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Homers Odyssey - 23-02-21

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Amelia Earhart Round Up 2020

The club had a successful year with the club president Jimmy Quigley & Son having been the top prize winners winning seven races, a great performance for this partnership.  They have also raised £550 for the club funds, Well done to the Quigley’s.

Another young man who is only four years in the sport put up a fantastic performance in the channel racing.  William Mc Closkey has win old bird Talbenny, Also old bird bude two very tough channel races and tops it off by winning the French race from St. Malo a distance off 503 miles to his loft.  William is a up and coming star and a hard worker for the club. It’s good to see younger fanciers coming to the fore.

Hopefully we will see a full racing program in 2021 with a strong competition in the club that has some very experienced fanciers. Inland racers next year price money will be £20 per race & £40 per race for the channel.

Good luck to all fanciers in the coming season.  Stay safe and stay home. Yours in sports - C Fox.

I had a message from Diamond Carson from Banbridge to inform the fancy of the passing of former Secretary of Banbridge HPS Anna Butler, and loving wife of Jim a life-long member of Banbridge HPS. On Behalf of the officials and members of our club may I offer our sincere condolences to Jim and all the family circle at this very-sad time. Diamond Carson on behalf of Banbridge H P S. I also had a message sent by Mervyn Lynn on behalf of Charlie Savage to let me know that Mrs Mima Inglis had passed away. She was wife of the late Stan Inglis who flew with the club and he was a past President of the NIPA.

Archive of 1976 continued – To complete the big race season for 1976 let me revert back to cover the major young bird events as covered in text and photos in the much-missed Irelands Saturday night where the reports were written by the late Martin Russell.

Given good racing conditions the NIPA birds competing in the Haverfordwest Young Bird Derby on Saturday last proved just how successful this race point can be. An entry of 5,500 birds guaranteed record prize and pool money to be shared among the winners. With south easterly winds prevailing a fast race was forecast and as expected, the majority of winning birds were recorded by lofts situated well inland. John Wilson the first member of Armagh HPS to win a major NIPA has broken the duck in tremendous style. John timed his fancied bird, a fancied pencil blue cock to win 1st Section E and 1st open NIPA plus the richest prize ever won in Ireland, a massive £1,858. The bird racing to the perch was basketed for the YB Derby carrying a full wing (5 old and 5 new flights). Bred from Molloy (Lurgan) blood crossed with Thompson Jurgen Ross, was entered with every confidence having previously won 1st Club Arklow and Wexford plus 2nd club Wexford. John, a small team man started the young bird season with 15 birds which have more than held their own winning the following club positions. 1st Sutton, 1st, 2nd and 3rd Sutton, 1st Arklow, 2nd, 3rd and 6th Arklow, 1st Wexford, 2nd, 3rd and 5th Wexford, and 1st Haverfordwest Derby (Wales). E C Gordon from Banbridge takes 2nd Sect & 2nd Open NIPA, good to Ernie in such high spirits.

wilson
John Wilson from Armagh who picked up the richest ever pigeon prize in Ireland some £1,858 in the NIPA Haverfordwest YB Derby, pictured with son Robert and daughter Martha.

Section A is headed by H Nevin Coleraine velocity 1239ypm followed by Kerr bros Limavady. Cullybackey fanciers take the top two positions in Section B, G Holmes velocity 1277ypm taking the premier position followed by S Smyth. The Taggart Bros from Ballyclare top section C velocity 1253ypm with A McConnell of Doagh the runner-up. Section D is headed by Lisburn Hill Street fanciers R & W Dornan. T W Boomer from Glenavy picked the right bird and will collect a tidy sum.

I suppose everyone is wondering what happened the NIPA Open result. Well, believe it or not, at Banbridge Centre Thursday night some thoughtless individual walked off with the master copy. Secretary Sam Halliday will have to spend many sleepless hours re-producing the original.

