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T. McCoy & sons of Richmond.


One of the most successful racing pigeon families in the London area is the McCoy family, with the late Tom McCoy being an outstanding pigeon racer for many years and now his sons carrying on the families winning ways. Billy McCoy races in the Richmond club (Three Borders Federation) and has enjoyed a wonderful 2019 racing season. Billy still races his pigeons in his late father’s name and this season won: 3rd, 5th, 6th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 21st Federation Newton Abbot, 11th, 12th, 13th, 17th, 23rd Federation Yeovil, 14th, 19th, 23rd Federation Blandford, 24th Federation Yeovil, 24th Federation Yelverton, plus several other firsts won in Richmond club.



The Three Borders Federation sent 1,081 birds to the S.M.T. Combine race from Sennen Cove in June 2006 and because of adverse weather conditions at the car park liberation the convoy was moved to Truro (230 miles). The Richmond partnership of T. McCoy & sons had a brilliant race, recording 1st, 2nd club, 1st, 6th Federation, 1st, 6th open S.M.T. Combine (2,089 birds). The partner’s Combine winner was there yearling Janssen blue white flight cock, ‘The Real McCoy’, and he was raced on the widowhood system. Although he was only a young pigeon, he had won several other premier prizes, including a win as a young bird in 2005. The second pigeon on the clock from Truro, to record 6th open Combine, was another yearling widowhood cock, in the form of the Staf Van Reet mealy pigeon, ‘Taffy’s Choice’. Two weeks later the S.M.T. Combine were at Messac, for it’s first race of the season from France and the McCoy partnership had another ‘banger’, recording 3rd open with their two-year-old Janssen blue widowhood cock, ‘Jake’s Delight’.



This game cock recorded his fourth club win from Messac, which was a very hard race, with only a handful of birds making 1200y.p.m. Great pigeon flying! Although the racing name is T. McCoy & sons, the two partners were Billy McCoy and Mel Evans, with T. McCoy being Bill’s late father, Tom. The late Tom McCoy started up racing in 1964 and was very successful racing in partnership with Georgie Oliver of Bedfont. They raced in the old ‘City Arm’ club in Hammersmith and raced successfully on the long distance with Delbars and Kirkpatricks obtained from Johnson of Larne.

Tom and Georgie’s best pigeon was a black Marriott hen and she recorded 2nd and 3rd open Combine from the long distance, and bred winners. Billy’s brother Dominic is also a pigeon fancier and raced in the Chertsey area. Billy and Del Evans had raced together for about six years and their loft was sited at Hammersmith in London. 



The partners raced 38 cocks on the widowhood system and their racing loft was a 33ft double decker, three sections on top for the old bird racers and sections below kitted out for ‘darkness’ youngsters. They were paired up after the B.H.W. Blackpool Show in January and were split into two teams, one just sat eggs then went on the system and the other reared a youngster before going on widowhood. Billy told me, it’s the team that reared youngsters that had done the best in the 2006 season.

The cocks were trained hard for a couple of weeks before the first Federation race and unlike most widowhood racers; they were trained during the race season. The cocks were not broken down, being fed on ‘Gerry Plus’, with extra Maize being added to the mixture on Thursday and Friday. Billy and Del tried and changed their routine on marking night, with the hen being shown sometimes and other times just turning the nest bowl before going into the basket. Del told me at the time, the cocks had no special wind up before they raced but got their mates for a couple of hours on their return home.

The partners liked racing up to 300 miles and said the whole team raced up to the middle distance. Billy and Del had twenty pairs of stock birds, mostly of the Janssen based families, Staf Van Reet, Jan Nauwelaerts, and these were housed in a special brick stock loft in Fulham. The stock sections were very roomy and deep litter was used on the floors in the winter months. These birds were fed on a heavy ‘breeder’ mixture and were paired up on Boxing Day. When bringing in new breeders, Del said, they liked to look at the bigger picture, firstly, going for a Janssen based family, secondly, the bird must conform to their type and thirdly, it must have a pedigree of good performance. The lads put 50 youngsters on the ‘darkness’ system and had 25 later bred youngsters as a backup, which were flown natural to the perch.

The dark youngsters were put on the system from weaning until mid June and the darkness was from 17.00hrs until 09.00hrs. The babies were trained well through to Winchester (50 miles) before the first race and once racing started, they were trained every day from Alton (40 miles), including sometimes on a Friday. Billy told me, they never stopped young cocks for the widowhood and the whole team had to fly the programme, including Guernsey. They raced on a celibate system, with the sexes being separated during the week and allowed to run together on Friday afternoon before going in the basket. The partners had used this system with their youngsters for the last three seasons and maintained it is far more successful than pairing them up.



The youngster was given pigeon tea and plenty of condition seed after the racing had finished, to make sure they finish their moult. Billy and Del had won many premier positions prior to winning the Combine that season, including 4th, 5th open Combine Wadebridge 2005, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th Federation young birds 2005, 1st Bedfont open race (twice), 1st N.W. Section Guernsey 2005 and won the Three Borders Federation young bird average in the 2005 season. One of the partner’s all-time great racers was the mealy pied cock, ‘The Newman Cock’, bred by the late Dennis Newman and he won seven times 1st club, three times 1st Federation, 1st Shepperton open race and 1st Bedfont open race. Billy said, Dennis Newman was a great fancier and won the S.M.T. Combine twice.

