Gino Clicque (Wevelgem, BE) claims convincing win from Montluçon

Gino Clicque is winner of quite a few prizes, but he had not yet been able to win a national race. He got close in last week’s race from Cahors, where he had to be satisfied with a second national prize old birds. He made up for it in the race from Montluçon, claiming a well-deserved national win.

He was national long distance champion KBDB in 2012, while claiming a provincial win from Bourges and Poitiers in 2011. Over the years, he has finished in the national top 10 from Bourges no less than ten times, and he has won ten provincial first prizes from Bourges as well. He is a fancier with a great reputation. Mr. Bourges is particularly successful in the long distance competition, and this makes him a strong opponent in the races from Montluçon, Cahors, Poitiers, and Limoges as well. He is now the man to beat in the long distance competition.

Gaby 870 x Robertina = another champion

The breeding lofts of the Clicuqe family are home to four different bloodlines: the line of Robert (Robert Dobbelaere), Figo (Reynaert), Meulemans and Vandenabeele. The goal is to carefully breed new youngsters to further increase the quality of the breed. The national winner from Montluçon is one of those young birds that were bred from the very best breeders. This pigeon originates from the outstanding line of Robert, which has been at the basis of this pigeon family for the past 20 years. This national winner is also heavily based on the amazing pigeons of Gaby Vandenabeele, including the outstanding Bliksem. There are not that many fanciers that were not successful with pigeons of Vandenabeele, whose bloodline has now brought yet another national winner. Gino started investing in this bloodline a few years ago, and with great success.
'Gaby 870' is a direct pigeon of Gaby and a grandson from Bliksem. He originates from Piraat and Super Prins from his mother’s side. This Super Prins had a great season in 2010, winning 3 national top 10 prizes and two provincial wins. This made him second national Ace Pigeon KBDB 2010. You can watch a video about Super Prins here. Piraat is another highly successful pigeon; his most important achievement is the winning of the title of 3rd National Ace Pigeon Longer Middle Distance KBDB in 2008. Click here for the pedigree of Devil Prince BE13-3031911.

Devil Prince, 1st national Montluçon

The one year old Devil Prince was a late youngster from the fourth round that was trained along with the other young birds in 2013. He was only basketed for Pontoise, Fontenay, and Brionne. He had a good result from Fontenay, winning a 78th provincial prize against more than 5,000 pigeons, but there was not a lot more to be said about this pigeon. He also won a 55th national prize in the first national flight from Bourges, but the tough race from Châteauroux was quite disappointing for him. Gino thinks this race was an important experience for Devil Prince, because he had to make a big effort to find his way back home.
All yearlings get the chance to show their potential in the race from Limoges, even the ones that have not won a single prize so far. However, not every single pigeon will be basketed for this race: a pigeon that is really tired from a previous race or that does not train well will be left out. All pigeons have to look healthy. From then on, only the strongest ones will be part of the racing team. The winning yearling proved a successful racing bird that really deserved a place in the racing loft. He will no longer be raced but he will now be used in the breeding loft instead. It is worth noting that the partner of the national winner has won a 28th national prize from Montluçon. Could this be a new top class breeding pair?

Top class pair: 1st and 28th national Montluçon

Top form versus exceptional form

Fanciers will often talk about how pigeons need to be in top form to be able to perform well. Gino would like to point out that it is very difficult to have your pigeons reach that form and to maintain it for an extended period of time. He has been in the sport for 40 years and he still finds it hard to get his pigeons in good shape, but his results indicate that he will always get there eventually.
This season has been a different story. Apparently, his pigeons are not just in great form. They appear to be in exceptional fitness this year, and his pigeons have been showing their exceptional form even during the training flights at home. They are really fast and strong this year, even though he has not changed anything about his training methods or nutrition. He does not have an explanation, but the high temperatures in spring are likely to have had a positive influence. Gino breeds youngsters from pigeons with a proven record only, and that might explain the exceptional form of his current team of racing birds. He is now preparing a new team for the upcoming national races, and his pigeons will be basketed every single week from the first flight in April until the last race in September. He uses a number of different teams throughout the season, which brings a lot of extra work and patience. However, this approach allows him to achieve great results. 2014 has been a wonderful season already, but he thinks there is still more to come.

What does 2014 hold in store for the pigeons of Gino Clicque?

Gino is really glad he made the change to the long distance back in 2001. He was planning to basket 10 pigeons for Tours and 2 pigeons for Brive, but a friend of his advised him to do just the opposite, and so he basketed 10 pigeons for Brive and 2 for Tours instead. It was an instant success. This change of focus has been an excellent decision and he has continued to make great results in the long distance. His loft in Wevelgem houses about 700 to 800 pigeons, including 100 young birds, 110 yearlings, and 40 old birds that are all raced in total widowhood. In addition, he has a team of 40 late youngsters as well. It goes without saying that the running of his racing loft is a fulltime job.

Gino says he is a patient man but he simply cannot do all the work on his own. That is why his family helps him as well. He could not do without his son Jasper, who spends a few hours in the loft every day. During the holidays, his daughter Eva is there to offer a helping hand as well. And as we know, a fancier cannot be successful without the support of his loving wife.

This is the team that did the job

Many congratulations and good luck for the rest of the season!