STAFFORDSHIRE MOORLANDS & DISTRICT FEDERATION
by Thomas Garvie
Hullavington & Frome - August 2012
As I am at present really struggling for time to do anything, I am having to copy and paste the results that are e-mailed to me. I would be grateful if they could be sent to me in the format Serif 1 and size twelve lettering and could you please try and type the e-mails with as few spelling and grammar mistakes as possible. Although I know I do make the odd mistake myself, copying them as they come to me does save me a bit of time so any time saved is appreciated.
After missing a week because of bad weather the fed has now moved to Hullavington and there were 2,330 birds released at 09-50 in a light south east wind. The first ten places all went to the west section, which is what you would have expected in a south east wind. Taking top spot was A Cliffe from Packmoor on 1548, then Walley Wilkinson prtnrs from Packmoor on 1547.8, 1547.1,1546 and 1545, N Boulton from Newcastle on 1547.4, J Woolrich and son from Packmoor on 1544 and 1543.5, W Burgess on 1543.7 and tenth spot went to M/M F White 1543.4 both from Packmoor. Almost a clean sweep of the top ten places going to Packmoor.
A few club notes now starting with Ipstones where 6 members sent 88 birds and taking first, second and fourth places was A Mace on 1313, 1219 and 1116 with B Rowlinson on 1180 taking third. Packmoor next where Jeff Roberts sent me the following: ‘A good day for Packmoor HS, 14 out of the first 15 in the prov result and we could not get one. Anyway 1st and fed topper is A Cliff on 1548.36. Well done Andy, if you are not winning the pools you are topping the fed. Andy also trains the birds in his van. Rob Slack’s winner in the first race was trained by Andy, 2nd, 3rd, 4th & 5th went to new members of Packmoor this year, Pete Wally & Dec Wilkinson. They are also 2nd, 4th, 5th & 6th Fed. If you carry on like this, it will not be long before you get your 1st red card Pete. They have just had ETS. It looks like it is paying off. 6th place went to that well known loft of T Woolrich & Son.’ Hayfield now where this week there were only two members able to send as the club had been hit by youngbird sickness after the first race so first and third was J L Gibb on 1443 and 1431 and the only other competitors being David and Jean Ashby who were second and fourth on 1435 and 1404. Jimmy says it is not much use racing when there are only two members able to send but I think Jim is worried in case the prize money is too low!
Macclesfield now where Kev Bowers sent me this: ‘10 members sent 283 birds. Martin Hough on 1529 takes the red card clocking a home bred young hen homing to the perch. The sire’s a brother to G. Kirkland’s famous Snake and was 2nd Le Mans this year. The dam is a Ralph Greenwood x de Klak. Stuart Goldstraw is second on 1524 with a hen sent paired. It’s an Engel Van Loon x Bosua. The dam’s a first prize winner and the sire was from Mark Anderson of Middleton. Martin Hough is also third on 1514, again a hen through the Snake lines x Leo van Rijn, the dam from B/K Haues, full sister to champion Cut Throat a double combine winner. Rick and Simon Geary are fourth on 1510 with a hen bred for them by Stuart Goldstraw. It’s a Koopman x Vandenabeele hen returning to the perch and one of their Staff Moorlands breeder buyer birds. Well done to Martin on a good result considering his youngsters came down with the dreaded YB sickness after the first race.’
We ourselves have had to stop racing because of young bird sickness and we do miss the racing on a Saturday because you breed the youngsters and then rear them and then you have to train them and this year especially our team of youngsters were doing absolutely great. We never lost one training. They were coming out the training baskets like rockets and we had high hopes for them but we were badly affected by the bug and anybody who thinks that the birds get it and are treated with whatever they use then they are ready for the race the following week and the birds will be okay are in my opinion much mistaken. They may look over it but I would bet inside they are still feeling the after effects, much the same way I would think that we get the flu and it takes a few days for you to look as if you are over it but you also struggle physically for a good while after the major illness is over.
