SHOW RACER WORLD” – Number 5.
Ron McCarthy of Rhymney.
I remember received the phone call, a couple of years ago from my good friend, Colin Carter, to inform me that the ‘master’, Ron McCarthy, had packed up his pigeons the week previous because of one or two health problems. Ron, then 81 years old, was going to retire from the Show Racer scene a year or so previous, but was persuaded by the lads to carry on, but then decided to call it a day! His 30 bird strong Show Racer team went up to the north east of England and are now the property the Wheatley family of Middlesbrough. This really was bad news as Ron was the ‘master’ of the show pen and his wonderful record in Society and National shows must rate him as one the greatest showmen of all time in the UK! Colin told me we will still see Ron about at the main National Shows as long as he can get a lift to venue and he will still enjoy the sport as a spectator. We look forward to seeing the ‘master’ again next winter!
Mr. & Mrs. Ron McCarthy of Rhymney 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 that 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, Ron and June McCarthy of Gwent. In Ron’s 60 plus 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 says, although it was many years ago, he rates his wonderful blue chequer cock, ‘Sparky’, as his best champion pigeon. He won thirty six firsts and many times Best in Show at Classic and National events, including BIS at the ‘Peoples Show’ and BIS at the ‘Show of the West’ held at Swindon. This wonderful cock was winning in the ‘golden’ era of showing in the late 1960’s, when Harry King and other Show Racer ‘superstars’ were at their best.
Ron kept about 16 pairs of Show Racers which were paired up on February 14th and bred about 40 youngsters each season. His loft was over 55 years old, starting out as a chicken shed, and was 22ft x 8ft with a flight on the front to bath the birds and keep the loft dry. Ron told me a good loft should be comfortable for the fancier and the pigeons. He had 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 were fed on farm beans and peas, mixed with maize and a pinch of Linseed each day. Ron didn’t feed anything special for the moult, as the birds got the same corn all the year round. He liked to pair grandparents to their grandchildren to produce good Show Racers. He liked a bigger pigeon for stock, with strong head and good body. Ron tried deep litter for about six months, but his wife, June, 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 enjoyed scraping the loft out every day and most of his birds were tame. Ron McCarthy is one of the very best showmen in the sport today. A brilliant fancier!
Jimmy Fitzpatrick of Cambuslang.
A good friend of mine in the Show Racer world is someone I admire for his skill in producing so many show champions, is Jimmy Fitzpatrick of Cambuslang, near Glasgow. ‘Wee’ Jimmy is in partnership with Roddy Fleming and they have won countless classes and trophies at every Classic show, including B.I.S. R.P. Old Comrades Show (twice), B.O.S. Old Comrades (twice), B.Y.B. Old Comrades (three times), many premier prizes at the B.H.W. Blackpool Show and three times Champion of Great Britain. Jimmy has kept show pigeons over 30 years, previously racing pigeons with his father, and 1971 won three races on the trot in the very strong local club, with over 55 members competing. At the end of the 1971 season Jimmy attended his first classic pigeon show and fell in love with the wonderful show birds he saw. He got rid of his racing pigeons and made his start in Show Racers, with a gift pair of eggs from Charlie Hanner. Later Jimmy met the ‘Master’ show man, Don Spedding of Cumbria, whom he considers to be the greatest stockman of them all!
Jim’s show team is housed in a smart six section loft at Cambuslang and the inmates enjoy an attached 24ft. aviary. The 25 pairs of Show Racers don’t fly out, but are fed in the flight, to encourage them to exercise. Jimmy told me, he let all the birds out once, to try and get them flying out and they were all alright until they went around the house roof out of sight of the loft, and they were lost. Wood chips are used as a litter on the loft floors and the loft has heaters which are used on the night before the big show. The birds are paired up at the end of January and are fed a Channel mixture of beans, peas and tares. Jimmy makes up his own seed mixture and feeds groats when rearing. This loft competes in about 40 shows in a season and Jimmy maintains he has no favourite colour, but only likes good type. The birds get a bath the day before the big show, but just prior to travelling, the birds drinking water is withheld as the partners maintains their droppings are dryer for the show pen. He likes to enter a team of about 40 pigeons in the Classic and National shows, and has judged all over the U.K. In fact the first time I ever met Jimmy, was when he was judging the Devon & Cornwall show in the West Country, with Alan Spedding of Cumbria.
