Combination van Panhuis - Leersum (NL) Rapid advancement rewarded with 1st Keizer General championship CCG 7 (Pro

On the Utrecht Heuvelrug , formed by various municipalities, lies Leersum. In this beautiful and woody environment the Keizer General Champions 2009 from the CCG 7, Cees and Richard van Panhuis made a restart with the pigeon sport in 2004.

In past years Cees (63 years old) was active in the pigeon sport in his old place of residence Ermelo. He raced successfully in combination. The pigeon gene was soon passed on to son Richard (40 years old) at the time and he could always be found in the lofts and soon developed a feeling for the pigeons.
At the start of the eighties Cees was affected by a serious pigeon lung and they had to stop with the pigeon sport so that his health was not affected further. A blow for Cees and also for Richard who had started to become more and more interested in the pigeons. This was the (preliminary) end of the pigeon sport by the Panhuis family.

In April 2004, during the birthday party of Richard’s daughter Fleur, Richard told of his wish to start with the pigeons again. Richard had bought a house in Leersum in 1998 and had enough room to build a pigeon loft. This remark was welcomed by Cees and they immediately started making plans  Within 3 months a loft was bought and ready for the first pigeons. These came in August 2004 via fancier friends. They decided to become members of PV de Postduif in Amerongen (25 active racing lofts) as it was the most practical where the distance was concerned.

They thought long and hard as to where they could obtain good pigeons. Heavy investments in breeding pigeons were made in order to have a good and strong basis for the future. They visited Ad Schaerlaeckens, Jos de Ridder, Will & Falco Ebbemn, the late Ries Schalkwijk, Comb. Boonen (Hierden) and the Comb. Kortes from Nes (Amersfoort) who have now unfortunately stopped.

In 2005 the official start was finally made in the races for the youngsters and it would be used as a learning year. They had one victory in the 8 races in 2005, and were satisfied with this. In the Autumn of 2005 Cees came into contact with Leo and Maria Broeckx-van Hees (Oud-Turnhout). They soon became close and they agreed that in 2006 youngsters would be transferred from Oud-Turnhout to Leersum.  This was a direct bulls-eye and since then the Broeckx-pigeons have formed the basis of the lofts Leersum. The pigeons from Broeckx were extremely successful in crossing with the pigeons from Ad Schaerlaeckens.

In 2007 and 2008 this positive trend continued with many victories and championships. Chain results with the youngsters became their trademark and also the old birds achieved chain results in the small middle distance races.

The 2009 season
In 2009 there was the provisional crown on their work. It was quite a stable season with 14 victories at club level and various CCG victories. The consistent performances ensured a.o. the following championships in the CCG 7:
1st Keizer General - 1e General Not nominated – 3rd General Nominated – 1st Small Middle Distance Nominated -  2nd youngsters Nominated CCG 7

The following championships were achieved in the club:
1st Keizer General – 1st General  Not nominated – 2nd General Nominated – 1st Small Middle Distance Not nominated – 1st Small Middle Distance Nominated – 1st Youngsters Not nominated – 1st Youngsters Nominated

The old birds are raced in total widowhood and the youngsters were raced from the shelf last year due to the great losses in the races. This meant that nearly all the couples were no longer together and according to Richard it was no use racing with the sliding door.

Responsibilities
There is a clear distribution of the responsibilities by this combination. Richard is responsible for the racing pigeon and sets out their plan. Cees on the other hand helps Richard when he can, this means that he is responsible for the training of the pigeons, both at home and away. A lot of worth is placed on the training of the pigeons. Cees generally takes the youngsters away to train 3 times in the week (fellow Club member Gijs Gregoor helps Cees to basket the pigeons).
In addition, the breeding pigeons also reside by Cees and he takes care of the increase of youngsters every year. By using a good face mask the pigeon lung condition isn’t affected and luckily it is possible for him to be more active in the pigeon sport.

Cees loves breeding youngsters. For the last few years there has been a focused search and investments made in pigeons that will lift this combination higher over the coming years. They have built up a very close relationship with Schaerlaeckens as a result of which a great number of pigeons have moved to the breeding loft. The latest acquisitions come directly from Hans Eijerkamp and Sons and they are direct children of the toppers from Heremans-Ceusters, including out the “Euro”, “Rossi”, “Spinneke”, “Peter” , “Mysterious” , “Di Caprio” and the “Ché”.  Out a son of the “Euro” (bought in 2008 via PIPA) very good pigeons were bred this year, including the Ace pigeon youngsters.

The results have proved that the investments have paid off, but also other fanciers are successful with the pigeons from Cees and Richard. So won the Comb. Boonen from Hierden the car race (and the car) in 2009 in Prov. 8 with a child from a cock that was lent to the Comb. van Panhuis. They also bred another 1st prize winner from a direct from Cees and Richard in 2009. Rini van den Boogaard has also had success with their pigeons and raced the 1st from the entire Province 7 from Pommeroeul with an exchanged pigeon. Harm Ottens from Finsterwolde bred a regional Ace pigeon out a Van Panhuis pigeon. These a clear signals for Cees and Richard that they are on the right road.

Fleur van Panhuis
Luckily, the pigeon gene has also been passed on to the following generation. Richard’s daughter is mad about the pigeons and she can often be found in the loft with the youngsters during the season. Many fanciers who visited the lofts in Leersum were presently surprised at how Fleur interacted with the pigeons and gently took hold of them. She has made the pigeons very tame and that is very pleasant for Richard because during the season he only has a limited amount of time to spend on his young and old birds. Because of his busy job, Richard is limited in the time he can spend with his pigeons and relies on the help of his wife Kelly and daughter Fleur (letting out and calling in the pigeons). It is obvious that they do this with a great deal of pleasure. In 2008 a decision was made to race with the name of Fleur van Panhuis, in order to motivate the involvement further. Prior to the season a few pigeons are chosen which have to keep up the honour for Fleur. The ladies touch in the pigeon loft is apparently advantageous because in addition to the championships achieved by the Combination, Fleur has also made her presence felt and has a list of victories to her name. In 2008 and 2009 she achieved a nice performance in the NPO beginners competition with 2nd and 4th and 3rd and 4th Best youngster respectively.

Fleur also raced the necessary championships together in the club and CCG:
CCG 7: 4th Youngster Not nominated and Nominated – 7th General Not nominated and Nominated
Club: 2nd Youngsters Not nominated and Nominated – 3rd Keizer General – 3rd General Not nominated

Finally
The pigeon family has got the taste for the pigeon sport and the championships of the last season prove that they are on the right track. Starting in 2010 the focus will lie on the small middle distance races and a cautious start made the overnight long distance. Within a few years they want to just concentrate on the small middle distance and overnight long distance< Time will tell whether or not this is a wise decision. One thing is certain: they only strive for the best and the highest!