The Ace Partnership of
IAN GIBB & SONS
NIPA SECTION D FANCIERS OF THE YEAR 2012
by Adie McCormick
With a few days off from my busy work schedule following my wedding to Charlene on Friday 21st September, I decided to make a call to my good friends and current NIPA Section D Fanciers of the Year Ian Gibb & Sons. It’s been some time from when I followed the weekly happenings in the pigeon world due mainly to my ever increasing work and family commitments and boy haven’t things spiralled out of control in a good way for the Gibb family since my last bit of scribing on this outstanding racing and stud partnership back in 2010, with the last detailed report on the partnership way back to 2007 following the partnership of Gibb & Byrne winning the Europa Classic One Loft Race. I headlined that particular article ‘The Dawn of a Golden Era’ which can be found on our website pigeonnetwork.com. I make reference to this for a reason as you will discover further on in this article.
Over the years I have watched what can only be classed as a development programme at the Gibb Lofts with regards their involvement in the sport of pigeon racing with two main objectives - winning top prizes and offering good pigeons at working men’s prices from their ever expanding Stud.
Just to give the fancy an insight into the make up of the partnership, Ian Gibb races in partnership with his sons Peter, Andrew & Simon as I Gibb & Sons flying within the competitive Glenavy & District HPS; the loft also falls into the boundary of the highly competitive Section D of the Mighty NIPA. The Gibb & Byrne Stud is a combination of two very good friends namely Ian Gibb and Henry Byrne who many fanciers around Ireland and the UK know well through his ownership of Sandyhill Pigeon Supplies in Dublin. Henry Byrne, I would have to say, is a highly regarded individual within the Irish South Road Federation, holding the vast majority of posts along the way including President time and time again, a true gentleman but one that will tell you exactly as it is. Not a concept everybody likes but one that I personally like and I for one have had many a mouthful from the man himself and rightly so, on the occasions that he has let rip. Now also many fanciers in Dublin will not need reminding prior to his now busy commitment with the Sandyhill Corn Store how this man raced. Without any exaggeration, he was a man to be feared with the wicker basket. Boy could he race pigeons and any fancier in doubt get yourself to Sandyhill for a debate. Of course, as many know, Sandyhill must be one of the busiest corn outlets about and if Henry doesn’t have what you’re looking for by God he will source it, and on top of that there’s a day’s craic to be had plus a super cuppa.
Ian also for a number of years owned a successful feed business in Lisburn which proved to be such a balancing act with working full-time as a production manager at Bombardier Aerospace in Belfast with the stresses and strains that the job brought. He found himself getting further and further involved in the Feed business on his return from his daily full-time work, which was starting to have an effect on his own racing and stud commitments with more and more successful testimonials coming forward by the day. Even with the unrelenting support and work of Ian’s eldest son Peter a decision had to be made and the Feed business was to be sadly no more. Of course with Henry Byrne being the Stud partner anything that’s needed in Lisburn is sourced from Dublin for fanciers but on a far lesser scale than previously.
What a change there has been with the lofts since my last visit many months ago, with more and more additions and they can still build around the frontage of the spacious family bungalow. The 1st loft measures 24ft x 6ft, 2nd loft 36ft x 6ft, 3rd loft 24ft x 6ft, then we have two 24ft x 18ft, followed by a 12ft x 6ft and finally a 24ft x 6ft. Simply what a set up of a Stud and on top of that you have wall-to-wall of individual breeding boxes within what seems like a custom made 2 floor garage. The lofts are built to the extreme highest specifications including internal flooring that can be power washed in the most recent loft, the vast majority all fitted with custom made Velux windows on the frontage and roofs also. All but one is PVC Clad with tiled roofs and all fitted with custom made aviaries. Where the new power washed flooring isn’t fitted the rest are steel floor grills with upwards of a 3ft gap from floor to base.
