Wim and Bertrik Murk (IJsselstein, NL) have excelled in the marathon races every season with a small racing team

Wim and Bertrik Murk have been able to win several national and international top results every single season, with no more than 24 pairs of racing birds and 8 breeding pairs. 2017 was another great success, with a 16th prize in the PIPA IATP ranking 2017 and a title of 1st National Ace Pigeon Pau ZLU 2015-2017.

Wim (left) and Bertrik (right) Murk

2017 was another great season with plenty of good results for Wim and Bertrik. This combination has been able to excel across different (national) competitions for several consecutive seasons now. For the past two years they have been competing in all the international long distance races with a team of just 24 racing pairs. Before that, they would only race the afternoon release. 2016 saw them claim a 21st prize in the most prestigious of PIPA rankings, the IATP. They did even better in 2016, with a 16th prize against an international field of around 2,500 fanciers. And Wim & Bertrik did great in the WESM competition as well: a 2nd place in 2016 and a 10th place in 2017. Father and son Murk claimed a first place in the Europe Cup 2017 (La Colombe Joyeuse) in the category first nominated over 5 races from Pau, Barcelona, St. Vincent, Marseille and Perpignan. 
The yearlings have been in great form as well, judging from the fact that of a total of 18 yearlings that were raced, 3 were able to finish in the top 250 of the PIPA ranking for best European yearling across all international races (2 prizes). On top of that, they claim a 1st National Ace Pigeon Pau ZLU 2015-2017 with super class hen Helen. Besides these numerous national and international top results, they also won the following championship titles in Fondunie 2000 union and Fondclub Utrecht this season:

3rd Fondunie 2000 Pyrenees cup
6th Fondunie 2000 Nominated
5th Fondclub Utrecht ZLU Not nominated
4th Fondclub Utrecht ZLU Nominated

It takes quite a few high quality pigeons to be able to achieve so many great results for an extended period of time. Apparently, Wim and Betrik have plenty of such pigeons in their collection. The descendants of their Legend Jantje and Rosy's Son have repeatedly shown their potential in the marathon competition, winning national victories at home and for other fanciers. Let's take a look at some of the champions that have been responsible for so many top results in recent years.

NL13-1017493 Helen, 1st National Ace Pigeon Pau ZLU 2015-2017

Helen became 1st Ace Pigeon Pau over 3 seasons (2015-2017) in the ZLU competition, winning the following top prizes:

 90th Nat. Pau 3,433 p. (2015)
 23rd Nat. Pau 3,788 p. (2016)
141st Nat. Pau 3,526 p. (2017)

This hen was basketed for seven marathon races, and she was able to finish in the top 58 national/international six times. This makes Helen one of the best hens in the marathon competition in recent seasons. Here is an overview of her best results:

 23rd Nat. Pau        1,049 km 3,788 p. (01:22 am after 17 hours of racing)
 36th Nat. Marseille    994 km 3,320 p.
 51st Int. Pau (hens) 1,049 km 3,017 p.
 61st Nat. Narbonne   1,000 km 5,338 p.
 90th Nat. Pau        1,049 km 3,433 p.
 58th NPO. Bergerac     866 km 1,673 p.
469th NPO. Périgueux    826 km 1,970 p.

These results allowed her to win the following titles:

 1st Nat. Ace Pigeon Pau ZLU 2015-2017
10th Dutch Olympiad Pigeon Marathon Brussels 2017
 7th Beste Pau-duif International (2015-2016) PIPA rankings
11th Best European Hen international races 2016 (2 prizes) PIPA rankings
15th Best Extreme Long Distance pigeon in The Netherlands 2016 PIPA rankings
43rd Best Extreme Long Distance Pigeon in The Netherlands 2015 PIPA rankings

Helen comes straight from the renowned loft of fellow club members Wim and Sven van Houten (IJsselstein, NL). Click here for Helen's fantastic pedigree.

NL12-1388377 Barca '77

De Barca '77 showed her potential with great results across 7 races. He was particularly successful in the last two races from Barcelona, which were particularly demanding:

 73rd Nat. Barcelona   1,200 km 4,504 p. (2017)
446th Nat. Barcelona   1,200 km 5,279 p. (2016)
 34th NPO  Orange        878 km   879 p.
123rd FU   Marseille     994 km   804 p.
167th FU   Perpignan   1,058 km 1,229 p.
196th NPO  Bergerac      865 km 1,673 p.
570th Int. St. Vincent 1,042 km 2,359 p.

The pedigree of Barca '77 features many great stars, including Kootenduifje of Bertrik and Wim's good friends Koop and Gerda Kiekebelt. Click here for the pedigree of Barca "77.

NL12-1388363 Dark 63

One of the great champions of this racing loft in recent years is Dark '63. He wins a total of 10 prizes in marathon races, including 5 x 1 per 10. He scored another 3 out of 3 in 2017, eventually winning a 41st prize in the PIPA ranking for best extreme long distance pigeon in The Netherlands (3 prizes) in 2017, based on the following results:

222nd Nat. St. Vincent 1,042 km 3,037 p.
647th Nat. Perpignan   1,058 km 4,789 p.
664th Nat. Pau           991 km 3,526 p.

