The now 41 year old Martin de Poorter, married and father of an eight year old daughter, has been one of the leading long distance fanciers in The Netherlands. Besides pigeon racing, which is of course his big hobby, he also enjoys walking his dog, fishing (a few times a year), and good food (he enjoys a nice meal and speciality beers). Martin works as a public-works advisor for the Sluis community, where he is responsible for topography and the maintenance and management of public space.
Martin already had a few fantails in his childhood (in the early 1990s), and he eventually got involved in the sport through a few pigeons from his uncle, as well as a stray pigeon. These first few pigeons had some promising results in the program races in his first seasons, but it was already obvious that he wanted to aim higher. He made a fresh start in 2005 in Sluis, where he invested heavily in some top class one day long distance pigeons. He claimed his first victory NPO already in 2006, and he was able to claim as many as six NPO/provincial victories until 2012. As of 2012, he tried his luck in his first few international marathon races (ZLU) as well, and he was even able to claim a 1st National St. Vincent in his debut season. In the wake of this first major success, he decided to start focussing exclusively on the international races. Martin has been highly successful in this competition for many years now, as you can tell from the following list of achievements (all won between 2012 and 2019):
1st Nat. St. Vincent ZLU 3,161 pigeons 920 km 2012 (on the day of the release) 5th Nat. Agen ZLU 6,211 pigeons 818 km 2017 (on the day of the release) 5th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,829 pigeons 907 km 2019 (on the day of the release) 8th Nat. Bordeaux ZLU 4,447 pigeons 818 km 2012 (on the day of the release) 9th Nat. Agen ZLU jl. 4,464 pigeons 818 km 2014 (on the day of the release) 11th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,829 pigeons 907 km 2019 (on the day of the release) 18th Nat. Agen ZLU 6,890 pigeons 818 km 2016 (on the day of the release) 22nd Nat. Perpignan ZLU 3,778 pigeons 967 km 2018 (overnight) 31st Nat. Pau ZLU 3,788 pigeons 930 km 2016 (on the day of the release) 32nd Nat. Perpignan 4,789 pigeons 967 km 2017 (on the day of the release)) 36th Nat. Agen ZLU 4,776 pigeons 818 km 2018 (overnight) 36th Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 pigeons 930 km 2018 (overnight) 40th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,082 pigeons 907 km 2018 (overnight) 42nd Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 pigeons 930 km 2018 (overnight) 45th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 5,338 pigeons 907 km 2015 (on the day of the release) 47th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,829 pigeons 907 km 2019 (on the day of the release) 49th Nat. Pau ZLU 3,788 pigeons 930 km 2016 (on the day of the release) 51st Nat. Marseille ZLU 2,525 pigeons 930 km 2017 (on the day of the release) 58th Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 pigeons 930 km 2018 (on the day of the release) 60th Nat. St. Vincent ZLU 2,570 pigeons 920 km 2018 (overnight) 62nd Nat. Pau ZLU 3,788 pigeons 930 km 2016 (on the day of the release) 64th Nat. Agen ZLU 6,638 pigeons 818 km 2015 (on the day of the release) 79th Nat. Agen ZLU 5,055 pigeons 818 km 2015 (on the day of the release) 95th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,829 pigeons 907 km 2019 (on the day of the release) 98th Nat. Perpignan 3,778 pigeons 967 km 2018 (overnight) 98th Nat. Agen ZLU 6,211 pigeons 818 km 2017 (on the day of the release) 3rd Nat. Champion Fondspiegel ZLU Cat. 3 (2016) 5th Int. Ace Pigeon Pau (2016-2017) 6th Nat. Ace Pigeon WHZB and PIPA ranking (2017) 7th Nat. Ace Pigeon ZLU WHZB (2012) 8th Int. Ace Pigeon PIPA ranking (2017) 11th Nat. Ace Pigeon PIPA ranking (2017) 12th Nat. Marathon Champion ZLU (2016) 16th Nat. Ace Pigeon Pau (2014-2017) 30th Int. Ace Pigeon PIPA ranking (2017)
His latest season had not been quite as successful due to a number of surgeries and a car accident, although he still did really well in Narbonne and Perpignan. He had an impressive four pigeons in the national top 100 in Narbonne, and he claimed an 84th International (hens) in Perpignan, with 8 of his 11 pigeons finishing in the top 257.