The last couple of seasons have been absolutely tremendous for the Gibb lads with winning the 2011 Section D fanciers of the Year, not surprising of course as I predicted this in my article in 2010. Having accumulated the most Section D points without duplication in 2010 they failed because all their competing races weren’t within the one Club, so with this in mind they stuck to their guns in 2011 and only flew pigeons with the Glanavy & Distrcit HPS having previously contributed to the Derriaghy HPS as well as Glenavy in 2010. The results that were to contribute to the accolade of the NIPA Section D Fancier of the Year are as follows and the first thing to take into consideration was the terrible weather in the lead up to the first race, which I recall was one of the worst in recent years.
In the 1st race from Tullamore the loft finished 4th, 5th & 10th Club; 2nd Tullamore flown on the 19th of April the loft was to finish 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th & 10th Club finishing 42nd Section D; Roscrea followed on the 23rd of April with a 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th & 9th Club finishing 9th, 10th, 11th, 17th, 19th, 20th and 28th Section D NIPA with NIPA Open positions as follows - 44th, 46th, 51st, 79th, 82nd, 83rd and 119th. Race 4 from Clonmel saw the loft finish 2nd & 3rd Club finishing 6th & 9th NPA Section D; prior to Roscarbery the loft sent to Fermoy having previously topped the NIPA from the same race point but like any other loft they met with disappointment (a true example of how hard it is to stay at the top week in week out) and the loft was to finish 5th Club; from Roscarbery the loft recovered finishing 1st, 5th & 9th Club followed by 11th Section D and 32nd, 196th and 261st Open NIPA, which just proves the calibre of fanciers coming back from a bad week to the next winning the Club; such was the disappointment from Fermoy this inspired them further for the week following Roscarbery the O/Birds were in Roscrea and what a team performance finishing 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th Club in the Section, 1st, 8th, 21st, 23rd, 32nd, 36th and 41st with the NIPA Open positions 17th, 44th, 100th, 102nd, 128th, 141st and 163rd. Back to Fermoy and on a day which proved difficult the loft was to finish 1st Club; Pilmore Beach was next up for the loft and they duly obliged finishing 16th NIPA Section D and 112th Open NIPA; the Nationals where next up with the loft competing with the INFC from Skibbereen where they were to finish 65th North Section; followed during the week by the Yearling Roscarbery Nationals for the NIPA where the Gibb loft was to finish 11th & 15th Section and 33rd and 51st Open. The cross water events with the first of these Talbenny in South Wales were to follow and the loft finished 44th NIPA Section D; back to Fermoy for one of my favourite races of the year the 5 Bird where the loft had an excellent arrival finishing 13th Section and 38th Open NIPA which was a fantastic performance. Considering each loft can only nominate 5 pigeons, to finish 38th best out of all the fanciers in the NIPA on the day that it was, was some achievement! Penzance followed and the Gibb loft timed their good two year old ’97’ finishing 30th Section and 156th Open NIPA.
