News and Updates

All birds have been activated, no need to call. 


Rick & Olga


We still have 3 birds available.  All three did well on the last race, so if interested let us know as soon as possible. 

Esmeralda Loft



3028 Available


0201 VIP Available

0228 VIP Available

Deposited the rest of the checks today so please check your account if you are wondering if it has arrived.  Still waiting on 5 checks to arrive.  Once they do and all clear, we will post the payout. 

Contact us if you are interested in activating one or more of the birds listed above that are still available. 



Rick & Olga


Congratulations to Dave Clausing for having the first bird through the trap in yesterday's first race of the series from Redmond, OR which was 165 miles, and congratulations to all of you who had birds arrive in good time. 

At release it was cloudy along the horizon but the sky was clear above, had to wait another 15 minutes for the sun to clear above the clouds down low and at release the birds headed directly north out of both sides of the trailer.  We released the birds from the Walmart parking lot in Redmond, OR and Ken Dunagan from Lamonta Loft who is also in the race was there to help with the release of the birds.  

We had 73% of the birds within a hour, and at the time of writing this we have 89% of the birds returned.  Training consistently lately has been difficult to say the least due to rain and wind with heavy overcast skies.  We are not afraid of a little wind or overcast along the course, but they must be able to see the sun at release to get a good start toward home.  

The birds loft flew today and acted as if they had not even raced yesterday, they are loft flown every day by the way.  We will start up training again tomorrow, weather permitting of course.    

We are looking for the next day for the next race from La Pine, OR which will be 210 miles.  Last we checked it was supposed to be overcast and rainy next week, but sunny this Sunday.  We prefer to wait until next Tuesday to race as this will be 7 days from the last race yesterday, but if it looks rainy all next week instead of letting them sit and get stagnant we may take advantage of the mild weather this weekend, we will keep everyone posted.  

We did video the activation race as well as the race release yesterday.  Those videos are on my personal Facebook page for those of you who I am friends with on Facebook.  I will get these two videos uploaded to Youtube and post the links for the rest of you to see, sorry for the lateness on that.  

Still waiting on some checks to come in which we have verified have been sent.  Once we get all of the checks to clear we will post a updated payout.  

Thanks for the kind words from all of you on yesterday's results, we sure are trying our best to pull off a great race the best we can!


Rick & Olga 



We have had a watchful eye on the weather for this week trying to find a good day with enough sunshine for us to feel comfortable and no rain forecasted.  The only days that look good are tomorrow which is Tuesday, 1 October, or Sunday.  Sunday has been ruled out because a tail wind is forecasted and it will be 13 days from the Activation Race which was last Monday.  Tomorrow the birds will start off with a slight 7 MPH head wind, then along the course the wind direction will change to west in some areas and east in others, but nothing over 7 MPH that we can see and no rain forecasted along the route. 

The birds had a 45 mile toss today from Satus Pass under overcast skies with just a bit of sun showing through.  On top of the pass it was fogged in so we released just this side of the pass.  The birds have been to this spot several times and fly right through there on every toss, unless they get blown east due to a west wind.  In other words, they know that last 45 miles like the back of their hand so today's toss was good for building their confidence in spite of little sun.  They all arrived fairly close together according to Olga who stays home to make sure nothing goes wrong wiht the clock, but they really took their sweet time trapping.  It got windy and rainy at home so the birds just splashed on top of the loft laughing at me whistling to them.  As distance increases, believe me, they will be more than ready to go in for a drink and food.  These little 45 and 65 mile tosses are not a challenge for them anymore, but they do keep their heads screwed on straight so when it is time to race they are in condition and know what is expected of them. 

EVERYONE has either paid, or we have confirmed you have paid but your check is late getting here, with the exception of two breeders.  Some of you, like us, live in a very rural area and the USPS can sometimes be a real challenge so we understand. 

The two breeders who we have not been able to contact via email, countless phone calls leaving messages, and leaving texts, are the following with their birds listed.  

Esmeralda Loft

3027 HRPC

3017 HRPC

3112 HRPC

3028 HRPC


0201 VIP

0228 VIP

So this is how it will work if you want to activate these birds. 

Call me, do not Text.  I am out in the loft waiting for my helpers so we can load the birds up for tomorrow's race and I have my phone with me.  Let me know which birds you want to activate and I will let you know if they are still available.  Once I have confirmed that they are, you need to IMMEDIATELY go to our site at, go to the Home page, then click on Payments.  Once Olga has confirmed that the birds you wish to move to your team are paid for I will scratch them from my list and the next caller will get second pick.  

