Secret Blue Nugget - A-14499 BB

A Great Hofkens Breeder!   This male has bred at least 5 winners in just 3 years in the breeding loft.  Not used much before that because his dad was still here.  He also has sons and daughters breeding winners in several states from reports we have gotten! Surely only a handful were ever raced, and very few were bred for stock.

His sire was one of the greatest breeders of breeders I have ever owned, he was so good offers started coming in and got so high that I had to let him go!  The Golden Nugget was a son of "Hollywood" when mated back to his mother, "Breeder's Best"!  All about them in the story below, written for the Digest back in 2002, called "THE GREATEST PRODUCING HEN OF ALL TIME?"

His dam, "Cajun Blue" was probably the best Foundation Hens I have ever owned !!!!  Many, many of her sons and daughters have bred so many winners I cannot count them all.  One son, a half brother to "Blue Nugget", bred 5 winners out of 6 offspring in his first breeding season, and the 6th was stocked, because the handler thought he was too nice to take a chance racing him.  2 nest-mate hens from that year were 1st or equal 1st in 6 out of 8 races sent to, and that was combine results!!!   A full sister to "Blue Nugget" was sold to California, and bred 3 out of 3 winners the first year, and 8 out of 8 the following year, including 2 futurity winners and a Combine Champion Ace Pigeon!!!!  Stories from children of "Cajun Blue" come in every year, she was a super foundation hen, and is the very reason "Blue Nugget" is still in my loft after many offers!!!  I don't know of any children of "Cajun Blue" that did not breed a winner!  Both of her parents were bred by the Master of all breeders,  Maurice Verheyen!!!



The Greatest Producing Hen of all Time?

                 By Gerald Hebert


                After several years of studying racing pigeon pedigrees, I’ve noticed one characteristic that many great producers have in common: they all have great mothers as well as super racing sires!  So in my search for a super producing foundation cock, I decided to look for the best living hen in the world today, and try to purchase a son of such a good producing hen mated to a super racing cock.

After extensively researching, I’ve never read of a better producing hen than the Hofkens hen that Mike Ganus calls “Breeder’s Best.” “Breeder’s Best” has produced 2 National Ace’s, “Hollywood,” and “Monty Carlo,,” along with “E.T.,” the super 1st National winner and fastest of over 90,000 birds, and countless other winners of smaller races, which were never talked about much.  Now sons and daughters of “Breeder’s Best” are producing super racers and breeders for fanciers all over this country as well as in Holland, Germany and Belgium.  The nest sister to “Breeder’s Best” won a 1st National over 33,000+ birds, so this is a family thing.

One of “Hollywood’s” daughters is producing super racers for Mike Ganus, a son, as well as a daughter of “E.T.” are producing many money winners for my friend Bob McCarty of Houston, and he has earned as much as $28,000 in one season.  Another son of  “E.T.” has produced well for William Tarver of Louisiana.  “E.T.” himself, has produced many money winners for William, including the 200-mile winner of America’s KingCup in 2000, and the “Dash for Cash” in Dallas.

          “Breeder’s Best” is a product of 2 Hofkens bred by the master of the old Hofkens breeders, Maurice Verheyen.  Verheyen’s Hofkens has been nominated to more Olympiads than any other loft in Belgium.  To be nominated to an Olympiad, your bird has to have been the best at its distance and category for 2 years in a row.  That takes a special bird! The “Kliene Merckx” of 1980 was even nominated to the Olympiads twice! Now as a breeder, Verheyen is not new to breeding super breeders; his old line Hofkens have bred great birds for many, many years.   “Old Merckx” of ‘75, his fabulous Olympiad winner, is world renown for producing super breeders such as “De Rocket,,” the “Kliene Merckx” line, “Young Merckx” (sire of “Breeder’s Best”), and many super producing hens.  “De Portugees” (Olympiad), “Old Violet Eyes,” “Kliene Merckx” (Olympiad), “De Princess” (daughter of “Old Merckx”), “Blauwe 3 Bander of ‘83, ,” “Old Pol,”  “Top Man,” “De 500” (Olympiad), and “De Coppie,” all Verheyen breeders, and are all world renown for their super breeding capabilities.