The Young bird season was the next thing on the agenda for the Gibb lofts with Tullamore the first race point to test the youngsters on the 23rd of July. The loft was to finish very well topping the Glenavy Club and finishing 6th, 15th, 27th & 45th NIPA Section D and in the overall Open result the loft finished 82nd, 143rd and 167th. A return to Tullamore followed the next week where the loft was yet again to top the strong and competitive Glenavy & District HPS finishing 16th & 19th Section D; from Roscrea the loft had a good card finishing 3rd Club and 14th, 21st, 34th, 42nd, 44th and 45th NIPA Section D finishing 77th and 105th Open NIPA. With form starting to show in a number of Sections Roscrea was to follow for a second week on Saturday 13th August and the Gibb loft had a result to remember with birds everywhere to say the least and the loft finished 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 6th, 7th, 9th, 10th & 11th Club, whilst in the NIPA Section D result with some 3,000 pigeons competing they were 2nd, 3rd, 7th, 23rd, 24th, 26th, 28th, 39th & 50th. If you thought that was good, the Open result was 2nd, 3rd, 13th, 57th, 59th, 63rd, 66th, 106th and 137th NIPA. Clonmel was next on the 20th August and another super team performance with 1st, 4th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th & 14th Club, finishing 1st, 4th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 13th, 19th, 20th, 25th, 40th and 43rd Section. Amazingly for the second week running the loft was to finish 2nd Open so having twice topped the NIPA Open in Y/Birds the year before they nearly completed the same feat in 2011. The Open positions from Clonmel were 2nd, 5th, 55th, 59th, 65th, 80th, 94th, 102nd and 116th. Back to Fermoy the following week for the Gibb lofts and once again yet another 1st Club followed up by 4th, 5th, 6th & 7th finishing 14th, 39th, 41st, 43rd and 45th Section D NIPA and 65th, 142nd, 147th, 154th and 157th Open NIPA. A return to Tullamore was to follow the first weekend of September with the Gibb loft finishing 42nd and 52nd Section D and 82nd and 100th Open NIPA; a welcome return to Fermoy was next on the racing calendar and especially the 5 Bird event and if you thought the O/bird performance was good against the rest of the country have a look at this performance - 2nd, 3rd and 4th Section D NIPA followed up by an incredible 6th, 8th and 11th Open NIPA, one of the top results I would have to say of the racing campaign to select 5 pigeons from your team (as does every loft participating in the 5 Bird event throughout the whole of the NIPA) and you have every right to be smiling like the cat that got the cream when you end up with three overall Open positions like that. In the overall NIPA Fermoy race the loft was to finish 5th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 24th, 30th, 31st, 32nd and 38th Section D finishing 6th, 22nd, 23rd, 24th, 27th, 37th, 38th, 39th, 75th 105th, 110th, 111th and 136th Open NIPA. The Y/bird National events were next up and like many lofts the pigeons are starting to fall to bits so selection is limited. From Roscarbery the loft was to finish 25th Section and 144th Open NIPA and with the Irish National Flying Club from Penzance the loft was to finish 114th Section and 149th Open and finally from the INFC Skibbereen Y/Bird National a couple of positions were gained in the North Section result namely 38th and 83rd finishing 154th overall. I would have to say what a year and no wonder the loft was crowned NIPA Section D Fanciers of the Year. Without doubt truly well deserved.
My admiration in pigeon racing goes not just to the fanciers who can keep it going week in week out but season after season. Just take note of the O/Bird performances of 2012. From Tullamore on the 14th April 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 5th & 6th Club finishing 18th, 23rd, 24th, 29th and 45th Section D against 2,122 pigeons and in the overall Open 97th, 109th, 114th and 129th against 16,200 pigeons; Tullamore was to be the race point for the second race and a harder affair it turned out to be with the loft retaining 1st and 2nd Club finishing 34th and 45th NIPA Section D against a larger birdage of 2,805 pigeons; Roscrea was to follow, a racepoint which has proved successful to the Gibb loft over recent seasons and this was to be equally as good with the loft recording 1st, 2nd, 4th and 5th Club finishing 1st, 11th, 33rd and 35th Section D against 3,300 pigeons and in the overall NIPA Open result the loft finished 6th and 103rd Open with 27017 pigeons competing. When you see the difference in positions gained in the Open with 1st and 2nd Club and 1st and 11th Section D you can see how far the winner was in front for the Gibb loft to record 6th Open with over 27,000 pigeons competing. The pigeon in question finished 5th Club and 29th Section D and 129th Open NIPA against 16,200 pigeons a fortnight earlier for the loft this, a G/Child of a pigeon named “Golden Ace” Next to follow on the 5th of May was Clonmel and once again an outstanding Club performance winning 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 6th, 7th and 8th finishing 4th, 7th, 9th, 15th, 19th and 23rd NIPA Section D against 3,677 pigeons. In the overall NIPA Open result with some 28,688 pigeons competing the loft finished 13th, 29th, 31st, 43rd, 62nd and 95th Open NIPA. Back to Fermoy on the 12th of May and yet again the pigeons didn’t disappoint as the loft recorded 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th & 9th Club finishing 5th, 8th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th, 30th and 44th NIPA Section D with 3,700 + pigeons competing. In the NIPA Open it was very similar to the week previous this time winning 14th, 18th, 24th, 25th, 29th, 33rd, 82nd 112th Open with over 28,000 pigeon competing once again.
