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Keith Mott writes about winning fanciers past and present...

Betty and I would like to wish all our many friends in the world of pigeon racing and showing a Merry Christmas and a lucky New Year! Have a great time!

RPRA Southern Region Show 2009

The month of November saw us make our annual drive up the M40 to High Wycombe for the RPRA Southern Region Show, which is one of the high lights of the show calendar in the South of England every winter. Show secretary, Ron Lacey and his band of helper work hard every winter and put on one of the best shows I visit! We don’t seem to mention Ron Lacey’s band of stewards and workers in the annual write up, whom year in and year out work tirelessly to put this great show on. I don’t know their names, but we always ‘tip our hats’ when we meet up each November and it’s them same ol’ faces every year working so hard on this great event. Well done to you all!

 

This year’s show held at the Hazlemere Community Centre turned out to be one of the best ever, with 610 plus birds entered. There was the usual auction of gift birds and the funds raised by the show and sale were donated to the Diabetic Association. I auctioned the 30 gift birds, which raised £300 and I must say they were a great daft of birds, including some quality stock birds donated by A. J. Brooks, son & Turner.  Judges for this years show were, Show Racers: Phil Mott, Bob & Anthony Besant, R. Harris, M. Neale, Ron Lacey and Keith Mott: Racing Pigeons: Mike Horner, Steve Wheatley, Les Petty, P. Crawford, Ron McCarthy and Colin Carter. It was a great pleasure to have my good friends Bobby Besant and his son Anthony judging along side us this year. Although they have judged racers many times through the years, including at previous Southern Region Shows, this was a new experience for Bobby, as he had never judged Show Racers before. I must say he did a great job! The Worcester Park partnership have enjoyed a great 2009 racing season, winning a long list of positions in the National and Classic, including 2nd open L&SECC Bergerac.

 

Ron McCarthy of Rhymney won Best in Show with a wonderful Silver Chequer Hen and she is a daughter of his Champion ‘Blue Boy’, winner of BIS at the BHW Blackpool Show in 2006. Ron tells me this brilliant blue Show Racer cock has won a first at Blackpool for the last three years and has now bred a BIS winner at the RPRA Southern Region Show.

 

Ron won Best in Show at the 2009 BHW Blackpool Show for the record fifth time with a wonderful young dark chequer Show Racer cock, now named ‘Colin’s Cracker’ and he was bred by Colin Carter of Churchdown. He was bred from a cock loaned from Ron McCarthy which is also the sire of Ron’s Champion ‘Blue Boy’ winner of BIS at the BHW Blackpool Show in 2006 and the dam of ‘Colin’s Cracker’ was Colin’s good dark hen, winner of many firsts including ‘Champion Hen’ at the Edinburgh Show, plus is dam of many winners. Ron McCarthy’s good wife, June, passed away in March of 2008 and she was greatly missed at this year’s Blackpool event, as she had never missed a show and always enjoyed Ron’s success. Ron McCarthy had one of his best Blackpool Shows ever, also winning BOS, four fists and lifting ten BHW Trophies.

 

On one of my ‘Many Miles with Mott’ video tours of South Wales, I visited the premier Show Racer fanciers, Mr. & Mrs. Ron McCarthy of Gwent. In Ron’s 50 years in the sport, he has won many top positions, including B.I.S. Cardiff Charity Show, B.I.S. Show of the West, B.I.S. Birmingham Mail Show, B.I.S. Midlands Show several times, B.I.S. R.P.R.A. Southern Region Show several times, B.I.S. B.H.W. Blackpool Show (a record five times), Supreme Champion at Blackpool and Supreme Champion Young Bird Southern Classic Show. A fantastic loft performance in classic shows!

 

Ron keeps about 16 pairs of Show Racers which are paired up on February 14th. and breeds about 40 youngsters each season. His loft is over 45 years old, starting out as a chicken shed, and is 22ft.x 8ft. with a flight on the front to bath the birds and keep the loft dry. Ron says a good loft should be comfortable for the fancier and the pigeons. He has been with pigeons all his life as his father was a fancier, and his first few pairs of birds were housed in the coal house. Ron’s best bird over the last few years is his White Mealy cock winner of two firsts at the British Homing World Blackpool Show, including Best in Show and Best Opposite Sex; at the R.P.R.A. Southern Region Show, Best in Show; at the Royal Welsh, Best in Show and first at the Monmouth Open Show, plus many other good wins for the Rhymney loft. A once in a life time pigeon! The birds are fed on farm beans and peas, mixed with maize and a pinch of Linseed each day. Ron doesn’t feed anything special for the moult, as the birds get the same corn all the year round. He likes to pair grandparents to their grandchildren to produce good Show Racers. He likes a bigger pigeon for stock, with strong head and good body. Ron tried deep litter for about six months, but his wife hated it and Ron wasn’t too pleased either, he always had to clean his glasses after coming out of the loft, with the dust. He told me, he enjoys scraping the loft out every day and most of his birds are tame. Ron McCarthy is one of the very best showmen in the sport today!

