Harrie and Roger Wijnands (Maastricht, NL) dominated the marathon competition in The Netherlands for over 40 years (Part 2)

Harry & Roger Wijnands have been one of the most prominent names in the marathon competition in The Netherlands for more than 40 years. The fanciers from Maastricht have 7 national victories to their name, and they are also two time National marathon champion in The Netherlands.

In our previous report (Part 1) we talked about the most important pigeons in the development of this breed. And we also showed you their best results up until the early 2000s. In this article (part two) we will focus mostly on their best results in recent years, and we zoom in on the pigeons that are mainly responsible for their achievements in the last several years.

Around 260 pigeons have been spending the winter in the Ringhoeve in recent years: they have 80 to 90 widowers, 25 breeding pairs, 25 late youngsters and a handful of substitute racing hens. The old birds are raced in widowhood (cocks only) and they breed around 100 to 125 youngsters for own use. These youngsters are trained in the natour competition for races of up to 200km. Most pigeons are basketed for two international long distance races, including this year's yearlings (Agen and Narbonne). Only the pigeons that race in Pau are basketed for a total of three instead of two international races. We will be talking about the team's best racing birds in recent years, but we begin with an overview of their national victories and some of their recent achievements (2015-2019):

1st National Marseille 1983
1st National Soustons  1992
1st National Perpignan 1992
1st National Marseille 1997
1st National Bordeaux  2004
1st National Marseille 2005
1st National Agen      2018

2015 (National)
Barcelona   5,183  p.: 241-248-282-576-745-etc. (8/14)
Narbonne    5,338  p.: 6-9-15-104-etc. (7/18)
2016 (National)
Perpignan   4,027  p.: 22-29-51-84-195-etc. (6/11)
Marseille   3,320  p.: 22-157-216-248-529
Agen        6,879  p.: 98-304-617-etc. (5/6)
Barcelona   5,239  p.: 272-611-665-693-etc. (6/14)
Narbonne    7,811 YLs: 105-147-221-256-304-326-363-375-etc. (13/18)
Narbonne   10,836  p.: 128-1477 (2/3)
Pau         3,788  p.: 170-337-817 (3/6)
3rd Superprestige
2017 (National)
Narbonne    4,566 p.: 9-26-149-150-162-336-385-402 (8/11)
Perpignan   4,789 p.: 17-65-238-244-etc. (6/8)
Barcelona   4,504 p.: 10-105-268-330-387-etc. (7/24)
6th Nat. Marathon Champion
5th Euregio Champ (two first nominated)
2018 (National)
Agen        5,754 p.: 1-109-786-814-944 (5/10)
Perpignan   3,778 p.: 15-26-151-311-etc. (7/12)
Barcelona   3,912 p.: 271-401-492-570-581-734 (6/12)
St. Vincent 2,570 p.: 5-380-562 (3/9)
2019 (Euregio)
Agen          449 p.: 9-22-27-31-43-etc. (12/30)
Barcelona     842 p.: 12-43-47-70-73-etc. (6/8)
Marseille     798 p.: 32-62-76 (3/4)
Narbonne      811 p.: 4-8-16-26-27-35-51-58-etc. (14/25)
4th Emperor extreme long distance ZLU
5th Pyrenees Cup ZLU
3rd Superprestige
2nd Euregio (2 first nominated)
3rd Euregio (first nominated)
2nd Europa Marathon
1st Int. serie 5 first nominated Barcelona 
3rd Int. serie 3 first nominated Barcelona

NL12-1916805, Lichte 05

De Lichte 05 had been a great racing bird across many seasons, winning for instance a title of 1st Nat. Ace Pigeon WHZB in 2013. These are his best results:

7th Nat. Agen 4,386 p. (2013) 11th Nat. Narbonne 4,515 p. (2013) 63rd Nat. Agen 5,910 p. (2014) 530th Nat. Narbonne 6,650 p. (2014)

The sire of Lichte 05 is a son of the Ace Pigeon pair (Asduivenkoppel) of E. Meirlaen, and he is also related to the fantastic breeder Don Michel (Cor de Heijde). The dam of Lichte 05 is a daughter of Witneus, winner of an 8th Nat. Bordeaux (6,133 p.) and a 7th Nat. Marseille (3679 p.). Witneus is a daughter of Blauwe Vanoppen.

Lichte 05 is now proving to be a great breeder as well; he is the sire of:

NL14-114 : 17th Nat. Perpignan (2017) NL17-146 : 65th Nat. Marseille 2,735 p. (2019) 235th Nat Perpignan 4,283 p. (2019) 147th NPO Agen 2,866 p. (2019)

NL13-1522057 Witneus Barcelona

Witneus Barcelona was also a trusted member of the team in the marathon competition, especially in Barcelona and Perpignan:

616th Int.Nat. Narbonne (2014) 241st Nat. Barcelona 5,183 p. (2015) 693rd Nat. Barcelona 5,239 p. (2016) 84th Nat. Perpignan 4,027 p. (2016) 268th Nat. Barcelona 4,504 p. (2017) 238th Nat. Perpignan 4,789 p. (2017) 492nd Nat. Barcelona 3,912 p. (2018) 311th Nat Perpignan 3,778 p. (2018) 116th Nat. Barcelona 4,129 p. (2019) 1059th Nat. Perpignan 4,283 p. (2019) 3rd Int. Ace Pigeon Barcelona across 5 years (2015-2019)

The sire of Witneus Barcelona is a grandson of Son Ohran (5th Nat. Barcelona '12 for the Bruggeman Brothers) x Son Oude Kruk. And the dam is a granddaughter of Blauwe Vanoppen.