When completing loft profiles like this the facts are there for all to see, you don’t need to bum and blow, simply the results say it all, but what I will add is the racing lofts of Ian Gibb & Sons are situated in an area that I would, without any hesitation, call unfavourable and without doubt their racing ability with his team of pigeons is catching the attention of the many greats who have dominated NIPA Open racing for years within Northern Ireland, with many acknowledging what they are achieving at their address.
Roscarbery was to follow and once again the loft topped the Club followed by 2nd, 5th and 8th. In the Section result the early arrivals finished 6th, 10th and 37th with Open positions being 34th, 51st, 270th and 318th Open against 6,175 pigeons; back to Roscrea for the 2nd time on the 20th May with the loft recording a 3rd Club and numerous others following it through the trap. In the NIPA Section D result the loft finished 13th, 16th, 17th, 19th, 26th and 27th against 2,000+ pigeons. Onto Clonmel for the 2nd time also and once again the loft returned to the top of the leader board at Club level recording a top three finish with the top three finishing 6th, 33rd and 44th Section D NIPA with some 2,900+ pigeons competing. Now the pigeon that topped the Club for the Gibb boys finishing 6th Section in this race also finished 1st Club, 4th Section 3,677 pigeons and 13th Open NIPA Clonmel against 28,688 pigeons and on top of that as a Y/B this Blue Cheq Cock finished 5th Club, 41st Section and 147th Open Fermoy, 26,000+ pigeons, on this occasion beaten to first Club by loftmates.
The first cross channel event of the season as per normal was Talbenny and once again the loft struck finishing 42nd Section D NIPA with just short of 1,800 pigeons competing. The pigeon in question finished well from Roscrea for the loft in 2011 ending up 2nd Club beaten by a loft mate finishing 10th Section D and 46th Open NIPA with some 25,000 pigeons competing. Also this year a fortnight before Talbenny this one finished once again well from Roscrea recording 26th Section D NIPA. Next up in the racing calendar was the Roscarbery Yearling cocks’ National flown on the 6th June and first pigeon home was a Belg recruit 11/192 finishing 6th Section and 21st Open 1,548 pigeons competing. Now this same pigeon was sent to the Roscarbery Y/Bird National in 2011 recording 25th Section and 144th Open NIPA and this one’s racing for 2012 wasn’t over as it was sent to the INFC Yearling National where it returned to finish 4th Club, 115th North Section and 177th Open overall.
Son of Statesman
Prior to the Yearling National the Gibb loft competed in a couple of races flown on the same day namely Talbenny and Fermoy on the 9th June. From Talbenny the loft was to finish 27th, 37th and 40th Section D on what proved to be a difficult race if memory serves me right. From Fermoy on the same day a very solid team performance gained 1st Club, also 8th, 12th, 31st, 32nd, 35th and 37th Section D and the overall NIPA Open positions were 11th, 20th, 91st, 92nd, 107th and 110th. I must also note that the Yearling National with the INFC saw the Gibb loft top the Club with 11/044 recording 28th North Section and 55th Open in the overall result. This same pigeon finished 149th Open in 2011 in the Penzance Y/Bird National INFC and all being well will go in 2013 for the Triple Crown.
Just looking through the results, another performer I pick out is 10/127, winner of 13th Section D and 38th Open Fermoy 5 Bird as a yearling, this after winning 11th Section and 33rd Open Roscarbery Cocks’ Yearling National NIPA. From Clonmel in 2012 this same pigeon finished 7th Club, 19th Section D 3,677 pigeons and 62nd Open 28,000+ pigeons, the following week 5th Club, 12th Section D 3,707 pigeons and 25th Open against 25,000+ pigeons yet again and from Fermoy on the 9th June 31st Section D and 91st Open NIPA, again big birdage!!!
