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The Roy Strain
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Eventually I knew that sooner or later I would have to include this compatriot in the series of brief insights into the founders of long distance and marathon families, strains, and dynasties of the past and the present. Like those whose stories have been printed or await publication this person and his pigeons are here by merit.The subject lives in England namely Margate and to those who have read my column in the pigeon press you may recall that previously I opined that Jimmy Roy had one of the best distance colonies in Britain, today. I hold this opinion not because Jimmy is a fellow Irishman but because of the outstanding flying of his birds into the island of Britain in recent years. That and that alone is the reason for my previous statement, a statement based upon my observations gathered since my return to the sport within the last three years. For example, in 2004 our subject's pigeons scored 1st Section, 5th Open from Pau (561 miles) in the NFC National; 3rd Open British Barcelona Club Palamos (659 miles); as well as 4th Open in the British International Championship Club race from Perpignan.This is but an example of his successes last year across one of the world's toughest terrains and against some of the greatest long distance and marathon fanciers on the planet.

Our subject is a person who has seen other parts of the world other than Ireland and Britain for he has lived, worked, and flown pigeons successfully in Australia from 1979 to 1983. A native of the capital City of Dublin where he once flew with success Jimmy Roy is now in his late 70s and has raced pigeons since 1943. Initially with representatives of the strains of Van Custem and Putman. His main interest today is in the long distance and marathon races for it is about 9 years now since he flew seriously at club level when he accumulated approximately 30 1sts in one season.

Jimmy Roy is akin to the famous Janssen family of Arendonk for he truly loves his pigeons and in return they truly love their master. This is the basis of Jimmy's success for aside from an astute managerial mind and the very best of bloodlines excellently cared for there exists that mystical element of mutual love.Indeed it is
reported that a number of his pigeons are so relaxed in his company that they pay visits to his house. A St. Francis type approach to our modern thoroughbreds which lies in stark contrast to those lofts where the inmates live lives of quiet desperation.

I entitled this article as ' The Roy Strain' for although Jimmy Roy has used pigeons of various strains over the years when one reaches the state of having 29 pigeons in ones ownership and bred by ones self which have flown 569 miles including leading positions then this justifies the use of the word 'strain'. Apparently his main base includes the bloodlines of Krauth, Huysken-Van Riel, Joe Shore and that of a 4th Open Irish National winner belonging to Noel Wiles of Skerries, County Dublin. Of course an important input is the noted Belgian Hen which came into the loft as a stray and after reporting and obtaining her this late bred was raced thoroughly but when put to stock became a gold mine by producing between 15 and 20 winners.

Some of Jimmy Roy's noted birds are Mary Anne, a blue chequer hen that was 16th open Dax and has also flown Pau a few times as well as San Sebastian, scoring 5th Open Pau 2004. The nest mate of Mary Anne is another great pigeon, Gentle Annie, who won from Pau in 2002. Then there is Maria who won 3rd Open Palamos, a sister of perhaps Jimmy's favourite- the winner from Perpignan. However, as space is limited, I cannot go on referring to the noted exploits of this strain but God willing more years to its founder and we will continue to see his name in the top positions of classic races into Britain.




Liam O Comain  -
by: Liam O Comain




Liam O Comain  -
by: Liam O Comain

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