Basketing Release Race Number of pigeons Category
11 Jul
15 Jul 07:15
St.-Vincent Nationaal | 2017 BV-EB 3092



It does do something to a human being, visiting someone who just has won a long distance classic. It always gives me the feeling that a sportsmen must have like for example to win Paris-Roubaix for a cycler, or Wimbledon for a tennis player, or the Marathon of New York, the Iron Man, and so on ….Moments that will be in your memory and hart for the rest of your live and that you can cherish unlimited.

In a far corner of Belgium, near the French border we find Poperinge, a beautiful provincial town in the West corner, we go and visit Olivier Deprez. He is the one who won the national race out of Sint Vincent.

Near the city centre, in a nice renovated house with a cosy garden live Olivier, his wife and two adorable daughters. We are being welcomed very warm and also the border collie, the proud of the children, is very enthusiastic with all this commotion.

“from across the border”

Olivier is born and raised in France, just across the border. He originates from Steenvoorde, a village with an ‘old-Flemish’ name in the Northern of France. Love brought him to Poperinge and he brought his loved hobby with him to Belgium.

He started racing pigeons in 1987 in France and for his father it was a restart after a few years of inactivity. He immediately got some first prizes on the short distance and middle distance.

In 1990 he was laureate of the best youth fancier of France and also made the step to go and race distances from 500km to 700km. In this period they succeeded to win 4 times 2nd National, which was a proof of the talent of Olivier.  

In 2002, Olivier moved to Vlamertinge in Ieper, raced the pigeons, but the real start up came with their move to Poperinge in 2007. In the last years, it is 2014 that is marked as their best year in a matter of results with a 3 on 3 on National Pau with 3 pigeons within the first 50 national (40,46,48). Since 2013, 17 pigeons where being basket on Barcelona with 14 prizes as a result, which really is a very strong result. Olivier chooses very clear for the marathon races.

A good balance in time spent

They say it easily when pigeon fanciers are talking amongst each other, how much time you can and have to spend on your colony and also have fun out of it. Race and keep pigeons in function of your time spent and the change you can make it into a nice hobby is big. So also for Olivier, he chooses for the extreme long distance, he has a young family, goes out to work daily and so he has to adjust his caring onto this time spent. The lofts are modest (garden lofts) but well thought trough. There are roasters on the floor and in the boxes the pigeons are on roasters as well which makes the cleaning a bit more comfortable. During the Winter time the cocks reside in an aviary and the hens on the loft of the youngsters. They are being fed only twice a week (full house) and there are placed drinking pots of 6L on the lofts. In Winter they get a lot of tea, apple vinegar and/or sedochol. In the food they get a lot of yeast and barley. The caring is very basic and close to nature.

The racing team (4 hens which are being raced on widowhood in the beginning of the season and on nest afterwards and 25 widow cocks) are being coupled at the beginning of February and can raise one youngster. Next to these racing pigeons there are about 10 breeding couples.

The pigeons are being trained on the short distance and middle distance but the focus remains on the extreme long distance. Even though he got to win the 3rd National Bourges old birds this season.

The fodder that is being given comes from the brands Bonduelle and Tuerlings. At homecoming the pigeons get a sports mixture together with electrolytes (Belgasol). Afterwards a few days of Diet to change onto Gerry Fond Plus 4 days before basketing. The last days, the pigeons get sports mixtures ‘à volonté’. And as a side product, he gives loads of tea (VanHee) and liquid brewers’ yeast (during the Summer and Winter period).

Remarkable is that the pigeons never get tap water, but always spring water. Olivier is convinced that tap water isn’t the best water for sports pigeons.

Basketing happens really quiet so no hens are being showed, only their nest dish.

The cocks train once a day in the evening (from 18h to 19h), the youngsters and the old hens train before them and after the cocks, the late youngsters have to train.

The strains where the colony is made of are the old known northern French top long distance strains (Gruson Maurice, Schercousse Paul, Decool Paul , Coddeville André..), which strain out of the period of the combination with his father, afterwards accomplished with pigeons from Luc Sioen (Brecht x Rikky), Vereecke Roger, Vermander Eric and Michel Dhalluin.

The BE14-3154544 wins National Sint Vincent

Where many dream off, fell just out of the sky last Saturday at Olivier’s…a national victory. The pigeons out of Sint Vincent are normally being released on Friday, but due to the national holiday in France, they were only being released on Saturday. According the predictions it should be a normal, good race, a bit of head wind to get some more back wind towards Belgium. The other middle distance races and the national race out of Jarnac confirmed this kind of weather and speeds between 1,100 and 1,500 m were to be expected. The race out of Jarnac showed the first pigeons could get home first in West- and East-Flanders.