Back to the week to week and next up was Bude on the 17th June and yet again the Gibb loft finished 1st & 3rd Club 4th and 16th Section D and overall in the NIPA Open 39th and 105th 4,489 pigeons; a come-back race was flown on the same day from Fermoy and the loft was to top the Club also from this event finishing 21st Section D and 133rd Open. Penzance was next up in the cross channel programme with the loft finishing 4th Club, 23rd Section D and 163rd Open. France was next up and the race point St Malo, this the final race of the 2012 O/Bird season for the loft and they finished an impressive 2nd Club 17th Section D and 146th Open.
The Y/Bird season was to follow and as per the norm for the last few years the first race of the season saw the pigeons go to Tullamore. The Gibb loft where to complete the same feat as the first Y/Bird race of 2011 by winning the Club also finishing 2nd & 4th. In the overall Open the positions had improved from 2011 and with some 7,500 pigeons competing the loft finished 36th, 59th and 148th. Tullamore was to remain the preferred destination for the NIPA for a further two weeks and the Gibb loft was to excel once again topping the Club yet again in the two occasions finishing exceptionally well in the NIPA Open result on the 28th of July with the following positions - 22nd, 23rd, 34th, 35th and 36th. Next up after a treble of Tullamores was Roscrea and yet again the pigeons didn’t fail their owners finishing 1st, 3rd and 4th Club, also NIPA Section D success finishing 1st, 19th and 37th with just short of 3,000 pigeons competing in the overall NIPA Open result on a day that for sure didn’t suit the loft location of the Gibb boys. The Section winner for them was to finish 10th Open with 25,000+ pigeons competing, a super pigeon on the day. To Clonmel the following week and a 1st and 2nd Club for Ian Gibb & Sons finishing 17th and 19th Section D and 90th and 93rd Open NIPA 22,147 pigeons competing. Fermoy was next up on the 26th August and the loft continued its rich vein of form scoring 1st Club yet again also finishing 8th, 12th and 43rd NIPA Section D 2,25 pigeons competing and in the overall NIPA a finish of 17th, 28th and 140th with just short of 18,000 pigeons competing. Talbenny for the youngsters proved a stern test and yet again another Club 1st for I Gibb & Sons finishing 15th Section D and 156th Open Talbenny Y/Bird National. On the same day as Talbenny the NIPA organised a race from Tullamore which was very well supported and yet again 1st Club with a host to back it up for the Gibb loft as they finished 1st, 2nd, 4th, 28th, 36th, 38th and 42nd Section D and 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 30th, 43rd, 47th and 54th Open NIPA with 9,167 pigeons competing. Fermoy on the 8th September saw yet again 1st Club and a finish of 15th Section D and 48th Open NIPA with 11,404 pigeons competing.
Now as many will know, to achieve that level of success and especially week in week out takes an awesome amount of work and I set about asking Ian just what was involved in the day-to-day running of the racing loft/stud. Firstly Ian says you need the room especially for racing to have different sections doing things at different times, so that when one team has peaked you have another ready to take over, this very much the same approach with the youngsters. In total the Gibb loft would have around 150 O/Bird racers spread over 9 x sections with a mixture of widowhood, roundabout and natural, this to enable different types of racing, distance etc.
The O/Bird season would start for Ian after the last Y/Bird race. Every identified cock would be given a box of some sort in line with previous years. Should a cock be a regular to a box he would retain same. The youngsters would have to have showed some promise to merit a box at the end of the Y/Bird programme. Maximum age for a cock would be three year old in the race team.
A good moult is of high importance and a peaceful loft with plenty of supplements and baths is the order of the day to achieve same. My personal opinion is that you will struggle to find better conditioned pigeons than the Gibb birds. Ian has this down to a tee and many have complimented him on this when visiting the lofts. With aviaries on very much every section or connected to every section, the pigeons are very rarely out over the autumn/winter months, this mainly down to a continued hawk problem and also the electricity wires and pylons that surround the lofts.
