Mid Antrim clubs celebrate awards

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For the last number of seasons the Ahoghill Flying Club have presented the awards for the racing season in the local clubrooms. The week after Blackpool Rosie and myself were invited out to present the awards.

It was fish suppers all round, well appreciated by all those in attendance, as the AGM had been arranged for after the presentation.

Racing was again to the highest standard and leading the way, the man to beat each week was Paddy McManus. This loft has dominated for as long as I can remember Highest Prize-winner for something like 25 seasons and this year five x 1sts in the Mid Antrim Combine and winner of the Les Mairs Old Bird Fancier of the Year for the first time.

The leading lofts were: Young McManus & Sons, Mr & Mrs Robinson, J Smyth & Son, J Orr & Son, T & G Balmer, John Balmer, Balmer T Young & Son, and William Livingstone. Show Specials were presented to Balmer T Young & Son, T & G Balmer, Chris Moore, William Livingstone, Jimmy Orr & Son and John Balmer. Total pay-out for the club was over £500. Talbenny YB Nat Special presented by Noel Percy was won by Jimmy Smyth & Son.

As I had mentioned Young McManus & Sons won 5 x 1sts in the Mid Antrim Combine – in Old Birds 1st & 2nd Tullamore, 1st Fermoy Comeback, 1st Talbenny (2), 1st Corrin (2). In Young birds the loft had 1st & 2nd in the Rosscarbery National. Other top places in the OB season included Young McManus & Sons 3rd Mullingar, Mr & Mrs Robinson 3rd Talbenny (1), Young McManus & Sons 2nd Fermoy 5 Bird, and T & G Balmer 3rd Bude.

The season’s race winners were as follows:

Old Birds: Mullingar – Young McManus & Sons, Tullamore – Young McManus & Sons, Gowran Park – M/M Robinson, Gowran Park (2) – Young McManus & Sons, Corrin – Young McManus & Sons, Rosscarbery Nat – Young McManus & Sons, Fermoy Comeback – Young McManus & Sons, Talbenny (1) – M/M Robinson, Fermoy 5B – Young McManus & Sons, Talbenny (2) – Young McManus & Sons, Rosscarbery Ylr Cock Nat – Young McManus & Sons, Rosscarbery Ylr Hen Nat – Young McManus & Sons, Bude – T & G Balmer, Corrin (2) – Young McManus & Sons, Fermoy – Young McManus & Sons, Penzance – M/M Robinson.

Young Birds: Mullingar (1) – J Smyth & Son, Mullingar (2) – J Smyth & Son, Tullamore – Young McManus & Sons, Roscrea – Young McManus & Sons, Gowran Park – Young McManus & Sons, Fermoy (1) – M/M Robinson, Talbenny Nat – J Smyth & Son, Roscrea – M/M Robinson, Fermoy – J Smyth & Son, Fermoy 5B - , Rosscarbery Nat – Young McManus & Sons.

INFC: Sennen Cove Ylr Nat – Chris Moore, Kings Cup St Allouestre - Gordon Jackson 649, William Livingstone 640.

Mid Antrim Combine for the first time had a Knock-Out competition for each individual loft. In the Old Bird Young McManus & Sons were best in the final from Penzance by Gary Gibson. All in all another top season for Ahoghill and especially Paddy McManus, thanks once again for the invite.

The Fireside Quiz winners for Ballymena & Dist were (they should all have received their prize money now): 1st, Deirdre Heaney c/o Cambridge House GS kitchen, 2nd, Jackie Rodgers Ballymena, 3rd Valerie Eagleson Ballymena. Thank you to all who supported us and purchased the quizzes. Nicola (chairperson Ballymena & District HPS)

Randalstown HPS 2017

F J & G Dickey team were Highest Prize-winners winning 13 races. Also collecting Old bird Inland Average, Young Bird Average, Loft Points Channel, Loft Points old bird Combined, Loft Points young birds, Loft points OB & YB Combined, Single Bird points inland, Single Bird Points channel, Old bird combined, and Old bird of the Year.

Top highlights were topping Cullybackey Centre from Rosscarbery Old bird National, 1st Mid Antrim Combine, 2nd Section B, and 16th Open NIPA. Talbenny (1) were 1, 2, 3rd Club; 5, 6, 8th Mid Antrim Combine; 11, 12, 17Section B, and 61,63,105th Open. Talbenny (2) were 3rd Club, 11th Mid Antrim Combine, 23rd Section B. Bude were 2, 4, 6th Club; 2nd Mid Antrim Combine; 2, 25th Section B; 2,179th Open.