One of the partner’s best pigeons in recent years is the wonderful Red cock, ‘Red Rum’, and he is off Harry Spratt of Belfast bloodlines. This cock has won countless first prizes in big shows and is a champion breeder, being the sire of Classic winners. The many quality stock birds owned by the partners are housed at the Aberdeen home of Gary Coutts and about 150 youngsters are bred each season. Jimmy is a very hard man when it comes to selecting young birds and is happy to retain just one youngster from the whole season’s production. He maintains that when competing at National level only the very best stock will do. There you have it, Jimmy Fitzpatrick of Cambuslang!
The late, great Norman Perry of Port Talbot.
I was very sad to hear of the passing of the premier Show Racer fancier, Norman Perry of Port Talbot on Saturday 9th April 2016. He was a member of the long list of top fanciers from South Wales and through the years I and many others have given him many first at National shows. Norman Perry and his wonderful Show Racer team were ‘world class’, winning ‘Supreme Champion’ at the BHW Blackpool Show three times. He won Best in Show at the BHW Blackpool Show in 2012 and his wonderful Mosaic hen went on to be ‘Supreme Champion’, which was a wonderful performance. At the 2009 BHW Blackpool Show Norman won ‘Supreme Champion’ and when I met up with him in the Winter Gardens on Saturday morning; he told me he was very proud that he had won. I first met Norman about fifteen years ago, when I was judging at the RPRA Southern Region Show and he won Best in Show with a Mosaic Chequer hen, bred from pigeons obtained from his good friend, Ron McCarthy of Rhymney. Norman has since gone on and won BIS at the Southern Region Show (twice), BOS at the RP Old Comrades Show and the top honours of ‘Supreme Champion’ and BIS at the BHW Blackpool Show for the first time in 2005. Norman had been in the sport since he left school and had kept Show Racers for about twelve years, being a north road racer before that. He changed over codes, to showing pigeons because his job as a postman didn’t allow him the time to race his birds properly. He was very keen on the long distance racing and won Lerwick twice. He paired his 25 pairs of show birds the weekend after the BHW Blackpool Show and kept mainly the very successful Ron McCarthy bloodlines. He had nine pairs of stock birds and bred about 50 babies each season, retaining half these for the show pen. Norman’s set up was made up of three lofts, with flights and the birds were fed on a Young Bird mixture. His club was the Monmouth Show Society and he entered only club events and three National shows each season.
I can remember at the 2006 RPRA Southern Region Show, when Norman won one of the classes I was judging. I normally judge the Show Racers and that year there were four of the best show men in the Show Racer world sitting on the side lines, 3ft. away watching me handle their birds, in the form of John Robilliard, Colin Carter, Ron McCarthy and Norman Perry, winners at that time, of seven times Best in Show at the B.H.W. Blackpool Show between them. I love a challenge! Norman won the class with a wonderful red hen and Colin was second with another red, which I think I’m right in saying won B.I.S. the week previous at a society show. The BBC ‘Inside Out’ television cameras came to the BHW Blackpool Show to film me judging in 2007 and the class winner which was featured on the programme was the smashing mosaic cock, ‘The Inside Out Cock’, owned by Norman Perry. A fancier with a big presence in the Show Racer world!
Mr. & Mrs. Alan Spedding of Cumbria.
