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Pedigree of the
with his daughter
and his champion
The Marseille Winner
2010 1st NATIONAL LIMOGES
Tielt-Winge: It’s Sunday night -- exactly one hour before the World Cup final Holland vs. Spain was played that we rang the bell of the personable Limoges winner Ronald Lodewijckx from Tielt-Winge. It was very crowded at his place because besides family there were also friends, reporters and pigeon brokers on hand to admire the fastest yearling of this national flight from Limoges.
Ronald enthuses, “It’s my first national victory, and I honestly didn’t expect such crowd. I think that I will process what happened in a few days. To be truthful, I’m happy that my pigeon friend Paul Tombeur had let me know that there were Limoges pigeons already clocked because I miscalculated by at least one hour. With the telephone in my hand I looked outside and there was already a pigeon. First I thought of a latecomer, but when I came closer I saw it was one of my Limoges flyers. You can guess the rest of the story!”
Ronald continues, “Until 2002 I raced with pigeons with my father in Tremelo. The highlight was winning the 1st semi-national Chateauroux in 2001. That same year I started with my young pigeons here in Tielt-Winge. The base of my colony is mainly our old basis (mainly based on pigeons of Marc Pollin) and this was expanded with pigeons from Christiaan Hennes, Van Vugelen, Speltdoorn Remi, Van Eycken Robert and Eddy Schrijven.
“I try to make it difficult for the competition with a team of 33 widowers, 26 couples of breeders and around 100 young pigeons,” Ronald explains. “I fully aim for the heavy middle fond and long distance flights, and since year and day I spontaneously get stressed when the national flight of Limoges comes near. In 2008 I won with my ‘Rode’ the 8th national and now I shot the main bird. That this all happens on Limoges makes it even more special to me.
“Despite that,” Ronald says, “I go to Brussels every day to go to work, leaving at 5:50 a.m. and back home at 5:15 p.m. I have coupled everything by the end of November. With exception of my best widowers, my widowers raise the first round of youngsters of my breeders. The breeders can start their second round right away then. Because the spring was very cold, I didn’t couple the pigeons again, but they got together for three days. They were very motivated by this to sprint back home from the first training flights.”
“The widowers train once a day,” Ronald explains, “but during the month of July I’m home every week starting from Wednesday, and that’s why the widowers are trained both in the morning and in the evening before the basketting. Because it was so warm, I did put a drinker on the landing board during the training in the evening, so that the widowers could drink every moment during the training.”
“As for treatment,” Ronald continues, “I feed with mixes from Beyers (Vandenabeele and Super Weduwschap), and I work with by-products of Dr. Peeters and Dr. Marien. On the medical front, I treat during the season against tricho every month (individually with Tricho Cure – Oropharma) and against ornithosis with products from Dr. Peeters.”
“I love to put very motivated pigeons into the basket,” Ronald confesses. “Normally, I use several tricks, but this time the motivation came spontaneously. When I gave my future national winner his hen before the basketting, the widower that sits right below him wanted to come inside its box. Why and how long this game has been going on, I don’t know. But the fact is that he went into the race super motivated as the second nominated of four participating cocks in the basket for Limoges. The extra night in his basket will have motivated him a lot more, and then it’s nice to see that he is the only pigeon that went faster than 1400m/mm. For Limoges he completed Argenton and two times Chateauroux as preparation.”
Ronald… enjoy your victory, and we will plan to go and drink a good beer this winter!
2010 1st INTERNATIONAL MARSEILLE
10,343 OLD PIGEONS
Brecht: Marseille international became a hard flight. After a being delayed a day the birds were released at 6:.40 a.m. None of the 10,343 participants could reach a velocity of more than 1000 m/m. The international winner was the well-known marathon racer Jos Joosen from Brecht, Antwerp. His five-year-old widower reached a speed of 992.998 m/m, and with this he had beaten pigeons of Adam Gerard and Muriel (989.168 m/m) and Campinne Patrick (978.252 m/m) who took the other places on the podium.
Jos Joosen from Brecht -- Does this player need an introduction?
If you ask me, someone who doesn't know the name Joosen doesn't follow the national and international pigeon sport, that's for sure. A brief look at his record: 1st international Perpignan 14,812 old pigeons (2006), 1st national Bordeaux yearlings ’09, 2nd national Perpignan, 2nd national Dax, 2nd national Marseille, 3rd national Pau, 3rd national Bordeaux, 3rd international Marseille, 3rd international Perpignan etc.…
Also this season, Jos was very successful because earlier he won provincial Pau and 2nd and 3rd provincial Montauban.