And these were not the only top results on his palmares in 2017; he also won:

 65th Nat. Perpignan     2016 1,058 km 4,027 p.
127th NPO Bergerac       2014   866 km 1,673 p.
176th Fondunie 2000 Agen 2014   936 km 2,221 p.
238th Nat. Narbonne      2015 1,000 km 5,338 p.
640th Nat. Marseille     2014   994 km 4,899 p.
689th Int. Périgueux     2015   826 km 4,773 p.
861st Nat. Pau           2016 1,049 km 3,788 p.

The pedigree of Dark '63 features some of the best bloodlines of Wim and Betrik. He is for instance a grandson of Ger-Ko (1st NPO/Nat. Périgieux 4,348 p.) and Legend Jantje. Super class breeding hen Legend Jantje can be found in the pedigrees of many of this team's pigeons. She has bred quite a number of highly talented youngsters with different partners. Here is a look at the national top 10 prizes that have been won by her descendants:

1st Int. Bergerac                 2009 865 km 6,919 p. (W.H. Murk and son)
1st Nat. Agen                     2015 860 km 1,177 p. (Freialdenhofen)
2nd NPO Bordeaux                  2010 895 km 2,465 p. (W.H. Murk and son)
3rd Nat. Ruffec                   2013 872 km 3,982 p. (A. Mulderij)
7th Nat. Ace Pigeon Marathon WHZB 2010                 (W.H. Murk and son)
8th Nat. Ace Pigeon Marathon      2010                 (W.H. Murk and son)

Click here for the pedigree of Dark '63.

NL05-1946642 Rosy's Son

Another top breeder that comes to mind when we think of super class breeding hen Legend Jantje is Rosy's Son. He is the sire of an extensive number of successful racing birds, including a 1st National St. Vincent 2016. The following is an overview of all the national top 100 prizes in other lofts, won with direct youngsters of Rosy's Son (which was born in the loft of Koop & Gerda Kiekebelt):

Le Bernard (raced by Frank Zwiers)
     1st Nat.     St.-Vincent 2016   990 km 13,472 p.
    12th NPO      St.-Vincent 2015   990 km  2,128 p.
Constance (raced by Frank Zwiers)
     5th NPO      St.-Vincent 2015   990 km  2,128 p.
    81st Nat. S 1 St.-Vincent 2016   990 km  2,706 p.
Villa (raced by Comb. Verweij-de Haan)
     9th Nat. Bergerac        2012   880 km  5,105 p.
    33rd NPO Albi             2012   948 km  1,296 p.
    64th Nat. Cahors          2010   930 km 10,325 p.
    84th Nat. Tarbes          2013 1,063 km  3,015 p.
    98th NPO St.-Vincent      2014 1,054 km  1,014 p.
Algoz (raced by Mark van den Berg)
     8th NPO Orange           2011   942 km  2,716 p.
    54th NPO Orange           2012   826 km  4,762 p.
Karma (raced by Frank Zwiers)
    18th NPO Dax              2013   981 km  1,678 p.
    20th NPO Bordeaux         2015   844 km  3,371 p.
Dione (raced by Frank Zwiers)
    32nd NPO Bordeaux         2015   844 km  3,371 p.
    80th NPO Bordeaux         2016   844 km  2,772 p.

The sire of Rosy's Son, Blue Champion, is a son of The Eagle x Blue Fairy. The Eagle won a 1st International Brive (2003) of 3,520 pigeons and Blue Fairy won a 1st National Bergerac (2003) of 2,903 pigeons. The dam is Rosy, winner of a 2nd NPO Brive (2,129 p.) and a 13th International Bergerac (3,903 p.). Click here for the pedigree of Rosy's Son.

NL12-1387457 Johan

Johan put in a great performance in 2013, winning a 1st NPO Orange of 879 pigeons. He won two absolute top results in two marathon race with a morning release. His first objective was the race from Orange 2013 over a distance of 878km. He arrived home at 10:33 in the evening from a demanding race (947km per minute), after racing for 15.5 hours straight. This was the outcome:

1st NPO Orange 878 km   879 p. (and the fastest yearling across all districts)
7th NU Orange         5,895 p.

His second important race of 2013 as a one year old was Périgueux. Again, he arrived home in the evening of the release at 7:30pm, winning the following prizes:

31st NU Périgueux  826 km 4,773 p.
24th NPO Périgueux        2,803 p.

Great results both at home and in other lofts

In addition to these great results at home, many other fanciers have excelled in the international races with descendants of the pigeon breed from Ijsselstein as well. We already listed the national top 100 results in other lofts with direct youngsters of Rosy's Son. And the national top 10 prizes that were won with descendant of Legend Jantje have been discussed as well. Besides these successful descendants of Rosy's Son and Legend Jantje, we have seen descendants of Blue 9-8-7 and others excel in national races as well, winning for instance a 9th Nat. Barcelona, an 18th Nat. Pau, a 17th NPO Orange and a 21st Nat. St. Vincent. Click here for an extensive list of references in 2013-2017.