I must start by saying, it was great to see my ol’ mate, Alan Spedding, up there again on the ‘specials’ table, winning Reserve Best in Show at the 2017 BHW Blackpool Show with a beautiful Blue Chequer. It was on a ‘Many Miles with Mott’ video tour of Cumbria and Scotland that I visited the Show Racer loft of Alan Spedding, soon after he had won Best in Show at the Old Comrades Show for the second time, and I must say, I have always found him to be a very nice guy. He started up with the Show Racers in 1988, taking over the birds when his relation, Donald Spedding packed up, and previous to that Alan raced pigeon with some good success. Donald was a professional singer and had to sell his team of birds to peruse his career in entertainment, and when he had his sale; Alan purchased two pairs back to start him self set up. Donald Spedding was very successful with his wonderful team of birds and is rated by some as one of the best Show Racer fanciers ever in the U.K. Alan told me; Donald was a brilliant stock man and had a natural gift of knowing which pigeon to pair together, to produce winners. He still spends a lot of time at Alan’s loft and his advice has help a lot with their recent success in the National shows.
Alan is a member of a big Show Racer society in the north west of England and it has lofts as far apart as Blackburn and Carlisle. As well as winning Best in Show twice at the Old Comrades, the Spedding loft has won B.I.S. twice at the Louella Classic and had a winning pigeon on the top table every year it was staged. The first pigeon I handled on my loft visit was the champion blue chequer hen that had won Best in Show at the Old Comrades Show a few weeks before. To say she was beautiful would be an under statement, she was perfection! She was a latebred, being out of a half brother, half sister mating and won the Old Comrades in her first season showing. Her dam, a blue chequer hen, was the nest mate to the champion blue chequer cock, ‘Mr. T’, winner of Best in Show at the Old Comrades in 1994. All these National show winners were bred down from Alan’s famous blue cock, ‘The Irish Blue Cock’, bred by Harry Spratt of Ireland.
Alan Spedding only keeps about 15 pairs of Show Racers and has no real stock birds, as he likes show all his birds. He pairs them up on 14th. February, to give them three or four weeks rest after the B.H.W. Blackpool Show and takes two rounds of them all. The premier birds in the loft are bred from more and ‘The Irish Blue Cock’ and ‘Mr. T’ might produce ten youngsters in one season. They are fed different corn at different times of the year, ‘four seasons’ when breeding, ‘moulting’ mixture and ‘best racing’ mixture during the show season. The loft is nice and big, being very spacious, with roomy wire flights. I noticed on my visit that the doweled nest box fronts had no landing flaps and it was furnished with lots of standard box perches. The Speddings don’t use any type of deep litter on the loft floors, but fresh clean shavings are scattered over the perches and in the nest boxes. Alan cleans the loft out at 6am every day before going to work and his wife feeds and cleans out again at mid-day. He says his birds are fed at lunch time, because in the winter months, he thinks the birds don’t feed right by electric light, and tend to loose body. The partners breed 50 young birds every year and these are graded before the show season starts. Alan told me, they have a hit list, two hits and they are gone! He usually starts showing with about 15 young birds and has been very successful on this method.
The next pigeon with looked at on our visit to the loft in Cumbria was the Old Comrades champion of 1994, blue chequer cock, ‘Mr. T’. This wonderful pigeon was five years old at the time and Alan said he had two more show seasons left in him. He won firsts at the Old Comrades three years on the trot and won Best in Show in 1994. Alan had a dream several nights on the trot, about a week before the Old Comrades and in this dream ‘Mr. T’, won B.I.S. at the Old Comrades Show. On penning his birds in the N.E.C. the following Friday, he told all the show lads about his dream and they all had a good laugh. Can you imagine the looks of amazement on their face on the Saturday when they walked in to the show arena and saw ‘Mr. T’ had won Best in Show! Really spooky! We also looked at the blue cock, ‘The Irish Cock’, and Alan told me he was the backbone of his loft, being a champion breeder. This cock was bred by Harry Sprat in Ireland and gifted to Donald Spedding in 1987, as a squeaker. As well being a ‘gold mine’ at stock, he won many firsts in the pen, including B.I.S. at York.
Alan told me there is no secret to his outstanding success, but worked to a regular routine and tried to stick to it. When he raced pigeons he raced on the widowhood system and works his Show Racers on a similar brake down system. The day after the show they are broke down and then built up with corn and seeds to the next show. He never over shows the birds and likes at least two weeks between shows. They get regular baths in the flights, with them have one as near to the show as possible and they get multi-vits in the water three days before the show, as part of their build up.