‘On a personal note’. The YouTube channel is going great and still attracting a lot of world-wide interest, including over 10,600 subscribers. When my son, Mark, suggested in March 2016, that I put my massive archive of pigeon films on the Internet he didn’t know what he was starting and to be honest, neither did I. It now hosts over 408 pigeon films and gets between 3,000 and 5,000 views worldwide every day. I have a long list of new pigeon visits lined up for YouTube filming and articles, for after the moult has finished. At the time of writing this article the channel has had well over 4.8 million views since we opened it in March 2016, and I would think we will be on that magic 5 million early in the New Year. Every film is tagged and if you go on to YouTube, type in my name or the name of the fancier you want to look at (lower case) it should all come up.

On the article and photo front, the situation has gone through the roof with all the visits I’ve made in recent months and I have a very big stockpile of article waiting to be published. I love being mega busy and after the family time, now spend most of my time playing in the pigeon loft, writing, taking photos and editing the films for the YouTube channel. Some say I have become a recluse! I don’t race pigeons anymore and breeding good winners, my pigeon fancy writing, website and the YouTube channel is my main hobby now. I get a massive amount of phone calls, emails and comments from fanciers interested in my work and I spend at least an hour every day answering them, which has always been par for the course.

I’ve been very busy writing, doing photos and updating the Website for the new 2020 season. My Internet website on: www.keithmott.com is a massive job every winter and will be shortly updated for the new season. At the time of writing this article my top film on the YouTube channel is Video 38: Ron McCarthy of Wales and this Show Racer legend’s loft visit has had a massive 575,000 views. Just brilliant! I am going to include a few lines to give an update on our breeding at ‘Foxwarren Lofts’ in the 2019 season. The eleven Keith & Betty Mott stock pairs have bred or been involved in the production of pigeons in the 2019 season to win: 2nd open National, 3rd open National, 12th open National, 16th open National, 19th open National, 26th open National, 29th open National, 127th open National, 135th open National, 6th Federation, 11th Federation, 21st open CSCFC and 62nd open International.

These are all produced from our Eric Cannon and Brian Denney bloodlines, including the champion breeders, ‘Foxwarren Fred’ and ‘Lady Tuff Nut’, apart from 29th open BICC Cholet National (2,859 birds) which we bred from our M. & D. Evans / Gaby Vandenabeele stock birds. Children of our champion Eric Cannon stock pair, ‘The Bourges Pair’, produced 2nd open National St. Malo, 33rd open National Poitiers, 9th UBI Combine, 15th Federation Poitiers, 60th open YB National in the 2018 season and now again in the 2019 season four of their children have bred: 12th open BBC Fougeres National, 16th open BICC Fougeres National, 127th open BBC Fougeres National, 135th open NFC Coutances National, 21st open CSCFC Guernsey, 6th Federation Lyndhurst.

I think it is common knowledge that ‘The Bourges Pair’ are the Eric Cannon champion racers: ‘Northern Expected’ grandson of ‘Foxwarren Fred’ and ‘Northern Star’ daughter of ‘Foxwarren Fred’. Our good friend, Terry Haley of Watford had an excellent 2019 racing season, with the highlights being three times 1st section National and a 1st open National. His first young bird race was from Lyndhurst (76 miles) and Terry recorded: 1st, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th Inter Counties Federation, with 1,902 birds competing. The second pigeon on the ETS to record 6th Federation Lyndhurst was the blue chequer hen, ‘Madam Mott’, and she was bred by Keith & Betty Mott, from our Pair 6, ‘Foxwarren Renegade’ and ‘Thelma’. ‘Foxwarren Renegade’ is a son of ‘The Bourges Pair’ and ‘Thelma’ was bred by Brian Denny and is a daughter of Champion ‘Brian’s Blue’, the NFC record holder, being clocked at 748 miles from Tarbes on the day of liberation.

The following week after the Lyndhurst race, ‘Madam Mott’ was Terry’s fancied pigeon, being all pools and snowball. She was first pigeon home and lost the race by a minute after the two-flirt bird flew up and kept her flying around home for over two minutes. She finished up 7th club and still won the pools. ‘Madam Mott’ went on to win: 2nd section, 12th open BBC Fougeres (YB) National (743 birds) and 8th section, 16th open BICC Fougeres (YB) National (1,944 birds). This is the third year that Terry has had youngster off Pair 6 and all three have been top prize winners for him.

The ‘Watford Wizard’ has a pair of youngsters off us every season to race and the second youngster in 2019, ‘11053’, recorded 17th section, 127th open BBC Fougeres (YB) National. The ‘Foxwarren Lofts’ stock birds have bred or been involved in the production in recent seasons of pigeons to win: 1st open National (twice), 2nd open National (three times), 3rd open National, 1st open Amalgamation (twice), 1st open Combine (five times), 1st open International Agen (10,510 birds) 2015 and the NFC Tarbes record holder, being clocked at 748 miles on the day of liberation, plus many other good winners.

The loft history, stock bird write ups and photos can be viewed on our Internet Website: www.keithmott.com  Well done to the T. McCoy & sons partnership on their outstanding performances in the Three Borders Federation this season. Well that it for another week! I can be contacted for any pigeon comments on telephone number: 01372 463480 or email me on: keithmott1@virginmedia.com


TEXT & PHOTOS BY KEITH MOTT (www.keithmott.com).