Maike Dedek and Alfons Klaas
And the Klaas pigeons are different in terms of appearance as well: they are slightly larger than average. They have a bit more body compared to most modern-day racing birds. But most races in Germany are shorter or middle distance races these days, which means it's all about speed.
This is what we said about the Klaas pigeons earlier on:
"Make of it what you want but there is no denying that the pigeons of Alfons and Helmut are not quite like most other pigeon breeds. These are genuine winners, and pigeons that adapt to a new environment really fast. We are confinced that the ability for the Klaas pigeons to very quickly adapt to a new situation has become an inherent part of their breed. They do not need a long transition time to get accustomed to a new loft. On the other hand, you have pigeons that really struggle to adapt at all, and these are of course not at all suited for one loft races, since they might get lost in their very first training flight. On top of that, the Klaas pigeons are able to get a sense of direction very quickly, and they are of course really fast, judging from their results at club level. These are no doubt truly special pigeons, that stand apart from the rest in many ways.
Each of the Klaas pigeons stems from some excellent bloodlines. Breeding pairs are often very closely related, and the different youngsters are then crossbred. As a result, the pigeon collection of Alfons & Helmut Klaas has really become a breed of its own. In fact, this breed has been in development since 1987/1988, and it is based on a very clever breeding strategy, involving nothing but top class birds. This is a breed unparalleled at international level."
This is what we said about this pigeon family earlier on, and we nothing to add to that.
We take a look at the results in the Reiseverband, which speak for themselves.
Results of 2018 in the Reiseverband
Some fanciers believe that the Klaas fanciers hardly ever basket their pigeons for the local competitions. That could not be further from the truth. They not only compete in these races, they have been quite successful here as well. Let's take a look at their best results of 2018:
1st Champion RV with 40 nominated pigeons 1st Champion RV Hens 1st Champion RV long distance (races of over 400km) 1st Champion of the month RV in Mai, June and July 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 9th best hen in the RV 1st One year old hen RV 1st Old Hen in the union 1st One year old hen in the union 1st Champion in the union in Gruppe Nord 1st Hen in the union in Gruppe Nord
We think there are two races that deserve a mention in particular, with first of all the flight from Mondercange/Luxemburg, a race in the RV. The winner is 0507-18-239 of Alfons Klaas against 13,408 pigeons. And the 239 was successful again just one week later, winning a 3rd prize of 2,520 pigeons from Etam - beaten by two of his own loft mates. The 239 happens to be a grandchild of "Super Purdey".
Team Klaas also claims a 1st and 2nd in the zone in the national race from London in 2016, resulting in a 2nd and 3rd international.
Those are great national results for a team that is actually mainly focusing on one loft racing. And that is why we will now take a closer look at their achievements in the OLRs in recent years.
Alfons & Helmut Klaas and their field of expertise: one loft racing
This team has grown used to winning top prizes in international one loft races on a regular basis; they claim victory at least once every year. One of their biggest wins came in 2007, at the 11th Sun City Million Dollar Pigeon Race, which they won with Konstantin, a pigeon that stems from breeding pair 0507-03-994 x 0507-96-660. The 994 is a son of the team's stock breeder 0507-97-180 paired to 0507-01-123, which comes from Steenbergen-Kösters. The 180 claimed 12 prizes in 13 races in 1999, scoring 1,070 ace points. And quite a few of his grandchildren have been winning prizes in the top 100. The dam of Konstantin, the 660, comes from stock breeder Tim, paired to Konstance. This was the team's first major result as well, with 200,000$ worth of prize money. The big question at the time was whether this team would be able to deliver another such top result in the years to come. And they have! Team Klaas has in fact become a householf name in OLR racing at international level, claiming a major victory every single season.
Here is a closer look at their recent OLR achievements.