Donald Spedding of Cleator Moor.
Donald Spedding was one of only a very few fanciers, who I’ve never met, but we finally met a couple of years ago, when we both judged at the BHW Blackpool Show and I had previously heard about his brilliant talent with the Show Racer from the fanciers I’ve met over the years. I recently had a phone call from Don congratulating me on the current Show Racer series of articles and I took advantage of the call, and asked him if he fancied being part number seven. Don is only part time in the sport these days, being a busy professional singer, but spends as much time as he can at the Show Racer loft of his cousin, Alan, who is a very successful fancier in his own right.
Don was born in Cleator, Cumbria and his father and uncle raced pigeons for many years. He first became interested in the Show Racers during his National Service days in Oswestry and used to visit an old fancier named Mr. Simpson, and he had some lovely birds. After he finished his Army Service, he watched the Classic Show results and saw that at that time Bill Meader of London was the top man, so wrote of to him for a pair of birds. Bill, ever willing to help, sent him a blue chequer cock and a blue white flight hen. The hen won for Don and he was ecstatic! He had many birds over the years from Bill Meader and visited his loft in Leytonstone many times. Don told me, Bill was a brilliant show man, who taught him a lot about showing and breeding winners, and remains a great friend to this day. He was lucky to live near Keswick, where the great H. E. Dalzell lived and obtained quite a few birds off this wonderful fancier’s, winning blue chequer family. Harold Dalzell had won Best in Show at the G.Y.A. twice, at what Donald says, was the height of the showing era in this country.
Donald had his small loft in Wath Blow at this time and was visited by many fanciers from all over the U.K. He said, too many to mention, but people like Bill Meader came to see the birds and later when he moved to his present address a young Jimmy Fitzpatrick come down from Scotland many times to visit. In Don’s opinion, ‘wee’ Jimmy has developed into one of the best, if not the best, Show Racer fancier from north of the border!
The Spedding loft housed only ten pairs of birds, which were paired up on February 14th. and he was always very selective with the pigeons, always looking for something to get rid of. Don told me, that he only had a small loft, so could only keep a small team and kept a family of blue chequers, which he enhanced by introducing a cock from Harry Spratt of Belfast. He called this cock, ‘Harry’, and he was bred down from pigeon he obtained from Don Spedding and a dark hen from Graham Rougvie. This champion breeding cock produced many fantastic pigeons to win at National and Classic shows. Don also obtained a young blue cock he fancied from Harry Spratt and he went on to become the famous breeding cock, ‘Irish Blue Cock’, and he is the sire of Alan Speddings loft today. Donald told me he had many great years showing his birds, but one of his biggest thrills was the year he bred his champion mealy hen, ‘Lady Di’. She won seven Classic shows in succession as a young bird, then went on to be Best in Show (1,300 birds) at the G.Y.A. as a yearling. At the G.Y.A. she beat Bill Meader’s, Champion ‘Princess Asti’, winner of 30 firsts and many times Best in Show. Don says his greatest thrill was showing in the 1970’s and 80’s when showing pigeons was at it’s height in this country. He won Best in Show at the mighty G.Y.A. Show seven times! The two great fanciers, Harold Dalzell and George Greenshield, had both won it twice, so it was a wonderful thrill to win it seven times.
Don did inbreed a lot in those days. He gave the birds special attention when moulting, with Linseed and plenty of baths to help the new feathers burst out. He told me he has met many lovely people showing his pigeons through the years, some now gone and some still with us. People like Ron and June McCarthy, still going strong after many years of success at the very highest level, Tony Baugh, Danny Ferguson and Russell Davidson, who he has known for many years. Keith Foley of Bideford still keeps in touch with Don. He says, John Robilliard of Cornwall was a great show man many years ago and there he is still there setting records at the B.H.W. Blackpool Show a couple of seasons ago. He maintains the number of premier shows has dwindled in recent years and the camaraderie doesn’t seem to be in the sport, like it used to be years ago, although the quality of the birds and fanciers is still very high. Don still goes to the Blackpool Show, enjoying the day out, and the pigeon chat with his fancier friends. He says, his cousin, Alan and his wife, are now showing the Spedding pigeons with outstanding success, having won Best in Show at the ‘Old Comrades’ Show twice. The two ‘Old Comrades’ champions were both typical Spedding blue chequers in the form of, ‘Mr. T’ and ‘The Old Comrades Hen’, and both were bred down from the ‘Irish Blue Cock’. Don still goes down to the loft regularly to see the birds and enjoys his limited time with them. There you have it, Donald Spedding, the champion Show Racer!
