Guido Van Caneghem (Merelbeke, BE) created a pigeon breed based on great champions

And this breed won a 1st Prov. Chateauroux 1,310 p. and a 4th National 6,850 old birds, as well as a 7th Nat. Argentina 12,449 yearlings this season. They managed to win no less than 15 first prizes this season.

Running a business, having a busy job and trying to achieve good results in pigeon racing, it can be a difficult combination. Especially if you are often on the road for your job but still try to run your pigeon loft entirely on your own. This is the situation which Guido Van Caneghem finds himself in.
Guido is a professional cook and he runs his own catering business. He also works as a private cook for AA Gent, a Belgian football team that plays in the Pro League. They were the national champion of Belgium in 2015. His job is to prepare meals for the team during their home games, as well as during their away games for the European championships.
He is praised for his skills, his dedication, and his work ethic, and these very characteristics have proved very useful in his career as a pigeon fancier as well. Just like in his cooking Guido is always looking for good quality ingredients. In other words he is always looking for descendants of successful racing birds and prize winners. Guido knows that prize winners breed prize winners, and he knows what he's talking about: he has already won a national first prize from La Souterraine 7,373 p. and a 1st seminat. Bordeaux.
Guido races with his pigeons whenever his job allows. Over the years he has been trying to combine his job with his career in pigeon racing, which he does by focusing on the races of 100 to 600km, where he has been doing really well. He has managed to win several first prizes every single season:

- in 2016: 15 x 1st prize (including a 1st Prov. Chateauroux)
- in 2015:  9 x 1st prize
- in 2014:  9 x 1st prize
- in 2013: 23 x 1st prize
- in 2012: 14 x 1st prize

Keep in mind most of his first prizes were also part of a great overall performance from the entire racing team.

1st Provincial Chateauroux olds

This team is mainly founded on Stijven BE86-4547397, the stock breeder of this loft. He was a late youngster of 1991 and had an old ring. His bloodlines can still be found in the current generation of pigeons of Van Caneghem. This bloodline was then combined with pigeons of Jos Deno-Herbots, Guido Loockx, Jef Delodder from Zulte and Gaston Van de Wouwer (including the dam of the 3rd Nat. Bourges).

This foundation eventually gave way to one of Guido's stock pairs of today, Broer Beckham BE06-2094194 of Deno-Herbots (grandson of Bliksem Gaby Vandenabeele) x Dochter Vooruit Pantani BE05-5124124 of Guido Loockx. She is a granddaughter of the legendary Pantani BE96-6038445, winner of a 1st Nat. Bourges 10,872 p., a 5th Nat. Ace Pigeon middle distance KBDB ’98, Olympiad Pigeon Allround Blackpool ’99, etc.). This stock pair had bred several top quality hens, including Isha, Yanah and Annah, as well as the dam of the 1st Prov. Chateauroux old birds in 2016:

- Blauw Chateauroux BE14-4013590

 1st Prov. Chateauroux      1,310 p. ’16
 1st N.Zone Chateauroux     1,896 p. ’16 
 4th Nat. Chateauroux       6,850 p. ’16
34th Prov. Villemandeur     3,156 p. ’15
35th Prov. La Souterraine   1,381 p. ’16
59th N.Zone La Souterraine  2,545 p. ’16
 3rd Souppes-sur-Loing        120 p. ’15
 4th Souppes-sur-Loing        783 p. ’14
 5th Souppes-sur-Loing        662 p. ’15
 6th Souppes-sur-Loing        148 p. ’16  

This pigeon has won 13 prizes at least per 10. This is a top class pigeon with excellent origins:
Sire: Blauwen BE10-4106960
An outstanding racing bird with a 6th La Chatre 222 p., 7th Angerville 424 p., 150th Nat. Limoges 14,686 p., 267th Nat. Argenton 19,782 p., etc. He is a son of Geschelpte Frans BE05-4040389 (from Laten Frans 556/95 Van Beirendonck x Dochter Stijven 478/02) x Blauw Zomerjong BE07/4367751 (inbred Stijven).
Dam: Blauw Dochter Stamkoppel BE11-4239038
A full sister of Isha, Yanah and Annah. She is a daughter of stock pair Brother Beckham BE06-2094194 (grandson Bliksem) x Daughter Vooruit Pantani BE05-5124124 (a granddaughter Pantani).
Click here for the pedigree of the 1st Prov. Chateauroux.

