Report: Welcome To The Another Year in Derby ARONA



The Derby Arona Tenerife One Loft Race 2020/21

It’s mid December and a little later than advertised the Ledesma family welcome its World Wide competitors and audience to the start of this years Derby Arona Tenerife One Loft Race “THE MOST EXTREME RACE IN THE WORLD”, this delay was unavoidable due to the poor weather that the canaries have endured in the three weeks leading up to the original start day of Dec 1st.

The Ledesma family (Derby Arona Team ) ready to start this year’s campaign


The challenging and unique race

With the doors closing early October and following the hard work of a team of worldwide coordinators in having to deal with the worldwide crisis of Covid-19 which on occasions hampered many plans and flight and shipping arrangements and cancellations and with the world struggling with an economic decline due to the pandemic, numbers as expected are down this year to previous years as we see 2,400 pigeons from over 30 countries successfuly perched within the Derby Arona lofts. Of which following weeks or months of being on the island and on the publication of the pre training loft list 2,159 have successfully made it to the first phase of pre selection training.
With Abel Ledesma once again loft managing and caring for the pigeons, already facing a challenging start to the series with heavy rain and high winds hampering the islands making it unsuitable to have the competitors loft orientated and exercising freely around the loft to his satisfaction, the teams made the decisions to delay the training for a week or so to give all competing pigeons a good start, whilst Abel and Fede were facing their daily challenges in the loft, in the office Gladys was also once again hard at it formatting the loft entry data and overseeing the its assignments and ensuring the administration side of things were in order to commence once the pigeons were basketed and ready to start.
With all the preparations completed and Abel now happy with the condition and routine he’s been able to achieve the decision to get underway was made for Friday 18th Dec.
With 2,159 pigeons basketed and loaded they made the short but essential journey just a few miles from the loft for the first of five training races, yes its only short at first, but important to give the pigeons the experience of being liberated in a mass and orienting back to the lofts with close to 100 fanciers logged into the Livestream from midday the confirmation of a 12.10 was confirmed as we awaited the first arrivals.

Tomasz Wiczling 1st International tr1

Taking Top Honors of First International we go to team Poland as Tomasz Wiczling with pigeon second chance 55 covering the short journey in just over sixteen minutes timing in at 12 .26.07.15, Team Maria & Hubert Brankamp from Germany take the runner up position of 2nd with pigeon “Spork 6” on, taking 3rd by a decimal we go to team belgium and the “Luckspil Syn” as their entry “Mathias” timing in on 12 .26..07.56, ahead of Team Glevum representing England and also taking 1st UK in 4th with pigeon after eight on, team Hungary take the 5th position with pigeon “Miki” for Team Kardulecz & Borsos on 12 .26.08.55, Team The Oener Butchers Syn from The Netherlands takes the 6th International position was his entry “Frieda” on resulting in the second arrival from team belgium of Team Dirk Mertens taking 7th with pigeon “Mad Jowan” on 12 26.09.85, the nation of Granada take the 8th position with pigeon “Ivana” for Rida Gzouly comes home on, whilst team netherlands take a second Top Ten position with Team Goede & Brakele with pigeon “Éclair” on, claiming the 10th and final spotlighted position we head back to Germany with Team Jörg Unglaube and pigeon “Time Bandit 3” on 10 26.11.10

Team Maria & Hubert Brankamp from Germany 2nd International tr1

As we expected the returns were fast and furious once they started to arrive back at the loft as batch after batch broke away from the liberation site and returned to the loft what was clear to see was the trapping was faultless an a tribute to Abel and the loft management team in the way they are controlling the team of pigeons




So were underway with this year’s Derby Arona Tenerife One Loft Race, over the next few days, the team will gradually increase the distance away from the loft for the first five pre selection training flights of 5, 10 and 15 klm with the last being from the 20 klm prior to the newly revised owners activation period date of 28th December through to Jan 8th, it’s a time to consider your options as all of these pigeons by such time would of overcome the settling in period, the loft orientation and of course the first five initial preselecting training flights, so now is the time to have faith in your own personal loft selection sent to the race, the costs of this is a one off payment of 220 euro per pigeon, remember if you don’t activate them, someone else can in the 3rd party activation period that follows and as a result you as the entrant would lose control and any potential prizemonies they may be achieved during the series …

Following on from the activations periods training will recommence northwards through the island, towards the port of Santa Cruz for the final island training flight before heading out to sea, where a number of liberations will take place from locations mid seas between Tenerife and the neighboring island of Gran Canaria prior and the first prize race and through to this year’s final race scheduled for March 27th
So let’s all sit back, wish the team a successful series as we enjoy this year.


Tom Harris