“The Original” Around The Up North Combine
By Good Corn
The final Up North Combine old bird race of 2018 was staged in Belgium, after a one day holdover Chief Convoyer Peter Maw in his first season in charge liberated the convoy of 8,775 birds at 6.30am on Sunday 22nd July flying into a South-West wind. Pride and place goes to the Skelton Green partnership of Bowden Bros Mick & Boss and loft helper Trevor Mitchell who timed no less than six of their inform team to win an earth-shattering 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th Club, 1st, 6th, 7th, 8th, 17th, 19th East Cleveland Federation from a 53 members entry of 751 birds. 1st, 35th, 75th, 99th, 149th, 169th UNC with vels of 1310, 1273, 1254, 1247, 1240, 1236 winning 1st Section 7 banking £171.45 and a Combine Gold Medal. With Mick, Boss & Trevor's Gold Medal winner being a yearling, so too was their fancied green card potter who netted 2nd £2 Fed Nom and £41.40; the lads fourth timer a 2y that claimed 3rd £2 Fed Nom picking up another £27.60 and that was followed by a 2y and a yearling to round off a fantastic and well-deserved days racing, more so the way their birds have been flying the past six races or so.
This is the lofts third 1st UNC winning performance after winning 1st UNC old bird Folkestone (2) National in 1994 with “Stan's Pride” named after Mick's late brother and Pigeon partner the always remembered Stan from a convoy of 20,447 birds when flying in the partnership of Bowden Bros & Dave Drinkhall. In 1997 when flying in the same partnership name 1st UNC old bird Folkestone (1) National was won with a Van Loon hen named “Julie” when there were 25,199 birds competing.
Back to the result where we see the loft of Bill Chapman, sons Steve & Colin and the late Tommy Swinburne timing a 2y doing 1282 to chalk up an impressive 2nd Club, 3rd Fed, 17th UNC and then a yearling racking up a vel of 1245.8 to lift 11th Fed, 110th Combine. Alan & David Wright netted 6th Club, 10th Fed, 109th UNC with a yearling on 1245.9; while the late Peter Winspear & son Derek and his son Mark pots 12th Fed, 112th UNC with a 2y doing 1245.2 to round off a very good day for the Skelton Green fanciers.
The Brotton H/S loft of Mr & Mrs Golly “Graham” & Linda Peirson & Tubby “Graham” Purver and loft helpers Evo “Ian” Everington & Frankie Rolands recorded their third channel win and fourth old bird win of the season, with their previous two water races being won from the French race points Burbure 2 (sub Roye) and Reims, and their inland win from Oakham (3). The gangs pole position winner that topped the Club charts by an incredible 17 minutes was a yearling chequer Riet Vink Prorous Van Loon x Prorous Koopman cock of Galaxy Lofts bloodlines recording a chart topping vel of 1285 which was enough to score a cracking 14th UNC. Reg Wilson, Ray Mole & Partners who have enjoyed an outstanding old bird season in both Club and Fed had a couple of their entries on the clock to lift 2nd and 6th Club with the blue card going to a 3y making 1235 to pocket 20th Fed and 170th UNC, while their second timer was a 4y. Club Secretary Terry Callan clocked a yearling on 1231 for 3rd Club, 23rd Fed and 210th Combine. Frank & Brenda Reilly & son Wayne notch up 4th Club with a 3y, and the partnership of Vic Garbutt, the late Brian “Rusty” Stone & Brian “Mac” McCormick claim 5th Club with a yearling.
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Mike Prokopowicz & son Lee recorded their third win of the season at Skinningrove with top spot being won by a well-fancied yearling blue pied cock achieving a winning vel of 1279 to lift a cracking 4th Fed, winning the £1, £2, £5 Fed pools banking £203.00 and 23rd UNC. The red card winning cock who scored 2nd Club, 8th Fed out of Oakham (4) when beaten by a loftmate that won 1st Club, 4th Fed, is out of Mike & Lee's 2009 1st UNC young bird Maidstone National Gold Medal winning “Georgia” when paired to a on loan cock from the very highly successful loft of Wade Bros, Richard & Martin of West Auckland fame. Mike & Lee's first win of 2018 was achieved out of the third race Chelmsford (1) when their red card winner went onto score a top notch 4th Fed when there were 2,189 birds competing. And win number two of the old bird campaign was racked up at Oakham (4) when another cracking 4th Fed was chalked up out of an entry of 660 birds.
