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Requirements of The Long And Marathon Distance Racer
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When reading about fanciers who have excelled at distances beyond the short and middle strands there will be references to families or strains that claim winners at all distances but just as there are good and not so good or bad in all strains perhaps what is required when we approach this belief is that there are individual differences to the norm. There is no doubt that there have been in the history of the sport outstanding all rounders but whether there exists or has existed an all round strain is questionable.

Speed is a necessary ingredient in the short and middle distance races but it is also necessary in the long and marathon distances allied with an abundance of will power and endurance. In negative or bad weather conditions the most important requirements is that of will power and endurance but speed could come into play when the pigeon enters its home ground and makes that extra effort to reach its loft.

I am of the opinion that intensive breeding over the last 100 years but especially during the last 40 to 50 years has produced a racing pigeon of a high degree of animal intelligence. Mental capabilities are of more importance than the physical. Even if a pigeon was superb physically if it lacked the right mental capabilities i.e. a clear grasp of homeward direction and the strongestof desires to get home it would be useless as confirmed by the well built strays which litter our racing and training routes.

Yes, a high degree of homing ability, super sight, a strong will, and a strong endurance against the background of a high degree of animal intelligence is what is required. In fact that is what champions are made of ! And it is to be found in the right pedigree, one in which the racing and breeding achievements of the immediate ancestry are recorded as good. For the chances of repeating the referred to successes amongst the latest generation are high in those circumstances.




Liam O Comain  -
by: Liam O Comain

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