Jos has been busy with pigeons since 1976. The basis for his colony was formed by pigeons of his father, and then we are speaking of the strains Huyskens-Van Riel and Van Rhijn-Kloek. Over the years they successfully invested in the pigeons of Vereecke Roger (Deerlijk), Chris Hebberecht (Evergem), Luc Van Coppenolle (Ouwegem), Debaene Hubert (Beernem), Van Ouwerkerk-Dekkers (Brasschaat), Van Mengsel Lucien, Vandenabeele Gaby (Dentergem), Jac Van Der Wegen, Aelbrecht Marcel (Lebbeke), Desmet-Matthijs (Nokere), Stefaan Meremans (Zottegem) and Jan Theelen (Buggenum).
But the ancestor is without a doubt “Bonga” (B85-6392475) who was coupled to “Sproet duivin” (strain: Van Aerschot Francois – Putte Kapelen), and a true top couple was formed. Jos dares to say that in 80% of his pigeons the blood of “Bonga” flows. Also in the pedigree of the international winner of Marseille we could read the name “Bonga” twice.
HE WHO STARTS THE SEASON TOO LATE ARRIVES TOO LATE DURING THE SEASON
Jos owns a very broad flying team and broad means 87 widowers, 20 hens and some “late breds”. With “late breds” we mean pigeons who are bred late and have not seen a hen or a basket as a yearling.
Everything, and this means the whole flying team together with the 24 couple breeders, gets coupled at the end of November. The old pigeons raise one young, and the yearlings raise a couple of youngsters. The fact that the yearlings can raise a couple of healthy youngsters gets seen as a first selection. Those who cannot do this (e.g., too much loss of weight) get out. Once the youngsters can be weaned, everything gets separated, and on the 15th of March a second coupling follows.
The widowers could breed for five days and then go to the races. In addition to the fact that Jos is a marathon player, all his flying pigeons were in Quievrain (120 km) the weekend of the 11th of April. Jos could see from my face that we find this a very early season start, but he assured me: “You can't start the season too early. Normally they are on Quievrain the first weekend of April. People who start the season too late, often arrive too late during the season.”
And then the treatment. Jos says, “Keeping everything as simple as possible, that's the message.” No difficult medical schemes, no special feeding schemes and the byproducts business is nothing for Jos. He says, “I mix the sport mixes of Versele-Laga, Van Tilburg and Natural. Of this mix I feed twice a day during 15 minutes a full basket. As for byproducts I give them electrolytes at homecoming and sometimes a vitamin complex. Medically, I check the pigeons myself, and I treat them when it's needed.”
“They train twice a day, every day,” Jos continues. “This happens at 5:00 a.m. (even when it's still dark) and at 6:00 p.m. By looking at the training of the pigeons, you can check to see what form they are in.”
“Can you believe that at first I wasn't planning on basketting this widower,” Jos remarks, “but because he trained so remarkably I basketted him. Marathon races often cost feathers, and because this cock stands his man on all flights I wasn't afraid losing him. But the one who wants to win needs to use his best pigeons, and because I knew he was in great condition I basketted him. Before he went to Marseille, he completed Dourdan twice, Bourges, Montélimar and Orange. He won a prize on all of these flights.”
“I don't work with motivation,” Jos confides. “Only for the last two marathon races do they get to see their hen, so before the basketting of Marseille, the winner got to see his hen for three minutes.”
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his wife and
It was nine minutes after 10:00 p.m. and without knowing it at the time, Jos clocked his second international win in four years. These are performances that can only be accomplished by the best in the pigeon sport.
Only heavy long distance
2010 1st INTERNATIONAL PERPIGNAN
15,857 Old birds
Oudenaarde-Mater: Perpignan is the traditional closure of the international heavy long distance. There were 16,000 competitors and the international victory was won in Belgium, more specifically in Oudenaarde (Eastern Flanders) by Wilfried Bruyneel. He clocked his chequered cock at 6:21 p.m. for a distance of 896 km, at a speed of 1297.75m/m. The second and third international was won by Willems Albert and Eric (1281.07 m/m) and Delait Gilbert (1264.52 m/m), all from Belgium.
Wilfried has spent time with pigeons since the age of 12. For 15 years, he raced together with Bettens Bertrand (Mater), but in those days they only raced with the youngsters. Twelve years ago, Wilfried moved to Mater, where he started to race all by himself, and from that moment on he preferred to race the heavy long distance. Then he needed heavy long distance birds, and he got them mainly from Georges Carteus. Wilfried says, “About 80% of my pigeons have the blood of Carteus. Other successful investments came from Vandenabeele Marcel (Ronse), Etienne Devos (Deerlijk), Brockamp and Hebberecht Chris (Evergem).”