The O/Birds would be paired up mostly in January in line with the Stud pigeons. The O/Bird racers will rear a single youngster and these will mostly be Stock youngsters when pairs lay in tandem. They will then be separated and re-paired. During the gap they will begin to fly out around the house in small batches (due to the wiring above the lofts and high winds that normally plague us here in Northern Ireland over the winter months). When re-paired they will sit till the 10th day then the hens will be removed, and the cocks will continue to be allowed to sit until they rise, then everything is removed. The serious work will then begin to have the pigeons in shape prior to the first race which can be a challenge as our weather can delay things without warning most years around March/April. Ideally Ian would like to see them flying round the house well before training resumes up the road. This can take some time as the pigeons are out in small batches and you have 150 racers. Approx 2 weeks prior to the first race is normally the time they are destined for the training baskets with the first toss the 18 mile mark. When returning home before the driver the distance is upped until Arde which is a distance of 50 miles approx to the lofts. Once training starts up the road they will not fly around the house at all. The pigeons are trained every day, sometimes twice per day. Some will be trained personally and others will go with some transporters daily, including a drive to Newry to meet up with Ronnie Williamson’s transporter. As you can imagine, an awesome amount of work and money but like everything in life you only get out what you put in hopefully.
Feeding is always a delicate issue with most successful fanciers and with Ian previously having his own feed business plus in Stud partnership with Henry Byrne owner of Sandyhill Corn Store you can’t help but think they would want to push Feed and Products but no, being tight lipped was the order of the day. However the feeding is measured at between 1 & ½ to 2 ounces per pigeon per day based on temperature and wind condition for the coming week. The corn fed is hand mixed by the Gibb men themselves this being a vast combination of seeds representing three brands: Beyers, Vanrobaeys and Matador. The racers will get fed on return from tossing with the main feed being at teatime.
One of the main products used around the loft is Primalac, an American Probiotic. This is perhaps the best one that can be used with other products in the drinking water at the same time. Ian would treat his racers especially for Canker and Respiratory every second week alternatively. Products used include Orni Extra Special, Gambakokzd and Roudensoul 10% for the latter. Parastop for the prevention of Salmonellas - Paratyphoid is a product used on a regular basis. Plus on top of this the pigeons are given Belgasol at least three times per week, all the above applied to the water which is changed daily. Naturalline Tea is also given twice per week, and Gervit W would be another product at hand. In the bath water Badzout Salts is the preferred choice with the racers bathed on a Thursday or Friday, this very much dependant on the weather, the stock pigeons every Sunday.
Y/Birds for racing number around the 150 mark also and will be spread out over 9 x sections, with around 120 on darkness and the remainder on the natural system. As for the darkness this starts from when the pigeons are moved from their parents. Hours of darkness are from 6pm till 10am and this will continue until the longest day. The pigeons are vaccinated twice on leaving the nest and then again a fortnight down the line when they will also get a canker tablet each. Just to note, Ian thinks that all stock pigeons and O/Birds must be vaccinated at least once per year. Again the wires around the lofts play a decisive role in how the youngsters are trained with a few lost each year due to the wires and that’s them released in small numbers to start their education around the lofts. Once content and ranging well they start from a distance of 5 miles. Twice at that distance should be sufficient and they are then moved to the 10 mile mark, once again a couple of times, and all going well they will move to the 18 mile point and then onto Newry 30 miles, with Ardee the next jump making it a 50 mile toss to the lofts in Lisburn. Once racing has commenced, like the O/Birds they will not be trained around the house. Basket, basket, basket is the order of the day, week and month, mostly twice per day, and without doubt at least two Port Patricks or Slanes per week when racing, a distance of 80 miles.
