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The Semi-Finals

The Semi-Finals of Fantail Judging

By Brian Pogue

The CCFC is known as a tremendously dynamic and progressive club within the entire fancy pigeon world; always looking to make improvements for the betterment of the fancy . The executive have discussed a possible change to how Grand Champion could be judged at our shows.  The suggested format is to follow something similar to what is done at the prestigious Westminster Dog Show.  If you have ever seen one of the big dog shows, there are a number of breeds.  The champions of these breeds compete in categories such as working, sporting, hounds, toys etc.  The winners of each category compete for the title of overall Grand Champion dog.

So with our shows the birds would compete in colour classes as they do now.  The “Best of Colour” winners would compete within a category for the “Best of Category”.  Each category would be judged like a class with placing from top to bottom.  The Grand Champion would be selected from the category winners.  For Reserve Champion, the reserve of that colour would come up to compete as well as the 2nd placed bird in the category, to ensure that the 5 best birds of the show are awarded. Again, the way

“colour class” birds are judged will remain the same. The new format happens at the end when judging for Grand Champion. So, all colour class champions go into the new semi final format, to reach the ultimate “5 best birds” in the show

The suggested categories are:

MARKED – AOC Saddle, Black Saddle, Bodymark, Red Saddle, Tailmark

BAR –AshRed, AshYellow, Blue, Powdered, Silver

SOLID – Black, Dun, Red, Spread, Yellow

EXOTIC – Almond, Andalusion, Brown, Grizzle, Indigo, Opal, Rare

BASE – Checker, Pied, White

Subject to change are the names for the categories and which classes are in each category.


Less stress on the birds - Instead of having all 25 birds up with 6 birds per pen and taking a long time, there would only be about 5 birds competing at a time.

Less total time - The time for the semi-finals and the finals may take less total time than the championship class with all 25 best of colours up in the walking pens at the same time.

Less stress on fanciers - It is difficult on those fanciers who have several birds competing for grand champion to get all of their birds ready at the same time.  So it will be less stress on those fanciers and there will be less time waiting for birds to be set down in the walking pens.

Less stress on the judge – There would only be 5 birds competing for Grand Champion rather than 25 so it will be much easier to watch the whole class.

Awarding the best birds - There should be an increased chance of the best birds winning and not just the ones that lasted through a marathon or demolition derby.

More Winners - In addition to having the Grand Champion and the 4 Reserve Champions, there would also be the champions of each category – Champion Marked, Champion Bar etc.


Adjusting to a new system - As with anything new, it takes some time for fanciers to learn a new system.

Exact order of the 25 not known -The order of finish from 1 to 25 in the colour classes would not be known.  However the placing within each category would be known.

The executive believe that that the pros outweigh the cons. However, this change to the system for selecting Grand Champion and Reserves will be discussed at the Annual Meeting and requires a change to the constitution.

Pogue/Wallace moved to propose a change to the constitution; by removing this paragraph "When judging for the Grand Champion Fantail, all colour class winners will be brought forward for judging.  The judge will then remove birds in reverse order of quality one at a time.  When the Grand Champion has been selected, the reserve winner of that colour class will be brought forward to be judged for the Reserve Champion and Second Reserve Champion. "  with the intent to develop a CCFC policy on judging procedures with the understanding that this proposed change to the constitution must be in the next bulletin and presented at the annual meeting.