Chris & Gerry Quinn, Milltown & District -
The 2012 Kings Cup flown from Vannes turned out a very hard race with only 71 birds in race time (three days). The Milltown partnership of Chris & Gerry Quinn clocked a magnificent Red cock named Hunter to win 2nd North Sect & 3rd Open INFC and 2nd in the Single Bird Challenge. The Kings Cup was won by the Malahide partnership of Gerry OReilly & Son with Willie Neill of Annaghmore 2nd Open INFC and the winner of the Single Bird Challenge. Chris and Gerrys Hunter was only a yard behind the W G Neill pigeon.
Hunter was the winner of an INFC Merit Award presented to the Quinns by Freddy Vandenheede at the function held at the Dunsilly Hotel in the early part of the year. His record to win the award 2011: 28th North Sect & 31st Open INFC 2,972 birds, 2012: 2nd North Sect & 3rd Open INFC 2,783 birds with total winnings just over £5,000.
Lets have a look at the loft and partnership. Chris started with the pigeons when he was 11 years old. A very good friend Eamon Campbell got Chris into Milltown & District where several members gave him a few pigeons to get him started. They have been racing to their present location for 13 years and have been helped and supported by all the Milltown members especially the late Jim Nelson Jim would have been proud of Hunter. Chris was to win the Young Fancier of the Year in 2004 and 2005 travelling to Blackpool with his dad to receive the award, and they now travel to Blackpool Show of the Year every January.
C & G Quinn have three lofts, stock loft, young bird loft and a racing loft. 25 stock pairs are kept and the same number raced (50 birds). Each year they rear approx. 60 young birds. The system used is a mixture of Roundabout and Natural for the old birds. The distance birds are raced Natural and the YBs race on Darkness. Gerry thinks the Darkness System has not effected the birds as yearlings.
The stock birds and racers are usually mated up about mid-January with the distance birds four weeks later. The YBs and OBs are trained 25 to 30 miles weather permitting, and fly at home for one hour each evening. The young birds are expected to fly the full programme and they send as many as possible each week. The YBs are flown Natural although a few may pair up and they are allowed to sit.
The main bloodlines are mostly from his own loft built up over ten years, the best from Colin Gibson and several gift birds received from top fanciers. The Quinns distance success came from a pigeon gifted to Chris from Jim Butler from Banbridge.
They try to breed from the successful pigeons from the precious season after studying the records and progress of individual pigeons. This seems to be working well as they have won 1st Sect G three years in a row. Father Gerry has worked alongside Chris since he started but recently after the sudden death of good friend Jim Nelson he has taken over as Secretary of Milltown & District and joined as C & G Quinn.
The Quinns obtain all their feeding from H Beattie & Son using several mixtures throughout the year on Cyril Beatties advice. Supplements are usually Cider Vinegar, Garlic, Minerals and Grit. Both OBs and YBs are tested before the season starts at Beatties a great service. This is a partnership that works well together and I will keep you updated on Hunter as we go into the 2013 racing season. Irish Rover.