The blue card went to Stafford & Wilson. While Tich Richards & Alice Marsay chalks up 3rd Club, 16th Fed, 143rd UNC on 1241 with a yearling, the green card potter is the previous scorer of 3rd Club, 3rd Fed Oakham (3) and 16th Fed Maidstone National this season. Sayers Bros Dave, Kenny, Brian and loft helper Richard clocked a 2y to take 4th Club.
While B & K Simpson the previous weeks 1st Club, 1st Fed Oakham (5) winners claim 5th position with a 3y Louis Cooreman widowhood cock who is the nest brother to Brian & Keith “King Keith” winner of 1st Club, 3rd Fed Oakham (1) from 2,191 birds and 1st Club, 1st Fed Oakham (4) in 2017 when there were 1,268 birds competing. The sire of the cock was bred for stock from a pair of direct Louis Cooremans, with him being the son of Brian & Keith's “Cavendish” sire of 3 x 1st Fed winners when paired to different hens, when he was paired to the old bloodlines from Bob Fenech. While the Dam of the blue cock was a gift youngsters bred by good friend Bob Fenech, after winning 1st Club, 6th Fed, she was later put to stock where she became Brian & Keith's number one stock hen after breeding at least 8 x 1st Club winners and at least 3 x 1st Federation winners when paired to different cocks.
Moving onto the Brotton Six Bird Club where the Burbure 2 (sub Roye) Up North Combine “Danish Cup Of Friendship winning partnership of Mr & Mrs Golly “Graham” & Linda Peirson & Tubby “Graham” Purver and loft helpers Evo “Ian” Everington & Frankie Rolands had a great clocking day after timing a trio of their entries to win a top notch 1st, 2nd and 3rd Club. With the red card being won by a 2017 bred chequer cock doing 1243 to chalk up 14th Fed and 128th UNC. With the winner that was 7 minutes in front of the second timer is through a daughter of Porter & Stevens double 1st Up North Combine Gold Medal winning “Village Lad” and lines through a 2nd West Durham Amal Maidstone winner. The blue card was awarded to a 2y blue Riet Vink/De Rauw Sablon cock racking up a vel of 1222 for 24th Fed. Golly, Linda, Tubby, Evo & Frankie's green card potter was “Elton” doing 1197, “Elton” a yearling cock who is of Ray Horton bloodlines crossed into Evo's bloodlines and is a son of a cock who won a brilliant 6 x 1st Clubs for Golly & Linda. With four of his wins being achieved from the channel when winning 1st Club Lillers and 1st Club Clermont in both Brotton H/S and the Brotton Six Bird Club. “Elton” hit the heights from the Burbure 2 (sub Roye) race when he won a fantastic 1st Club, 3rd Fed, 4th UNC from a convoy of 4,051 birds. He was the lofts second timer out of that race after being clocked 17 seconds after the gangs 1st Club, 2nd Fed, 2nd UNC Silver Medal Brotton H/S winner, with both birds winning the “Danish Cup Of Friendship” for the best two bird performance which was a fantastic achievement.
Barry “Smiler” Kettlewell wins top spot at Lingdale with a 2y knocking out a vel of 1234 to go onto claim 21st Fed and 183th UNC. Barry's highlight of the season was when he won a very impressive 1st Club, 5th Fed, 26th UNC out of the Maidstone National when there was 18,454 birds competing. Ian “Knocker” Brown comes out on top at Boosbeck with a yearling recording 1218 for 26th Fed. While David Coates timed a 2y achieving 1192 to lift 2nd Club and then a yearling making 1189 to notch up 3rd Club. Golly “Derek” Foster comes out on top down at the Fishing Village Staithes with Golly's red card winning Scottish rung 2y achieving 1211.5 to notch up 30th Fed. Geoff Bavin comes out on top at Marske & New Marske with a 4y achieving a winning vel of 1211 to pocket 29th Fed. Jimmy Reed is in 2nd spot with a 2y doing 1205, while the loft of the late Jack Brown & Tony Hunt chalks up 3rd Club with a 2y on 1197.
