Klemens Iking (Vreden, DE) won national first prize from Barcelona 2015

The weather conditions were particularly difficult for the German fanciers. Fanciers with a loft in the westernmost part of the country had a slight advantage, because they had to cover a shorter distance. However, there were exceptions such as Klemens Iking.

Klemens Iking, the German national winner of Barcelona 2015

A very hard race!

This race from Barcelona was particularly difficult, and Barcelona is of course the most important classic in pigeon racing. The weather conditions were quite extreme in 2015: tropical heat in France with temperatures of over 35°C, and sometimes as high as 38°C. It was yet to be seen if the pigeons could cope with these high temperatures.

The wind made the race somewhat easier, blowing mainly from south to southeastern direction. However, the wind was blowing very hot air. There was a slight north-easterly wind and a temperature of 25°C on the release site in France.

On 3rd of July 2015 at 7:40am a group of 19,083 pigeons were released in Barcelona, under a bright blue sky and with good visibility. There were 7,835 Belgian, 5,182 Dutch, 3,134 French, 1,295 German, 1,276 Polish, 331 English and 30 Luxembourgish pigeons. Father & son Cuffel from Montivilliers clocked the first pigeon at 20:57’05”, over a distance of 917.056km. This pigeon reached a velocity of 1,150.51 m/min. After this first arrival many fanciers were hoping that the race would continue without any major problems. The town of Montivilliers, where the first pigeon landed, was situated to the west of the direct flying route. This explains why the first pigeons arrived here, driven by the north-easterly wind.

No more pigeons landed on Friday

I continually checked the PIPA radar to find out when and where the next pigeons were about to arrive. However, no more pigeons landed that Friday. We had to wait until Saturday morning for the next arrival, most of which took place in the north-west of France. The first Belgian pigeon eventually arrived home shortly after 8 o’clock. However, none of these pigeons reached a velocity of over 1.000 m/min, making them a lot slower compared to the pigeon that landed on Friday. The slower speeds were caused by the heat, and fanciers did not expect the race to close before Saturday evening.

To cut a long story short: the international winners were father and son Cuffel, whose winning pigeon achieved a velocity of 1,15.51 m/min. The national winner in Belgium was Noel Peiren from Zedelgem; his pigeon was clocked on Saturday at 8:05’34”, covering 1,082.98km with a velocity of 984.91 m/min. Noel finished in second place at international level. The first prize in The Netherlands went to Kees Droog from Andijk. His pigeon was back on Saturday at 11:28’59”, covering 1,281.32km with a velocity of 983.37 m/min, and finishing in third place at international level. All other early arrivals were won by fanciers from the west; most fanciers with a loft in the east were unable to win an early prize.

Berni, 1st national from Barcelona 2015 in Germany

German national first prize for Klemens Iking from Vreden

Like we said, the lofts in the western part of Europe had a slight advantage thanks to the wind, which means none of the German fanciers were able to take an early prize. There was obviously still a national winner in Germany, and this year’s winner is Klemens Iking from Vreden. He clocked his first pigeon at 15:21’20” over a distance of 1,233.45km, his racing cock reaching a velocity of 803.37 m/min. This was quite an impressive achievement, given the weather conditions.

The second national prize was won by the pigeon loft of KH & KJ Plum from Frelenburg, who clocked their winning pigeon at 13:20’38” over a distance of 1,101.552km. Pigeon fancier Burghard Heller from Eschweiler finished in third place in Germany, clocking his first pigeon at 14:00’00” after completing 1,092.112km.

Let’s go back to our national winner Klemens Iking from Vreden, a city in the Münsterland region, in the north-west of Nordrhein-Westfalen. Vreden has 22,500 inhabitants, making it a fairly small sized city.

Klemens Iking claimed the national victory over a distance of 1,233.45km with his four year old cock 02745-11-428 Berni. This was quite an impressive feat; their winning cock has done a brilliant job.

Wer ist nun dieser Klemens Iking?

We could not find much information about this fancier. It turned out he is a fancier with quite a small pigeon loft, who has nonetheless achieved some great results. Klemens Iking is 51 years old, and he has been keeping pigeons from an early age, initially together with his father.

We discovered an article about father and son Klemens Iking (they have the same first name) in a copy of the Gut Flug magazine published by the company Natural. The article was about their outstanding hen 06381-94-616, which won an impressive 76 prizes over 29,934km over the course of her career. This hen was also awarded the title of second best hen of Germany in the union in the highest category, in Dortmund in 2003.

We came across another article about this pigeon loft in a copy of the Taubenmarkt magazine of 2014, in which Yannick Ungerer writes: “Klemens Iking – A small pigeon family with great achievements.” In this article he discusses the results of Klemens Iking in 2013:

Pau nat. (1,108 km): 29., 61., 71., 88., 109. against 1,033 p. (6/11)
Barcelona nat. (1,233 km): 180., 268., 287. against 1,729 p. (3/5)
St. Vincent nat. (1,109 km): 71., 179. against 1,029 p. (2/4)
Marseille nat. (996 km): 57. against 1,331 p. (1/3)
Perpignan nat. (1,088 km): 98., 106. against 894 p. (2/3)
Ruffec nat. (825 km): 28., 321., 463., 531. against 1,682 p. (4/11)
Brive nat. (861 km): 89., 340., 415. against 2,062 p. (3/7)

This is quite an impressive palmares for a rather small pigeon family. Klemens Iking keeps no more than 40 pigeons in his loft during the winter, and he does not have any breeding pigeons. All he has is a team of racing birds.

The 02745-11-428, the national winner

This is quite a talented racing cock. He claimed the national first prize in a particularly difficult race from Barcelona, covering an impressive 1,233.45 km. This was a top class performance. It was not the first top result for the 428 however; he also won a 49th national from St. Vincent (1,109km) and a 57th regional from Perpignan in 2014. His sire is the 02745-10-17, which originates from a grandchild of Bordeaux of Menne & Töchter from his father’s side. He is also related to a pairing of two full sisters of Iking/Volmer from his mother’s side.
The dam of the 428 is the 02745-10-26 Hanna, and she originates from 03337-08-48, a cock from the pigeon family of Oswald Schneider. This cock is for instance the sire of 02745-09-447, winner of five prizes from Barcelona. The dam of Hanna is the hen 02745-08-78, which is also related to the pigeon breeds of Oswald Schneider and Menne & Töchter.

Another picture of Bernie, the first national Barcelona 2015 in Germany.

Klemens Iking had basketed four pigeosn for the race from Barcelona. The second pigeon arrived home on the second day at 21:34'12", finishing in 74th place at national level. Klemens won three and four national prizes respectively. Not bad at all for such a small team.

Congratulations from the entire PIPA team, keep up the good work.