He had a racing team of around 50 pairs, which were all raced from the nest. Around 50 percent of them usually consist of yearlings and late youngsters. Martin's breeding loft is home to 17 breeding pairs, and he breeds around 75 youngsters every season for his own collection. These are mostly raced in the natour competition, after which he tends to have just over 60 young birds left. Since 2013, he has only been competing in the international races in recent years, focusing mostly on the flights up until Perpignan. However, he has been thinking about making Barcelona his main objective in the future. Martin does most of the day-to-day maintenance on his own, although his father joins him on Wednesdays to do some cleaning. This is also the day of the week that his parents are looking after their granddaughter. Martin can count on his father whenever he asks for his help. And he is very grateful for that. Martin's uncle does sometimes come over as well, if something needs to be built or demolished.
The pigeon breed
This pigeon family has three main building blocks: Rainman, Levi and New Rainman. These pigeons were crossbred to some of the best marathon bloodlines in The Netherlands and Belgium, resulting in a pigeon breed that can easily compete against the strongest teams in the international marathon competition. Today, we look at Rainman, Levi, New Rainman, and some of their most important descendants.
Rainman claimed a 1st National St. Vincent ZLU 2012 of 3,161 pigeons. He was obtained as a young bird from Team BDS but he was raced in Sluis. Rainman was sold shortly after his national victory but his bloodline has become one of the main pillars of this breed. Rainman is for instance the sire/grandfather of:
1st Nat. Agen 9,818 p. 2017 1st Prov. Poitiers 1,974 p. 2018 3rd Nat. Libourne 4,356 p. 2019 4th NPO Issoudun 4,564 p. 2018 5th Nat. Agen ZLU 6,211 p. 2017 10th Nat. Limoges 6,275 p. 2015 11th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,829 p. 2019 18th Nat. Agen ZLU 6,890 p. 2016 1st Nat. Ace Pigeon YLs PIPA ranking (3 prizes) 6th Nat. Ace Pigeon ZLU WHZB 2017 8th Int. Ace Pigeon 2017 (2 prizes) 11th Nat. Ace Pigeon ZLU 2017 (3 prizes)
Among Rainman's most important youngsters are Rainmans Jewel, First Son and Rainmans Zemer. All three birds have proven to breed excellent descendants as well, across several generations.
NL12-1682105, Rainmans Jewel
Like we said, Rainmans Jewel is a daughter of 1st National St. Vincent 2012 Rainman. The dam is Schuwe Brommer (Sjaak v.d. Velde & Son), and she is a daughter of a 3rd Nat. Ace Pigeon Perpignan (2012-2015). For the pedigree of Rainmans Jewel, click here. Youngsters and grandchildren of Rainmans Jewel have won as many as 18 top 200 prizes in national/NPO races, including:
11th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,829 p. 2019 42nd Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 p. 2018 47th Nat. Narbonne 3,829 p. 2019 48th NPO Issoudun 6,607 p. 2017 64th NPO Issoudun 3,644 p. 2016 91st Nat. St. Vincent ZLU 2,570 p. 2018 98th Nat. Perpignan ZLU 3,778 p. 2018 98th Nat. Agen ZLU 6,211 p. 2018
NL12-1682106, First Son
First Son is a full brother and a nestmate of the aforementioned Rainmans Jewel, as you can see here. First Son has shown to be an excellent breeding bird as well; he is the sire and grandfather of:
4th NPO Issoudun 4,564 p. 2018 33rd NPO Bergerac 2,343 p. 2015 47th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,829 p. 2019 51st Nat. Marseille ZLU 2,528 p. 2017 64th Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 p. 2018 11th Nat. Ace Pigeon ZLU PIPA ranking (3 pr) 2017
BE13-3148322, Rainmans Zemer
The last top class Rainman descendant that gets an introduction today is Rainmans Zemer. The dam is a sister of a 3rd National Brive (8,331 p.) of Rudi De Saer (click here for the pedigree of Rainmans Zemer). He and Bontje Wesley have been an excellent breeding pair together; they are the parents of:
6th Nat. Ace Pigeon WHZB ZLU 2017 8th Int. Ace Pigeon 2017 5th Nat. Agen ZLU 6,211 p. 2017 18th Nat. Agen ZLU 6,890 p. 2016 32nd Nat. Perpignan ZLU 4,789 p. 2017 93rd Nat. Perpignan (dv) 1,184 p. 2015
Together with fellow fanciers AP Overwater and Piet de Vogel, Martin obtained Levi from Aad Kuyt in 2014. Levi was truly a magnificent bird in the marathon competition, winning a 1st National St. Vincent 2013 (of 3,282 p.) as well as a 4th National S2 St. Vincent 2010 (5,336 p.). Levi had been paired to the aforementioned Rainmans Jewel, and a few of their youngsters have been quite pivotal in the further development of this pigeon family. Mr Balance, Bolletje, Levi 242, Levi's and De Toekomst are just a few of the youngsters of this breeding pair that have proven capable of breeding successful racing birds as well.
