Kurt & Raf Platteeuw (Rumbeke, BE) have probably their best season yet, winning several national top results and 15 provincial ace pigeons KBDB

After a spectacular sale in 2015, team Platteeuw managed to win a 1st National Châteauroux in 2016, which was supposed to be a transition year. And the following 2017 season has probably been the best racing season so far for the pigeon family of Kurt and Raf Platteeuw. They win an impressive 23 first prizes, 223 top ten prizes, 15 provincial ace pigeon titles KBDB, as well as several national top results.

Many fanciers struggle to return to their previous level after a total sale, and many never get there at all. As many of you know, father and son Platteeuw had been running a highly successful pigeon family up until their 2015 sale. It all began in 2010, with Pauline winning a 1st National Gueret of 13,885 young birds. They went on to win a 1st National Argenton of 4,782 pigeons with their top class hen Devils Daughter. Then came the successful 2015 auction, in which they sold their entire old birds' collection on PIPA, only keeping their youngsters of 2015. After the total sale they continued to work with their remaining young birds. Kurt's favourite passtime within pigeon racing would be to look for great champions, and trying to push their limits. For instance, he obtained pigeons of the small but renowned sprint and middle distance team of Rony Calus (Heist aan Zee, BE). Rony and Kurt got along really well, and their collaboration led to a great result right away: Kurt and Raf won a 1st National Chateauroux of 29,591 yearlings with one of the pigeons that they obtained from Rony Calus: Emanuelle. She was the second fastest bird in the most important national race of 2016, with a record number of 54,717 competitors (olds and yearlings together) - it was one of the biggest wins for the team of Kurt and Raf. Several more pigeons were transferred from Heist to Rumbeke after Emanuelle's victory. The two lofts have been working together very well, and 2017 would prove a pivotal season after their national victory of 2016. How would the new team perform? Well, it turned out to be their best season yet in terms of overall results, with 23 first prizes, 15 provincial ace pigeon titles KBDB and many other national top results. 

The team has set a high bar for 2018 as well; all the champions are back in the racing loft and ready to go. We are close to the 2018 season now, just in time to look at the national palmares of Kurt and Raf so far:

70 KBDB ace pigeons
3 x 1st Nationaal
2 x National champion
2 x 1st general champion West Flanders
4 x 2nd general champion West Flanders

Current pigeon family

The new and improved Platteeuw pigeon breed is based around four breeding birds, with a fifth breeder have been added just recently. Each of these breeders has already bred a champion, and from then on everything fell into place. Here is a closer look at their five top breeders.

Starlight and Dragon

BE12-3112538 Starlight

Starlight and Dragon together represent the four stock bloodlines of the old Platteeuw breed. Starlight is a son of Labiau Jr x Annemie. We rarely get to see a stock breeder that has had such a profound impact on its pigeon family as Labiau Jr: its youngsters and granchildren have won an impressive 19 national top 40 prizes, including most notably a 1st National Argenton by granddaughter Devils Daughter (the dam of Dragon). Annemie is proving to be an exceptional breeder as well: its descendants have won a 3rd Nat. Issoudun, a 7th Nat. Tulle, a 9th Nat. La Souterraine, and a 10th Nat. Bourges. Click here for Starlight's full pedigree.

BE13-3113480 Dragon

Like we said, Dragon is the second breeder besides Starlight to represent the old bloodlines of team Platteeuw, with which Kurt and Raf have been so successful over the years. The sire of Dragon, Brother Red Drageon, is the sire of 15 first prize winners. The dam is Devils Daughter, and she bred several national stars as well:

  1st Nat. Argenton     4,782 p.
  7th Nat. Bourges     20,589 p.
 18th Nat. Châteauroux 16,479 p.
110th Nat. Châteauroux 25,263 p.

Dragon is now the sire of a 22nd National Issoudun (11,984 p.) and a 44th National Brive (9,106 p.). Click here for the full pedigree of Dragon.

Sea Cove and Sea Biscuit

After the national victory from Châteauroux with Emanuelle, two more top birds of Rony Calus were introduced in the loft in Rumbeke: Sea Cove and Sea Biscuit. These two cracks have an excellent palmares as a racing bird, and they continue to excel in the breeding loft as well.

BE12-3044649 Sea Cove

Sea Cove won four first prizes, including three victories against more than 1,250 pigeons. He also wins 22 prizes within the top 10 (no doubles):

1st Prov. Ace Pigeon Sprint KBDB West Fl.
1st Arras    1,526 p.
1st Clermont 1,356 p.
1st Fontenay 1,264 p.
1st Fontenay   174 p.

The sire of Sea Cove is also the grandmother of Emmanuelle, which, as you know, has won a 1st National Châteauroux (29,591 p). Click here for Sea Cove's pedigree.

