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A report of the National Flying Club race from Cholet on the 8th June 2014

The National Flying Club race from Cholet was liberated at 6.45am on the Sunday into a light west wind after a holdover from the Saturday due to adverse weather. With the wind changing to a south westerly later in the day it was a faster race than many expected. The following is a report on the early times according to the provisional result based on telephone verifications.

Nine hundred members sent just under seven thousand pigeons to Cholet which is around three hundred and eighty miles to the centre of the club's radius in the UK.

Mr & Mrs Titcombe (Photo courtesy of Chris Sutton)

First open and first section G was taken by Mr and Mrs Paul Titcombe from Portishead with a Belgian bred two year old called Benny on 1564ypm. Benny contains Hereman-Ceusters bloodlines and was bred by Louis Thijs from Hulshout. The partnership bought twenty young birds as a racing kit from Louis in 2012 and Benny was raced as a hen when a young bird but later proved to be a cock. A consistent pigeon, Benny has other prize cards to his name. The partners have a small backyard set up and don't often send across the channel as Paul's job involves quite a bit of travel, but they regularly compete in club racing, which due to their location is restricted to seventy miles down to the coast.

The Cholet winner (Photo courtesy of Chris Sutton)

Eddie Froggatt

Second open was clocked by E W Froggatt from Rugeley and was also first section J. Eddie timed a two year old on 1561ypm. Assisted by his wife Julie, Eddie has been a name at the top of the pigeon sport in the UK for many years and especially when it comes to channel racing, having been a member of the National Flying Club for over sixty years. Eddie clocked a hen named Fantastic, with Frank Tasker bloodlines in its pedigree, the sire being a Tasker cock which excelled at the inland races. The dam is a granddaughter of the legendary Young Couple from Syndicate Lofts.

Mr & Mrs B Fisher

Mr and Mrs B Fisher of Todmorden were third open and first section L with a yearling on 1556ypm and flown on the roundabout system. Brian and Sandra timed a blue hen which has been a consistent racer in the past, having been third club from Yeovil, seventh club from Cheltenham and sixth club from Mangotsfield. It was also third North East Lancashire Two Bird Club from Carentan. Bred from stock out of one of the partner's best breeding cocks, unfortunately the dam of this pigeon is no longer in the loft.

Emma Hamplett

J A Hamplett of Stafford timed a two year old on 1549.32ypm to take fourth open and first section J. Jonathan followed his father, Harold, into the pigeon sport and has continued the family tradition of top performances. His timer this time was a Verboven x Kellens x Robert Venus hen on its second channel race of the season. The dam of this pigeon won approximately £5000 for the Hamplett loft during her racing career. Jonathan's loft manager is his daughter Emma who is pictured holding the section winner.

Fifth open went to Mr and Mrs P Titcombe again with excellent flying from their pigeons. This one was clocked on 1549.13ypm and also took second section G. Their second in the clock is a nestmate to Benny, a cock that the partners previously favoured over their winner. Both pigeons are great grandchildren of some of Hereman-Ceusters best pigeons such as Rossi, Spinneke, Olympiade and Natascha.

Geoff Kirkland

Sixth open and second section J was timed by Mr and Mrs Geoff Kirkland from Stoke on Trent and was a two year old on 1547ypm. The Kirkland family are another legendary pigeon racing dynasty in the UK. They only sent a small team to Cholet with the NFC but quality will show and their first on the clock was their nominated bird for the prize of a car. Named The Super 14, this cock is one of Geoff's favourites and always does his best, having won three weeks on the trot as a yearling and being placed several times in national races. The Super 14 is a grandson of Geoff's The Snake, an excellent racer and an even better breeder.

Graham Mackay

Mr E G Mackay from Swinton timed seventh open and second section L on 1542ypm with a two year old raced on the roundabout system. This hen was bred for Graham by Harry Aspin from Eijerkamp Ponderosa Van Loons and is a double granddaughter of Che, a top stock cock within the family. Eighth open and third section L was clocked by Tom Duffy from Manchester. This pigeon was a yearling timed on 1541.8ypm and was bred from a pair of pigeons sourced from John Wheatcroft. Tom Duffy and Graham Mackay share a stock loft to pool their resources when it comes to the pigeons so it is nice to see two local fanciers reaping the benefits of their co-operation.

