We closed down our mega-successful,
professional racing loft at the Stud in 2007 amid complaints from the competition
that as we had great big lofts, full time staff and super facilities,
it was somehow unfair!
And while considering this we came to accept that perhaps we were not competing
on a level playing field with the rest of the competition.
To address this, and in the spirit of fair and even competition, in 2009 Graham Sparkes,
in partnership with Les Bennett, built a 20 foot loft in the small back garden of Les's
modest semi-detached house. From the Stud we placed just 50 babies to race,
these being just grandchildren of our best birds from our various families.
The results are below.
As well as this we have set up a racing loft in Antwerp Belgium, by continental standards very average in scale, in the ordinary back garden of an ordinary semi-detached house in an ordinary suburb of Antwerp. We have flown very lightly in 2009 just to establish our team of 50 pairs of old birds to race in 2010. We have bred 150 youngsters at the Stud to go and join the the old birds in February 2010, when we hope to be able to compete with and win against some of the elite of the Belgian pigeon sport! We will keep you informed.
OUR RACING RESULTS FOR THE 2009 PART-SEASON WE FLEW AT PATRINGTON AND ANTWERP ARE AS FOLLOWS:
WE HAVE WON OVER 20 FIRSTS IN THIS SINGLE PART SEASON!!
1st, 2nd, 3rd & 5th COMBINE 2961 birds
1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 11th, & 12th COMBINE 3751 birds
1st, 2nd, 48th & 50th COMBINE 2004 birds
Also in 5 Belgium Nationals flown:
ARGENTON 30,977 birds in open competition
1st, 3rd, 4th, 6th, 11th KEMISCHE FOND CLUB REGION
36th, 69th, 84th, 92nd NATIONAL
LIMOGES 16,893 birds in open competition
2nd, 19th, 49th, KEMISCHE FOND CLUB REGION
17th, 473rd, 1171st NATIONAL
BOURGES 64,621 birds in open competition
4th, 10th, 15th, 17th KEMISCHE FOND CLUB REGION
70th, 303rd, 386th 420th NATIONAL
TULLE 13,143 birds in open competition
8th, 15th KEMISCHE FOND CLUB REGION
477th, 1066th NATIONAL
GUERET 14,245 birds in open competition
7th, 21st KEMISCHE FOND CLUB REGION
264th, 1047th NATIONAL
We also had 3 birds in the top 200 of the prestigious Best National Average for ARGENTON & LIMOGES. Also 58th Best National Average from TULLE & LIMOGES combined. Not quite our set ambition of 1st National Ace Pigeon Middle Distance in all of Belgium but, we are sure you will agree, a creditible start. Once our team is established in Belgium, you can expect much bigger and better things.
The lofts in Antwerp as seen from the rear, where we fly the youngbirds.
In Antwerp, the first-story loft where the old birds birds are flown.
Brian Bolton in front of the young bird loft in Antwerp.
Graham & Les standing in front of their typical Yorkshire twenty-foot backgarden loft.
Les and Graham at the partnership's hobby racing loft which has brought so much instant success in 2009 their first year. In March 2009 Les Bennett was an absolute novice. By the end of August, in partnership with Graham flying to this very modest back yard loft, he had won the mighty Yorkshire Middle Route Combine three weeks on the spin!
Graham holds the partnership's first combine winner a Premier Stud bred Van Dyke Kannibaal pigeon.