A new world record was set last week when a racing pigeon sold for €1.6 million at auction. Originally priced at a mere €200, New Kim, a lovely looking female pigeon, was the subject of a bidding war.
Two Chinese bidders, using the pseudonyms Super Duper and Hitman lost the run of themselves in the last half-hour of bidding, pushing up the price to a whopping €1.6 million. The Belgian pigeon’s breeder Kurt Van de Wouwer said he was “in shock” at the price his pigeon fetched.
The price was about €350,000 more than the previous record set, also for Belgian racing pigeon, last year. That bird, a male named Arnando was known as the “Lewis Hamilton of pigeons. Must have been pretty speedy, in his day. He has since retired and is kept for breeding. New Kim has also been retired. The hen pigeon had her best racing season in 2018.
Belgium has been seen as the source of the world’s best racing pigeons for many years now.
Belgian pigeon federation chief Pascal Bodengien says, “Everybody is interested in our pigeons. To be the best, it has to be your life’s work. For some, it may seem boring. Day in, day out. Winter and summer, always those pigeons.”
There’s nothing boring about the tens of millions of Euros in prize money up for grabs at the high end of pigeon racing. New Kim’s wealthy owner can look forward to breeding the winners of the future.