It was actually Fillip's grandfather (the current manager of the Norman-colony, together with his faithful old friend and loft-manager Gilbert van Parijs) who began racing pigeons in 1902. Of course, we have to add that it was father, the late Norbert who put the Norman-strain on the world-map. Did you say on the world-map..? Yes indeed! They have achieved no less than 13 national victories in the Norman lofts !! The first time was in 1963 when they won the 1st national Perigeux ; in 1970 they won international Barcelona in Westkapelle. etc
On his deathbed, father Norman didn't ask Filip to continue with the printing firm Die Keure ( Filip is director and the firm has a turnover of 25 million), but to promise that he would continue racing the pigeons. He kept his promise "
And I will continue racing the pigeons until I draw my last breath", adds Filip.
Other highlights - "Norman is a concept in the pigeon sport".
One of the most prestigious prizes you can win in the pigeon sport, de Gouden Vleugel ! (the Golden Wing). The race concerning the first nominated pigeon from Barcelona, also won in Westkapelle by Norman.
In addition, the Euro Diamond was also added to the Norman's list of honours. The only loft to have won both the Euro Diamond and the Gouden Vleugel !
In 1982 they won 1st national Ace pigeon Long Distance with the famous "Thurau".
In 1984 they were also National Long Distance Champion KBDB
In 1991 they once again won the 1st national, this time from Argenton for the youngsters It became quieter for a few years
But in 2004 Norman once again showed that he was a force to be reckoned with. He won, with Robinson, the 1st national & 2nd international Pau.
In 2005 they yet again won 1st national, this time in the zone A from Limoges old pigeons & Derby
Million Dollar Race
Pedigree "Abraham" Winnaar Million Dollar Race 2008 : Click here
Has been used as a bull for years.
Filip Norman & Gilbert van Parijs ; Filip is holding super breeder "Zorro", grandfather of the winner
You can't believe it ? That's understandable, it is beyond comprehension ! There is probably only one loft in the Belgian pigeon sport with such a long enchanted history
it is almost a fairytale, this year, in 2008, Filip Norman ( & the late Norbert, since Filip wants his father to be mentioned always, because he has an ENORMOUS respect for his father ! ) won the Sun City One Million Dollar Race, possibly the biggest and most magnificent thing a fancier can experience. A few years ago it was won by the Belgian K. Roosens, together with a South-African; this was a South-African entry. But this is the only ever time that a Belgian has won this One Loft Race ! Saturday, after the race, I was one of the first to congratulate him, and the telephone hasn't stopped ringing since
The national television ( VTM ), the national papers ( Laatste Nieuws, Nieuwsblad, etc
) came to visit. There were calls from everywhere. Now, Monday, I was at his home in Westkapelle, and was treated like a king by Frans, Lisette, Gilbert, Filip, his wife Roos, brother-in-law Roger, what an ambiance ; you can taste the true West-Flemish sociability.
All sympathetic people, real people, cut from good wood. I had a very enjoyable stay !
Over the moon "Euphoric" "I'm over the moon", says Filip.
"The tension, the pressure for the next season has gone The season has already been successful. And if the pressure has gone, then Norman could be even more dangerous!" write that down "I haven't slept for 2 nights, and hardly eaten anything over the last few days" adds Filip. "The adrenaline travelling through my body is phenomenal, I'm living on the adrenaline ".
It was the third time that Filip Norman participated in the Million Dollar Race, this time with 9 pigeons. The premonition that something special was going to happen on the day of the final was evident Even before the victory, Filip had already signed 24 pigeons up for the edition next year.
The final race in the Million Dollar Race was a very hard one, with a velocity of hardly 1060 m/m for the first pigeon ; real tough pigeon weather ! The first day there were only 300 pigeons home, which says enough ! More than 25 countries took part, and everyone entered their best pigeons. This year there were 5000 pigeons at the start. The registration fee is 1000 US $ per pigeon, the prize money one million dollars, and the first prize in the final is 200,000 US $. Despite the enormous upcoming popularity of the one loft races in China, and the enormous prize money available from China for the One Loft Races (it has been reported that in 2008, more than 6 races will be organised in China with prize money of more than 2 million), the race in South-Africa is the most popular and most correct race. It is possibly the toughest competition for youngsters in the world.
"My good friend Jos Thoné told me that I could NEVER win a race like this Also my friend and loft carer Gilbert van Parijs was very much against our participation"
And still we did it " adds the proud Filip Norman. "Even the chairman of the KBDB, Félicien Vermeulen, called me to say that he was so pleased that he could experience this during his last months as chairman of the KBDB".