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National Flying Club: report of the race from Fougeres on Saturday 19th May 2012

The first race for the National Flying Club in the UK was held from Fougeres on Saturday 19th May. The birds were liberated at 07.30 hrs with a light south westerly wind and sunshine at the liberation site. Conditions along the route varied from a south westerly in southern UK to a north easterly further up the country. Towards the north of the UK the visibility and weather was expected to deteriorate.

The winner of the race was Mr C A J Riley from Blandford Forum. Mr Riley had two drop together and clocked them in within 12 seconds of each other to take first and second place, a whole 58 yards per minute in front of the third placed bird. His loft is mostly De Klaks and the parents of the winner were bought from Spracklen and Thomas. Ponderosa Stud was the source of the sire and dam of second National. Mr Riley flies widowhood – the hens are not raced at all.

In third place was the loft of Graham Matthews of Fareham. His bird was a Lindelauf cock, a son of the General paired to the Benjamin hen, both of whom breed winners with other pairings. The week before the same bird was 1st club, 43rd Wessex combine Fougeres against 2,700 birds.


Was won by David Fry from Havant with a yearling Soontjen x Van Reet he bred himself. This bird scored as a young bird and is looking to continue racing well. David won the section from NFC Fougeres in 2011 and that winner was his third bird to drop to the loft this year.


Graham Matthews from Fareham clocked a three-year-old to take third open as above.


The winner of the race C A J Riley took first and second section.


The partnership of Weir and Sterry from Plymouth took first and second section D. Mr Weir missed seeing his first bird home as he was in the house at the time checking the NFC result on the computer. This is the first season for ten years that he has competed in the NFC and he would like to give credit to his wife Denise for all hard works she puts into helping him with the birds. Mr Sterry will be joining the partnership fulltime to race young birds this year.


Mark Gilbert of Winkfield took the first two in section E with two grandchildren of the 2004 Dax International winner. The breeding was Van Elsacker x Brockamp. Mark had a good race and may well have eight in the first eleven of the section.


Anna Crowley and Richard Green are very enthusiastic National flyers and had therefore despatched what they consider their strongest team to compete in the first national race of the 2012 season. Their team consisted of 4 roundabout hens 2 roundabout cocks and their best 34 widowhood cocks. Their first bird was a three year old blue Leo Van Rijn widowhood cock called “Vagabond” who was clocked at 11:38 to record a velocity of 1546 to take 1stSection F and 11th Open. He is no stranger to the winner’s enclosure as last season he had won 3rd Open BBC Bordeaux, 142nd Open CSCFC Carentan and 217th Open NFC Poitiers.


The Trowbridge loft of J Sawyer and Son were first in section G. A Jan Aarden from Louella this hen was flown on the roundabout system. As a YB it had two x second and 2 x third place. Mr Sawyer sent six pigeons and got six on the day and would like to thank the NFC for the good condition the birds arrived home in. 


John Black of Hitchin. The bird that won the section H for me at Fougeres was a two-year-old blue cheque widowhood cock GB10Z20424, the sire was breed by Sheldon Leonard of Arklow in southern Ireland from his old Janssen Bros lines of De Klamper, 019, Racket 76 and Merckx. When I got this bird Sheldon said it will breed something special. The dam was breed by Terry Robinson of Goffs Oak Hertfordshire, its sire is a son of Motivator dam is a g/daughter of Bryan Denneys Tuff Nut. I named this cock Callum after a young boy in Hemel Hempstead who found him in the road being chased by a cat, someone had cut his flights on both wings he was lucky Callum found him and his mum reported him.


Rob Rome of Cheltenham's bird was bred in the Scottish loft of his father, who flies as RSR and RJ Rome in Annan. The partnership have won numerous prizes in Scottish nationals. Rob sent ten with the NFC and clocked eight in on the day. The section winner was a two year old blue hen, the sire came from Patrick and Dimitri Houfflijn (their stock pair Zoon Blauwe and Ronkertje), the dam was was from Luc van Hoecke. Rob would like to thank his wife for all her help with the birds and for presenting him with a baby son a few days after the race.


M Williams of Hereford had two drops together and is probably 1st, 2nd and 3rd Section J. The section winner is a Roodhooft x Jan Hutbregt flown on the roundabout system.


Chris Gordon of Pontefract won section K with a two year old dark chequer cock. This bird scored in a national as a youngster taking 87th open Carentan (302 miles.) As a yearling it had three channel races and in the final one flew 500 miles on the day to take third club, beaten only by loftmates. Chris is no stranger to national results and likes to compete at the long distance.


S A Goldstraw of Congleton clocked a Van Loon from Planet Brother lines to top section L. This bird has flown every inland race this season apart from the smash weekend of 28th April when a lot of birds were lost due to bad weather. It had flown NFC Messac as a yearling being first back to his loft.