Verkerk Gerard & Bas, " 'Gouden Duif' Winner NL 2007. 'Outstanding' in the National Competitions for 13 years in a row!"

'Gouden Duif' Winner The Netherlands 2007. 'Outstanding' in the National Competitions for 13 years
Gerard & Bas VERKERK, Alphen aan de Rijn (NL)

Meer info Verkerk Gerard & Bas : Klik hier Dutch
Meer info Verkerk Gerard & Bas : Klik hier Dutch
Meer info Verkerk Gerard & Bas : Klik hier Dutch
Meer info Verkerk Gerard & Bas : Klik hier Dutch
More info Verkerk Gerard & Bas Loft : Click here English
More info Verkerk Gerard & Bas Loft : Click here English

Making a report about the 'wonder colony' of Gerard & Bas Verkerk is like kicking down an open door. There has been so much said and written about over their often 'out of this world' achievements this last season, with which they have marched to the absolute world top in the races from 100 to 700 Km. So as stated in the title, their colony has now been in the 'spotlight' for 13 years running and the performance nouveau of their racing team is just 'outstanding', even up to the level of the National Championships and Ace pigeon competitions! What Gerard and Bas managed to pull out of their 'seemingly inexhaustible' magician's hat in the turbulent sport year 2007 is once again bordering on 'immense', enjoy with me:
- Golden Pigeon winner the Netherlands 2007
- Superstar Long Distance Golden Pigeon 2007
- Competitor West European Nations Cup Dortmund 2008
- Probably 1st national Ace pigeon WHZB 2007
- Probably 1st Best Hen WHZB 2007
- Probably 1st national Ace pigeon All Round TBOTB 2007
- Probably 1st national Ace pigeon Yearlings TBOTB 2007
- 23 first prizes in 2007 against an average of 2.286 pigeons
(without doubles)

Enough to make us want to take a look behind the scenes of this wonder colony in order to learn something about the care of the pigeons and the system behind these 'top successes'!

Taking care
Care of such a huge colony as the one from Gerard en Bas is no simple job and requires planning and deliberation. During the racing season the care of the pigeons is a full time job for Bas. If everything is 'going smoothly' a person carries out his duties with a smile and as a real 'topper' in the sport you also owe it to your status. They know here that you don't get something 'for nothing' in the pigeon sport and a daily effort and attentiveness is required in order to achieve top performances worthy of the name Verkerk! Bas has a lot of admiration and respect… and is full of praise for his fellow sportsmen who are not as successful, who know more 'lows' than 'highs' in our sport. It takes courage and perseverance to do 'everything' for your pigeons day in, day out with the aim of better performances. You have to be crazy about pigeons, or obsessed with the game… to keep that up year after year.
The Verkerks keep the care of the pigeons simple. The pigeons eat a mix of 4 sorts of mixtures from the firms Beyers, Mariman, Versele Laga and the Plus-mixture Versele Laga the whole year through. This 'mix' is adjusted when necessary or supplemented with the Zoontjes-mix or with depurative. As an additive or as dessert the pigeons are also given nibbling seeds, Tovo, P40 and peanuts. Both the racing cocks and racing hens are given the same feed, on the understanding that the hens are fed more frugally, the amount of feed varies according to the temperature and the efforts that they have had to make. The 'feeling' of the 'master' plays a very important part! The cocks however are given a full tray of food in their living boxes. Whatever is left over is removed after nine o'clock every evening. The medical guidance is in the hands of vet Dr. Henk De Weerd from Breda.
During the season Henk regularly controls the pigeons and they intervene when necessary with the intention of preventing infections or catching them very early on. Normally, during the racing season, the pigeons are given a cure for tricho every four weeks in addition to BS or Belga-Magix.
Other treatments are only given on the advice of Dr. De Weerd. During the winter period the pigeons are given a cure against paratyphoid (with Parastop) and all the pigeons are vaccinated against paramyxo and smallpox. They are given a cure for tricho when they are brooding. In addition to the products and services of Dr. Henk De Weerd, there is use made of:
- Probac1000 from Brockamp (probiotic)
- Yellow capsules and louse powder (with quick-working results during the racing season) from Vincent Schroeder
- Forte Vita from Travipharma.
This was also used regularly in 2007 and it had a positive effect on the performances.


Gerard and Bas don't pin themselves down to using only one racing system year in, year out. Bas likes variety, it's a question of breaking through the routine of the pigeons. Variety is the spice of life… as the saying goes, and via a few well thought-through and studied changes to the lofts or racing system they tried to raise the motivation and performance nouveau of the racing team. This is how it came to be that the pigeons from October '06 up to and including January '07 were together freely. They were then separated and in March 2007 coupled again, being only allowed to brood for a few days (the so called dry widowhood).
For the 2008 season the racers raise their young, just like in previous years. Starting on the 1st of February 2008 the pigeons will go into widowhood.
In 2007 they had an inexperienced team of yearlings because they didn't use darkening in 2006 and only trained in the after races. This was a disadvantage for the yearlings in the first middle distance races in 2007. That's why the majority of the youngsters were raced in the old-fashioned way in 2007 (2x 350 en 2x 450km) and with success.
The accommodation for the youngsters was changed back to how it was in 2003.
Furthermore they were darkened again. With this, Gerard and Bas have a good feeling about 2008.