NIPA Haverfordwest YB Derby Open 1,716/5,614 – J Wilson Armagh 1330, E C Gordon Banbridge 1298, G Geary & Son Lurgan Soc 1291, J Porter Drumcree 1283, F Anderson Newry 1281, Kennedy & Swail Moira 1279, G Glenholmes Cullybackey 1277, S Smyth Cullybackey 1258, G Barr Ballymena & Dist 1257, McMaster Bros Harryville 1257, A McInnes Milltown 1257, C Shaw Randalstown 1256, Taggart Bros Ballyclare 1252, Beckett/Truesdale Banbridge 1252, R & W Doran Hill St 1245, Thompson Bros Muckamore 1243, W Millar Lurgan Soc 1241, S & V Millar Randalstown 1240, W Blair Ballymoney 1239, W Blair Ballymoney 1239.   

NIPA Sect A – H Nevin Coleraine 1239, Kerr Bros Limavady 1229, R Hall Coleraine 1222, H Platt Coleraine 1220, B Mullan Limavady 1215, Martin/Kempton Cookstown 1190, B Miller Londonderry 1184, J Kearney & Son Coleraine 1183, A Heaney Castledawson 1183, Tosh Bros Coleraine 1182.

NIPA Sect B – G Glenholmes Cullybackey 1277, S Smyth Cullybackey 1258, G Barr Ballymena & Dist 1257, McMaster Bros Harryville 1257, C Shaw Randalstown 1256, Thompson Bros Muckamore 1243, S & V Millar Randalstown 1240, W Blair Ballymoney 1239, W Blair Ballymoney 1239, S Maternaghan Ballymena & Dist 1233.

NIPA Sect C – Taggart Bros Ballyclare 1253, A McConnell Doagh 1230, J Cameron & Son Ballyclare 1205, R Patton Muckamore 1204, Kyle Bros Glengormley 1196, J Leitch & Son Doagh 1195, W Kikson & Son Doagh 1193, D B Mairs Kingsmoss 1184, A Agnew Ballyclare 1183, R Patton Ballyclare 1183.

NIPA Sect D – R & W Dornan Hill Street 1245, T W Boomer Glenavy 1236, S Adams & Son Derriaghy 1233, H Mallon Hillsborough 1222, J Magee & Sons Lisburn 1221, J McCracken Derriaghy 1220, T Beckett & Son Hillsborough 1217, T Beckett & Son Hillsborough 1197, M & F Russell Dromore 1192, L Fryers Lisburn 1191.

NIPA Sect E – J Wilson Armagh 1330, E C Gordon Banbridge 1298, J Geary & Son Lurgan Soc 1291, J Porter Drumcree 1283, F Anderson Newry 1281, Kennedy & Swail Moira 1279, A McInnis Milltown 1257, Beckett & Truesdale Banbridge 1252, W Millar Lurgan Soc 1241, McCullough Bros Queens 1232.

Mid Antrim Area -

James Martin the local Ballymena Guardian scribe wrote at this stage of the season the following. The first of the seasons classic young bird events took place on Saturday when the NIPA Clubs were at Haverfordwest for the money spinner young bird event, and with all eyes on the winning of the McKeown Cup. Entries which were put through local centres were satisfactory.

Down through the years this race has been, more or less a nightmare, with more than its share of really bad races. On some occasions no birds were timed at all locally, but nevertheless the stout-hearted were not deterred, and with the excellent weather the youngsters enjoyed the season, all looking forward with keen optimism to Saturday’s event. With a helping wind -South East – and fair visibility, birds were up at the appointed time, and again several good performances were recorded.

In contrast to the 1975 race, this one proved a real success, with the prize money in most clubs all being picked up, and will give added interest to the averages many of which were not won owing to the smash-race in 1975. The best local performance at the Ballymena Clock Centre was that of George Glenholmes of Cullybackey Flying Club who clocked his good mealy youngster at 8 hours five minutes, and this after losing almost 5 minutes, will probably win Sect b. The best in Harryville was McMaster Bros and other good birds were timed by George Barr, and Sammy Smyth and in Randalstown S Shaw will take the top honours.

