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by UK Press Officer Tom Harris

Race day 8


With the training programme now gathering momentum, the birds were once again heading north for training race 8 from the village of Fasnia, an approx distance of 33 km to the Guazza lofts. It was an early start for the Arona team with all the 2,080 entrants swiftly basketed and on their way for a planned 9am liberation. The strings were cut, as expected, at 0900 and they were liberated into a light 9km north-easterly wind with slightly overcast skies.


Once again on the Arona live stream, the usual congregation were present and chatting away, giving their expected time of arrival and patiently awaiting the sightings of the first batch as they approached the lofts. It was at 0930 that the first pigeons could clearly be seen approaching and as they hit the trapping board, it was once again a race to the finish, as within 60 seconds, a total of 791 pigeons crossed the line, which can only be described as a testament to the Arona team in the way they are dealing with the feeding and management. As we all sat awaiting the winner, the digital display showed that the eventual winner was the Netherlands entry Dyanne Dromer, entered by Japp Koehoorn. This blue hen has performed mid-table throughout the early stages and moves to 113th position overall in the ace pigeon averages.

Jaap Koehoorn (Netherlands) - 1st position race day 8


Second place goes to the Bulgarian one loft race entry for Maksim Kumanov at with their entry, Conny. Team Kuwait, takes third place for team Ghanem Aldahoulm with pigeon, Lety, recording, followed by 4th and 1st the UK for William Gray, timing in Panacea, In 5th it was team Germany with pigeon, ‘Let’s go for fun’. Entered by team Mazur-Wang at and 6th was team Burca with Tander for team Rumania at Seventh was team Belgium with Black Pearl, entered by Vincent Neirynck at Eighth and a second arrival for team Netherlands came Sawyer, entered by team D&P Soepboer at Ninth for Germany were team Gleichberg’s pigeon, Jackpot, at and rounding off today’s top ten is the Belgian syndicate of with Dynamo at


So another training event over and, once again, the returns were great for the organisation with 2027 from the initial entry registered, giving a returns rate of 97.45%, which takes us onto race day 9.


Race day 9 


Again it was an early start with the 2027 birds safely on site at Guilmar and a distance of approx 40 km. The liberation was once again 0900 into a 12 km north-easterly wind with temperatures a moderate 21 degrees and broken cloud throughout the journey home. Taking pole position on this occasion is the Czech Republic entry for Lubomir Kubacek, Kabul, taking just 29 min 12 sec 65. This pigeon has moved up in the past training records an average of 8/900 positions, however, in the past two training races it has started to improve by taking 19th in race 8 and now 1st in race 9.

Lubomir Kubacek of Czech Republic - 1st place training race 9

Second position was team Florea Sorin from Rumania with their entry, Cheddar, timing in at Third was team Ireland with team Cherry Lane with their entry Cherry Tree-Natural at Fourth was Horst Hain with entry Horst-55 at Fifth was the Gran Canarian pigeon, Bandido, for team Yahve & Oliveiro. Sixth was team Stella Rossa and team Italy with Wilbur, Seventh was training race winner, Jaap Koehoorn, with the same pigeon, Dianne Dromer, at Eighth were team Ganus family lofts and ‘Debbie has a good one’ at Ninth, Mattias Spring with Theo at, followed by Erich Muller and Agnes, rounding off on


Once again the birds arrived in large batches and at the final count there were 1944 appearing on the results and 95.9%. Hopefully a few more will turn in for their owners.


So we are ten training races into the campaign and the distance is moving on with just three more island training races to complete before the training heads onto the rescheduled five sea races and the competition heats up with the first of the hotspot challenges.


Temperatures on the island rise so quickly and with that you get humidity and dehydration, so looking back at the past two training races it appears that the decision to get the pigeons away early, into the cool of the morning is bringing with it better results and returns and, with 1944 pigeons returning, it gives any birds that do struggle to keep up with the main batches, for whatever reason, the whole all day to return rather than having a night out. So, once again, the welfare for the pigeons is paramount to ensure the best conditions for all concerned.


Finals week 


Whilst we are still focused on the forthcoming training races and hotspots, it is also time to publicise the final and the programme leading up to the final race. This starts between 21st and 25th March (subject to weather conditions) with public basketing, where everyone is welcome at the lofts to see. If the owners are present, they have their first opportunity to handle their pigeons, which have overcome the training programme and will be representing them and their country in the final before being race-marked and basketed. The Ledesma family then invite you to join them at a welcoming dinner at a top Canarian restaurant March 22th-26th, tickets approx 30 Euro pp, followed by the final day when everyone is welcome to come along and enjoy the Tenerife One Loft experience and join the owners who will be awaiting their pigeons in the final race of the campaign and have the prospect of winning this main event and prizes attached (March 23rd-27th).


Finally rounding off the whole series is the prize presentation evening to congratulate the winners, which is scheduled on Saturday 28th March. All the above is dependent on the weather and will be confirmed closer to the day.