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Report of the British International Championship race from Agen

Seven hundred and thirty six pigeons were sent with the British International Championship Club to compete in the international race from Agen. The convoy was liberated at 6 am into excellent weather conditions.

With a south westerly wind aiding the birds it was hoped that there would be day birds into the UK and this proved to be the case with twenty birds on the result by nightfall.

In first east section and overall first place was Charlie Simmons from Basildon in Essex with a five year old blue pied widowhood cock. The breeding of the winner contains Soontjens from Mr and Mrs Clayburn’s Black Ring pair and Mardon’s Geschifte bloodlines. On returning from having his clock checked Charlie found his second entry on the loft and this took twenty first open. This is Charlie’s third BICC win as he won from Gellainville in 2002 and then Falaise in 2009.

In first centre section and second open is a loft that needs no introduction, that of Mark Gilbert of Windsor; always there or thereabouts when it comes to the international races. Mark clocked four arrivals to take first, third, fifth and seventh centre section and second, sixth, thirteenth and nineteenth open.

Beaten by a fraction of a second into second centre section, third open was a pigeon for John Haynes of Fifield. This was a two year old latebred which won tenth open NFC Saintes as a yearling, it’s breeding is Deweerdt x Andre Vermote. This pigeon was raced on a semi celibate system, where the hens are only shown on arrival.

Fourth open, second east section was won by the Dover partnership of Lee and Kevin Buddle; another name that is always near the top on the longer races. Their timer was a four year old widowhood cock called Spitfire, a grandson of the mother of their loft Buddy. Kevin and Lee had three out of four entries by the following afternoon.

First west section and fifth open went to Geoff and Catherine Cooper from Peasdown St John. Their widowhood cock named Scotty had braved the south westerly wind and dodged the intermittent showers; it was his fourth channel race this season. The partnership clocked three more pigeons taking sixth, seventh and eighth west section.

Alan Dimes from Orpington in Kent was third and fifth east section, seventh and eleventh open. His first bird was a three year old Jan Aarden raced natural and sent sitting fourteen day eggs. Both Alan’s birds were raced on the natural system.

Traian Farentz of Romford took fourth east section and eighth open with a yearling cock. The sire of the bird was a Van De Pol crossed with a hen from Paul Delea. He was racing to a perch only as his hen was lost earlier in the season.

The first pigeon into the north section took ninth open overall and was clocked to the loft of Peter Mallett of Bury St Edmunds. This is a full brother to the pigeon Peter clocked as third north section from the Pau international.

Finally, second west section, tenth open and the furthest bird west clocked on the day was to Mark Sparey of Abertillery. This three year old widowhood cock was fifteen hours on the wing to reach home. His sire was a son of the Edwards Brothers Nantes national winner and his dam is JT Barnet Laeremans x Bert Hession DeBaere.

Third west section was clocked by Dennis Ford of Blaenavon. Dennis has won over twelve nationals including first British International Championship Perpignan and is helped with the birds by his wife Ann. It was almost dark when his roundabout hen arrived and she hit the loft doors and flew off to do another couple of circuits before finally trapping back.

Runner up in the north section and twenty third open was Mr and Mrs Russell Bradford from Farndish in Northamptonshire. Russell is the treasurer of the club and he clocked a five year old cock which had been sitting for a week when sent.

Rob Rome from Cheltenham was third north section and twenty sixth open with a two year old blue hen bred in the Annan lofts of the father and son partnership RSR & RJ Rome. 

In conclusion, another successful race for the British International Championship Club in conjunction with the international. Next up is the big one, Barcelona!