NL14-1331929 Barca Rambo

Barca Rambo was also outstanding both in Barcelona and Perpignan, just like Witneus Barcelona. We particularly remember his 33rd National Barcelona 2019 and his 82nd National Barcelona 2020. It led to a title of 6th Nat. Ace Pigeon Barcelona (2018-2020) and 8th International. His sire is Rambo 207, which was very successful in many national races between '07 and '12.

Here are some of his best results:

67th Nat. Narbonne 5,042 p. (2016) 387th Nat. Barcelona 4,504 p. (2017) 65th Nat. Perpignan 4,789 p. (2017) 401st Nat. Barcelona 3,912 p. (2018) 151st Nat. Perpignan 3,778 p. (2018) 33rd Nat. Barcelona 4,129 p. (2019) 722nd Nat. Perpignan 4,283 p. (2019) 82nd Nat. Barcelona 4,477 p. (2020) 6th Nat. Ace Pigeon Barcelona (2018-2020)

NL15-1105530 Rode Barca

Rode Barca proved to be a very strong racing bird as well, having won a 105th National Barcelona '17 (4,504 p.) and a 216th National Marseille '16 (3,320 p.). His sire is a son of Pozzato (1st Int. Bordeaux 9,001 YLs '04 and the fastest of 16,000 p.). This son Pozzato is the sire of Rode Barca, and of the following racing birds:

NL11-190 : 41st Nat Narbonne (2012) 85th Nat. Barcelona (2014) 273rd Nat. Barcelona (2013) 574th Nat. Barcelona (2015) 287th Nat. Perpignan (2013) 13th Golden Barcelona pigeon 2015 ZLU NL16-679 (Mai-kel): 1st Nat. Agen (2018)

We spotted some other important stock breeders in the pedigree of Pozzato, such as Blauwe BrouwersOlano (1st Nat. Marseille '97) and once again Blauwe Vanoppen (brother 1st Int. Barcelona '87).

NL16-1778567 Lotus

Like we said in part 1, breeding bird Beluga of Jos Thoné (a gift) proved an important introduction in the lofts of Harry and Roger as well. Lotus was one of his best youngsters but he bred some other talented descendants as well, such as:

NL18-570 : 70th Nat. Narbonne 3,829 p. (2019) 253rd Nat. Agen 3,940 p. (2019) 2nd Best pigeon Limburg YLs+olds (2019) NL15-537 : 22nd Nat. Marseille 3,320 p. (2016) NL16-1778567 Lotus : 5th Nat. St. Vincent 2,570 p. (2018) 16th Nat. Pau 3,551 p. (2018) 239th Nat. Agen 5,930 p. (2017) 336th Nat. Narbonne 4,566 p. (2017) 822nd Nat. Pau 3,785 p. (2019) 3rd Nat. Ace Pigeon WHZB (2018)
Lotus, 3rd Nat. Ace Pigeon WHZB 2018

Lotus is a full brother of the 22nd Nat. Marseille, and they have the same dam: NL15-562, a granddaughter of Blauwe Vanoppen.

3rd Nat. Bordeaux 4,504 p. 14th Nat. Marseille 3,486 p. 68th Nat. Barcelona 85th Nat. St. Vincent 122nd Nat. Perpignan 140th Nat. Bordeaux 155th Nat. Bordeaux 224th Nat. Bordeaux 334th Nat. Narbonne 780th Nat. Marseille

NL16-1778679 Mai-Kel, 1st National Agen (5,754 p.)

Mai-Kel is the last racing bird that we would like to introduce. This pigeon was named Mai-Kel to honour Harry's deceased wife. Her name was Mai, a beautiful name from the Maastricht region. The racing cock that was named after her won the 7th national victory for the Ringhoeve, in a demanding race from Agen. The sire of Mai-Kel is NL06-242 (son Pozzato), and he is also the sire of the aforementioned Rode Barca (NL15-530). The dam of Mai-Kel is a daughter of super class breeding hen Prima Donna (Fons van Ophuizen). And his pedigree also features the stock breeders Blauwe Vanoppen, Olano and Blauwe Brouwers. Mai-Kel has not fertilized any eggs yet but Roger has already bred a few youngsters from a full sister: breeding hen NL16-1778670.

End of an era

Harry and Roger have been one of the leading names in the international long distance for over 40 years now. We have tried to make a summary of their countless top results over the years, and we have also talked about the pigeons that form or have formed the foundation for this unique collection of birds. We have listed up some of the team's most legendary names like Kleine Jo, Kuyper 128, Goede Blauwe, Blauwe Brouwers, Olano, Blauwe Vanoppen, etc., but there are several other pigeons that have contributed to the success story of this pigeon breed, both in their own loft and in numerous other lofts at home and abroad. At the end of the season, this exceptional long distance team from Maastricht will cease to exist. Their entire pigeon collection, except for the youngsters from 2020, will be sold on PIPA (Roger will be making a new start with the youngsters from 2020, racing from a new location). It goes without saying that we will be hearing from the descendants of these pigeons soon. Hoewever, for the Ringhoeve this will be the end of an era.