A proper infrastructure on a limited amount of space

Three talented ladies: Isha, Yannah, Anah

Brother Beckham x Daughter Vooruit Pantani are an invaluable breeding pair that has given several generations of first prize winners. Three of their daughters have been of particular value to the breeding loft of Guido Van Caneghem. We browsed through their impressive pedigrees:

- Isha BE10-4106926 (winner of 4 first prizes)

10th Prov. Argenton I      4,948 p. ’11
39th Nat. Argenton I      19,782 p. ’11
14th N.Zone Gueret         2,435 p. ’13
22nd N.Zone Bourges II     1,295 p. ’13
91st Nat. Bourges          9,639 p. ’13
31st N.Zone La Châtre      7,487 p. ’11
32nd N.Zone Bourges I      4,873 p. ’11
45th Nat. Bourges II      12,607 p. ’11
46th N.Zone Chateauroux II   735 p. ’13
70th N.Zone Argenton I       504 p. ’12
87th Prov. Montluçon       3,984 p. ’12
93rd Prov. Orleans         1,478 p. ’13

She has won 22 prizes of at least per 10.

- Yanah BE10-4106927 (nest sister Isha)

 1st Angerville          771 p. ’10
 3rd Angerville          470 p. ’10
 3rd Angerville          471 p. ’11
 4th Noyon               495 p. ’12
22nd N.Zone Montluçon  6,081 p. ’12
34th N.Zone Bourges I  4,873 p. ’11
86th Prov. Argenton I  4,948 p. ’11
90th Prov. Argenton I  2,848 p. ’12
97th Prov. Vierzon     4,366 p. ’11

- Anah BE11-4239095

  1st Angerville           306 p.
 24th N.Zone Argenton    3,455 p.
 49th N.Zone Bourges II  1,295 p.
 88th N.Zone Bourges     3,409 p.
246th Nat. Bourges       9,639 p.
298th Nat. Montluçon     7,828 p.

She has also won a 173rd N.Zone Gueret 2,435 p., a 243rd N.Zone Argenton 8,476 p., a 266th N.Zone Chateauroux 6,962 p., etc.
Anah is paired to the direct Gaby Vandenabeele pigeon Pico BE10-3047082 (bred from Mr Magic BE07-3199999 grandson Bliksem x Luna BE07-3034354), and they have been a successful combination as well. They are the parents of quite a few first prize winners, including Blauw Argentontje 012 and Blauw 608:

- Blauw 608 BE14-4013608

 1st Souppes-sur-Loing    797 p. ’14
 1st Bourges I            351 p. ’16
 1st Bourges              172 p. ’15
 2nd Souppes-sur-Loing    546 p. ’15
 4th Souppes-sur-Loing    662 p. ’15
 8th N.Zone Bourges I   5,147 p. ’16
12th N.Zone Argenton    2,875 p. ’16
30th N.Zone Chateauroux 5,641 p. ’15
63rd Prov. Bourges FVOV 2,124 p. ’15

Click here for the pedigree of Blauw 608.

- Blauw Argentontje 012 BE15-4141012 (1st Argenton, 1st Montluçon, 1st Souppes)

  1st Souppes-sur-Loing       249 p. ’15
  7th Nat. Argenton        12,449 p. ’16
 76th Prov. Chateauroux II  1,943 p. ’16
140th N.Zone Montluçon      2,724 p. ’16
256th Prov. Chateauroux     7,617 p. ’16

Click here for the pedigree of Blauw Argentontje.

Petra and Miss Bourges

Another important name in this pigeon breed is that of Broer Barnaby BE06-2094192, which comes from Deno-Herbots but is a 100% Gaby Vandenabeele pigeon: he is a son of Bliksem and James Bond (1st Nat. Bourges). He is the grandfather of two outstanding racing birds, the two sisters Petra and Miss Bourges.