Feeding and supplements are the same as the O/Birds, the only difference being the Y/Birds rarely get feeding on a Friday just a sprinkling of seeds to encourage drinking. Health is the biggest factor to success and vigilance is a key especially with Y/Birds. Ian would like to personally thank his good friend Dr Henk De Weerd for all his help over the years, an man Ian says is only on the end of the phone should he have a query.
Also Ian extended his thanks to Ricky McCullough who has been a tremendous help around the lofts over recent months, and his hard work is greatly appreciated by the complete I Gibb & Sons team.
Where do we start when talking about stock, remembering that the Gibb & Byrne Stud house without any question one of the finest collection of Soontjens around. What I will say is I have been to the continent on numerous occasions when Ian Gibb has been sourcing new families of pigeons with vast amounts of money changing hands. Simply not satisfied with what he has been offered, he often asks to see the Champions and what produced them, then if satisfied he puts his request in regardless of cost. Personally you can’t knock Ian Gibb or Henry Byrne for this as I for one know that many class producing pigeons and prize winners have come down the line from these big money pigeons at working men’s prices to the fancy around Ireland and the UK. They simply buy the best; if it’s not the next branch of the tree it’s not good enough. Equally I have known many new pigeons to come in and back out again as time waits for no man and new stock haven’t long to make their mark at the Gibb & Byrne Stud.
Many outstanding families of pigeons are now housed at the Gibb & Byrne Stud. These include obviously the superb SOONTJENS which even after all this time are producing winner after winner week in week out; NOEL PEIREN - one of the extreme best from Belgium, a fancier with various National successes, one of the first fanciers in Belgium in fact to win two Nationals in one year from Bourges and Brive with an average birdage of 21,500 pigeons; LEO HEREMANS - a fantastic collection of these now at stock with new additions continual being added; the extreme best of the MARIKE VINKS winning superbly whereever they go, and in big demand; the ultimate collection of KEES BOSUAS, once again in big demand and what about the new ACE Producer “GOLDEN ACE” -more details in the next paragraph. Also at stock a superb collection of the STICKERS DONKERS from Gust and Dirk sourced away back in 2009!!! More recently another new family to the ever increasing collection is KERK HOFS - VAN DEN EYNDE from Berlaar.
Now I made reference at the start of this article about my previous headline on my detailed report on the Gibb Loft in 2007 named “The Dawn of a Golden Era”. The reason for the story then was in reference firstly to their outstanding results that particular year which ended with the Gibb & Byrne team winning the Europa Classic One Loft Race and £30,000 with a pigeon later named “PACE MAKER” at the auction of the winning pigeons. As well as purchasing their winner the Gibb & Byrne team purchased some more including the pigeon that finished 2nd in the race, a Kees Bosua and its nest mate who finished 13th Open and was the overall ACE Pigeon. She is now named “GOLDEN ACE” by the Gibb & Byrne team. For why, you may ask. Well after paying £3,000 for this hen at the auction she was very slow in mating up to anything in the loft. She was persevered with and they had several inspections of her including a trip to the Henk De Weerd Clinic in Belgium to see Henk himself. The hen finally turned the corner and started to lay. Some two years were lost with her at the start then the turn around happened.