Still with the classic races and away from club routine, the big event this week is undoubtedly the “Blue Riband” of the young bird season from Penzance when members of the Irish National will compete for the supreme distinction of having the ace youngster of the year. Local lofts have figured prominently since this race was first flown. E G Leckey (Cullybackey) and Smyth Bros (Ballymena) took premier honours from Milford Haven, Gray & Lowry (Ballymena) from Bude with Campbell & Francey (Harryville) and S Herbison & Son (Cullybackey) winners from the present race-point. Who knows what success will come to local lofts again this Saturday, this column hopes so.  Just a  final reminder all local birds to be taken to Muckamore Centre, don’t forget to have your clocks sealed.

Blue Riband YB National from Penzance –

Weather reports for the Penzance Young Bird National could not have been better, good visibility plus a light north-east wind were forecast for the line of flight. This was accurate enough, however the wind freshened much more than anticipated and as a result the young birds had their work cut out to reach home lofts. A record entry of 3,452 birds were competing for total prize and pool monies totalling £13,388 and on top of that a Colour Television. All 143 birds recorded in race time receive a share.

The winner a courageous bird timed at 6.19pm by Joe Mulgrew & Son from Dromore recorded a velocity of 792 yards per minute for the 300 mile journey and netted £474 for her proud owners. This champion young bird a blue cheq hen carried an ideal wing condition, 61/4 new flights had flown Haverfordwest the week previous. It was the second bird to the loft on that occasion, sent sitting on eggs. Bloodlines via the sire is Burgher a gift bird from fellow club-mate and life-long friend Tom Spratt. The dam is Krauth from W M Thompson of Muckamore. Joe is a great competitor also a shrewd judge of a bird. Best performances to date include 3rd Open Redon in 1955 winning the Gilliland Cup , 1st Open NIPA Skibbereen YB Derby in 1967 and was one of the very few to record an arrival in this years old bird Weymouth disaster.

mulgrew

National Double for Dromore – Joe Mulgrew (r) with his “Leading Lady” winner of the INFC Penzance YB Nat. Joe pipped his townsman Jim Brown from Drumbroneth whose bird “Codelia” was placed second.

The runner-up position is also taken by a Dromore fancier. Jim Brown. Jim seems to reserve his best performances for this event, he recorded a second arrival to win 67th Open and was also placed 26th Open last season. His winner a blue hen it had also flown Haverfordwest and was third bird to the loft, her sister was placed 35th Sect in this event. The blue hens wing condition was not perfect, she dropped the 9th flight in the basket and was flying to the perch. Her sire a Blue Cheq cock is from the Kings Cup winning loft of Larry Burns, her dam was obtained from fellow club-mate Maxie Brown.

Ligoniel & Dist ace fancier Harry Granville is placed 3rd Open and Osborne & Cassalls from Lurgan are 4th Open. The complete result has not been published as the final placings must be ratified at a meeting of Committee to be held on Monday night in Glenavy Clubrooms.

News that Sam Halliday the NIPA Secretary has been admitted to hospital has stunned the fancy, every-one wishes him a speedy recovery to good health. Without Sam’s leadership the organisation of next week’s YB Derby will create many problems. Assistant Secretary Joe Vage stresses that all fanciers, club secretaries, centre officials, etc must take extra care to ensure that all information such as proper distances, sections, pools etc are recorded on verification envelopes.

