2014 has seen excellent weather conditions so far. However, it seems that the weather has started to have a negative impact since last weekend. Last weekend’s national races were affected by the weather. Heavy rain prevented the pigeons from being released from Gueret on Saturday and Sunday. It was a good decision, given the disastrous outcome of a number of races on Saturday. The sky cleared on Monday, and the pigeons were eventually released at 7:30, in good weather conditions and with a slight wind coming from the west.
It is remarkable how the national prizes were won across Belgium. The national first prizes were won in West Flanders and along the border between East and West Flanders. This might have surprised a number of fanciers, given the direction of the wind.
Bert Van Den Berghe has the fastest pigeon from Gueret
It was the East Flemish Bert Van Den Berghe from Wortegem-Petegem who clocked the fastest pigeon of a total of 17,430 pigeons. His winning pigeon landed at 14:20’00” after covering 536.946km with a velocity of 1309.62 m/min, which made it the fastest pigeon in the race. This resulted in a national victory against 9,754 pigeons, achieved by Bert’s first nominated of six basketed pigeons.
Bert won three prizes with 6 basketed pigeons in the club:
Gueret 196 yearlings: 1-18-52 (3/6) Nat. 9,754 yearlings: 1…
He won a national first prize from Agen with Fyther in the same weekend last year, and Bert now takes another national win from Gueret. This weekend’s winner is a direct daughter of his outstanding hen Gloria. The pigeons of team Van den Berghe showed in the tough race from Poitiers two weeks ago that their form was coming:
Poitiers 340 yearlings: 3-11-18-25-26-28-30-35-43-45-75 (11/12)
They put in a great effort in the race from Gueret, and this resulted in a national victory!
Bert Van Den Berghe toastend op zijn nationale zege met dochter, verzorger Wim en hofleverancier Gaby Vandenabeele
Vandenabeele pigeons are the key to success
Bert Van Den Berghe (49) is the manager of NV Roger Van Den Berghe, and this means he knows what it takes to gain success. It involves making the right choices at the right moment, and being able to cope with disappointments and setbacks. After all, every fancier will have a few setbacks in his career.
Bert got passionate about pigeons at an early age, thanks to his grandfather Jerome and his uncle Antoon Laverge. Bert lost his father when he was still fairly young, and shortly after his studies he got involved in his father’s company, which was run by his mother. He did no longer have time to keep pigeons, and so he was no longer an active pigeon fancier. However, he continued to follow the sport, and he was bound to make a return sooner or later.
Bert made his comeback in the early 1990s, initially joining partnerships in other lofts. He started out in the loft of Patrick and Dimitri Houfflijn, and he also teamed up with Jacques Verschuere. His only goal was to make it to the top, and that is why he started working with pigeons of Gaby Vandenabeele from Dentergem. These pigeons provided the basis throughout his career, and they have brought him quite a lot of success. We discussed this in detail in our previous reports and in the catalogue of the PIPA auction earlier this year, in which Bert sold all of his old birds (from 2012 and older).
Bert started keeping pigeons on his own from 2011. An impressive new loft was built in his garden in Wortegem-Petegem, and he asked Wim Dewitte to assist him with the caretaking of the loft. The next step was obtaining a number of top class pigeons. Unsurprisingly, Bert paid another visit to the pigeon loft of Gaby Vandenabeele, while also obtaining pigeons of Marc Pollin, Rik Cools, Geert Vanrenterghem, and Patrick Houfflijn. The latter three have a pigeon breed that is based on the Vandenabeele breed as well. A number of pigeons of Etienne De Vos were added to his collection as well. His team was on the right track from day one, quickly winning important prizes. The first impressive achievements came already in 2013. The pigeons of Bert Van Den Berghe had made their way to the top, winning one important win after the other that season. This is their list of achievements of 2013:
1st Nat Agen-Bordeaux 5,507 olds (with Fyther) 1st + 2nd Nat Zone A Limoges 5,742 olds 1st Nat Zone A2 Poitiers 3,342 yearlings 2nd Nat Libourne 6,658 olds 3rd and 45th Nat Poitiers 13,135 yearlings 4th + 8th Nat Limoges 14,271 olds
He also won the following titles:
2nd Nat Ace Pigeon Long Distance Old Birds KBDB 2013 12th Nat Ace Pigeon Extreme Middle Distance Old Birds KBDB 2013
This is quite impressive! Bert auctioned his entire collection of old birds (2012 and older) on PIPA in the end of the season. This collection of pigeons had allowed him to achieve great success in no time, and nobody had expected Bert to be just as successful with his team of yearlings (young birds born in 2013). The crowning achievement came from a daughter of Gloria.
-Dochter Gloria BE13-4186089
1st National Gueret 9,754 yearlings (fastest of 17,430 pigeons) Daughter of 2nd National Ace Pigeon Long Distance KBDB Old Birds 2013
She was bred from a joint breeding between Gaby Vandenabeele and Bert Van Den Berghe
Sire: De Kapoen BE12-3162831
A pigeon of Gaby Vandenabeele. He is a full brother of Goliath BE09-3095224 (sire of Fyther, 1st Nat Agen-Bordeaux 5,507 old birds in 2013) and of the winner of a 2nd prize in the One Million Dollar Race South Africa. Goliath is a son of top breeder Neptunus BE99-3199708 x Daughter Champion BE07-4361085 (a direct Chris Hebberecht, bred from Champion; 2nd Nat Ace Pigeon Long Distance KBDB 2005, and today's stock sire of the Hebberecht pigeon breed).
Dam: Gloria BE11-4291462
An exceptional hen from Wortegem-Petegem, and winner of:
2nd Nat. Ace Pigeon Long Distance Old Birds KBDB 2013 1st Nat. Zone Limoges olds 5,742 pigeons 2013 - 4th Nat. 14,271 pigeons 10th Nat. Zone Cahors olds 2,801 pigeons 2013 - 159th Nat. 8,570 pigeons 32nd Nat. Bordeaux yearlings 5,480 pigeons 2012 - 39th Int. 10,620 pigeons 11th Int. Bordeaux hens 2,869 hens 2012 51st Nat. Zone Châteauroux 6,962 pigeons 2012 - 53rd Nat. 15,902 pigeons 59th Nat. Zone Souillac olds 2,435 pigeons 2013 - 72nd Nat. 5,282 pigeons 147th Nat. Narbonne yearlings 6,933 pigeons 2012 - 174thInt. 11,000 pigeons 72nd Int. Narbonne Hens 5,098 hens 2012
Gloria is a direct Gaby Vandenabeele from super class pigeon Royal Blue BE05-3006583 (a grandson of Wittenbuik from Pipo Wittenbuik BE94-3237367 x Patsy BE99-4393724) x Mona BE04-3069721 (a daughter of the iconic Bliksem BE98-3158062 x Frieda BE99-3103770). Gloria was the most expensive pigeon in the internet auction, and she was sold to Mr Ali Adel Obaed.
Click here for the full pedigree.
This national winner proves once again that it takes top quality pigeons to breed new champions. This national victory is the first big win for a new generation of Van Den Berghe pigeons, and it is the second national win in just one year's time. Impressive!