New top pigeons
It is a public secret that Gerard & Bas Verkerk are very limited in their accommodation, meaning that against all logic, all the lofts contain a lot of pigeons… which would make you think that the pigeons don't have enough oxygen during the warm summer days. Nothing could be further from the truth, which is proved not only by the powerful series of 'top performances' in the previous seasons… races in which the pigeons were rigorously grilled, because here they have to 'work for their bread'. The pigeons have to be prepared to race 24 weeks in a row in the programme races. Over the last ten seasons they achieved more than 200 x 1st prizes and this against an average of more than 2.200 pigeons! On top of this they represented the Netherlands with no less than 7 'Olympiad pigeons' in the Sport Class, in various Olympiads. Something which they are rightly proud of!
They also managed to resist the temptation of the often 'astronomical amounts of money' that were offered for these Olympiad pigeons, because up until now not one has been sold… with the policy at the back of their minds: 'you won't find any better'!
Quite the opposite, it is these pigeons that are at the basis of the fact that every year a series of superior 'crack pigeons' are bred, with which the Verkerk-colony keeps going at the absolute top of the pigeon sport goings-on, and who don't only make them 'untouchable' for the rivals… but also allow them to keep acting at a 'lonely high'! Lastly we would like to introduce you to a few of these 'miraculous' Verkerk-pigeons, who in 2007 made the 'nice weather':

NL06-2162303 "SITA"
The 'new sensation' of the Netherlands, with no less than at least 12 prizes per 100 (1:100) in 2007!
Probably National Ace pigeon WHZB 2007
Probably Best Hen WHZB 2007
Probably National Ace pigeon All Round TBOTB 2007
Probably National Ace pigeon Yearlings TBOTB 2007
Ace pigeon Sprint 'West European Nations Cup' 2008
Peronne - 638 p.
Duffel - 591 p.
Bouillon 2° - 6.517 p. (Equal 1st)
Strombeek 2° - 2.257 p.

NL05-1394730 "DIDDL"

Probably 'Top 5' National Ace pigeon All Round 2007
Probably 'Top 5' National Best Hen WHZB 2007
21° Best hen WHZB 2006
21° National Ace pigeon Yearlings 2006
25° National Ace pigeon All Round 2006
Ablis (451 km) - 20.007 p.
Creil (359 km) - 627 p.
Chantilly (364 km) - 483 p.
Bourges (586 km) - 320 p.

NL04-1644661 "LADY DUEGO"
Achieved her 'firework performances' in the lofts of Sangers-Ung. She was not only the best, but also the most expensive pigeon in their public auction on the 1st of December '07, where she was bought by Gerard Bas Verkerk! Here a selection of her top performances:
6° National NPO Orleans 2005 18.127 p.
7° National NPO Orleans 2006 14.285 p.
15° National NPO Blois 2007 6.954 p.
24° National NPO Blois 2006 8.313 p. (also car winner)
26° National NPO Bourges 2006 7.941 p.

A selection of the 'eruptions' in 2007
(prizes achieved per 5)
07.04 Meer (73 km) 1.434 p. 2,3,4,6,7,9,11,12,13,15,17,18,19… and 73/109
19.05 Ablis (451 km) 20.007 p. 1,8,14,18,22,39,77,78,104,115… and 78/102
07.07 Pommeroeul 2.592 p. 4,5,7,8,9,26,28,29,44,47… and 57/83 (200 Km) 15.137 p. 4th,5th,7th,8th & 9th fastest pigeon
14.07 Mariembourg 12.909 p. 5,7,11,12,13,19,20,21,28… and 62/83 (229 Km)
21.07 Bouillon 6.517 p. 1,2,4... and 7/9 (260 km)
13.710 Youngsters 3,5,7,8,30,31,35… and 31/43 (S/Nat - NPO West)
28.07 Vierzon (580 km) 2.102 p. 3,10,14,37,42… and 14/25
18.08 Duffel (118 km) 3.152 p. 3,4,6,7,9,16,19,21,22,23,25,28,29,30.. and 59/84 or 49/52 by the old pigeons
01.09 Pommeroeul 2.194 p. 1,3,4,6,11,12,15,16,17,23,24,25,26,28,29… and 107/133
08.09 Peronne (276 km) 4.876 p. 1,2,3,6,11,13,14,15,16,17,18,24,25,26,27… and 97/136