This column was published one week later with update on the Penzance YB National - Penzance National proved a great test of endurance for the young birds. Only 143 were reported in race time, many more being recorded throughout the week. Dromore fanciers Joe Mulgrew & Son and Jim Brown took the premier positions. Harry Granville Ligoniel, was placed 3rd Open, his second bird was 116th Open. Osborne & Cassells Lurgan won 4th Open and collected a tidy sum of £713. Millar & McClean from Ballyclare were 5th followed by F Steele of Ahoghill Flying Club 6th Open collecting the Sect Nom and prize money totalling £790. Steeles winner was W McIlhagga Cattrysse and W Hood Ahoghill is another half-brother to his other big winner that was placed 4th Sect B Dinard. George Barr special training for the YB Nat has paid dividends. His loft was placed 7th Open with a young blue cock bred from the Ron Mitcheson stock hen. Joey Wright of Kells prominently placed in the Nationals of date, clocked his fancied candidate to win 8th Open. His next arrivals took 46th Open and 121st Open, total prize and pool monies were £752 plus the Colour TV. Joey’s first two birds are nest-mates bred from Billy Erwin and Harold Stockman stock. Their dam a grand-daughter of “Moonlight Mannequin” (The Erwin Kings Cup winner) is also the dam of Joey’s 8th Open Beauvais 1976 winner. Joe Doheny Dublin placed 15th Open, is the highest placed South of Ireland fancier. He also recorded another bird to win 51st Open. Gilmour & Beattie from Newtownbreda who were also highly placed in the Old Bird Nat recorded two arrivals to win 19th and 87th Open. J W & T Harper from Ballymena & District are enjoying a real money-spinning season. They won 33rd Open and add another £341 to the staggering prize money won to date. The overall Nat Championship Average for all races will not be decided until after the Skibbereen event. The result should be a close finish between Wright, Gilmour & Beattie and Harper.

INFC Penzance YB National Open /3452 – J Mulgrew & Son Dromore 792, J Brown Dromore 783, H Granville Ligoniel & Dist 757, Osborne & Cassells Lurgan 754, Millar & McClean Ballyclare 752, F Steele Ahoghill 750, G Barr Ballymena & Dist 747, J Wright Kells 746, R Mailey Antrim 746, R Carnduff Dundonald 745, Smyth Bros & Johnston Larne 744, McCartney Bros Moira 740, Agar Bros Newtownards 738, J Heaney Bangor 731, J Doheny Dublin 729, E J Connor Dundrum 728, T Cotter Ballymena 752, J Brown & Son Lurgan 721, Gilmour & Beattie Newtownbreda 719, J & S Patience Lurgan 718.

Cullybackey HPS Dinner & Presentation Report from 2008 –

The Michelin Athletic Club in Ballymena was the venue for the annual dinner and prize distribution for the Cullybackey HPS last Friday. Usually the first away, the good attendance of members and friends were made very welcome by President Brian Herbinson. He asked Alan Darragh to say grace and the dinner proceeded without delay. The guests this year again included Homer and Rosie, Wilner Spence and wife and Brian Hayes and wife from the Bridge Garage. Mrs Kathleen Spence the wife of the former Mayor of Ballymena the late Sandy Spence who hardly missed a prize night at Cullybackey was missing through illness, also missing Alfie Greenwood who was ill in hospital. The club sent best wishes to both, Alfie was ever present at the prize night for a lifetime. The guests were joined by the other officials including Chairman Harry McCloy, Secretary Edrick Davidson and wives, the Treasurer Tom Taylor was attending a family wedding.

HerbisonCup
Brian Herbinson (r) President of Cullybackey HPS, presents a new trophy in memory of his father Stewart to the officials of the club.

The members had another super season and none better than young Gary Gibson who after a few close calls has emerged as Top Prize-winner just ahead of Russell Bros and Alan Darragh two lofts that have a long history of success. Both are former winners of the highly prized Northern Ireland Fancier of the Year title and what about Alan Darragh some 15 seasons on the trot in top place. Is it the dawn of a new era?? I think one thing for sure all three lofts will be up for the competition in 2009, it will be fascinating. Many congratulations to Gary on lifting the Russell Family Cup for Highest Prize-winner for the first time.

GaryGibson
Gary Gibson collects the Russell Family Cup for Highest Prize-winner in Cullybackey HPS from Mrs Spence.