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Moving onto the Teesside Federation where Ali “Mac” McLeod continued his outstanding season to time no fewer than nine of his inform team to win an awesome 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th Club, 1st, 2nd, 9th, 10th, 11th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 19th, 20th Fed out of 215 birds to record his tenth Club win and seventh Federation win of the season. Which sees the lad win the Teesside Federation Old Bird Inland Average and the Old Bird Combined Average, and I don't think he will be far short of winning the Federation Old Bird Of The Year with a 2y cock who has won 3 x 1st Federations. Topping the charts for Mac was a yearling blue Vandenabeele hen who wins the £5 Fed pools recorded a top vel of 1289 which was enough to score a most impressive 10th UNC, to add to her 1st Club, 2nd Fed, 24th UNC Burbure (1), 18th Fed Chelmsford (2) when beaten by nine loftmates that won 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th Club, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th Fed etc, and then taking 18th Fed again at Oakham (5) when beaten by four loftmates that won 1st, 3rd, 5th, 6th Club, 2nd, 5th, 12th, 13th Fed this season. The very promising young blue hen has the same mother as Mac's 1st UNC Burbure Gold Medal winning “Gaby Lou”, which also makes her half-sister to Mac's 2nd UNC Silver Medal winner, and many more top birds including Ali's 1st Section, 32nd Open NEHU Futurity Race and 1st Club, 2nd Fed, 7th UNC Burbure (2) winner. These Vandenabeele bloodlines are responsible for numerous Club, Federation and Section winners, including some top UNC positions. The sire of the winning hen is half-brother to the sire of “Gaby Lou”, who was retired after her Gold Medal winning performance and is proving her worth at stock. The blue card was awarded to a 1y blue pied hen doing 1287 to chalk up an impressive 12th Fed, with her being bred by Evans & Hawkins.
The yellow card potting yearling blue hen who knocked out a vel of 1238 to pocket 161st UNC was also bred by Evans & Hawkins, with her being the previous scorer of 15th Fed, 176th UNC Burbure (1) and 4th Club, 7th Fed, 123rd Burbure (2) when beaten by two loftmates. Fourth on the clock was Mac's “Star Of The Season” a 2y blue cock on 1230 to claim 228th UNC, the top of his form cock who is out of Ali's old cock paired onto a grandson of Ad Schaerlaeckens “Sissi” , has really excelled himself this season after winning a top drawer 1st Club, 1st Fed Huntingdon, 1st Club, 1st Fed Chelmsford (2) and 1st Club, 1st Fed Oakham (3) in the space of four races and also netting 3rd Club, 5th Fed Oakham (5) the race before Ypres when beaten by a loftmate that won 1st Club, 2nd Fed.
Mac's fifth timer was a yearling blue cock 1214.9 who is the previous winner of 1st Club, 2nd Fed Oakham (1) and 5th Club, 9th Fed Oakham (3) when beaten by four loftmates that won 1st, 2nd, 7th, 8th Fed. Next on the clock one second later came a 2017 bred chequer cock on 1214.8 who notched up 19th Fed out of Oakham (1); and he was followed by a useful 2y blue hen on 1214.4 who has flown consistent scoring 3rd Club, 3rd Fed Oakham (1), 4th Club, 12th Fed out of the Maidstone National, 2nd Club, 3rd Fed, 22nd UNC Burbure (2) and then won 1st Club, 2nd Fed Oakham (4). A yearling blue hen was next on 1200.5 with her being 17th Fed Oakham (1) and she was followed nine seconds later by a 2y blue cock who notched up 6th Club, 7th Fed Newark when beaten by five loftmates that won a cracking 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th Fed; the cock also netted 17th Fed from Oakham (1).
Colin Atkinson timed two of his three entries to chalk up 3rd Club, 9th and 17th Fed, with the green card going to a 2y chequer cock achieving 1239 to net 156th UNC. Colin's second timer was 2016 bred blue cock doing 1204, with the cock being the previous winner of 4th Club, 11th Fed, 71st UNC Burbure (1) and a brilliant 1st Club, 1st Fed, 1st Section, 9th UNC Burbure (2).
Perth race details 1913.
