IN the final two races of 2011 young bird programme, Cookstown fanciers produced excellent results at national level.
In the Irish National Flying Clubs Blue Riband Young Bird National which was flown from Penzance in Cornwall, four members sent 27 pigeons to the race. The young pigeons were released at 8.45am into a light south wind and broken sunshine. As usual this is not a race for the faint-hearted and only two of the pigeons entered were clocked in race time.
The Parkview Lofts of Vernon Thom had an excellent pigeon on the first day after flying seven hours to reach home. When the going gets tough you can nearly always count on Vernon to produce the goods.
The Breezemount Lofts of Spiers and Campbell, those other channel specialists, timed a pigeon early on the second day. The pigeon they timed was bred for them by good club mate Gerald Marshall and with only 180 pigeons recorded in race time both the Cookstown pigeons will feature in the prizes.
In the NIPA Inland National from Roscarberry, the dynamic duo G & S Smith were at it again taking first and second positions with Vernon Thom in third position. Six members of Cookstown Social HPS sent 55 pigeons to the race.
The pigeons were held over because of poor weather on the Saturday and released at 11.10am on Sunday into a stiff North West head wind. After spending three days and nights in the crates the pigeons had a stiff task ahead of them and so everyone who had a pigeon in the top ten deserves credit.
Penzance Young Bird National
1st V Thom 1325 ypm
2nd Spiers & Campbell 719 ypm
1st G & S Smith 1140 ypm
2nd G & S Smith 1130 ypm
3rd V Thom 1094 ypm
4th G Marshall 1040 ypm
5th V Thom 1036 ypm
6th V Thom 1036 ypm
7th S Marshall 1029 ypm
8th G Marshall 998 ypm
9th V Thom 992 ypm
10th G & S Smith 989 ypm
Overall the 2011 season was a good one for Cookstown members and although racing finished this week the preparations for next season’s competition are already well under way.