BE12-3044650 Sea Biscuit

Another important addition from Rony's collection is Sea Biscuit. He is a proven racing bird, having won the following top results:

1st Prov. Châteaudun 3,601 p.
1st Châteaudun         409 p.
1st Fontenay           176 p.
1st Arras              164 p.
1st Fontenay           122 p.

And he is showing to be quite a talented breeder as well, with his first youngster of 2016 winning not one but two provincial races:

1st Prov. Châteaudun 2,115 p.
1st Prov. Châteaudun 2,040 p.

Sea Biscuit comes from super class pair Number 1 x Number 1 Girl - click here for the full pedigree. Number 1 and Number 1 Girl are also the grandparents of the team's most recent transfer: the one and only Cannibal, 1st National Ace Pigeon Sprint KBDB 2017. Click here for Cannibal's full pedigree.

BE16-3046631 Cannibal

BE16-3046631 Cannibal

The transfer of Cannibal from Heist aan Zee to Rumbeke is a perfect example of the successful collaboration between the two lofts. Let me tell you the whole story. One week before Bourges, Cannibal was certain to be winning a provincial ace pigeon title (with 5 top results). In the weekend of the race from Bourges there are not too many pigeons that compete in sprint races, and so it was decided to basket Cannibal for a national race instead. Rony had basketed three pigeons, and two of them won a national prize - Cannibal was not one of them. In order for Cannibal to claim a national ace pigeon title, he needed a sixth top result, and basketing a pigeon for a sprint race after it completed a national classic is quite an unusual strategy. One week after Bourges, Rony basketed his Cannibal for Clermont. He did quite well but he did not win a top result. He was then put to rest for a week, and he finally delivered the following week, winning a 6th national top result and a coveted title of National Ace Pigeon Sprint KBDB 2017. Cannibal had bounced back, and he delivered a rare achievement: it was for the first time in history that a West Flemish sprint pigeon claimed an ace pigeon title in the yearlings' category. This title was based on the following results:

3rd Arras      694 p.
2nd Clermont   738 p.
2nd Clermont 1,063 p.
3rd Clermont   636 p.
1st Clermont   567 p.
1st Clermont   282 p.

The stars of last year

BE15-3115257 Young Mata Hari

Young Mata Hari is currently the star of the team, as 1st Prov. Ace Pigeon Longer Middle Distance, based on the following results: 1st Tours 302 p., 1st Tours 608 p., 1st Brionne 133 p., 2nd Tours 136 p., 2nd Fontenay 1,054 p., 4th Fontenay 684 p., etc. The sire of Young Mata Hari is also the sire of Coffin, five time first prize winner and winner of a 5th Nat. Bourges 10,141 p. and a 10th La Souterraine 4,161 p. The dam of Young Mata Hari is Mata Hari, 8th Prov. Ace Pigeon Longer Middle Distance 2011. Click here for the full pedigree of Young Mata Hari.

BE16-3116410 Sea Surfer

Sea Surfer is a 100% Rony Calus pigeon - see pedigree. Here are her best results as a racing hen:

 1st Jarnac     202 p. (and 14th Nat.  5,117 p.)
 2nd Limoges    314 p. (and 64th Nat. 10,554 p.)
29th Fontenay   728 p.
50th Fontenay 1,054 p.
53rd Clermont   624 p.

She won the following ace pigeon titles in 2017:

 3rd Prov. Ace Pigeon Long Distance Yearlings KBDB
12th Nat. Ace Pigeon Long Distance KBDB
 1st Ace Pigeon Pieter de Conick Throphy Yearlings

Many positive trends in 2017 for team Platteeuw

Kurt was thinking of no longer racing his cocks this season but he did get some great results with them last year.

They also started keeping a large team of young birds, which Raf did not think much of initially. He had to change his mind after the race from Orleans, where they excelled against the wind, racing mostly on their own.

The team of youngsters has been stronger than ever this season, with plenty of pigeons that excelled whenever they wanted. The Platteeuw family will have plenty of talented yearlings this season, and they actually removed some renowned old birds to give their new generation of racing birds a chance instead.

A young bird gifted by Alfons Bellaert (Oedelem) won a 3rd Provincial Ace Pigeon title long distance YBs. And a pigeon bred from Supercarck 913, purchased from Jacques Hellebuyck (Aarsele), becomes 8th Ace Pigeon shorter middle distance YBs for the team. These were two racing cocks.

Long story short: selecting your strongest pigeons and basketing them often has continued to be a successful strategy indeed. The team was able to achieve great results with a small racing team and just five breeding birds, winning a national first prize, a national ace pigeon title sprint and a 12th national ace pigeon title long distance YLs, in just two years' time. This team has excelled across the board!

Fanciers are once again looking for the best sprint pigeons on the market, to combine them with their existing bloodlines. It has been the key to success for Kurt and Raf Platteeuw, whose pigeons have excelled in shorter distance races as well as in the long distance. Be that as it may, top quality birds can be hard to find!