The Middlesbrough H/S loft of the late Les Wellburn & sons Les & Derek have enjoyed a very good old bird racing season and this week it got even better for brothers Les & Derek after timing three of their all natural squad to win a top notch 1st, 3rd and 4th Club, 3rd, 5th and 7th Fed to record their seventh win of the season. With top spot being won by a fancied 2y blue pied hen achieving 1280 to win the Fed Nom, 19th UNC and 3rd North Of England Championship Club winning £133.93 in prize money, with the red card winning hen being the previous scorer of 4th Club, 15th Fed Oakham (2) when beaten by two loftmates that won 1st and 3rd Club. The green card was awarded to a blue hen knocking out a vel of 1273 to net 33rd UNC, with her being the previous potter of 6th Club 20th Fed Oakham (2) when beaten by four loftmates. Les & Derek's third timer was a chequer cock making 1249 to go onto claim 94th UNC, with him scoring for the second time after netting 3rd Club, 9th Fed out of Oakham (1) when beaten by a loftmate that took 2nd Club, 6th Fed. Les & Derek's first win of 2018 was achieved at Bubwith on the opening day of the new season when they won a cracking 1st Club, 2nd Fed when there were 776 birds competing. The lads netted win number two at Huntingdon when they won 1st Club, 9th Fed out of 458 birds. The duo chalked up their third win out of Oakham (2) when 1st Club, 2nd Fed was won when there were 410 birds away. The brothers returned to the winners' enclosure at the Maidstone National when they won 1st Club, 7th Fed from an entry of 378 birds. A most impressive 1st Club, 3rd Fed and 26th UNC was won at the channel race point Reims from a convoy of 3,265 birds. Les & Derek racked up their sixth win of the campaign two races ago out of Oakham (4) when they won 1st Club, 1st Fed from 213 birds. The partnership of Keith Hodge & Dennis Potter are in 2nd spot with the duo's blue card scoring 2016 bred blue hen doing 1275 to chalk up a useful 4th Fed and 29th UNC. Mr & Mrs Stephen & Jeanann Wheatley followed up their 1st Club, 1st Fed Oakham (5) winning performance by timing a yearling blue pied hen making 1228 to notch up 5th Club, 12th Fed and 240th Combine.
What can I say what I have not said before about the Haverton Hill partnership of Andrew “Jappa” Appleton & Paul “Skunky” Longstaff? The two lads and their birds have excelled this season and it's only right that they are enjoying every minute of it. The lads recorded their fourth channel race of the season no matter it been from France or Belgium after timing three of their entries to win an outstanding 1st, 2nd, 4th Club, 6th, 8th, 18th Fed, 85th, 96th UNC with vels of 1252, 1248, 1202. Jappa & Skunky the winners of 9 x 1st Clubs this season red card winning 2y blue Vandenabeele hen bred by Ali McLeod through his “The Young Couple” and the old Minderhoud bloodlines had flown outstanding this season. For she took 3rd Club, 3rd Fed out of Oakham (1) when beaten by her loftmate that potted 2nd Club, 2nd Fed; she followed that up by taking 2nd Club, 2nd Fed, 31st UNC Burbure (2) when beaten by a loftmate that won a brilliant 1st Club, 2nd Fed, 13th UNC. She then won 1st Club, 5th Fed Chelmsford (2) before scoring 2nd Club, 3rd Fed, 40th UNC out of the Maidstone National when again she was beaten by a loftmate that won an outstanding 1st Club, 2nd Fed, 35th UNC.
The blue card was awarded to a yearling blue cock who was 3rd Club, 4th Fed, 117th UNC Maidstone National beaten by two loftmates that won 1st, 2nd Club, 2nd, 3rd Fed, 35th, 40th UNC.
Jappa & Skunky's third timer was a 2016 bred chequer hen that scored 2nd Club, 6th Fed, 169th UNC from the Eastbourne National when beaten by a loftmate that won 1st Club, 4th Fed, 110th UNC. Jappa and his partner Skunky have really hit the heights this season with them knocking out top performance that have not only seen the two lads win 1st Club and top Fed positions from both the inland Nationals and the four channel races they have competed in, it has also seen them win 1st Club, 1st Fed, 1st Section winning £177,83, 3rd UNC winning a Combine Bronze Medal from a convoy of 10,633 birds, winning the UNC “Captain George Trophy” for the first yearling. A number of fanciers have stood up and admired the lads outstanding performances and achievements this season which included winning the Teesside Federation Channel Average. Their achievements have spilled out onto the public with Skunky getting mobbed on a recent trip to the seaside town of Saltburn with his family which left him in tears, but not due to the mobbing, it was the digging into his pocket to buy the ice creams that really shook the foundations.
Where was I? The loft of Paul Gatley, Bob Harrod & son Dale clocked a yearling blue hen making 1205 to lift 3rd Club, 16th Fed. With the green card scoring hen being the previous potter of 5th Club, 14th Fed Reims when she was beaten by a loftmate that took 3rd Club, 4th Fed, 61st UNC.
That's the old bird season reports over and done with, it's been a struggle to get the reports out the last couple of weeks due to me not been too well. I have not been able to get around the lofts to take any photos because of this but I have added three photos taken by Tommy Barron on a recent trip to “The Beamish Museum” an open-air museum located near Stanley, County Durham.