Small loft, great results!
Will & Falco Ebben, Beneden-Leeuwen
Their racing loft has room for only twelve pairs of old birds that they race on total widowhood system. This team they take to the battlefield, also against men with many times the number of pigeons they enter. And not seldom they beat these mega-lofts! Especially on one day long distance races the duo from Beneden-Leeuwen is hard to beat.
From 2004 up to 2007 they won at least 27x 1st prize in big competition. The last four seasons they furthermore excelled on the important National NPO videotext races winning 1st, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 5th, 5th, 8th, 8th etcetera in the south section of the province. This with an average of 12 entrees.
Next to these special performances they also managed to grab some extreme important championships. In 2005 as well as in 2006 they were 1st not nominated champion in combine one day long distance racing (approx. 700 members).
The Ebbens home pigeons for over fifteen years now. Falco started first in 1991, later his uncle Will followed, and the first loft was bought in 1993.
But also the father of Falco, NPO-director Ton Ebben, became a pigeon fancier because of his son's influence.
The first years only some ‘give away' pigeons housed the lofts. They did pretty well. Like in 1993, when Falco was crowned 8th National short distance champion and 14th National middle distance champion of Holland in the youth-competition. And his 'Generaal', the first pigeon he ever bred, became 3rd best old acebird in youth competition in 1994 and this cock was crowned 'most beautiful cock' in the club show. The 'Generaal' was born in 1992. He spends his last days at the lofts of Falco's father.
Will had a flying start in pigeon racing, on the first old birds race he entered he won 1st prize.
Until 1999 uncle and nephew raced pigeons individually. In club level they did very well. In 1998, as a 22-years old, Falco made an important move buying five couples of eggs at no one less than Ad Schaerlaeckens from Baarle-Nassau. That year his uncle moved and decided to only take the three best pigeons to the new address. Amongst these pigeons was 'Suuske' NL97-1096582. A hen from the lines of the legend '46' from Verbart . This golden breeding hen, a descendant to '46' of Verbart, is mother to a/o NL03-2083516 'Roosje' (6 x 1st in big competition), NL04-1720208 'Masja' (4 x 1st), NL01-1507048 'Elfpenner' (3 x 1st) and NL04-5418004 'Zeno' (1st prize winner and already father to two hens winning 5 x 1st in big competition). Later more.
During his study Falco was unable to home pigeons and the direct Schaerlaeckens-pigeons moved to Will in 1999. He paired these pigeons to the three left Verbart-pigeons and in 1999 magic happened: 1st prizes in big competition were won!
In the meanwhile Falco got to know Arie van Beek in 2000. A close friendship arose with 'De Klak from IJzendoorn' and the first pigeon given by the grandmaster was the hen NL99-2004475, alias 'Greetje', a direct daughter to his 'Superkoppel'. Later over twenty pure Klak pigeons moved to Leeuwen.
In 2001 ‘Greetje' was paired to the Schaerlaeckens cock NL98-2331508 'Ko' and it brought a great deal of good pigeons. No less than 16 first prize winners have the bloodlines of 'Ko' running through their veins. He was almost always paired to 'Greetje'.
In 2001 Will and Falco formed a partnership and they became 2nd not nominated young birds champion in combine. The old birds performed very well too and two daughters to 'Suuske', full sisters of the present eye-catcher 'Elfpenner', performed superbly in one day long distance racing. The NL99-1963418 (1st Orléans 125 birds, 2nd of 1,277 birds) and NL99-1963446 (1st Chateauroux 72 birds, 3rd of 520 birds) however staid away in 2001.
In 2003 a son of Van Beeks 'Blauwe Jos 69' (acebird one day long distance combine) x foundation hen 'Suuske' bred the superstar NL03-2083516 'Roosje'. This great hen won at least 6x 1st prize in big competition. Her siege started in 2004 as yearling when she won three first prizes in big competition, with a/o a win on the NPO-race La Ferte Bernard with over six minutes lead in combine (south).
In 2004 ‘Suuske' was paired to another Van Beek-cock, a son to 'Kras 21' (also acebird one day long distance in combine). This pair also bred two supreme racers:
NL04-1720208 'Masja', 1st Morlincourt 4,673 birds, 1st Niergnies 315 birds, 1st Blois 455 birds (4th NPO 3,735 birds), 1st Bourges 527 birds (5th NPO 7,075 birds), 2nd PS Maxcence 164 birds etcetera. ‘Masja' reinforced the breeding loft since 2008
NL04-5418004 'Zeno', himself a top racer with a/o 1st Niergnies 210 birds, 8th Peronne 177 birds, 12th Strepy/Thieu 2,274 birds, 14th Orléans 866 birds, 72nd NPO Orléans 5,741 birds, 16th Le Mans 930 birds, etcetera. After the 2007 season she moved to the breeding loft.
Already ‘Zeno' showed great breeding skills. Normally Will and Falco do not breed from racers, but in 2005 and 2006 they decided to keep the eggs from their talent 'Zeno'.
The four eggs turned into these cracks:
NL05-1070138 'Aliyah', 1st Strombeek 981 birds and 1st Peronne 860 birds.
NL06-1914835 'Belle' 1st NPO (South) Freiburg 3,790 birds, 1st Pommeroeul 471 birds (2006) and 1st Pommeroeul 2,086 birds (2007).
In 2005 the great results of ‘Roosje' made Will and Falco decide to pair 'Suuske' to the father of ‘Roosje' again. From this pair NL05-1070176 'Alexander' was born. As new-born he was lost, picked up in Germany and placed on the breeding loft. In only two years time he became father to several top pigeons, with amongst them the first prize winners NL06-1914907 'Berry' (1st Duffel 6,332 birds) and NL07-5708937 'Ceryl' (1st Peronne 573 birds).
Unfortunately ‘Suuske' laid no more eggs in 2006.
VANDENABEELE & KOENDERS
Next to the pigeons mentioned above, the last years many successes were brought in by two other grandmasters; Nico-Jan Koenders from Westervoort and Gaby Vandenabeele from Dentergem.
Nico-Jan is a friend of the Ebbens and with him they regularly cooperated in breeding. Already twice the champion from Westervoort was category-winner in the National competition Eendaagse Fondspiegel, Best Dutch fancier WHZB and National young bird champion.
At Gaby Vandenabeele the first pigeons were purchased in 2003, three hens. All three they brought 1st prize winners, reason enough for Will and Falco to visit the grandmaster for reinforcements again in 2007. The Vandenabeele as well as the Koenders pigeons are crossed to the lines of 'Suuske'.
2008 was just another prove of the unlimited hereditary value Will & Falco treasure with ‘Suuske'. Her children pass on the top genes just as simple. Still four of her children house the breeding loft, one of them the racing loft. These mostly Janssen birds distinguish from other strains by their perfect body, mainly beautiful yellow eyes and plumes soft as silk. Such plumes are only very seldom seen at other pigeons.
They must ensure the future of the colony. By well-considered and aimed breeding, the partnership hopes to compose a homogeny strain within several years with the great 'Suuske' and her children in the centre of attention.