          “Hollywood,” the best racing son of “Breeder’s Best,” was named the 1st National Ace WHZB of all Holland 1997, Old Males!  Not only was he 1st Ace Pigeon of his club 4 years in a row (1994, ’95, ’96, ’97), but he was a prize-winner 34 times in the top 5 places with 14 firsts!  What a racer!  As a breeder, “Hollywood” is one of the best ever.  “Hollywood” has produced more than 25 top foundation breeders for lofts in Germany, Belgium, and Holland.  More than 100 of his grandchildren have won races!  They cross well with Janssen and other Hofkens blood.  His daughter, GFL 363-99 bred the 1st place IF Convention winner in 2000 winning more than US$10,000.  Wally Tienprasid of Westerville, OH has bred several winners off his direct son of “Hollywood,” and says, “Hollywood is the best!”

          In March 2001, Jimmy Smith and I took a trip to the Michigan/Indiana area to visit with Mike Ganus, Harold Lamons, and Leon Patton.  I wanted to visit Mike Ganus’s famous loft to see “Breeder’s Best,” “Hollywood,” and to find a son of “Breeder’s Best” which I could purchase before she was done laying.  Mike suggested a young son he had just weaned, and had named “The Golden Nugget.”  “Holding him is like holding a nugget of gold in your hands, I have no better,” says Mike.   “Hollywood” sired “Nugget,” when he was mated back to this great hen, his mother.  This mating has produced some super hens for Mike, but he knew of only one other full brother.    We were able to handle “Breeder’s Best”, “Hollywood”, and many of Mike’s National Aces.  “Breeder’s Best” was one of the best handling hens I have ever had my hands on, what a body!  I was able to look at her eye also, and her eye is even better than the pictures I’ve seen.

Jimmy and I were both totally amazed at the quality of birds Mike Ganus had in his loft, and the care of these birds were nothing but the best.  Never have I ever seen a loft that was so organized, clean, and nothing but the well being of the birds in mind!  Every single bird was in perfect health.  Our host, Mike Ganus, had put aside a few hours to spend with us and show us his operation, and what a host he was.  Mike answered all of our questions, showed us, and let us handle any bird we wanted to see.  Mike even told us stories of how he was able to buy some of the birds, and about his travels in Europe.  It was a very information and enjoyable afternoon; I was like a kid in a candy store for the first time.

Jimmy and I also visited several other lofts in the Michigan/Indiana area.  We visited Leon Patton’s loft and Harold Lamons’ loft my friends and some super racers up in the Michiana Combine.  Harold has some of the nicest birds from Mike’s Ganus Family Loft I’ve ever seen and handled, he is also a top breeder of “969” and Ganus Grizzles.  This was too much, we saw and handled so many top birds, and all I wanted to do was go home and cull most of my birds!  I just had to have more of these birds for myself, so I brought home “The Golden Nugget”, GFL 311, a winner Mike has raced, a daughter of Harold’s best “969” pair, and several other birds to breed more of these for myself!  All in all this was a very memorable trip, and we still talk about it often.  We call it, “The Cajun Connection”!

I brought “Nugget” home with me, and have been putting him on some of the fine Hofkens hens I have from the Verheyen and the Leo Broeckx line.  I pride in having one of the most complete families of the smaller Verheyen Hofkens hens in America.  A list of a few of the Hofkens hens I have are; several daughters of “Kliene Rocket” (a super son of “De Rocket”), a granddaughter of “De Coppie”/ “Old Violet Eyes,” a granddaughter of “Top Man,” and a daughter of “Mr. Bourges.”  I am also breeding “Nugget” to several Janssen hens to make sure I don’t disturb that wonderful Janssen/Hofkens cross that has turned the world of racing pigeons upside down in breeding statistics.  The Janssen hens are; a top producing daughter of “Trail Blazer” (1st x 12,000+ birds) x Quick Star (National Ace of Belgium), a double granddaughter of “969” from Harold Lamons fabulous “Pair One”, and a super producing daughter of “Champion Home Alone”, Alex Cornella’s American Ace Pigeon.

My knowledge of super producing hens led me to believe “Breeder’s Best” is, and will be known for some time as “The Greatest Producing Hen Ever”!  If anyone can challenge that statement, with statistics, of a hen that has produced better, or more National Ace Birds than “Breeder’s Best”, please let me know, I don’t think there is.

Published in the RACING PIGEON DIGEST  Jan 15 '02 Vol 11 No 19 pg 44