Rosscarbery Yearling Cocks Nat, 1, 2nd Club; 1, 5th Mid Antrim Combine; 1, 10th Section B; and 15, 80th Open. Fermoy 5 Bird YB 1st Club, 11th Mid Antrim Combine, 13th Section B, 52nd Open. Talbenny YB Nat 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8th Club; 5, 6, 9th Mid Antrim Combine; 9, 11, 18th Section B; 67, 98, 165th Open. Roscrea (2) were 1, 2, 3rd Club; 1, 11, 12th Mid Antrim Combine, 2, 19, 21st Section B.

Racing with the Mid Antrim Combine, Randalstown lofts had success with the Dickey Team winning 1st in the Rosscarbery OB Inl Nat vel 2046, 1st Rosscarbery Yearling Hens National vel 1860, and then in the young birds 1st in the Roscrea Comeback vel 1560 and just before that 2nd and 3rd in Fermoy (1).

Long distance Ace Flyer Hugh Boyd had 1st in the old bird Bude vel 1600 (Dickey was runner-up) and finished the season winning 2nd in the Kings Cup from St Allouestre vel 823. The Dickey team as mentioned above won 13 x 1sts, Stewart Bros had 6 x 1sts, Hugh Boyd 3 x 1sts and one win each for Secretary John Millar, Smylie Bros breaking Novice Status from Talbenny (2) finishing 3rd MAC and Percy Son & Murphy.

Highest Points - 1st F & G & J Dickey, 2nd Stewart Bros, 3rd Percy Son & Murphy. Old Bird Inland Average - 1st F & G & J Dickey, 2nd Stewart Bros, 3rd Percy Son & Murphy. Young Bird Average – 1st F & G & J Dickey. Best Old Bird – 1st F & G & J Dickey, 2nd Stewart Bros, 3rd Stewart Bros. Best Young Bird – 1st Stewart Bros, 2nd F & G & J Dickey, 3rd F & G & J Dickey. Bird of the Year – 1st Stewart Bros, 2nd F & G & J Dickey, 3rd Stewart Bros.

Northern Ireland

Provincial

Amalgamation of Racing Pigeon Societies

Secretary’s Report 2018

You will now be in possession of your accounts for 2017 and the resolutions for 2018 Annual General Meeting Agenda.

The Agenda this year is long and complex mainly due to the committee doing their utmost to bring the Nipa Rule Book up to date.

There is nothing too controversial in them and I hope you are able to support them, as it will assist the officials in running your organisations.

There is much better news this year on the accounts. The Transporter Account has seen a marked turn around turning a deficit of £16,371 into a Profit of £11,915. On this information your committee have agreed to freeze the price of crates for 2018. This should be welcomed by all members.

The expenditure and income is clearly set out for you to read, there will be challenges ahead in 2018. Fuel costs along with the poor exchange rate will mean that the price of fuel will continue to rise. A close eye will have to be kept on this commodity.

Insurances, freight, tyres, vehicle maintenance and crates is always responsible for a large part of our expenditure and we do our utmost to keep them as low as possible. I would ask you to keep an eye on the crates and if you see them being abused please do not hesitate to contact me.

For 2018 I will be sending each club out a questionnaire asking for you to confirm the number of aluminium crates in your club’s possession. I have tried in the past to find out this information. I have not been very successful as clubs do not return the information required. Hopefully you will all send this information in this year.

The General Account is again in deficit but much reduced on last year. Last year’s deficit was £11,238 and this year £3,868.82.

This turn-around is mainly due to prize monies not being claimed for 2013/14/15 and totalled £3,947. These cheques are not out of the system and cannot now be reissued, there are still a number of 2016 cheques not cashed, we have left them on the system for the present but your rule states that no uncashed cheque is valid after 12 months of being issued.

The Committee have reluctantly agreed to raise the administration fee to £25 an increase of £1. This will only put a slight dent in the deficit. Your committee will have to get to grips with this situation and reduce its expenditure.

Your balance sheet is in a very healthy state showing an increase of almost £10,000 on last year.

Any queries on the accounts can be forwarded in writing to me and I will answer them.

The 2017 season was a very difficult racing season with weather conditions playing a big part in our racing. St Malo was very disappointing and we hope that in future years lessons have been learnt. The remainder of the Old Bird season was difficult enough but fortunately the YB season turned out to be much better than everyone was expecting.

I will take this opportunity to thank everyone who contributed to the NIPA having a successful year and hopefully 2018 will be a really good season for us all.

Fred Russell,

Secretary