NL14-1940107, Mr. Balance
Mr. Balance is the sire of:
98th Nat. Perpignan ZLU 3,778 p. 2018 132nd Nat. Marseille ZLU 2,758 p. 2018 303rd Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 p. 2018 348th Nat. St. Vincent S1 6,228 p. 2017 414th Nat. Pau 3,785 p. 2019
Bolletje is the dam of:
42nd Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 p. 2018 48th NPO Issoudun 6,607 p. 2017
NL15-1665353, Levi 353
Levi 353 is the sire of:
11th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,829 p. 2019 115th Nat. Perpignan ZLU 4,789 p. 2017 141st Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,082 p. 2018 185th Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 p. 2018 223rd Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 p. 2018 255th Nat. Agen ZLU jl. 5,935 p. 2017
Youngsters of Levi's, another son of Levi x Rainmans Jewel have won:
47th Prov. Poitiers 1,974 p. 2018 71st Nat Agen KBDB 4,664 p. 2019 131st Nat. Agen ZLU YLs 3,940 p. 2019
NL14-1015299, De Toekomst
Youngsters of De Toekomst, which is another son of top pair Levi x Rainmans Jewel, claimed the following prizes:
47th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,829 p. 2019 235th Nat. Agen ZLU YLs 5,935 p. 2017 420th Nat. Agen ZLU YLs 3,940 p. 2019
BE13-3148340, New Rainman
New Rainman was purchased as a youngster in 2013, again from Team BDS. He was raced in Martin's team in Sluis. This New Rainman has the same sire as the aforementioned Rainman (1st Nat. St. Vincent). Click here for New Rainman's full pedigree. New Rainman showed his potential as a yearling in 2014, claiming an 9th National Agen ZLU (of 4,464 yearlings). He went on to win a 1st NPO Bergerac (2,343 p.) and a 36th NPO Issoudun (3,644 p.) in 2015 and 2016. It was then decided to transfer New Rainman to the breeding loft as well, and this proved a smart move. Today, he is the sire and grandfather of:
1st NU Zone 3 Dax 2019 7th Nat. Dax S3 2,088 p. 2019 4th NPO Issoudun 4,564 p. 2018 5th Int Asduif DV 2019 22nd Nat. Orange S3 2,569 p. 2019 26th Nat. Perpignan ZLU 4,283 p. 2019 36th Nat. Agen ZLU jl. 4,776 p. 2018 42nd NPO Melun 5,425 p. 2018 45th Final race Algarve 2019 12th Asduif Algarve 2019 64th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,829 p. 2019 84th Nat. Dax S2 1,727 p. 2019
Like we said, Martin has also been very successful with descendants that stem from champions from other lofts, which were crossbred with his own breed. Here are a few examples:
NL14-1801999, Son Red Rose
This son of Red Rose stems straight from the Verweij de Haan combination (Mijdrecht, NL); he is a son of their famous Red Rose (click here for Son Red Rose's pedigree). Martin won the following prizes with the youngsters of this young super class breeder:
36th Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 p. 2018 42nd Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 p. 2018 48th NPO Issoudun 6,607 p. 2017
NL12-1682114, Purple Rain
Purple Rain is another example of a successful crossing of Martin's own breed (Rainman) and a star of a different loft, in this case a son of the world famous Paarsborst (click here for the pedigree of Purple Rain). Purple Rain is the sire of several successful racing birds in Sluis, including:
NL14-3414273 Big Red : 58th Nat. Pau ZLU 3,551 p. 2018 62nd Nat. Pau ZLU 3,788 p. 2016 NL16-3613263 Miss Narbonne: 40th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,082 p. 2018 95th Nat. Narbonne ZLU 3,829 p. 2019
Having to take a step back
Martin is a meticulous and devoted fancier. He wants to leave nothing to chance in the two most crucial months of the season (the marathon competition). Well, as long as he can keep up physically, and that has been a problem this season. He was actually forced to make a choice: to quit pigeon racing altogether or to try and keep racing in a way that can be sustained in the long run, making different adjustments. For now, he has opted for the second option. In the coming winter he is selling his entire old birds' collection (up until 2017) on PIPA. In addition, a large section of his breeding loft will be torn down. Meanwhile, the racing loft will be made more maintenance-friendly, and it will be equipped with a floor grating, for instance. And he will only be competing in the international races this season. As such, Martin will be able to continue racing pigeons. Like we said, the team will be increasingly focusing on the classic from Barcelona in future seasons, rather than on the entire international calendar. Given the talent of his young birds' team and Martin's experience as a fancier, we are confident that he will continue to achieve great results in the future with this new approach as well.