The season of 2010 started with 38 old and 20 yearling widowers, which stay in five different lofts. After the season, the widowers can raise a couple of youngsters and that’s it. No winter breeding or pairing in spring. “Nevertheless,” says Wilfried, “when the widowers get their first training flights, they get their hens for three days, but this only to stimulate the cocks to return faster. The old pigeons have to race the national and certainly the international races, while the season stops for the yearlings after Limoges or Tulle. Those that scored well can stay, the others have to make room for better pigeons.”
“My system is very simple,” Wilfried continues. “Throughout the week, the birds get the same mixture: one part breeding mixture, one part moulting, one part sports, half a part Super Diet and half a part Gerry Plus. All mixtures are from the firm of Versele-Laga. Every day the cocks can eat as much as they want. I usually use the by-products of Brockamp, and I follow the advice of the vet Wim Boddaert. Normally my widowers have to race every three weeks and in between two flights I treat shortly after they come home for three days against canker. For the next two days I use a by-product of Brockamp, then a treatment of 3 days against ornithosis and again two days a by-product of Brockamp. Then they’re ready for the next race. Besides my widower team, I also have 13 breeding pairs and about 60 youngsters. The young birds have to do Noyon (150km) three times in their year of birth and then the season is finished for them.”
“Perpignan is the last flight of the season,” Wilfried explains, “and every year they are extra motivated. On the day of basketing, the hens go on the loft early in the morning along with a lot of straw. I put in 18 pigeons for Perpignan and in the evening I had already clocked nine of them. I was sorry that I didn’t see my Perpignan winner arrive home. I was busy behind the loft and when I came out, my winner was on the roof. I can guarantee that at that moment my heart beat very fast because I knew from the Internet that no bird was announced in Belgium.”
Wilfried, this is a first-class victory! Enjoy it while you can!
and the champion
Head of the
2010 1st NATIONAL BOURGES 30,759 Youngsters
Fastest of 55,781 pigeons
Grimbergen: The national race from Bourges is the first of four national races for the youngsters. Bourges II is a classic flight. The winner gets “eternal fame” and this time it’s André Moonens from Grimbergen. There in the Meisestraat we found a very happy André Moonens.
André says, “I’ve already put a lot of time and energy into the pigeon sport, and finally I can enjoy my hard work. I think my wife will have to pinch me a few times on the arm so I’m sure I’m not dreaming!”
One thing is sure: the youngsters of André are in top condition, and this can be proved by the results of the last few weeks. Last weekend he even won 1st Angerville against 2,900 youngsters and this with a brother of his national winning hen.
André is not unknown in the Belgian pigeon sport. It was 1975 when he started to race in his own name, and from 2000 till 2008, he was loft-manager of Marc De Cock (Temse). André explains, “In 2008 I started again on my own. First I raced together for a year and a half with my friend and vet Dirk Moens, and afterwards went on my own wings. I fully concentrate on the middle and the heavy middle distances. I own 20 breeding pairs, 16 yearling widowers, paired to 20 yearling hens, which are raced on total widowhood. The team of youngsters counts 80 pigeons. My colony is based on pigeons of Petrus Dehaes (Jette), Limbourg Erik (Brussegem), De Cock Marc (Temse), Moons Ward (Zemst), Louis Van Den Eynde (Brussegem) and Van De Wijngaert Johan (Vilvoorde).”
Because André won the national victory with the category of youngsters, we wanted to know more about the system with these birds.
André says, “As I already mentioned, I weaned 80 youngsters before the season. In front of my youngster loft, I have an open aviary. My young birds always have the choice to stay inside or get outside. I think they know what’s best for them. I worked very hard on their training -- no large jumps and when they didn’t get home before me, I went to the same place the next day.
Because of the hot weather and the North Western wind, I started later this season with my young group. The first time they were in Noyon was June 27th. They came home very well, with a super result. Up to now the youngsters have raced: 2 x Noyon (170km), 2 x Dourdan (330km) and then the young hens left for Bourges (450km). I would like to keep my young cocks on the middle distances, and the hens have to do the national races.”
“I race my youngsters on the system of the sliding door,” André explains. “Before I start the system, I like my youngsters to be paired well, so I separate them in the middle of June. I darkened them till the longest day of the year and now they get more light. Once the system of the sliding door starts, the young birds can’t fly out during the week. The daily training flights are replaced by training flights of 65 km. On Tuesday and Wednesday, I drive 65 km and I release them all together. At their arrival they can spend some time together, and when I get home half an hour later, they get separated. On the day of basketing, they come together for about 30 minutes before they get into the basket. To motivate them even more, I create dark corners.”