Yves Vandepoel (Geetbets, BE) takes victory from Chateauroux II old birds

It took a while before we published this report but Yves Vandepoel's victory could not be overlooked. It appears that the town of Geetbets was the place to be for fanciers looking to win a national old birds' race. One week after Andrea Morren took the old birds' win from Bourges, Lady Bolt (BE11-2007582) of Yves Vandepoel claimed a first prize against 4316 pigeons.

Lady bolt was clocked at 13:02'30", after having covered 517.216km with a velocity of 1603.77 m/m.

Lady Bolt (BE11-2007582)

It goes without saying that Lady Bolt is a top class pigeon. She had not won an important result yet this season, but 2013 had been a great year for her, winning 7 top prizes in 7 national races:

Montlucon (582 Km)     18568 p.  166
Argenton (546 Km)      16325 p.  531
Bourges (466 Km)        9639 p.  132
Chateauroux (516 Km)    4757 p.   49
Argenton (546 Km)       5941 p.   35
Issoudun (456 Km)       5670 p.   30
La Souterraine (581 Km) 4144 p.  119

She won several ace pigeon titles that season thanks to this list of achievements. You can find her full palmares here.

Her pedigree shows that she is a 75% Soontjes pigeon from her father’s side. Her grandfather Supersonic Soontjens 663 (BE95-5062663) was obtained from Tony Martens (Lummen, BE), and he was a great racing bird but an even better breeding pigeon. Lady Bolt is a 100% Heremans-Ceusters pigeon from her mother’s side. This is a pigeon with excellent origins indeed. Click here for the pedigree.

The story behind this loft

Yves used to be fond of the extreme long distance competition and he particularly liked the Spanish classic from Barcelona. He won several early prizes and he took the win in the club OBRAFO (Tienen, BE) once. However, he started looking for new challenges in 2009, eventually focusing his attention on the longer middle distance competition.

Yves races his pigeons in total widowhood and he started the 2014 season with 24 pairs of old birds and 15 one year old pairs. He tries to keep things simple, partly due to lack of time. Besides, he is convinced that a simple approach can make you very successful as well. His pigeons are brought together before every race and they are released shortly before being basketed on Thursday. Most fanciers tend to keep their pigeons together for a longer period of time as the season progresses. This was not the case for Yves last weekend; his pigeons could stay together for no more than a few minutes.

The pigeon family is founded on the old stock pigeons of Yves, which used to do well in the extreme long distance. They were paired to the following bloodlines:

In 2004 a son of Pinoccio of Jef Houben (Ichtegem, BE) was purchased in an effort to make his long distance pigeons gain speed. In fact, the combination of Vanoppen-Luyten (Herk-de-Stad, BE) has bred several prize winners from this pigeon. A number of Soontjens pigeons were introduced in Yves’ loft in 2005 via the Geerinckx combination (wommelgem, BE). In 2007 he obtained about 20 pigeons of Heremans-Ceusters, which were all sons or daughters of Olympiad pigeons. They were not as expensive back then. Yves successfully combined these Soontjens pigeons with pigeons of the great champion Louis Van den Eynde (Brussegem, BE). Yves also invested in pigeons of Gaston Van de Wouwer more recently.

Yves prefers to keep medical guidance to a minimum as well, visiting his vet only once in a while. The pigeons were treated against trichomoniasis two weeks before the race from Bourges I, and there was an individual coccidiosis dose against respiratory diseases. Both treatments were repeated four weeks later over a period of two days.

We wish Yves good luck for the season to come.