In 2010, these positions where all obtained with her G/Children: 1st SECTION 2,502 Pigeons finishing 1st OPEN NIPA FERMOY 19,604 Pigeons; 1st SECTION 3,300 Pigeons finishing 6th OPEN ROSCREA 27,017 Pigeons; 1st SECTION 2,987 Pigeons finishing 10th OPEN NIPA ROSCREA 25,007 Pigeons; 2nd SECTION 2,538 Pigeons finishing 2nd OPEN NIPA ROSCREA 19,768 Pigeons; 2nd SECTION 1,392 Pigeons finishing 3rd OPEN TULLAMORE 9,167 Pigeons; 4th SECTION 627 Pigeons finishing 33rd OPEN BUDE 4,489 Pigeons; 7th SECTION 3,677 Pigeons finishing 29th OPEN CLONMEL 28,688 Pigeons; 8th NORTH SECTION 2,215 Pigeons finishing 112th OPEN SKIBBEREEN Y/B NAT INFC 3,037 Pigeons; 8th SECTION 3,212 Pigeons finishing 11th OPEN FERMOY 18,268 Pigeons; 9th SECTION 2,912 Pigeons finishing 55th OPEN CLONMEL 20,559 Pigeons; 9th SECTION 213 Pigeons finishing 28th OPEN ROSSCARBERY YEARLING NAT + GOLD MEDAL 1,548 Pigeons; 11th SECTION finishing 33rd OPEN NIPA ROSSCARBERY YEARLING NATIONAL; 12th SECTION 3,707 Pigeons finishing 25th OPEN FERMOY 28,178 Pigeons; 13th SECTION 3,707 Pigeons finishing 29th OPEN FERMOY 28,178 Pigeons; 13th SECTION finishing 38th OPEN NIPA FERMOY 5 BIRD 2,488 Pigeons; 14th SECTION 3,707 Pigeons finishing 33rd OPEN FERMOY 28,178 Pigeons; 16th SECTION 2,502 Pigeons finishing 48th OPEN NIPA FERMOY 19,604 Pigeons; 18th SECTION 2,122 Pigeons finishing 97th OPEN TULLAMORE 16,200 Pigeons; 19th SECTION 3,677 Pigeons finishing 62nd OPEN CLONMEL 28,688 Pigeons; 19th SECTION finishing 94th OPEN CLONMEL 20,559 Pigeons; 23rd SECTION finishing 163rd OPEN PENZANCE; 24th SECTION 1,182 Pigeons finishing 282nd OPEN TULLAMORE 16,200 Pigeons; 28th SECTION finishing 66th OPEN ROSCREA 19,768 Pigeons; 29th SECTION 2,122 Pigeons finishing 129th OPEN TULLAMORE 16,200 Pigeons; 30th SECTION 3,707 Pigeons finishing 82nd OPEN FERMOY 28,178 Pigeons; 30th SECTION finishing 105th OPEN FERMOY 10,529 Pigeons; 31st SECTION finishing 91st OPEN FERMOY; 35th SECTION finishing 107th OPEN FERMOY; 38th SECTION finishing 136th OPEN FERMOY 10,529 Pigeons; 39th SECTION 2,538 Pigeons finishing 106th OPEN 19,768 Pigeons; 43rd SECTION finishing 154th OPEN FERMOY 18,494 Pigeons.
Now on top of the above this super breeder is also now G/G/Dam of 2nd SECTION 1,116 Pigeons finishing 2nd OPEN NIPA TULLAMORE 8,339 Pigeons; 2nd SECTION 2,805 Pigeons finishing 4th OPEN NIPA TULAMORE 24,133 Pigeons and 3rd SECTION 2,805 Pigeons finishing 5th OPEN NIPA TULAMORE 24,133 Pigeons.
I think you would have to agree what a pigeon. She is a Kees Bosua Belg 07/575. Her breeding is as follows: Her SIRE NL 06 1078723 Kees Bosua bred for Stock coming direct from the famous 2004 bred “Time-Out” when paired to the 2003 bred “Kerkduifje”. DAM NL 06 1078715 Kees Bosua bred for stock, this one direct daughter of the 2002 bred “DAVID” when paired to the famous “MAXIMA”.
As I’m sure you can imagine, all children from this hen now go to the stock loft, with every one to date producing prize winning children including the very few to leave the loft and the fanciers concerned can’t rate them highly enough. Not many times in your life do you come across a pigeon of this magnitude.
Note this! Yet another grand child of the Golden Ace won 3rd Open and 3rd Overall Ace Pigeon in the Algarve One Loft Race flown Saturday 29th September 500km.
On that golden note I would like to congratulate and thank Ian Gibb for his time and wish firstly the Gibb loft continued success in 2013 and finally wish the Gibb & Byrne partnership every success for the future. With any luck they may yet come across yet another golden prolific breeder.
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