A report on the North Road Championship Club race from Fraserburgh

One hundred and thirty-nine fanciers sent one thousand, one hundred and eighty-four pigeons to the North Road Championship Club race from Fraserburgh. After a one day holdover, they were liberated at 07.00CEST on the Sunday. The winners were Brian and Christine Guilford of Sandiacre in Derbyshire.

Brian & Christine Guilford

There was a lot of south-west in the wind on the day of the race and this was expected to benefit fanciers down the east of the country, so it was a remarkable achievement by Brian and Christine's four year old, mosaic widowhood cock who dropped to the loft after seven hours and twenty-three minutes on the wing. Brian was just beginning to think they were a little behind schedule when the winner appeared.

The Guilford's lofts

Back in 2012 and 2013, Brian and Christine were second open from Fraserburgh, beaten by Bill Bearder and Sons and then Ernie Gregory. With this in mind, Brian approached Bill to see if he could buy a bird off his 2017 Fraserburgh winner, Mossy. Bill said that there wasn't one for sale but that he would gift one to the husband and wife partnership. So, the dam of the latest Fraserburgh winner is a daughter of the Bearder's winner, whilst the sire is Mr Reliable, one of the brothers that were the runners up for the Guilfords in 2013. The parents of these brothers were a Janssen hen obtained in a swap with David Oakes of Eastwood and one of the Guilford's own Janssen cocks, a pair that have bred many winners at stock. Six pigeons were sent to Fraserbrugh and five dropped on the day with the final one returning the next morning.

The quality of pigeons from the Guilford loft was once again emphasised in 2016 and 2017 when they won successive races from Perth. With other open, federation and club wins to their name the Guilfords are certainly fanciers to be reckoned with. Brian does not keep a lot of pigeons and those that are kept have to keep up with his exacting standards.  The birds are exercised morning and evening and the widowhood loft is scrapped out twice daily and then the birds are left to enjoy the peace and quiet. The widowhood cocks are paired up in March but not bred from. Selected stock pairs are kept in their own compartments to ensure the authenticity of their offspring.

Many congratulations to Brian and Christine on a stellar performance.

The wing of the winner