The sport of pigeon racing was conducted in Bangalore in the 1920’s by a club called the Bangalore Homing Society. For reasons unknown the sport was discontinued. In 1973 a band of four members got together on the 18th of October and formed the Mysore Racing Pigeon Club (It was all Mysore State then). It was later renamed the Karnataka Racing Pigeon Club consequent to renaming of the state.
In those days no one had an idea about how to go about organizing pigeon races. No books or literature were available. fanciers around the Cox Town area got together and raced amongst themselves.
According to Mr Philip David from California, who lived in Cox Town in the 70s, “Two great Pigeon Racers from Stephens Road were very instrumental in getting the club off the ground. One was Dellamott who lived very close to Paranjoythi Road; he had a great a great loft in the back of his house and had some very fine pigeons. The other person was Peter Pereira who lived close to the Stephens Road Bridge. He started with a few Japanese blues which he got from Kevin Stephens. We used to race among ourselves much before the club started. There were many pigeon fanciers around the cantonment area during the 70s who lent their shoulder to kick start the club. Some of them were Dellamott, Robinson, Pereira, Willie and Stephens.”
Thanks to the enthusiasm of these fanciers ideas were pooled and things got underway. A few places on the north western route were selected for training and racing. Since the birds were never tested prior to this, no one knew what to expect. Also, fanciers had no idea about any method of training and feeding. As a result returns were very poor and velocities deplorable. A decision was taken and a switch was made to the Eastern route. Results were much better from this side and in 1975 the club successfully conducted a race from Chennai a distance of about 280 Kms. Encouraged by this result and because of the distance limitation on this route the club changed to the Northern route. After some shuffling of race points the club has stuck to this route ever since.
In the mean time more members joined the club. The quality of the birds also improved, thanks to fanciers in Coimbatore and Chennai who managed to input some birds. Books and other literature also became available. All these factors contributed greatly to the improvement in the sport. Where once flying 400 kms on the day was difficult, now 700 km is flown easily.
Founders of the KRPC
If we have to look for one name that can be credited with starting this club, that name will be Kevin Stephens. It was his idea to get a club together. He was supported by Mr Wilfred Williams, Mr G. ARebeiro and Mr G. H. Rebeiro
Mr Ram Prasad and Mr Eshwaran joined them a little later. Mr George Robinson served as president for a short while followed by the journalist Sydney Smith, then a reporter with the Bangalore newspaper Deccan Herald. Later, his brother Lt Col. F. C. Smith became president in 1980
It was Colonel, as he was popularly known, who brought discipline into the club. He drew up the Rules and Regulations for the club. He was president for 25 years holding the post till his demise in the year 2005. Mr Gopi the then vice-president, took over as President in 2005, followed by Mr Afsar in 2006. The KRPC was then presided over by me, Edison Thomas, with Mr V Madhava as Vice President and Mr Chellaiah as secretary.