My own birds were loft flown tonight and then basketed for another toss from 15 miles. I had 4 in with the younger ones as they were carrying knocks etc. But these were basketed as well and in total took 37 on the toss. On arriving back home 35 were sitting on the perches. Hopefully the missing 2 will come a little later! They will go again tomorrow but we are looking at 28 miles tomorrow depending on the weather!
Thursday, 28 July 2011
The Europa birds were trained from 40 miles today and once again 'Smoking Bullet' put in a good performance coming 11th. He has now been 8 times in the top 30 from 11 races! It was pleasing to see all 4 of the entries on the result sheet with the other birds taking 186th, 326th and 399th.
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Thursday, July 28, 2011
Wednesday, 27 July 2011
The Europa bird are still going ok and '12' is showing as being in the loft after training today. '13' returned to form after his poor showing in the 1st Hotspot by coming 29th yesterday in training. The others were 116th and 404th yesterday. Today they were trained from 35 miles again and they were 129th, 220th and 504th. '07' has failed to time today but hopefully returned late and will be on the result tomorrow.
The loft birds have been busy training. Yesterday they were loft flown for an hour before being basketed and taken to 15 miles. It was a weird toss for them as 7 miles from home they came right over the car and going like the clappers. I arrived home fully expecting to see them in the loft but to my surprise they arrived the same time as us! I counted them up and found I was 7 missing!!! Only 1 returned later that night and I have only had 1 return this morning. So whether they have hit wires or something in the 7 miles between when I saw them and home I don't know. On closer inspection I found one tonight with his leg all cut open. So I suspect they have hit some wires somewhere on route.
So after yesterday sending 41, I am was missing 5 so that let me 36. The two that returned late were kept back today so 34 were trained tonight This is their 10th toss. Again I loft flew them for an hour and half before basketing. They were taken to 7 miles and all home in good time.
I am now going to finish this week at 15 miles before increasing to 27 miles all next week starting on Sunday 31st July. Depending on how they come I will then make a decision if they go to the race from 76 miles on Friday night (6th August) or if I will then give them another solid week from 50 miles before the basketing on Friday (13th August) for the race from 97 miles.
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Monday, 25 July 2011
Get in there! 'Rasbull Smoking Bullet' has returned in the Europa Classic! He had flown for 8 hours and returned on his own. This could turn out to be a real blessing in disguise as he would have learned a lot from his experience! Hopefully after todays rest he will be back on form in training this week.
My own loft birds were again trained twice today. First they went to 10 miles at 3.30pm before going to 15 miles this evening at 8pm. Missing 2 from the second toss and currently have 39 in loft having had 8 tosses.
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Monday, July 25, 2011
Sunday, 24 July 2011
Our loft all is now geared to getting the young birds fully trained up. They were taken to 10 miles at 3.30pm and 38 from 41 arrived in good time. They were then rebasketed and taken to 15 miles for the first time. All arrived in another good time. They have now been trained the last 5 days and have been taken 6 times in total. We will go again tomorrow from roughly the same area before moving on to the next stage.
Well that turned out to be a disaster! Only 2 of the 4 home, my best pigeon so far not home, my second best performer not home, lost the lead in the Grand Averages and didn't win any pools! All in all a bad day at the office! lol. The 2 birds that did arrived were '07' who is off my number 1 hen, who was 193rd and has now moved up to 28th in the Grand Averages. The other is '09' who has been my worst bird so far and he came 275th. Hopefully the other 2 will make it back and live to fight another day! There are still 170 odd birds to arrive so plenty still to come and plenty of time still left in the day as well.
Saturday, 23 July 2011
The birds were trained Friday afterwards as cleared up nicely. 42 were taken to 10 miles and 41 made it home. Today the birds were taken to the same place and took just 15 minutes to fly the distance - all home safe and sound. I will take them there again now another 2 or 3 times before moving them up in distance. I am in no real rush as the first race I am planning to send to is the 5th in the club so that still gives me 4 weeks to get them just right. Last year I jumped a few of the later ones to quickly and a hawk strike resulted in me dropping 10 birds with them being reported up to 80 miles away. Learn by your mistakes is the only way to progress!!!!
The Europa Classic 1st Hotspot is tomorrow from 60 miles and there are 728 birds on the basketing list. Hopefully the syndicate birds can do themselves justice. Good luck to all those who are in the race.
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Saturday, July 23, 2011
Friday, 22 July 2011
'13' is really making his mark in the Europa Classic this year! He has already exceeded my expectations with his consistency in the first 6 training tosses winning 160th, 33rd, 7th, 5th, 2nd, 8th and now today he is 4th! He certainly likes to trap that is for sure! The other 3 birds in the syndicate are also doing well with them being 28th, 388th and 419th in todays trainer.