DO NOT PAY FOR ABOVE LISTED BIRDS ON PAYPAL BEFORE CALLING ME.  If you go to Paypal and pay for birds before calling me, then someone else may be paying for the same birds at the same time.  This is why you MUST call me before going to Paypal.  

Please hold the phone calls tonight folks unless you are calling to activate some of or all of the birds listed above that are available.  We need to get these birds loaded up for the race tomorrow so they can rest, then yours truly has to get a few hours of sleep before getting up at 1 AM to drive down to Redomond, OR and get there few hours before release so the birds have a chance to relax before release.  






Hi everyone, raining cats and dogs here with lots of wind and it is forecasted to be the same down in Redmond, OR most of next week.  If it is clear from our 65 and 45 mile spots we will train and get the birds tuned up so when we do have a good day in Redmond the birds will be ready, hopefully next week. 

Most everyone has paid, there are a few breeders we can not reach and hope you can help us with contacting them if you know them.

Brooklyn Loft, NY  Yi Tao Zhao

C & K Loft, FL, no email address, Kenny Chen

Esmeralda Loft, FL Yosdany Gonzalez

Thormod/Blakenship, NV Steven/Bill Thormod/Blakenship

If you know any of the aforementioned, please let them know that we need to know if they have sent their checks immediately.  They can also pay by Paypal by going to our Home page, clicking on Payments, and following the directions.  

If you are not on the list it means we have received your payment via USPS, Paypal, or we have spoken to you on the phone and you have verified that you have sent your payment.  


Rick & Olga 


We headed toward Goldendale today for a toss but it was overcast, sun completely covered.  Dropped back to Satus Pass, sat there for over a hour waiting for the sun to come out which it finally did.  At the time of typing this most of the birds have arrived.  A few took their sweet time going in, just not enough distance to get their attention today. 

We want to have the next race on Monday but it is calling for rain, we will keep a watchful eye on the weather to determine what day is best for a race next week.  Not looking for a perfect day where it will be easy for the birds, but we do know from experience that they need to be able to see the sun at release to get headed in the right direction if we are to have a good race on the day.

We have about 2/3 of the payments in already.   All checks that we have received have been deposited and the 12 we received today will be deposited in a few hours.  Before calling us to see if your check has arrived, please check your bank statement.  If you are using Paypal, no need to send us a picture of your confirmation email showing it has been sent because it pops up on our computer screen as soon as you pay.  If you get the confirmation email that you sent funds, then it means we received it seconds later.  

We have several individuals interested in unactivated birds and we are compiling a list.  All breeders have until 18:00 Saturday, that is 6 PM our time for you non-military folks.  If every bird gets activated we will have a little over $140,000 in prize money, so get those Entry Fees in ASAP folks!

We will train between races.  If you end up having a bird come up missing on the training tosses after the Activation Race and before the first race from Redmond, OR then we will refund the Entry Fee for the bird(s) lost.  

Everyone have a great day!


Rick & Olga 


Activation fees are due now. 

We plan on having the next race next Monday.  This means that all fees MUST be received by Saturday.  Any breeder who does not have their birds paid for by Saturday at 6 PM Pacific Standard Time relinquishes their birds and they will be sold on a first come first serve basis.

If you are interested in purchasing unclaimed birds email us, do not call or text, your name, loft name if you do not already have birds in the race this year, and a phone number.  Your name will be added to a list we are creating and we will start calling at the top of that list and working our way down the list.  We will accept Paypal payments ONLY for unclaimed birds purchased Sunday morning prior to the race tentatively scheduled for next Monday.   

The lobby to our post office is closed on Saturday, but we can get to our PO box.  This means do not send us a certified letter because we will not be able to get it until Monday which will be too late to verify your payment was received. 

Again, please do not text us a picture of your mailed check.  It is too difficult to keep up with everyone's text messages so just send your payment in if you have not already and it should get here by Saturday.  If you have not already send your check/money order then it would behoove you to send it express mail, or just pay by Paypal.  Currently we have about half of the payments, 1/3 are paying via Paypal, the rest by check. 

Our contact info is under the tab that says Contact Us.  If you are having a hard time finding this, here is our address again. 

Apple Cup

PO Box 313

Moxee, WA 98936

It is best to email your questions or concerns.  We often times are away from the loft and can not remember every conversation, but if you absolutely must speak to us on the phone then by all means give us a call. 


If you send a text identify yourself by your loft name, that way we know who you are. 

We will train the birds a few times before the next race.  Remember, entry fees are based upon what you had return from the Activation Race, not what you have on the subsequent training tosses prior to the first race.  Invariably, every year we get a few breeders who want to see how their birds do on the trainers after the Activation Race and before the first race.  If everyone did this folks, we would never be able to progress forward to the next step which is the first official race.  The Activation Race is complete, we got 98% returned, please get your entry fees sent to us no later than today if you are sending them through your post office. 