AlanDarragh
Rosie presents award to Alan Darragh many times the top prizewinner at Cullybackey but knocked off the perch in 2008.

In Mid Antrim Combine the club won the Old Bird Points Shield, Willard Reid won the William McIlhagga Memorial Cup for 1st Mid Antrim Combine in the OB National from St Malo in France and Russell Bros won Bird of the Year and the Bryan Eagleson Memorial Cup for Best Ave Talbenny (1) & (2), Bude and Sennen Cove. The local club topped the MAC five times racing with the NIPA, four won by Gary Gibson and the other by Willard Reid from St Malo. Of the six races flown by the Irish Nat FC Cullybackey had no arrivals in the Quimper Friendship Nat from France. In the other five races flown the local members scored 3 x 1sts, 4 x 2nds and 2 x 3rds an impressive record. Alan Darragh had 1st, 2nd and 3rd in the Skibbereen OB Inl Nat and Russell Bros were best in the Sennen Cove Yearling Nat with Alan Darragh 2nd & 10th. In the young bird season Russell Bros and J & J Greer timed birds on the day in the hard Sennen Cove YB Nat to take 2nd & 3rd and on the same day Alan Darragh scored 1st, 2nd & 4th in the Old Hens National also from Sennen Cove.

MACWinners
Mid Antrim Combine winners included from (l) Len Russell, Alan Darragh and Gary Gibson.

With Show Specials and Squeaker Sale the pay-out was £1,160, Russell Bros had the top cash awards at £350. The leading lofts were Gary Gibson, Russell Bros, Alan Darragh, H & R McCloy, Des Robinson, Sammy Steele, J & J Greer, Ross Bros, Reid Bros & McCloy, Brian Herbinson, Edrick Davidson and D Robinson & Son.

Cups and trophies were presented as follows.

Gary Gibson won – A McCullough Cup Rosscarbery OB Nat, G McCloy Talbenny (2), Robinson & Livingstone Rosscarbery YB Nat, Herbinson Memorial INFC Skibbereen YB, J Rock OB Knock-Out, Spence Cup Inland OB Ave, J Harkness Best Ave 2 x Derbies, Harkness Rosscarbery OB & Fermoy YB, Club Shield Most Points YB, and Russell Family Cup for highest Prize-winner.

garryofficials
Top prize-winner Gary Gibson with the Cullybackey HPS officials at the annual prize night.

Russell Bros won – Patton Plant Sales Talbenny (1), J Kilpatrick Bude, Ladies Cup INFC Yearling Nat, B Law INFC Sennen Cove YB, G Erwin YB Knock-Out, Coronation Cup Old Bird CC Ave, O’Kane Cup ON Ave, Armstrong Cup YB Ave, N Blaney Memorial Talbenny (2), Bude & Sennen Cove, W Allen Most Points OB, J Wheatcroft OB Mallow 5 Bird, Moore Cup Bude & King Cup, S Herbinson YB Mallow 5 Bird.

LenRussell
Mrs Linda Hayes presents the Sennen Cove Yearling National Cup to Len Russell.

Alan Darragh won – Darragh Cup All Derbies, R McIlwaine 3 Derbies, J Anderson St Malo & Rosscarbery YB, J Blaney Memorial Sennen Cove & St Malo, H & R McCloy Reid Bros Memorial Kings Cup, St Malo & YB Nat, Community Cup Sennen Cove & St Malo.

Sammy Steele won – S Moore Cup Sennen Cove, G Glenholmes Memorial Bude & Sennen Cove, T Livingstone Cup Sennen Cove OB Classic. Willard Reid won – Derby Cup St Malo (France), E G Leckey Cup Best 2 Bird Ave St Malo.

SammySteele
Ina Davidson the wife of Cullybackey Secretary Edrick presents the OB Sennen Cove Cup to Sammy Steele who had a very good old bird season.

J & J Greer won – S Reid Cup Sennen Cove 2 Bird Ave.

