John Chipperfield wins the British International Championship Club race from Barcelona

Barcelona is the blue ribbon race for the British International Championship Club as it is the longest race for all members. It is run in conjunction with the Barcelona International and this year 16,000b were liberated on the 5th July at 8:50am UK time.

John Chipperfield recorded the arrival of one of his four entries at 6:32am on the third day to record a velocity of 604ypm over a distance of 688 miles.

John Chipperfield (all photos courtesy of Chris Sutton)

John Chipperfield lives in Herne Bay, a seaside town on the north coast of Kent and including the Barcelona race, he has won five BICC races with four being from the International racepoints and one BICC National race. His main aim was to time in from Barcelona “I just wanted to know what it felt like to get one” he said, which he has done this season in style. His winning hen is small in comparison to most pigeons these days, but she had previously proved her heart is as big as any, being 15th Open BICC from Pau at 560 miles, 15th Open BICC from Perpignan at 610 miles, and now 1st open from Barcelona 688 miles.

Herne Bay Sophie

Preseason his friends were advising him to send her to Pau International again this season to be followed up by St Vincent International 544 miles, but John would not be swayed in his decision to send her to the biggest race in the International programme, as he knew if he wanted to get one, he had to send his best and she came just under 5 and a half hours clear of the second pigeon on the BICC Open result.

The winner's wing

The winner in hand

Now named “Herne Bay Sophie” after the daughter of his friend Robbie Harris in Ramsgate, as she was gifted to John by Robbie. The sire in turn was gifted to Robbie by Alan Phillips of “Channel Lofts” based on the island of Guernsey. A fox had entered into the stock loft of Robbie and taken all his stock pigeons in 2013 and Alan kindly offered him 6 youngsters, one of which is the sire of “Herne Bay Sophie”. He in turn is bred from “Tammy” full brother of 1st Open BICC St Vincent 2014, 12th Open BICC Pau and half brother of 1st and 6th Open BICC Pau. He was paired to “Darkie” a hen direct from Mark Gilbert being a half sister to G & C Cooper’s “Scotty” three times 1st West Section. “Darkie” was sired by a son of 1st International Bordeaux when paired to a daughter of “Euro Diamond” and her dam “El Mark” is a direct daughter of “Southfield Supreme” 1st International Dax and dam of “Scotty”. The dam of “Herne Bay Sophie” is a hen owned by Robbie Harris direct from the loft of E. Verheijen in Putten. Her sire is a son of “De Stien” raced by Martijn De Groot and was the 2nd best long distance North Holland in 2008 and her dam, bred by E Verheyen, is down from “Int Barcelonaduif”

John Chipperfield with Herne Bay Sophie