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PART II - 1st and 2nd in the competition Best Fancier of the Netherlands WHZB/TBOTB

PART II - 1st and 2nd in the competition Best Fancier of the Netherlands WHZB/TBOTB Translated from Het Spoor der Kampioenen, the Dutch pigeon sport magazine

An article was published in the Dutch pigeon sport magazine to pay attention to the titles achieved in 2020. In particular, obtaining the titles 1st and 2nd best fancier in the Netherlands.
This article has been translated and will be published in parts on our website so that everyone can read how the pigeon sport is experienced by Hans and Evert Jan Eijerkamp.

Their own toppers
Evert-Jan: "It’s like kicking in an open door, but it’s easier to breed good ones from good pigeons. In recent years we have also strengthened our breeding lofts with our own home-grown National Ace Pigeons. These include:

In the past we used to buy an entire round of youngsters from well known fanciers but have since switched to searching for the real currants in the porridge. Crossing these with our own toppers, so far has yielded further successes. 

The Fancier: Team Eijerkamp
In the equilateral triangle, mentioned earlier, the fancier is the third important side. Patriarch Hans and son Evert-Jan oversee the successful Eijerkamp team. The tasks are allocated to five full time employees. Henk Jurriens has worked for the Eijerkamps for almost forty years and knows all the ins and outs. He is actively involved in every important decision made at Greenfield Stud regarding the pigeons. He is usually far afield, that is far over our national borders, he is our contact person. Henk is a proven specialist.   The guardians, carefully watching over the breeding lofts are Arnold Paalman, himself a more than successful fancier, and the young man Rick Wuesteenk, proudly escorted by Hans. 
Joke Geven and Kees van de Beek, former and proven great champions in Afdeling 8, take care of the racing pigeons. Oliver Sabol is the caretaker in the Lotte Eijerkamp lofts. In addition to the permanent team there are long time friends who when necessary, gladly lend a hand. There is mutual trust, plenty of skill and knowledge and in particular a pleasant atmosphere.  In soccer terms "on this team there are players on the bench who want the carry the ball". Team Eijerkamp is ambitious, experienced, and proud of their own lofts, but above all enjoy the many successes that "their" pigeons achieve in other lofts worldwide.  We now introduce the three caretakers of the racing lofts.

Joke Geven: her own contribution
A special spot-on team Eijerkamp has been set aside for Mrs. Joke Geven. Joke came to Greenfield Stud with her husband Martin, from Bussloo, in 2014. Together, they had gained national fame from a wooded area near a recreational lake, "Bussloo", by winning the title "Best Ace Old Pigeon" WHZB, many national wins and NPO championships twice. Their move to Greenfield Stud was a surprise, but a win-win situation for both sides. Sadly, her husband Martin passed away at a young age in 2016 after a debilitating illness. Partly due to Martin’s insistence, Joke remained as a member of team Eijerkamp.  Evert-Jan: "In 2020 season, she took care of 16 widow hens, who were only raced in the sprint and middle-distance races. In an addition, she also had a section with forty youngsters in her care. She flies with Kees v.d. Brook under the name of Hans and Evert-Jan Eijerkamp. Joke flies as agreed to by Team Eijerkamp, but her own input is undeniable. When hearing her coming to the lofts the pigeons are already cooing and alert, ready to greet her. Joke thoroughly enjoys every moment she spends with "her little people "and rewards their behaviour with tasty treats. The youngsters are raised like this right from the start and quickly become hand tame. Joke can talk to and understand her youngsters. She was Champion Middle-Distance Ladies League 2020. In 2021 Joke will limit herself to flying only young birds, because that where her heart and passion lie.

Kees van de Beek: Widow Hens
Kees came to Greenfield Stud in 2019 as a caretaker. It was an unexpected move to the outside pigeon world. However, not for Hans and Evert-Jan Eijerkamp, because in their search for a top caretaker they were firmly convinced that in the triangle, loft-pigeons-fancier Kees would excel on their team as a specialist with the widow hens. Moreover, they had known Kees for some time as a designer/builder of their nest boxes. Kees had already proven to be able to compete with the absolute best in the Netherlands for several years and was especially successful with the Eijerkamp pigeons. In 2018 he crowned his career with his ‘328’ who became 1st in the "Best Middle-Distance Pigeon" category, in the WHZB-TBOTB competition. Kees moved on to a new location and continued making great results and winning attractive awards. Evert-Jan: Kees can speak to and understand, the widow hens. With his stingy feeding hand, he gets them coming to him quickly. He believes the hens should have peace and quite during the day. This means leaving them alone throughout the day. His methods work perfectly.

Oliver Sabol: A dream come true
"As a novice pigeon fancier, by chance I saw a pigeon video of the Eijerkamp aviaries. It was mesmerizing. I was totally motivated. For years afterwards, when dreaming, I was in their lofts," Oliver said. Four years ago, the then Croatian champion, came to Brummen as a caretaker, at the recommendation of the president of his national federation. His dream had become reality, a dream that shows how obsessed he is with pigeons, as he had to leave a lot behind to fulfill his dream. His wife and their two children come to Brummen for two months in the summer and in the quite periods he spends several weeks with his family.
Hans: "Oliver is an extremely agreeable, civilized and sociable person, and he can keep contacts and visitors feel at ease. He has a drive to learn, he is not afraid to ask and listens, but he happily shares his knowledge freely with others. He lives for pigeons, he breathes pigeons; they are his live! they are his joy! He is a pigeon fancier through and through!
Conversely, and perhaps the main reason to which his successes depend, is that the pigeons also like to be around him. He challenges them and then rewards them.
The folding perches spread out on the sidewalls of the loft form, among other things, by temporarily collapsing them, a play pen for the pigeons. Every moment Oliver is in the lofts turns into a party for the pigeons. He feeds them not only on the always spotlessly clean floor, but throughout the loft, on the benches, on the perches and in other unexpected places.
Oliver, of course, becomes a part of the flock. He is at his best with his whistle, his patience, his watchfulness, his constant attempt to please his pigeons. He is their comrade during the season from five o’clock in the morning to nine o’clock.
Oliver enjoys every day to the utmost, but most of all on the day that his best friends fly home at the front of the peloton. Like a good shepherd, he watches over his flock with modest pride.
The late Hans Boenders and I, several times, have found Oliver in the lofts among the pigeons. We once compared him to a quote from an article, of a conversation the writer and columnist Godfried Bomans had with Johan Cruyff: "Johan reminds us of an angel, an angel is not subject to gravity. I have often seen him play and I am always surprised that he just walked of the pitch with the others after the game and had not taken of and disappeared over the stands. Presumably, he’s holding back."

Click this link to read part III

Click this link to read part I