Talking with a few pigeon friends, we got on to the discussion about where your loft actually lies within the fed and afterwards I decided to have a better look at some of the clubs within the fed. I took some terrain images of the rough direction the birds would be expected to come and I was quite surprised when I looked at it in more detail. I was always wondering why clubs such as Longdendale and Poynton were always doing well in the fed considering they were not a great deal in distance from us in Hayfield [most important reason for that though is they have some of the best distance flyers in the fed and I think last year practically all the averages went to either Paul Beck or Mike Webb] but when you get a detailed map of the terrain showing all the hills and the area known as the Cheshire Plain where the birds come in, it is staring you right in the face. The aforementioned clubs are at the top end of the Cheshire Plain so theoretically the birds are on a straight line to these lofts up here and they are on the correct side of the hills and also all the clubs further south and to the west in the fed do not have anywhere near as many hills as the north does. The terrain also shows why in my opinion that Hayfield is actually the worse situated club in the fed as the birds are assumed to be flying up the Cheshire Plain being on the correct side of the hills and when the birds reach the end of the Pain and hills the pigeons have to make a detour back to lofts in Hayfield club. Not that it makes any difference to me as we just love racing our birds whatever way they come. I often hear flyers saying if only they were in a better location it would be different and it probably would as loft location within the club is critical when the birds are coming together. We ourselves have the worse situated loft location within the club and we are the club’s shortest flyers but because we are on the opposite side of the Cheshire Plain and hills the birds fly to the end of the Plain and swing back around the hills with the birds coming through Newmills before flying on to us. We do occasionally get the odd bird coming straight from the south but this usually only happens when there has been some sort of bad weather or also if there is a very strong south west wind, with the emphasis on the west part of it, so in practice we have no chance of winning any of the inland races. When we joined the club the members pointed this out saying we would never win a race because of where our loft is located and they are correct. But when the birds are over the channel we more than hold our own and it is these races we look forward to more than any other. I think that is enough diversification from the present young bird races.
The next fed race was from Frome and the fed had 91 members sending 1,902 and just re-iterating the point I had just made about loft location and top flying we had Paul Beck from Longdendale topping the fed again plus he was second, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth with velocities of 1703, 1701, 3 on 1699 and 2 on 1698. Top class flying by anyone's standards. Third place in the fed went to Collins and Stevens from Dukinfield on 1700 and ninth and tenth places went to P. Stanway from Poynton on 1695 and 1694. Great flying to these lofts and again a determining factor in pigeon racing is the wind, which in this case was light south west, and it was as I expected with the clubs at the top of the Plain doing very well but even I was surprised at the overall result.
A few club snippets now starting with Ipstones where 5 members sent 68 birds and the red card went to R&J Goodwin and son on 1536 with the next three club places going to A Mace on 1528, 1504 and 1457.
Packmoor now where Jeff sent me this: ‘Packmoor & District sent 255 birds to the Frome race; not a bad race as I got them all back for the 1st time this season. The winners this week are Mr & Mrs F. White. Frank has not been too well lately so it’s nice to see him back to winning ways again, vel 1663.53. 2nd place goes to A. Cliff also winning 1st share of pools (again) with his 4th bird, vel 1658.498. 3rd & 5th are T. Woolrich & Son vel 1650.45 & 1627.036. 4th is Dave Jones on 1647.429. 6th place goes to W. Burgess vel 1623.403. J&R McLatchie win the nom plus 2nd share of pools. Got a lot on this weekend with the Blandford & Guernsey races both marked on Saturday night. Good job Rob & Baz John and the boys will all be there, also a special thanks to Bod from the Dog & Partridge who is coming to give a hand.’
Thanks for that Jeff so next is Macclesfield where Kev Bowers, the club PO, sent this: 9 members sent 239 birds and the dedicated partnership of Richard and Simon Geary claim 1st and 2nd with two on 1690.349, the winner a cock homing to the perch, a van Wanroy. The sire won Saintes last year for them and was from D. Reid of Weybridge and the dam’s from Ponderosa Stud. Second is also a cock sent semi widowhood bred by them. It’s a Soontjen from their good racer Shy Boy (18 first prize winners) and the dam is a Rietvinck from J. Keeble of Hersham. Ben Walton is a close third on 1690.269 with a home bred cock returning to the perch. The sire’s a van Hocke x onto a hen from Ken Salt of Derbyshire. PO Kev Bowers on 1688 is 4th with a cock sent pairing, a home bred Soontjen. The sire’s F. Sheader direct onto a Soontjen hen bought from the sale of the late Dereck hill of Meir. Last club again is Hayfield where 4 members sent 71 birds. There are still a couple of us not sending but taking another red card as well as second is the Usain Bolt of the sprint pigeon world J. L. Gibb on 1599 and 1585. Next was Chris Mourne on 1532 and fourth place went to Hansel and Gretal, also known as David and Jean Ashby on 1492.
Well that is it for now so good luck for the rest of the season.