 

Steve Wheatley drove all the way down from Middlesbrough, in the North East of England, to enter a team of pigeons in the Region Show and made it very worth while by winning Best Opposite Sex with his good mealy. The Wheatley family have a wonderful record in both racing and showing pigeons, winning eight times BIS NEHU Show in Newcastle, twice Supreme Champion at the BHW Blackpool Show and three times Supreme Champion at the RP ‘Old Comrades’ Show. The partners have won the Federation many times through the years and 1st open Up North Combine Andrezal (456 miles) in 2008.

Of course Steve is the son one of the premier showmen in the UK, Stan Wheatley of Middlesbrough. While I was in the North East of England, judging at the N.E.H.U. Peterlee Show, I visited the top show racer loft of Mr. & Mrs. Stan Wheatley and they have a very smart 9ft.x 6ft. self built loft, and only keeps a very small team of 16 pigeons, including stock birds. Stan maintains it only takes one bird to win a show and his ‘motto’ is quality and not quantity. The loft is full of quality, winning at every major show, many times through the years, including B.I.S. at the R.P. Old Comrades Show three times, twice Supreme Champion at the B.H.W. Blackpool Show, Reserve Supreme Champion Blackpool, eight times B.I.S. N.E.H.U. Peterlee Show, B.I.S. Nottingham National Young Bird Show three years on the trot, B.I.S. Scottish Championship Show and B.I.S. at the last Louella Classic Show. Stan has been in the sport over 50 years and has had the Doug McClary family of pigeons for many of those years. Most of the present day team are bred around the old Mike Hale Mealy cock, ‘Caesar’, and he had bred winners at every major show for Stan and many other fanciers in the Show Racer world. A brilliant family of Show Racers!

 

Class winners were: Class 1: 1st J. Harrod, 2nd J. J. & B. Rice, 3rd Wheatley Family: Class 2: 1st Wheatley Family, 2nd Petty & Crawford, 3rd Wheatley Family: Class 3: 1st M/M C. Carter, 2nd L. Carter & son, 3rd M/M R. McCarthy: Class 4: 1st M/M R. McCarthy , 2nd M. Hawker, 3rd C. Bullard: Class 5: 1st Petty & Crawford, 2nd M/M R. McCarthy, 3rd M/M C. Carter: Class 6: 1st C. Reynolds, 2nd M/M R. McCarthy, 3rd Wheatley Family: Class 7: 1st J. Harrod, 2nd M/M R. McCarthy, 3rd C. Bullard: Class 8: 1st M. Horner, 2nd M/M D. Minty, 3rd L. Carter & son: Class 9: 1st M/M C. Carter, 2nd C. Bullard, 3rd J. Harrod: Class 10: 1st C. Reynolds, 2nd J.J. & B. Rice, 3rd C. Bullard : Class 11: 1st M. Hawker, 2nd M. Horner, 3rd M/M C. Carter: Class 12: 1st L. Carter & son, 2nd L. Carter & son, 3rd M. Hawker: Class 13: 1st Petty & Crawford, 2nd M/M R. McCarthy, 3rd M/M C. Carter: Class 14: 1st M. Horner, 2nd Petty & Crawford, 3rd Hawkins, Hill & Cardwell: Class 15: 1st J. Harrod, 2nd J. Harrod, 3rd J. Harrod: Class 16: 1st J. Harrod, 2nd J. Smith, 3rd C. Bullard: Class 17: 1st Miss L. Bullard, 2nd T. Smith, 3rd J. Smith: Class 18: 1st J. Harrod, 2nd J. Harrod, 3rd  J. Harrod: Class 19: 1st J. J. & B. Rice, 2nd C. T. S. Bunting, 3rd J, J, & B, Rice: Class 20: 1st C. T. S. Bunting, 2nd N. Walker, 3rd M/M Dickinson: Class 21: 1st C. T. S. Bunting, 2nd M/M Dickinson, 3rd C. T. S. Bunting: Class 22: 1st T. Wyman, 2nd  M/M Dickinson, 3rd : Class 23: 1st J. J. & B. Rice, 2nd J. Prentice, 3rd J. Smith: Class 24: 1st C. Bullard, 2nd J. J. & B. Rice, 3rd C. T. S. Bunting. Trophy winners were: Best in Show, M/M Ron McCarthy: Best Opposite Sex, Wheatly Family: Best Show Racer, M/M Ron McCarthy: Best Race Bird, C. Bullard: Best 400 miles, C. T. & S. Bunting: Best T. T. W., C. Reynolds: Most Points Show Racer, M/M Ron McCarthy: Most Points Race Bird, John Harrod.

After the show my brother, Phil, said to me. ‘there’s some fanciers missing from the show this year’ and I replied, ‘yes, a two great fancier who have supported the Southern Region Show for many years, John Robilliard and Norman Perry’. John and his wife have been on a holiday cruse and only arrived home two days before the show and could not attend. Norman entered a team in the show but could not attend because he was put in bed by a bad bout of flu. Both will be back in show action in a couple of weeks! The 2010 RPRA Southern Region Show will be held at High Wycombe on Saturday 27th November. That’s it for this week. I’m looking forward to seeing you all at the BHW Blackpool Show in January. Any pigeon comments to me on telephone number: 01372 463480. See yer!

TEXT & PHOTOS BY KEITH MOTT.     

 

 

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