Patrick Van Goethem (Oost-Eeklo, BE) wins 1st Nat. Argenton 12,190 old birds

It was great to see a small fancier take the highest honour. His entire collection comprises just five widowers. He had only basketed two pigeons for this race, and it was his first nominated that claimed a national victory. It was a dream come true.

Patrick still finds it hard to believe what has just happened. He was really surprised by the impressive performance from his national winner. It goes without saying that every fancier dreams of winning a national first prize and most of them will never be able to fulfil that dream. Patrick was following the first arrivals on his computer. He assumed he would have to clock a pigeon by 1pm to win an early prize. The eventual national winner had already won a 5th in the club from Bourges against 615 pigeons, so he knew he had a good chance of winning a decent result, despite having only basketed two pigeons.

He got really excited when one of pigeons arrived home at 12:51'22", a lot sooner than expected. Patrick had seen him come home at great speed. He covered a total distance of 535.038km with a velocity of 1440.727 m/min, making him the first pigeon in the club, the top level Long Distance Club Eeklo. Winning a first prize in a classic was already a dream come true for him. Moments later he received numerous phone calls, as his fastest pigeon also proved to be the fastest old bird at national level. Patrick was quite overwhelmed, as he did not get a chance to quietly enjoy his victory. Instead, countless fanciers wanted to congratulate him, several journalists asked him for an interview, and some fanciers were interested in buying his winning bird. Patrick did not know that a national victory would be such a stressful event, he told us.

Small but brave

Patrick started the season with 10 widowers, a group that has been further reduced to 5. Some pigeons got lost during a race, others were not strong enough and were left behind. Patrick knows from experience that it takes top quality pigeons to win prizes. This was the case in the sprint and middle distance competition, which used to be his favourite disciplines. He assumed that the same applies in the longer middle distance and the long distance as well.

Patrick also noticed that pigeon racing is increasingly focused around the national competition. This leaves you with two choices: you can either join the national competition or stay where you are. Patrick decided to give the national competition a try, and he obtained a round of late young birds from Geert Couvreur from the neighbouring town of Bassevelde in 2013. Geert is an outstanding fancier in the long and extreme long distance. These pigeons were trained well in 2014,  and they were expected to be ready for the marathon races by 2015. 
They had an early breed prior to the season, and they raised their youngsters. Afterwards they were brought together for a few training flights but they did no longer breed. One of these Couvreur pigeons has now managed to win a national first prize. He showed his strength by winning an early prize from Bourges but he did even better in the race from Argenton, claiming victory at national level.

-Argenton BE13-4153951

 1st Nat Argenton   12,190 olds
 5th Lok Bourges       615 olds
24th Zone A2 Bourges 4,700 olds

This outstanding racing bird is a direct Geert Couvreur from Bassevelde, bred from the following parents:

Sire: Bugg BE11-6173352
Purchased in the PIPA auction of Vermeerbergen-Wilms from Mol. Bugg is winner of

29th Intprov Blois 5,000 p.
65th Prov Gueret 2,222 p.
298th Nat La Souterraine 16,665 p.

He comes from Son Fenomeentje BE10-4014158 (from Grandson Dream-Couple BE03-4431174 De Rauw-Sabon x Fenomeentje BE09-6150023: 1st Nat. Ace Pigeon Middle Distance KBDB 2009.) x Blauw Wonder BE10-6236861 (half sister of Robby). Click here for the full pedigree of his sire.

Dam: BE10-4201403 Everaert-duivin
Originates from the loft of Frederik Everaert from Zwijnaarde. She is a daughter of Zwarte Casaert BE04-4377296 (top breeder) x Dochter Sproetje Crusson BE07-4377756. Click here for the full pedigree of the dam.

This was the story of a hobby fancier with a very small collection of pigeons who managed to outsmart some of the great champions in our sport. It reminds us of the Belgian cyclist Preben Van Hecke who claimed the title of Belgian national champion a few weeks ago, beating all the big favourites. This is a David versus Goliath story, and this is what makes our sport all the more interesting. Congratulations Patrick, enjoy your victory!


Proficiat en ook nog een tip: blijf klein maar vooral dapper!

Prachtige overwinning Patrick
en ook voor Geert een dikke proficiat. Geniet met volle teugen ...

Gevleugelde groeten
Martin Dhooge

Beste Patrick,
proficiat met je nationale overwinning.
Geniet maar van je nationale overwinning.
sportieve groeten Serge D'hondt

Proficiat met deze droom overwinning.
Geniet ervan.


Astère Vergotte

Proficiat! Geniet ervan!

Schoors - De Waele

Een dikke proficiat Patrick,

Rony Noteboom


alle medewerkers en het bestuur van Fondclub Eeklo wensen jou van harte proficiat met de nationale overwinning.