Dave Jennings

Ninth open went to Mr and Mrs F B Jennings and Son from Chorley with a two year old on 1541.7ypm which was also fourth section L. This was a hen flown on the roundabout system, the parents of which were bought from Dean Pallett's Michel Van Lint family. The sire is a son of Amos and the dam is a daughter of Christine. Gavin and Glynn Buckley were tenth open and fifth section L with a two year old clocked into their Rochdale loft on 1541.2ypm. The partners bought this pigeon at a a breeder buyer sale in Rochdale and it was bred by Bobby Brandon. A very consistent pigeon it had five channel races as a yearling and was forty eighth section L and one hundred and seventieth open from the first National Flying Club race this year from Carentan.

Around the sections

Section A was won by A Blake from Havant with a yearling hen on 1297ypm. On its fourth race of the season this hen was first club from Yelverton the previous week. D & D McFadden from Cranleigh were second section A on 1285ypm and Mr F A Couzens from Havant was third on 1284ypm.

Section B winner

Section B was won by Mr A C Stephens from Poole with a yearling on 1399ypm. Second section went to Mr and Mrs Mark Gower from Fordingbridge on 1390ypm. Mark timed a three year old hen bred down from stock obtained from Brian Sheppard of Trowbridge, the sire being a grandson of Leon and the dam a granddaugter of Griff. Third in section B was won by D C Day from Salisbury, a yearling on 1355ypm.

John Halstead with Nyland Javelin

John Halstead from Gillingham was first section C with a two year old on 1426ypm. John timed Nyland Javelin, a cock raced on the widowhood system and a son of The Dorset Dart, a Busschaert cock having numerous prizes to its name. Mel and Sue King were second on 1411ypm with Stourcrest Gwain bred from a pair of direct M & G Casaerts on loan in 2011 from Brian Goodwin. M & M Wiffen were third on 1399ypm.

Richard Goodier

Section D was won by Richard Goodier and Sons from Marsh Green with a two year old on 1451ypm. The section winner from Cholet was a Jos Thoné hen containing the bloodlines of Sumo, Arnoldus and Yutta and it was racing back to fourteen day eggs. Second section D went to Luscombe and Allen from Plymouth on 1148ypm. Third section was timed by Mrs and Mrs Paul Naum from Watchet on 1432ypm.

Mr & Mrs Cockett and Sons

Section E was won by Mr and Mrs Corkett and Sons on 1388ypm. Sons Gary and Glen race along with their mum and dad and the partners timed a three year old, blue pied hen of Florizone x Jan Aarden bloodlines. They also took second section on 1381ypm with a Wildemeersch x Cooremans cock. Third section went to Mr and Mrs P J Wells from Dunstable on 1373ypm.

Steve Thorpe

Section F was won by Mr Steve Thorpe from Swindon with with a two year old on 1398ypm. This pigeon was bred by Hayden Minett of Wales. After an early start in the sport, having flown with his father since 1963, Steve took a break and only started up again three years ago. Second section F went to J & P Parker from Beensham near Reading on 1390ypm and third section F was clocked by P Kenny from Wantage on 1387ypm.

Section G was won by Mr and Mrs P Titcombe, who were first and second on 1564ypm and 1549ypm respectively and who took first and fifth open as above. Mr and Mrs Wile and Lias from Bristol came third on 1538ypm.

Section H was won by Gary Jones from Wellingborough near Northampton with a two year old on 1344ypm. This is Gary's fourth year in the sport after a twenty year break and he competes on the roundabout system. Second section H went to A Smith From Wellingborough on 1320ypm and third went to HM The Queen on 1284ypm.

Section I was won by E W Froggatt from Rugeley with a two year old on 1561ypm and which was also second open. Second section I was T J Durrows on 1506ypm. Third was Jones and Adams from Redditch on 1489ypm.

J A Hamplett of Stafford won section J on 1549ypm with a two year old the details of which are in the top ten result above. Mr and Mrs Geoff Kirkland from Stoke on Trent were second section on 1547ypm (sixth open) and K Rhodes from Telford was third on 1538ypm.

J R Woods

Section K was won by J R Woods of Barnsley on 1521ypm. He clocked a two year old, widowhood hen that had flown the full inland programme and was on its third channel race in four weeks. Brian Denney from York was second section on 1518ypm and D & J Hawkins and Evans from Doncaster were third on 1509ypm.

Section L was won by Mr and Mrs B Fisher from Todmorden on 1556ypm and is detailed in the top ten result above. Second section was clocked by E G Mackay from Swinton on 1543ypm, again a top ten performance and third section went to Tom Duffy from Manchester on 1541ypm. Tom's bird was eighth open.

That concludes the report of the provisional result of the National Flying Club race from Cholet on the 8th June 2014.