Mark Hylands of Port Talbot.
Mark Hylands is one of the premier show in this country, having won consistently at the highest level in the Show Racer world. The lad from South Wales first started up with racing pigeon at the age of nine and tells me there were no pigeon fanciers in his family. Mark recalls, a fancier named Roy Denner was the best local racer at that time. He formed good friendship with Royce Davies of Sandfield and the lads formed a pigeon partnership, racing as Davies & Hylands. Mark was 11 years of age at the time and they joined the very strong Liberal Club (46 members), which was affiliated to the Welsh North Road Federation. Mark says that his good friend Royce Davies is still the best fancier in Port Talbot today! The young Mark had his first Show Racers from the late Will Morley of Port Talbot at the age of 13 and these were housed in a 10ft.x 6ft. loft. At that time, although he had some show birds, he was still hooked on the racing pigeons. Like all true Welsh men, when Mark was younger he played Rugby for his local club, Aberavon Green Star R.F.C.
When I asked Mark how he got on when started up, his reply was, ‘I only had three pairs of show birds, one pair from Will Morley, another from Will Williams of Glyncorrwg and the third from Brian Jones of Bridgewater. My favourite bird was a blue hen from Will Williams and she won the big show held in Swansea. That was my first big win, I was over the moon! On the racing side; I will never forget one particular day when we were racing three races, Lerwick with the Welsh Grand National, Elgin with the Mid Glamorgan Championship Club and a club race from Shrewsbury with the Welsh N.R. Federation. This particular day Royce had to go to work and clocking in was down to me, which was a huge responsibility for a 13 year old. There was a tail wind from Shrewsbury and I clocked to win the Federation, and then went on to time the Combine winner from Elgin. Royce phoned to say that the Lerwick birds would be home on the day, having been liberated at 06.00hrs. in a North East wind. At 18.12hrs I timed the black pied hen, sent sitting 10 day old eggs and this game hen recorded 1st. open Welsh Grand National, first birds in to Wales. What a day, that I will never forget!’
In the early days the racers came from M. Matthews and Ayton Marshall of the Up North Combine fame, and the first really successful show birds were obtained from David Shuttleworth of Bridgend. David was a great all round fancier and had the best Reds and Mealies at that time. When Mark worked in Essex he visited the great Bill Meader at every spare moment he had, to learn the showing ‘trade’ from one of the all time greats. Mark says, Bill Meader was the ‘master’ and he learnt a lot from him. One of the best birds he ever owned was a mealy pied hen gift from ‘wee’ Jimmy Fitzpatrick of Glasgow and she was the mother of his loft. Mark says what a pigeon! He maintains ‘wee’ Jimmy is the best all round pigeon man on the show scene today and there is nothing he hasn’t won. Mark’s first society was the very strong Monmouth S.R.S., which at that time had a membership like a ‘who’s who’ of some of the best Show Racer fanciers in the sport. He won his first Best in Show in the Monmouth and it was like winning an open show. Mark told me his early mistakes were over feeding and losing! After some time off from the sport, Mark restarted with show birds in 1989, with birds obtained from David Shuttleworth, ‘wee’ Jimmy Fitzpatrick and a very good friend, Donald Brown of Campbell town in Scotland. He combined the birds from these great fanciers together and they ‘clicked’.
