Mast-Scheper, Nieuw Amsterdam
Benny started with pigeons in 1991. Nobody in his immediate surroundings had or has pigeons, but at that time he really enjoyed it and was impressed that a pigeon could fly for more than an hour. He was 12 years old then. A loft was built where fancy pigeons were placed, but he was quickly bored with it, because they only flew around and he didn’t like that at the moment. Then the racing pigeons arrived. The pigeon bug did its job and kept Benny in its grip until today. After flying for about 10 years on the program races, he was bored with this and the love for the longer distance came. And that is also a bug, but of a different kind. This is the game that Benny wanted to grow up with! And that is no different now. Wanting to be the best in the country. That is the end goal!
Every person has a certain feeling about the discipline that he / she feels best about. Maybe a combination of both because it doesn’t look different with work. Benny’s heart lies with the marathon, not because, as most people say, this is easy, but because it is great when the pigeons return from 800-1200 km. This gives him goosebumps. The character that is in the pigeons to come home and sometimes even come home with playful ease, that is what Benny is looking for.
After years of flying the marathon with his then partner (Wijlen Jan Lotterman) from 2006 to 2011, where 5 teletext prizes were achieved, it was decided in 2014 to start again with pigeons with his partner. His partner had no knowledge of racing pigeons, but now 3 years later she knows very well what needs to be done to compete at a top level. It is hard work and every details play a role!
Most people look and start on the marathon flights because it would be a lot easier? That you have to do less work for it? That it takes less time? Benny thinks this is not accurate. It is just as hard of work as the program pigeons. And in terms of discipline, the bar for the marathon flights is slightly higher.