Thanks everyone for your continued support!


Rick & Olga



The birds were released from Shaniko, OR today under sunny skies with a slight west wind.  Olga said the birds arrived about 20 minutes before I returned and they took their sweet time trapping, some acting like they had not flown at all.  As of writing this we have 97% in the loft, hopefully the few that are still out will be in by nightfall. 

Please get those checks in the mail today, tomorrow at the latest if you are still waiting on a straggler.  If the weather cooperates we will have the next race in 7 days, thus the reason for needing payments before the next race so we can offer any unpaid birds to those who want to get in on the fun or add to their team.   

If you want to pay online go to our site at, click on Payments on the left, the rest is self explanitory.  Do not try to send funds via Friends and Family through Paypal, this creates some issues for us.  If you do not want to pay the required fees, then just send a check in the mail.  

It has been a long day folks, yours truly is going to take a nap!


Rick & Olga 


As of typing this there are still a few birds outside screwing around, so if you had a bird trap in later than the first please do not fret as it appears they are all here. 

Olya has finally finished up the Paypal payment option for those of you who wish to pay electronically.  Please go to the HOME page on our site, click on the word PAYMENTS, the rest is self explanitory. 

If you plan on paying by check, money order, cashier's check, PLEASE get it in the mail the day of the activation race or the day after.  Those of you who have flown with us before know that once we start racing we do our VERY BEST, weather permitting, to have races 7 days apart.  If you do not have your payment in to us the day prior to the race we will send a email to you, call you immediately afterwards, and if we do not get a hold of you that way we will post a list of those birds not paid for and they will be available on a first come first serve basis, no excuses.  

Please, no emailed or texted pictures of your mailed in payments at the last minute.  It gets confusing enough right before the race trying to process everyone's payments, we can't possibly keep track of every text and phone call especially when yours truly is usually out in the loft this time of the year.  Just fill out a envelope TODAY so when the birds come back from the activation race, hopefully all on the day, you can fill out a check and drop it in the mail that day (tentatively this coming Monday) or the day after. 

If I have not already mentioned, the long awaited activation race is tentatively scheduled for Monday.  It was perfectly clear and sunny this morning, tomorrow is supposed to be slightly rainy, Monday sunny and perfect like today, and the rest of the week sunny with patchy clouds with temps in the 70s.  We have put off the activation race several times due to rainy weather moving in right when we were setting the birds up for the activation race.  Good news for all of you is your birds got about 1,000 training miles before the first race last I checked, not exactly but close.  Last yr we logged more training miles than any race in North America, and it looks like we are going to follow that trend again this year.  One thing about the Apple Cup, you will not get short changed in training and the birds will get 2-3 tosses at 45-65 miles between races.  Many of you know or have heard that we train a lot and we update frequently, obviously that is our selling we aim to deliver as promissed! 

Lets hope that the weatherman, or weatherwoman for that matter, is right about the wether this time and that we can have an awesome race on Monday with a 100% return rate!


Rick & Olga



The birds had a good toss today with most trapping in fairly close to the first bird telling us the birds are in shape and ready for the activation race. 

Game plan is as follows. 

Tomorrow rest. 

Saturday train, it is supposed to be perfect. 

Sunday rest, it is supposed to be raining. 

Monday activation race, it is supposed to be perfect with sunny skies. 

If Monday does not look good from Shaniko but does from Grass Valley 65 or Satus Pass 45 we will train from there, rest Tue and have the activation race Wed. 

Very rarely will you see us rest the birds two days in a row before a race and race dates are always dependent upon how they did their last toss and the projected weather the day of the race. 

Thanks to all of you who have sent in payment already, think we have 40 checks sitting on the kitchen table.  Hopefully this weekend we will have time to go through the checks and get them deposited, if there are any issues with them clearing we will let you know immediately. 

The Paypal option will definitely be available before the activation race.  Olga was working on it last night and there was a issue with linking Paypal to our business account.  For all I know she may of already posted the link, which should say PAYMENTS under our tabs on the left side of the home page.  If it is not up now, it will be by time we have the activation race. 

As with checks/money orders, same with Paypal, if you end up paying too much for the activation of your birds we will send you a refund check.  Not sure how Olya wants to handle those of you who pay electronically if she will refund you electronically or send a check, she does the accounting so it is up to her.  Do not try to tell a Russian woman how to do things, you will end up in the dog house, or in my case the pigeon loft. 

Weather is looking good for the activation race, please cross your fingers that it stays this way. 

Rick & Olga (She goes by Olya by the way)

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