This nice blue cock, a summer youngster 2014, didn’t leave anything to a coincidence and brought the 1st national to Poperinge. When he got home and Olivier left him together with his hen, and was off course very nervous with an early arrival, he noticed a bit later that the electronic registration didn’t occur. He had to get him out again and bring him manually over the electronic device again…and this is how he loses the 1st International with a few seconds…

But this didn’t spoil their happiness. This nice pigeon, that caries the extreme long distance blood, raced home out of Limoges and Cahors very fresh but always out of the prizes. The believe in this cock wasn’t any less due to his lack of prizes and he assumed that, when he got some extra kilometres, he would score better…and rightly so !

The father of this pigeon is original from the known extreme long distance specialist, Michel Dhalluin from Dottenijs (who also had a marvellous result on Sint Vincent). The father was bought as a voucher by Olivier and did race himself a few times nice national head prizes on Pau. The mother is a breeding result between the strains Sioen, Berteloot, Steverlynck and Vereecke.

An ode to the simplicity of pigeon sport.

This victory is once again the proof, that it doesn’t have to be largely set up to know success. There are many ways that lead to Rome and it is an art that everybody, within his own capacities and time spent, can enjoy their hobby. This is surely the case for Olivier and his family. It stays a hobby that takes more time in Summer and less in Winter, but this doesn’t make the joy any less.

A very nice victory, a beautiful stimulus for the ones who like to experience the pigeon sport in a pure hobbyist way.

Congratulations from the Herbots team ! 

B14-3154544: 1st NATIONAL ST.VINCENT 3,092 OLD BIRDS

Geert Dhaenens

Number of pigeons


Local Oude/Vieux Jaar./Year. Jong./Jeunes Tota(al)    
Vlaams Brabant            
GOOIK 25     25    
BEERSEL 16     16    
KAP,O/D BOS 11     11    
ANDERLECHT 63     63    
HERENT 59     59    
TIENEN 34     34    
TESTELT 15     15    
  223 0 0 223    
Brabant Wallon            
NIVELLES 26     26    
RAMILIES 33     33    
WAVRE 8     8    
  67 0 0 67    
WIJNEGEM 29     29    
BEVEL 13     13    
STABROEK 25     25    
OUD-TURNHOUT 35     35    
HERENTALS 29     29    
RETIE 26     26    
HOUTVENNE 9     9    
MOL 48     48    
BEERSE 20     20    
SINT-JOB-IN-'T GOOR 136     136    
MECHELEN 11     11    
SCHILDE 18     18    
  399 0 0 399    
Local Oude/Vieux Jaar./Year. Jong./Jeunes Tota(al)    
STEENBRUGGE 120     120    
ROESELARE 41     41    
GISTEL 136     136    
KORTRIJK 108     108    
REKKEM 104     104    
VLAMERTINGE 161     161    
WAREGEM 62     62    
KORTEMARK 168     168    
RUISELEDE 74     74    
  974 0 0 974    
AALST 30     30    
DENDERMONDE 18     18    
NINOVE 62     62    
LOKEREN 52     52    
SINT-GILLIS-WAAS 36     36    
ZOTTEGEM 61     61    
EEKLO 100     100    
MOERBEKE 89     89    
GENT 70     70    
RONSE 63     63    
  581 0 0 581    
MAASEIK 48     48    
ST TRUIDEN 21     21    
TONGEREN 124     124    
ZONHOVEN 57     57    
LANAKEN 58     58    
  397 0 0 397    
Local Oude/Vieux Jaar./Year. Jong./Jeunes Tota(al)    
LESSINES 58     58    
SOIGNIES 25     25    
ATH 21     21    
ESTINNES-AU-VAL 39     39    
TOURNAI 109     109    
LEUZE-EN-HAINAUT 55     55    
PONT-A-CELLES 29     29    
MARBAIX-LA-TOUR 5     5    
GIVRY 18     18    
  366 0 0 366    
FORVILLE 13     13    
  13 0 0 13    
VISE 13     13    
HERVE 26     26    
HANEFFE-MONALLE 26     26    
  65 0 0 65    
ARLON 7     7    
  7 0 0 7    
 TOTAL 2017       Belgique 3092    en/in 2016 2561    
                            France 4163     3405    
                            Duitsland 932     966    
                            Nederland 3028     3383    
                            England 278     299    
                            Luxembourg 43     33    
  11536     10647    


Below you can find the results

fr St.-Vincent Nationaal