West Rand pigeon fancier Steven Fouché’s dedication to pigeon racing has made him a force to be reckoned with on the scorecard. Thomas Smit reviews his achievements.
West Rand pigeon fancier Steven Fouché participates as ‘Fouché Lofts’ (home loft) and ‘Old Boys on Tap’ (one-day loft races). He’s a member of the Horizon Pigeon Club, one of eight clubs in the Golden Reef Pigeon Association (GRPA). There are approximately 100 members in the GRPA and between 1 000 and 1 600 pigeons are entered in the Saturday races.
Steven’s family’s been in pigeon racing for about 53 years. His father, Lionel, started racing pigeons with Steven’s uncle in Pietermaritzburg in 1960. Their basic families were the old Stassards, Amiels and Putterie/De Wets – and these bloodlines still run through the birds today! Lionel now partners Steven in Fouché Lofts, which is based in Roodepoort, Gauteng. Steven’s uncle is still involved with pigeons and is currently crossing the old families with the new strains from Fouché Lofts, and is still based in Pietermaritzburg.
Steven’s brother, Paul, meanwhile, has been a member of the Maritzburg Specialists Homing Society in KwaZulu-Natal for the past 20 years. He’s had tremendous success with birds from the Fouché Lofts and has been runner-up club champion for the past two years. Steven’s recent successes include winning the Club Sales Race, Yearling Derby and a GRPA event in the West Rand.
His performance highlights in one-day loft races include: 3rd and 11th, Allflight Winter Race; 3rd Ace Pigeon, Allflight Winter Race; 5th and 20th, Allflight Summer Race 2013 (with only 23 birds back on the day); 13th, Hot Spot 1, SA Million Dollar Pigeon Race (SAMDPR), 2011.
Steven’s foundation stock includes:
“We like to train the birds hard and, once they’re at the first race point, they’re road-trained from 60km every day during the week, except for Sunday and basketing days for the race events. “The secret to keeping the birds in form with a strenuous training programme is knowing how to recuperate them after a race with the correct food and supplements.”Steven’s advice to beginners is simple. “Look for a family of champions and buy into them. “Make sure the babies get raised as healthy as possible and send a nest-pair to the one-day loft races,” he says.
Contact Thomas Smit on 011 680 4778 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please state ‘Pigeons’ in the subject line of your email.
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