The next race is the 1st Hotspot on Sunday and I hope they do themselves justice as these 4 birds have been bred specifically for this years Europa Classic.
In my own loft the training of the youngsters is underway. 46 were taken to 6 miles on Wednesday afternoon and all returned. They were then taken to 10 miles yesterday but we were hit by a hawk and 6 returned on there own, and then came in ones and twos and finally ended up with 42. The weather is dreadful here today and training has been cancelled but I hope to get the birds out around the loft for an hour if it clears up later.
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Friday, July 22, 2011
Thursday, 21 July 2011
Another fantastic result for the syndicate birds in todays trainer. 6th, 8th, 153rd and 441st. '13' again in the top 10 for the 4th day running with position 8th. He has now increased his lead in the Grand Averages to over 2 minutes of the next bird! Hopefully they will put up a good performance in tomorrows training toss before the 1st Hotspot on Sunday!
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Thursday, July 21, 2011
Wednesday, 20 July 2011
Wow, '13' is going great guns and very keen to trap by the looks of him. He was 2nd in todays trainer just 1 second behind the winner. He is now leading the Grand Average by over 1 minute after 5 training tosses. Also great news for the syndicate as 2 of the other birds are now showing as being on the race result from todays trainer.
The positions of the syndicate birds in today's trainer are 2nd, 229th, 305th and 371st,
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Wednesday, July 20, 2011
Monday, 18 July 2011
By the looks of it we have 2 speed machines on our hands! '07' who is off my No.1 Stock hen, when paired to 'Rasbull Mr Perfect'. This was my intended pairing last year but they failed to pair in time to enter the Europa and instead had to be paired to different mates. I have waited 2 years to get this pairing's youngsters tested and what I am seeing so far I am more than happy with. Between them last year when paired to different mates, they produced 2 pigeons to win 1st, 5th, 9th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 20th, 35th in the training races and 37th, 54th and 97th in the Hotspots! Now I have paired them together I am expecting huge things from them.
The other bird '13' is off a pairing I introduced from the Europa Auctions last year and are having their first breeding season with me. The youngster has been 160th, 33rd and now 7th in the first 3 tosses so very pleasing indeed. He is currently sitting 5th in the Grand Averages after 3 tosses!
Todays results in the training toss were 7th, 27th and 151st. The one pigeon seems to be hit and miss at the moment with him not being recorded again today for the 2nd time in 3 tosses sandwiched between a 71st! Maybe he has a girlfriend on route or something! hehehe
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Monday, July 18, 2011
Sunday, 17 July 2011
The Europa trained today from 30 miles again and its great news for the syndicate as the result shows we have got 4 birds in the race! Syndicate 3's bird is showing on the result sheet. That leaves us just missing 1 bird out of the 5 and given they have lost 1/3rd of the entries that is great news!
The results today were very pleasing with 17th, 33rd, 71st and 482nd. Hopefully this team of youngsters will eclipse what last years entries achieved!
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Sunday, July 17, 2011
Friday, 15 July 2011
The first training has been completed and the result is showing we have 3 out of the 5 birds in the loft at present. The Europa have had a nightmare start to this season with 1/3 of the entries having died or been lost prior to the 1st training toss from 30 miles. The loft manager has changed and a lot of people have lost nearly all their entries. They have 670 birds left out of the 1040 that were entered. They had a bad outbreak of Ecoli and Circo Virus during the intake period. I am relieved that we still have 3 for definite and potentially 4 or even 5 as there are still around 40-50 birds that had not returned when the result of todays trainer was published. I guess we will know for sure come Sunday when the birds are trained again how many we actually have in the race but as it currently stands it is going to be 3 for sure! The birds were 160th, 194th and 533rd in the first trainer today from 30 miles. I apologise to the people who have shares in the birds that are missing but that is the nature of the beast and you pays your money and you take your chance! But don't rule anything out at this very early stage and lets see what Sunday brings! Good luck to us all!
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Friday, July 15, 2011
Monday, 11 July 2011
My enthusiasm for the young bird season has really increased the last few weeks. Up to now I have not had much interest in it at all to be honest. But now the old bird season is over it is full steam ahead.
Before I go any further, I would like to review the old bird season we have just had. To sum it up we have had up and downs the whole season. I think the first 6 or 7 races we were at the races and the birds were coming well. The second half of a season was somewhat of a disaster. We started the season with 14 old birds. At the end of it we have just 1 left in the loft. Bearing in mind we only lost 1 pigeon in the first 7 races and one was killed by a hawk just goes to show what a downer we have had for the second part of the season. We achieved our aim pre season of getting birds to Reims (378 miles) but we failed to have one of the three entries return! This has to be the biggest disappointment for the Old bird season for me. There are no excuses even though the club only timed 5 birds on the night from the race. The main thing I have concluded from this is the birds were just not up to it. They were sent healthy, flying for an hour a night around the loft and were fed correctly prior to the race. So you have to face facts!