Alfons & Helmut Klaas were victorious in the final race of Carpat 2018 with Milla 0507-18-283, which also became 1st International Ace Pigeon - a great result. 1,400 pigeons from 19 different countries were competing in this OLR. The sire of the 283 is Kleine Bolt, a half brother of Mr. Bolt, 1st Ace Cock in Regionalverband 250 of 35,196 pigeons in 2009. Alfons & Helmut also won a 4th International Ace Pigeon in Carpat 2018 with a nest sister of the 283, called Mrs. Kunis (0507-18-284). She came in fifth in the semi-finals. This was another major result; keep in mind they had only 6 pigeons in this one loft race.
However, there is one race in particular that stands out every season: South African Million Dollar Pigeon Race. Needless to say, the Klaas breed was there as well. Here are the results:
Hot Spot Car Race 3 (212 km) 5th of 3,196 pigeons with Helle, DV 0507-17-641 Hot Spot Car Race 4 (212 km) 8th of 2,874 pigeons with Power Bolt, DV 0507-17-636 Hot Spot Car Race 4 (212 km) 9th of 2,874 pigeons with Treasure, DV 0507-17-571 Hot Spot Car Race 5 (268 km) 5th of 2,807 pigeons with Bamberg, DV 0507-17-280 Hot Spot Car Race 5 (268 km) 10th of 2,807 pigeons with Treasure, DV 0507-17-571
This illustrates once again how talented this pigeon breed really is; otherwise these results simply would not be feasible. Remember what we said in the beginning? Alfons and Helmut Klaas have pigeons that are not quite like most other pigeon breeds out there. Their most important characteristic is their ability to quickly get used to a new environment, combined with quite a bit of speed obviously.
DV 0507-17-630 Miss Spain - winner of a 12th in the final at Victoria Falls, and 1st Grand Average Pigeon
Alfons and Helmut Klaas attended the 2017 Victoria Falls Race as well, and they were particularly successful in the young birds' competition. They claim a 12th place in the closing race over 410km with Miss Spain, DV 0507-17-630, and more importantly, she also becomes 1st Grand Average Ace Pigeon. A terrific result.
The closing race for the yearlings in the 2018 edition of Victoria Falls had a distance of 602km, and the 2nd place went to racing bird Maxi DV 0507-17-669 of Team Klaas. Miss Spain and Maxi are in fact full sisters. This says a lot about their origins indeed!
The Klaas racing birds have competed in the Derby Arona quite a few times as well. In this year's race they had the 1st German pigeon in the final.
A leading names in One Loft Racing
We often wonder who would be the number one in One Loft Racing. We would not hesitate to grant this title to Alfons and Helmut Klaas, because the achievements of the son-father combination in One Loft Races across the globe are quite astounding. Here is a look at their most notable results:
Sun City Million Dollar Race 2007: 1st prize for Alfons & Helmut Klaas; Sun City Million Dollar Race 2011: 1st prize for Kitchenbrand Lofts with a pigeon bred by A. & H. Klaas! 1st prize Silver Race & car winner 2015 1st prize final Carnaval City OLR 2014 1st prize Final Derby Arona Teneriffa 2013 1st prize Final Million Dollar Race 2,402 p. 1st prize World Ace Challenge in USA 2007 1st prize Hot Spot 1 Teneriffa 2008 1st prize Hot Spot China 1,432 p. 300 km 2009 2 x 1st prize OLR Tribünenflug Deutschland 2010 1st prize Final Million Dollar Race (Kitchenbrand Loft) 2011 3rd prize Final Million Dollar Race (Team Esser-Klaas) 2012 1st prize Grand Average Million Dollar Race (Team Esser-Klaas) 2012 1st prize Final Race Allflight South Africa 521 km 2012 1st Ace Pigeon Hot Spot Allflight South Africa 2012 3rd, 5th, 7th prize 2 Hot Spot Teneriffa 2008 7th and 11th prize semi-final Teneriffa 2009 5th prize Hot Spot 2 Teneriffa 2009
And let's not forget their best results of 2018 which we talked you through in this article.