R Kent, clearance sale.
Her dam is  the A ring hen, raced as young bird only winning 1st  section, 4th  open, 1st gold ring race, MNFC Carenten. Her Dam was the ‘ 42’ hen, the best hen that Derek reckons he has ever  owned. She in turn is the dam of 1st open MNFC Tours, plus 3x 1st section winners and 3 x 2nd section winners in the MNFC. The Sire of the A ring is a Wildemeersch and an RPRA award winner, bred from Jim and Carol Dutton stock. These bloodlines have stood up to the challenges that Derek has thrown at them and have thrived on it.

Derek Jones

Right folks, that’s all for me. The first race has been and gone and I hope you all enjoyed it. At the very least I hope it gave you an indication of where you birds are at and I hope its close to where you expected. For those of you entered in the Champion of Champions League I hope you got off to a good start.

Once again, can I remind you that if you are top 2 in the section or top 10 in the open don’t wait for me to contact you feel free to send me the info by the Thursday following the race to the usual address.

As always I am on 01926 817796 or .