Jamie Grreer
Young James Greer collects the Sennen Cove 2 Bird Ave Cup from Jennifer McCloy the wife of Cullybackey Chairman Harry at the annual prize night.

Let me quickly review the racing season starting with the NIPA old bird inland programme, racing started on 12th April with a liberation at Navan won by Gary Gibson doing a velocity of 1579. Des Robinson was the winner the next week from Tullamore a harder sort of day with the winning velocity 1029 the loft finished 6th Comb, 10th Sect & 76th Open NIPA with 19,486 birds competing. Alan Darragh doing velocity 1690 was just ahead of Sammy Steele in the race from Roscrea finishing 4th Comb & 10th Sect B 185/4,172. Another new winner won race four with former YB Nat winner Brian Herbinson doing a mile a minute. Gary Gibson came back with two wins on the trot, from Pilmore Beach the winner doing velocity 1352 was just ahead of Russell Bros and the lofts finished 7th & 11th Combine and 12th & 18th Sect B 189/4,490. The best result so far was Rosscarbery Inland Nat Gary Gibson well ahead on velocity 1532 scored 1st Combine, 2nd Sect and 18th Open NIPA 796/6,900 plus £275. Others well placed included Alan Darragh, Reid Bros & McCloy and Russell Bros winning 114th, 120th and 150th Open NIPA. We had two more new winners in the next two races, it was super competition.

With Donny Robinson & Son having success from Pilmore Beach, doing velocity 1180 the loft finished a good 2nd Combine, 2nd Sect and 35th Open NIPA with a massive 21,745 birds competing. Sammy Steele had two good birds here and finished 3rd & 5th Comb, 3rd & 6th Sect and 47th & 91st Open NIPA. The club had a very good result in the two Talbenny races from South Wales the Russell Bros doing velocity 1218 just clear and finishing 5th Comb, 6th Sect and 125th Open NIPA 1,059/13,774. Sammy Steele had the next two birds winning 9th & 10th Sect and both made the NIPA Open result. In between these two races Russell Bros won the Yearling Hens Nat from Pilmore Beach doing velocity 1495 and finished 5th Comb and 10th NIPA Sect B. On to Talbenny for the second time the winner was Gary Gibson doing velocity 1382 and finishing 3rd Comb, 4th Sect & 11th Open NIPA 1,001/11,333. Russell Bros were runner-up followed by Brian Herbinson and Glass & Weir to finish 27th, 39th and 84th Open NIPA. Gary was to complete the double winning from Fermoy flown on the same day, doing velocity 1517 he was to finish 1st Combine, 4th Sect and 15th Open NIPA 475/5,657. Alan Darragh was next best followed by J & J Greer and both made the NIPA Open. Russell Bros completed a race double the following week from Bude and Mallow. In a steady race from Bude they recorded velocity 1236 with the winner and finished a good 2nd Comb, 2nd Sect and 82nd Open NIPA 828/8.634. Sammy Steele was next best followed by J & J Greer and Reid Bros & McCloy; all birds again made the NIPA Open result. In the Mallow 5 Bird Championship Russell Bros recorded velocity 1323 to finish 8th Combine & 10th Section B. Sammy Steele had the big result in the races from Sennen Cove his winner records velocity 1384 to finish 3rd Combine, 3rd Sect & 30th Open NIPA 856/8,740. Russell Bros doing velocity 1360 were runner-up this time with the same bird that has won from Bude, and this was the Mid Antrim Combine Bird of the Year. In the duplicate OB Classic the same two lofts finished 4th & 9th Combine, 4th & 11th Sect and 22nd & 45th Open NIPA 484/3,216. The final event for the NIPA was the OB National from St Malo in France, it turned out a race to remember for Willard Reid who posted a best ever result timing three birds when most lofts recorded none. The Reid loft had had some good results from the distance and timed on the day to record velocity 1141 and finish 1st Combine, 1st Sect B and 3rd Open NIPA 527/1,668 with an all pooler. The consistent Alan Darragh was next best to finish 6th Comb, 7th Sect and 43rd Open NIPA the loft has a fantastic record in the race 2nd Open NIPA twice. Further arrivals for Willard Reid one of the quiet men of the sport finished 10th & 12th Combine, 11th & 14th Sect and 87th & 102nd Open NIPA lifting total winnings of £1,242.

