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Homers Odyssey - 05-01-21

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Homers Odyssey

Ballymoney HPS 1990 Season –

From the archive I have come across the report that was published in 1990, a total of 120 fanciers, friends and guests attended the annual dinner and prize presentation held in the North Irish Horse in Dervock, this was around the time of the formation of Rasharkin & Dist. and before the arrival of the best fancier competing today in Ballymoney Danny Dixon.


Montage of the top winners for Danny Dixon in 2020.

After a lovely turkey and ham dinner the club Secretary Mr Tommy Tweed started proceedings by apologising for the absence of the President, Chairman, and their wives due to illness. He wished them all a speedy recovery and hoped to see them all able to attend next year.

Next, he introduced special guests Mr & Mrs Jackie Steele, the former being Secretary of the newly former club in Rasharkin. Tommy went on to congratulate a few members on outstanding performances during the year.

Stephen Young was Highest Prize-winner for the second year winning five old bird races and nine trophies including. M Gamble OB Average, Combined Average, Points Shield, Old Bird Knock-out, W & L McCaw Best Ave all Derbies, as well as Best Ave in all Derby & Classic races and Highest Points in National races. Davy Devenney won two young bird races, Young Bird Ave and Young Bird Nomination. R McCook won two young bird races and had the Young Bird of the Year trophy.


Leading prize-winner for the second year running, Stephen Young (l) won five old bird races and nine trophies in an outstanding season pictured  with the Ballymoney HPS Secretary Tommy Tweed.


Mrs Francis Fulton presenting trophies to Mervyn Gamble, the list included OB Ave, OB Loft to Loft, Highest Points Shield and Combined Average. 

The highest open position won in 1990nwas by Robin McCaw 26th Open Sartilly followed by J & R Gage 33rd Open Talbenny, S Young 40th Open Penzance, W& L McCaw 60th Open Penzance, and Willie Blair 95th Open Yearling National. In the top race of the year, the Kings Cup Austin Gage was 74th Open, T Tweed 98th Open and A Thompson 111th Open INFC.


Billy & Leonard McCaw (W & L McCaw) with trophies won in the Ballymoney HPS. Included Best Ave Derby races, Best Ave Derby & Classic, and Best Ave all National races.  


Secretary of Ballymoney HPS Tommy Tweed (Centre) presents Willie Blair (l) and Rudolph (J & R Gage) with the Yearling National and Young Bird Derby trophies.  

The presentation of the trophies was carried out by Assistant Secretary Lynn Neill helped by Miss Rhonda Tweed, Mrs A McCook and Mrs J Fulton. New trophies were donated to the club by Mr & Mrs Albert Tweed, John Connolly, Trevor McLernon and a very special cup by the McKinney Family in memory of the late William and David McKinney. A presentation of flowers and a lighter was made to Mr & Mrs James Filton by Anne Tweed in recognition of work done during the year for the Armoy Combine Club.


Mrs Eileen McCaw presenting the new William & David McKinney cup to the winner Stephen Young at the Ballymoney presentation held in the North Irish Horse. 


Mrs Eileen McCaw (r) making a presentation on behalf of Armoy Combine to Mr & Mrs Jim Fulton.

Trophy winners old bird races – 1st Kildare S Young, 2nd M Gamble; 1st Wexford S Young, 2nd S Young, 3rd L Neill, 4th J McDowell & Son; Tramore R J Elliott; 1st Talbenny F Barkley, 2nd A Thompson; Yearling Nat W Blair; Bude & New North G McCaw; 1st Yearling Bude G McCaw; Penzance Classic & Dinard S Young; Kings Cup A Gage; Sartilly R McCaw; 1st Yearling Penzance S Young; OB Ave, Combined Ave and Highest Points M Gamble; Best Ave All Derbies, Classics and Highest National Points W & L McCaw; Best Ave 2 Wexford races S Young; Best Open position R McCaw; Old Bird Knock-out M Gamble; OB Inland Derby and Best Ave Skibbereen & Talbenny J McHenry; Old Bird of the Year F Barkley.

Trophy winners young bird races -  1st Navan D Devenney, 2rd R Stewart; 1st Wexford D Devenney, 2nd R McCook; 1st Wexford W & L McCaw, 2nd R McCook; Tramore H Cooke; Talbenny Derby J & R Gage; Talbenny New North S McCook; Skibbereen Derby S McCook; Skibbereen National W & L McCaw; Novice Trophy Mr & Mrs A McCook; Nomination & Young Bird Average D Devenney; Young Bird Knock0out W Barkley; Best Ave in 2 Derbies C Browne; Best Novice in first three young bird races G Holmes Jnr; Young Bird of the Year R McCook; Best Ave Wexford & Wicklow R McCook. 


Shaun McCook (Centre) winner of the YB Derby collecting his cup from Albert and Maud Tweed at the Ballymoney HPS presentation. 

News Update -

So far. we have not much to celebrate in this New Year of 2021, the hope was it would be a lot better then the year previous. Bird Flu has been confirmed at a site in Clough, Count Antrim just North of Ballymena and a Temporary Control Zone is in place. On the top of that we have a further Lockdown covering the whole of the UK including Northern Ireland and restrictions could be in place until February or March depending on circumstances. NIPA had arranged a Zoom meeting to consider a race programme and will also sort other AGM related business with the usual meetings probably unable to take place. Sammy Thompson rang me to let me know his wife Edith had sadly passed-away she was in her 90’s and had been in a Care Home in Coleraine for a few years. Sammy himself has had a few health problems and like Edith is in his 90’s we hope he continues to make good progress. The pair were regular visitors to the big prize nights for the NIPA and INFC and both presented awards on numerous occasions especially for the RPRA (Irish Region) and Sammy was a long-time member of the various pigeon committees and had in recent years retired as RPRA Councillor, Sammy carried the highest respect among the pigeon fancy.

Remember I am doing club season reports and require info from the many clubs not already done. A few Loft Feature reports have not yet been returned, could I ask fanciers to send back the info as soon as ready. Do please remember it’s only a bit of fun, nothing serious and something for fanciers to read and see how the successful lofts perform, something might be picked up to improve their own situation   We have the space available now running up until April when hopefully we have the all clear to resume racing.  

HOMER. Willie Reynolds

Tel/Fax: (028) 256 44683

Mobile: 07538 238364

Twitter: willie reynolds@homerbhw>

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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