After he hasreached the top in the German Program on flights from 100 – 600 km he started in 1980 to focus in long distance and very long distance races. Mr. Hermes owns to big lofts for the long distance races. One is built in Althornbach and one in Hamm/Sieg. The difference is in the distance the pigeon have to fly. So the distance at Barcelona to Althornbach is 900 km and to Hamm/Sieg is 1200 km. But he wins great classics in Altornbach and in Hamm/Sieg.
Raymund Hermes is now 72 and he has worked with carrier pigeons since he was 9. And that's no wonder since his ancestors were also bit by the carrier pigeon bug. When he was building up his company, he only played in the German programme (i.e., national) and among 80,000 breeders he made to an unrivalled first place very quickly. Since 1980, this successful businessperson has been on the international longe distance races.
In spite of his difficult geographic location in Germany (Westerwald and the Low Mountain Range), he had achievements on the international long distance route that still stand alone today. His recipe for success is still I in use today: all pigeons in his loft are raced. For instance, at Perpignan 2002, there was still one single injured racing pigeon on the racing-loft in Hamm/Sieg. For the territory of Westerwald, you can only get tough and high-performance pigeons for long distances by applying a rigorous programme of selection. They never sold a high-performance bird, no matter whether it was an international winner or an AS pigeon. If we ask the breeder Hermes for the reasons for his unrelenting success, he'll give you an answer that's short and sweet:
thinking logically, being true to your principles and a fine feeling for the carrier pigeon business are what make you successful.
This is where it all started. At the beginning of the 80's, pigeons with experience in the sport came to the High Westerwald. They had not only demonstrated their breeding quantities, but also their class in the flights of the European fund programme. There's not
enough room here to list all of the pigeons that have advanced the renown of the Hermes
Loft. But some of the pigeons have inherited such outstanding qualities as to make a major contribution to the development of this exceptional European loft. And this is the reason why we have described them below. Take the example of:
The Steenberger, a red cock with number H 75-2452792, raised by Cees de Groot in Steenburgen not far from Cees de Baat. Cees de Groot was a friend of the legendary Jan Aarden his whole life long. The Steenberger produced a whole series of extraordinary
long-distance pigeons for Raymund Hermes.
For instance, the Steenburger produced the Nachtflieger 0647-81-1949 with the Bostijn hen B-72-3464758 that came with a brother of the Benoni and a sister of the Pasport.
The Nachtfliegerin won the 2. national prize at Perpignan and the 3. international prize in Perpignan in 1985. The Steenberger is also a grandfather of the pigeon 01063-88-3163 that won the 1. international prize at Barcelona in 1990 against 28,128 pigeons. The
Steenberger also has an outstanding place in the pedigree of the pigeon 06935-92-4184 that won the 1 international prize at Pau in 1996.
At this time, Raymund Hermes was not a fan of the red pigeons. That's why he didn't pay any attention to the red bird when he visited Cees de Baat and he only took his blue hen. We have Jean Hausoul's persistence to thank for the Steenberger becoming one of the best breeding pigeons in the Hermes Lofts because a day later he was able to convince Raymund Hermes of the quality of this red bird. The 464, NL 74-1886464, a son from the ancestors from Marcel Braakhuis, the parents of the famous Zwarte Moordenaars.
The 464 didn't come to the Westerwald directly from the champion stock from Heer, but by a roundabout way. This was because Raymund Hermes got this super inheritor, its
nest sister 463 and also its siblings (the cock 720 and the hen 721) from Jo Gilissen in Cadier en Keer, the fund champions of the Province of Limburg at that time. Jo Gilissen was a long-time friend of Marcel Braakhuis and the descendants of the Zwarte
Moordenaars formed the basis of a very successful fund career. It was also the 464 that brought the Hermes Loft on the Upper Sieg River its first international prize-winner in the European long-distance programme, namely the super cock 2081 (0647-80-2081). It also won the first international prize at Pau, thus opening the ring of the ten international prizes for Raymund Hermes. The 464 and its three siblings represent a whole series of winners and As pigeons not only with the Hermes Lofts and a number of other lofts of the national and international programme. They can also be found in a series of pedigrees of prize-winning national and international pigeons.
One example is the hen 06935-96-231 that won the 1. international prize at Dax in 1997.
And not only Dax was won:
1. International Pau 1983
2. International Perpignan Hens 1985
3. International Marseille Hens 1988
4. 1. and 2. International Barcelona 1990
5. 1. and 2. International Perpignan 1990
6. 1. 2. and 3. International Marseille 1990
7. International Dax 1991
8. International Marseille 1992
9. 1. and 3. International Dax 1993
10. International Dax Hens 1994
11. International Perpignan Hens 1995
12. International Pau 1996
13. International Dax 1997
14. International Dax Hens 1998
15. International Pau Hens 2007
16. Internatonal Pau 2009
Is there anyone in the world who has won 16 International victories. I dont think so. The loft of Raymund Hermes is unique in the world. And not only the results are unique. So are the lofts as you can see at the fotos.
As asked for the reason of his success Mr. Hermes said that you must have the right pigeons to breed with. Than you have to manage that the pigeon are free from cancer and even the long distance racers must have fresh air as much as possible. So like you can see on the pictures the lofts are open at the front with a special construction of glass. The lofts are cleaned twice a day from one of the loft managers. In Hamm /Sieg there are two managers and in Althornbach also take care for the pigeons the whole day.
In preparation for a long distance flight the pigeon are feed with to 40 % of corn.
But Hermes not only wins the International races; here are some of the national winnings:
1. National Marseille 1982
2. National Pau 1983
3. National Perpignan 1983
4. National Perpignan 1985
5. National Marseille 1988
6. National Perpignan 1989
7. National Barcelona 1992
8. National Dax 1994
9. National Perpignan 1995
10. National Narbonne 2005
11. National Pau2007
So did you know someone with 11 National and 16 International Victories ?