Marks present loft set up at Port Talbot consists of a 12ft.x 8ft. stock loft, with an aviary and a 35ft.x 10ft. show loft, with an aviary, which is open all the year round. The loft has skylights in the roof to increase the light, he thinks ultraviolet is important for conditioning pigeons. In the loft contentment and feeding management are the most important things and he is against deep litter, because it is to messy and dusty. He likes to clean out twice a day, if possible.
When I asked Mark about his general management, he told me, ‘I don’t race any more. I concentrate on show birds, but if I was racing, the distance birds would be raced on the natural system, sprint to middle distance would be flown on the widowhood system, with the youngster going on the darkness system. Back to the showing; I keep about 40 show birds and breed about 60 young birds because it’s difficult to breed a champion, because every judge is different. There should be a standard for Show Racers i.e.; reds and mealies should have black eyes and blues should have good bars and plenty of colour. I find my late breds are always my best yearlings and find the best young birds are bred from yearlings. The corn I use is the best, a prestige mixture by the Versele-Laga corn merchants, which contains five different peas, popcorn maize ect. For conditioning I use plain canary seed. I think it is important to bathe the birds the day before a show and normally three times a week, also treat for cancer once a month’.
Mark pairs his 20 pairs up just after the B.H.W. Blackpool Show. All his Dark Chequers are bred down from his champion hen, ‘Nancy’, which was bred by Mark’s good friend, Russell Davison of Edinburgh. Even to the untrained eye you can tell this hen is very special, as her record tells you: B.I.S. ‘Old Comrades’ Shoe 2004, twice B.I.S. Edinburgh Show, twice B.I.S. N.E.H.U. Peterlee Show and to finish it off, twice Reserve Supreme Champion B.H.W. Blackpool Show. What a pigeon! When selecting birds, Mark, likes a long cast, a good head and a good size, not to small. He doesn’t like coloured birds and tells me he has just introduced some new stock from Darren Gibbons of Grimsby and Peter Kendall of Bideford. He normally keeps about 40 young birds and these are fed the same as the old bird show team. His job is a pipe fitter, which takes him working all over the U.K. and E.U., and sometimes only comes home once a month. He has some good friends that look after the bird well when he is away working, but it can be difficult when something goes wrong and he is not there to sort it out.
He first entered the ‘Old Comrades’ Show at the N.E.C. Birmingham in 1990 and won Best Young Bird and Best in Show, with his champion blue hen, ‘Lockie’s Gift’, which was bred by the late, John Lock of South Wales. Other premier birds at Mark’s Port Talbot loft are: ‘Peaches & Cream’, Mark told me she is the best Mealy he has ever seen and is a champion breeder, being the dam of his loft. She is 11 flighted and has won through the wires: ‘Fatty’, winner of five times Best in Show including at the R.P.R.A. Southern Region Show and Reserve Supreme Champion at the B.H.W. Blackpool Show: ‘The Beard’, winner of 11 times Best in Show. This wonderful Mealy cock has won two firsts at the ‘Old Comrades’ Show and three firsts at the B.H.W. Blackpool Show: ‘Spanish Princess’, Supreme Champion at the B.H.W. Blackpool Show, B.I.S. Monmouth S.R.S. Show: ‘Brownie’, Reserve Supreme Champion B.H.W. Blackpool Show, B.I.S. Monmouth S.R.S. Show. A wonderful loft record!
Mark says Show Racers should have dark eyes; he doesn’t like yellow eyes and maintains it is a fault. He believes in inbreeding his pigeons and told me late bred quite often make the best stock birds. When I asked Mark about the Show Racer scene in general, he said, ‘I would like to see only show men judging show birds, because racing men will always go for the smaller types of pigeons, with small heads and yellow eyes. You wouldn’t ask a show man to judge a 500 mile class! Just because a racing man has won a National or big race it doesn’t mean he knows about Show Racers. (Mark, I gave your beautiful pair of reds the first card at the ‘Old Comrades’, when I judged at the N.E.C. a few years ago! – Keith.) Show Racers should be bigger, bolder and beautiful, and in the main racing pigeons are smaller and finer. I think a racing man will always go for the type of bird he keeps.
TEXT & PHOTOS BY KEITH MOTT (www.keith mott.com)