- Petra BE10-4106944 (6 first prizes in the club)

 3rd N.Zone Argenton I      3,455 p. ’13
 5th N.Zone Bourges I       3,489 p. ’13
85th Nat. Bourges I        19,655 p. ’13 
23rd N.Zone Montluçon       6,081 p. ’12
27th N.Zone Argenton II       706 p. ’13
30th Prov. Blois            1,357 p. ’11
43rd N.Zone Chateauroux I   4,390 p. ’13
44th Prov. Blois            2,144 p. ’11
55th Prov. Vierzon          6,420 p. ’13
65th N.Zone Bourges         2,297 p. ’12
98th N.Zone Montluçon       3,716 p. ’13

Sire: Father Petra BE09-4032172
A son of Brother Barnaby BE06-2094192 (grandson Bliksem Vandenabeele) x Sister Toby.
Dam: Mother Petra BE08-4090008
A daughter of the Colijn-Ganus bloodline NL06-1214535 x Laatje BE05-6453316 of Dirk Van Dijck.

Miss Bourges and Geschelpt 001 are two successful descendants of this very same breeding pair as well; they are full sisters of Petra. This is their palmares:

- Miss Bourges BE12-4185006 (volle zus Petra)

 1st Best pigeon of Bourges YL in Belgium ’12-’13 (3 prizes)
 1st  Angerville             639 p. ’12
 8th  N.Zone Bourges II   11,003 p. ’12
33rd  Nat. Montluçon      14,230 p. ’14
36th  N.Zone Bourges II    1,751 p. ’13
67th  Prov. Bourges I      2,647 p. ’13
145th N.Zone Argenton      4,800 p. ’13

- Geschelpt 001 BE15-4141001

18th  Nat. Issoudun      11,984 p. ’15
46th  Prov. Chateauroux   1,943 p. ’16
72nd  N.Zone Bourges      5,014 p. ’16
628th N.Zone Bourges II  11,401 p. ’15
727th Nat. Argenton      12,449 p. ’16

Click here for the pedigree of Geschelpt 001.

This is an impressive list of successful racing pigeons, but there is one more pigeon that deserves a mention: Blauwe Poitiers. He is a direct son of Broer Barnaby BE06-2094192, paired to Blauw Gaston BE07-6385691. She is a direct Gaston Van de Wouwer, and the dam of a 3rd Nat. Bourges 37,357 p. (granddaughter of the world famous Kaasboer 690/98).

- Blauw Poitiers BE13-4047102 (winner of 1st Poitiers, 1st Tulle)

 2nd Prov. Tulle         1,383 p. ’16
12th Nat. Tulle          6,101 p. ’16
18th Nat. Poitiers      14,094 p. ’14 
21st N.Zone Gueret       4,003 p. ’15
33rd Prov. Villemandeur  2,135 p. ’15
54th N.Zone Chateauroux  3,150 p. ’15
57th Prov. Chateauroux   1,310 p. ’16
77th Prov. Blois           832 p. ’15 

Click here for the pedigree of Blauw Poitiers.

The breeding pigeons and the partners of the racing birds can spend their days in the spacious aviaries

Racing cocks and hens

Guido's racing lofts are home to quite a collection of talented racing birds, as you can tell from their achievements. Guido started the 2016 season with 16 hens and 25 cocks (including 8 summer youngsters). The two sexes are raced in classic widowhood, which means the partners get to stay at home.

The hens are paired on 1st of March and they raise one youngster; their widowhood begins right afterwards. They train only once a day, at about 9 o'clock in the morning, immediately after the racing birds. They initially get to see their cock for half an hour before basketing but by the time they get to Paris they can only spend 15 minutes together. They should be familiar with how the game is played by then, so they should be looking forward to their partner when they get home. The hens will usually compete in the national longer middle distance competition.

The cocks were paired around the 21st of February and they got to brood their eggs, without actually raising a youngster. The cocks compete mainly in the shorter middle distance (Souppes). The racing cocks train twice a day at 8am and 4pm, and there is always a full feeding tray when they get home. Guido cannot really use a fixed feeding system, simply because the pigeons have to adapt to his work schedule. With a full tray the pigeons can eat just what they want.
Medical guidance is rather limited, although Guido takes a sample of their droppings every three to four weeks, which are taken to Dr. Johan Vandercruyssen from Oosterzele for analysis. He gives eye drops once a week as well to look for respiratory diseases. "If the drops do not go away immediately you know there is something wrong", Guido explains. "With this approach you only have to worry about trichomoniasis, which we do treat every once in a while."

Pigeon racing at the highest level might sound like a piece of cake, especially with such a talented group of pigeons. Guido Van Caneghem's racing birds clearly have what it takes to win early prizes in the national classics.