There have been highlights to this season (my first proper old bird season with more than 2 birds as I had last year). Without doubt the biggest highlight has to be the 1st club, 1st federation result I achieved from Newbury (97 miles) with 3,549 birds. I have said on here many times to get a club card is nigh on impossible unless the wind has strong south in it, so to top the federation has to be a massive achievement for the loft. We will try even harder next year with the old birds and hopefully will have a bigger team to start with and the main aim of the season will once again to get the birds to Reims (378 miles).
Now onto the youngsters! They total 46 in total which are currently flying around 1h 30mins - 1h 45 mins around the loft in the evenings. They are flying really well and putting in good work. I am a little concerned that they are only flying around the loft and not yet ranging away and out of sight. I am planning on flying them for another week to ten days around the loft and around the 20th of the month will be starting the basket work with them. They will be trained up to 50 miles prior to the first race. The first race for me will be the 5th race of the young bird season and will be from 97 miles. I made this decision a long time ago due to a second batch of youngsters who joined the 46 and I felt I would have to rush them through loft exercise and training just to catch the first race. This was not an option and therefore gave myself a further 4 weeks to get them exactly how I wanted them.
I am not racing darkness and my sole aim is to educate the youngsters in readiness for next year as old birds. I will have another team of 26 who are in a separate loft and are being allowed to mature before they will start the loft exercising process.
The targets for the young birds this season are to get the first team of 46 to Folkestone (200 miles). All will be expected to fly before being put by for the following season. The later bred team will be expected to compete in the last 2 comeback races from 76 miles in September.
In addition to our own loft races we have a team in the Europa Classic this season once again. We are looking for a further improvement in this years team to add to the improvement Rasbull lofts pigeons have made the previous two years. A third years progress in a row will be very pleasing and one that I will expect the birds to make. (please see progress charts on the One Loft Entries section of this site). We have a team of 5 and they are going to be starting training from 30 miles in the next few days and the results will be displayed on this site and also the Europa Classic site.
Well thats all for now and I will update again when the Europa training starts and also our own training which will be around the 20th of this month!
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Monday, July 11, 2011
Friday, 8 July 2011
The last race of the season for Old Birds is just going to be a training toss for Rasbull Lofts. We have sent 3 birds who have only had 7 races between them. All are latebreds from last year. I have no expectation of them coming very well at all and have not had the clock set for the race tomorrow. This is merely a training toss for them and they will then be kept for next year to fly as 2 year olds. All my efforts have no turned to the young bird team. I am exercising them every evening for up to 1 and half hours. I will be starting them road training in 10-14 days!
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Friday, July 08, 2011
Tuesday, 5 July 2011
The youngsters are really hammering it in training now. They are flying for an hour and half in the evenings. They look like they are going to go ranging very soon. They have been flying a lot higher and in far bigger circles the last two days. I will give them another 2 weeks of loft flying and getting themselves familiar with the loft surroundings before the basket training will begin. There are 47 of them in total and I am going to be training them in small batches to avoid the risk of hawk attacks.
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Tuesday, July 05, 2011
Saturday, 2 July 2011
We are due to scale down our existing stock loft and therefore have a number of stock birds that have been purchased in 2009 and 2010 for sale. These have mainly been purchased from the Europa Classic races from the last two years. Many of these pigeons are having their first breeding season with us this year. There are winners of top 10 Hotspot races, 1/2 sister to Scottish One Loft races etc. We have sent 2 youngsters to this years Europa Classic bred from these pigeons. They are not rubbish and if given the opportunity to breed will produce some super youngsters I have no doubt! We have to scale back though as the current stock loft is going to be replaced within a smaller section with the existing loft and numbers have to be reduced. To see the birds in question please visit http://www.rasbull-lofts.co.uk/WeBid/
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Saturday, July 02, 2011
Friday, 1 July 2011
The birds at Reims (378 miles) were liberated at 6.50am. I have waited and waited and nothing has arrived! Gutted. However, only 5 birds in the club have arrived home. Bobby Thomas has had 4 from 20 and Lynn Birch 1 from 6. No other birds have arrived by 8pm tonight! There were 57 birds sent in the club so that leaves 52 still to come. A shocker of a race for the club but a good batch must have got through as other fed members have clocked from 3.45 through to 4.30pm. A mystery of a race as its not as if they have clashed with anything as no other feds racing on Friday! Hopefully there will be some more arriving tomorrow and just keeping my fingers crossed my 3 are among the ones that do get back tomorrow!
Posted by Richard Shepherd at Friday, July 01, 2011