YoungFancier

Special guest Brian Hayes from the Bridge Garage presents the Young Fancier awards to messrs Greer and Anderson.

The NIPA young bird season also started at Navan and the race was won by Russell Bros doing velocity 1364 and the same loft won the third race flown from Tullamore recording velocity 1583. Between the two the race from Mullingar was won by J & J Greer finishing 9th Combine almost 3,000 birds recording velocity 1419. Gary Gibson was back on song from Roscrea with the top three birds, his winner doing velocity 1417 finished 1st Combine 121/3,365 and 3rd NIPA Sect B 171/4,754. Just for the record he had 4th & 5th in Mid Antrim Combine and that was three in the Top 5 with 3,300 birds. The J & J Greer team won for the second time from Tullamore a fast day with the winner doing velocity 1614 and then the next week Gary Gibson was beat by Ross Bros from Pilmore Beach the winner this time doing velocity 1238. Des Robinson won the comeback race from Tullamore at the end of August finishing 5th Comb, 14th Sect & 35th Open NIPA 515/10,476 Garry Gibson was runner-up again. Russell Bros won the race from Fermoy doing velocity 1167 and then in the final YB Nat from Rosscarbery another top result for Gary Gibson doing velocity 1270 and finishing 1st Combine, 3rd Sect B and 152nd Open NIPA 535/4,329.

As I had mentioned earlier the Irish Nat FC season was something special and the club collected a number of top awards. The first race was the Skibbereen OB Inland National and it was a top result for Alan Darragh who is hard to beat in the INFC races having already won 5 x 1sts which still stands as the Irish record. He had three arrivals almost together with the winner doing velocity 1228 and a top 1st, 2nd and 3rd Combine, 62nd, 78th & 79th North Sect and 67th, 83rd and 84th Open INFC 354/2,413. In the Yearling Nat from Sennen Cove it was Russell Bros who were best doing velocity 908 to win 1st Combine, 12th North Sect and 15th Open IN FC 829/4,175 plus £642. Alan Darragh had the next two to finish 2nd & 10th Comb plus 32nd and 80th Open INFC. Alan Darragh is a former winner of the race and I remember the first time the Yearling Nat was flown Russell Bros were beat by just one yard. The YB Nat from Sennen Cove was a hard race as well the winner was again Russell Bros doing velocity 837 finishing 2nd Comb, 76th North Sect and 98th Open INFC 351/1,856. The J & J Greer team took 3rd & 5th in Mid Antrim and then Alan Darragh with two birds finished 6th & 9th Combine, all the birds were placed in the Top 200. Two birds were timed on the day and just two were recorded in the Old Hen Nat with the birds released with the youngsters. Alan Darragh had 1st, 2nd & 4th Mid Antrim Combine and 6th, 8th & 17th Open INFC, the Darragh loft have also won this race previously. Skibbereen Inland Nat was the final race Gary Gibson finished with the winner doing velocity 1438 and finishing 7th in Mid Antrim Combine. The season overall was good again for the Cullybackey members, we had a change of 1st, 2nd and 3rd for Highest Prize-winner and competition in 2009 will be very interesting indeed. Gary Gibson worked very hard to get to the top, it will be very hard staying there.

Many thanks to the members for inviting myself and Rosie to the prize night, it was an honour to attend at a function I have been going to for as long as I can remember. I hope very soon to feature the results achieved during 2020 from Cullybackey HPS, no presentation this year maybe get back to normal in 2021, as mentioned earlier the local club function is the first every year.

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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