The first few races from Zutphen and Brummen were usually a close call, with fanciers finishing within seconds of each other. The racing conditions were quite different on 5th of May however, allowing the pigeons to really set themselves apart. The race was also slightly longer (306km), there was a clear blue sky and a fairly strong headwind. These are the conditions in which the strongest birds will stand out. "We had similar conditions in a race two weeks earlier as well, and we won a 1st of more than 2,450 pigeons with a 1.5 minute advantage", Marcel explains. "Still, you can never take a first prize for granted, although we had great confidence in our racing team for Niergnies."
Six pigeons in the breakaway
When Marcel and Brian heard that their opponents had reached a velocity of 1155 m/min, they quickly knew that they needed to clock their first pigeons within 6 minutes. At that very moment, Brian spotted a racing bird approaching the loft at high speed. It was BE15-4100298 Nikki, one of the team's most consistent performers. "You know you have a great result coming up if your pigeon can take a 5 minute lead over its strongest opponents. We were of course more than happy, but we also realised that all the pigeons that might follow in his slipstream would have an early prize as well." And that is exactly what happened: Nikki arrived home at 12:50, with the other pigeons arriving home at 12.52-12.53-12.53-12.54-12.54. They claimed a 1st-2nd-3rd-4th-5th-6th of 2,122 pigeons in District De Ijssel.
They knew that claiming a first prize in Region 4, where they had to cover an additional 40km at low speeds, would be quite a challenge. And yet, Marcel and Brian dominated this competition as well:
Region 7,100 p.: 1st-2nd-5th-6th-7th-8th and 57 prizes with 89 pigeons.
Top class hen Nikki
The first prize winner is racing hen BE15-4100298 Nikki, a 100% Dirk Van Den Bulck bred by Flanders Collection. Marcel exchanged a few pigeons with Yannick De Ridder of Flanders Collection in 2015, which would be used in the racing loft. From that group of pigeons two racing birds remained on board: Nikki and racing cock Blue Blood. They have both been highly successful.
Nikki's pedigree is based around some of the best bloodlines of Dirk Van Den Bulck. The sire is a son of Mr. Exclusive x Zus Schone Vale
- Mr. Exclusive is a half brother of Kittel, bred from Goede Rode x Golden Leo 40000
- Sister Schone Vale comes from Broer Goede Rode x Goed Rood
The dam is a daughter of Super 66 x Daughter Goed Rood
- Super 66 is a first prize winner from Broer Vale As x Grandchild Olympiade
- Daughter Goed Rood comes from a Son Broer Goede Rode x Goed Rood
Nikki's palmares has been quite impressive so far:
5th ace pigeon sprint overall district 6th ace pigeon middle distance district 11th Nat. ace pigeon olds ‘De Allerbeste’ 2017 of 1,166 pigeons 1e Niergnies 7,100 p. 1e Nanteuil 142 p. 2e Laon 142 p. 3e Laon 616 p. 4e Nanteuil 569 p. 5e Laon 820 p. 6e Nanteuil 728 p. 8e Laon 671 p. 9e Chimay 2,066 p. 9e St Quentin 334 p. 13e Feluy 398 p. 14e Nanteuil 2,319 p. 27e Chimay 7,048 p. 36e Asse Zelik 1,282 p. 52e Isnes 5,079 p.
The results of Marcel and Brian Sangers in 2018 so far:
- 07-04-2018 Boxtel (88 km) of 2,396 p. 3rd-4th-5th-6th-7th-9th-10th-21st-22nd-23rd-25th-26th-39th-51st-56th-79th-80th-82nd etc. (99 pigeons and 50 prizes 1:4) - 14-04-2018 Geel (140 km) of 6,739 p. 5th-9th-11th-13th-14th-19th-23rd-24th-29th-31st-33rd-35th-40th-41st-42nd-45th-58th- 62nd-63rd-65th-67th-68th-75th-77th-78th-79th etc. (101 pigeons and 76 prizes 1:4) - 21-04-2018 Tienen (174 km) of 2,450 p. 1st-5th-6th-7th-12th-19th-22nd-23rd-24th-25th-39th-43rd-46th-48th-49th-52nd-53rd- 57th-59th-86th-87th-88th-93rd-96th-99th etc. (98 pigeons and 71 prizes 1:4) - 05-05-2018 Niergnies (306 km) of 7,100 p. 1st-2nd-5th-6th-7th-8th-etc. 1st-2nd-3rd-4th-5th-6th-etc. district of 2,122 p. (89 pigeons and 57 prizes 1:4)