We worked on inputting the addresses of those we planned on shipping birds back to today last night and in to the early AM through the USPS Click N Ship site and when we went to pay before printing the site froze up on us. This happened last year as well, very frustrating. So we went down and talked to our postmaster who agreed to let us dump 40 boxes off on her, she even called in another clerk to accomodate us. However, after spending time on the phone with the Click N Ship folks this morning, then prepping boxes and manually filling out 40 express labels, we came to the realization that there just was not enough time left in the day to get the birds boxed up and down to the post office and give them enough time to process each shipment before the express truck shows up in the afternoon. Now that 90% of the work is done it is just a matter of putting the right birds in the right boxes and getting them to the post office, which we will do tomorrow.
We are only shipping to those who won money on the final race this week, simple deduction of shipping from winnings. Had we thought about it we would of also contacted those who won money on the 267 mile race, totally slipped our minds. We will ship back the remainder next Monday, providing you have sent your return shipping fees which is $60 for the first bird, $10 each additional. Some of you have already sent return shipping to our PO Box, we will mail yours out next Monday.
Once we have the birds shipped out we will send out prize money minus shipping, providing we have a W-9 on you. If we owe you a entry fee refund this check will be separate from the prize money check if you won prizes so you do not have to pay taxes on the refund portion.
Thanks for everyone's patience.
Rick & Olga
Birds are released at 7:00
Good Luck Everyone
The birds had their 39th training toss today from Goldendale, our favorite 60 mile station. The birds came home together, a few decided to play around outside the loft. We just did some quick calculating and it looks like your birds logged 1,919.3 miles in training this year, this does not include the actual races. There are only a very few races who train like we do, but it looks like we logged in the most training miles this year of any races in North America.
We boosted the corn today and will tomorrow before the birds are loaded on to the trailer and we head down to Alturas, CA. We plan on getting down there before dark so the birds can get a good drink before going to sleep. They will have water in front of them all night and of course in the morning as well.
The birds are tentatively scheduled to be released at 0700 Thursday morning but if the sun is up before then we will release a bit earlier. The days are getting shorter so we want to give your birds as much daylight as possible to make it home on the day.
If you plan on coming for lunch please let us know via email or text, lunch will be served at 1 PM. The earliest birds could possibly arrive would be around 2 PM but that is 50 mph and we do not usually hit speeds like that on this course. We are very busy today and tomorrow getting ready for the final and we don't have a lot of time to spend on the phone, hope you understand. Please bring a comfortable chair.
Good luck to everyone on the final race!
I got down to the release point about 1:30 AM, stars shining through with a cloud here and there, checked radar one last time and weather along the way and all looked great. About 6:45 the sun started to come out, checked radar one last time and at 7:30 the birds were released, 42F, calm, birds headed off in the right direction. Headed home and along the course encountered some overcast, but not bad and the sun shining through in spots. With about 2/3 of the way left to go it got sunny with just patchy clouds, the closer to home the better it got and all the way thinking, man we are going to have a great race today......boy was I wrong.
Now I hear a lot of talk about overfly, I usually just think that is a excuse for poor returns. Once out of the mountains and I had reception again about 20 miles from the loft I see no pigeons on Wincompanion. Olga called me when we had the first two, I get excited thinking we are about to start getting big drops, but that just never happened. When I did get home about 20 minutes after the first birds arrived I watched as the birds came out of the N and NW, so they must of overflew, at least some did.
Hopefully we get some more birds this evening, still about two hours of daylight left, and we get ther rest tomorrow.
Sorry folks, I really have no explanation. It was very nice at release, slight overcast once I got down the road a bit with sun shining through, then it cleared right up and was sunny and warm, not a drop of rain hit the windshield all the way home. Possibly they hit some bad weather along the way shortly after release, another flock of pigeons, got blown off course by unforseen winds, we can guess this all day long. All I know is those pigeons looked great and were ready for the task, wish I had better news.
Congratulations to Burge Family Loft and Flying Pilgrims for having the first two birds 16 minutes out front, awesome birds guys! Also congratulations to L & L Breeding Station, Fassio Loft, and Hawaii Syndicate for having the next three birds. The aforementioned won all the money today!
Rick & Olga