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Local pigeon racer wants more people to race in Amarillo

Amarillo, TX - The AU American Racing Pigeon Association has been around since 1910 and have thousands of members around the world. But one local pigeon racing hobbyists want more members to join in Amarillo.

John Landry has been racing pigeons since he was a kid. "I learned from a old time racing pigeon guy who took me under his wing," said Landry.

After retiring from the navy in the 80's, he decided to join the American Racing Pigeon Association and race pigeons as a sport in Amarillo."The smell of the birds and the handling of the birds... I just have a deep love for these animals," said Landry.

And there are a few others who feel the same way. Right now there are about 20 members in Amarillo who race their pigeons. But Landry wants this membership to grow bigger in the Panhandle. "It's a good sport. You can do it right at your home and it's been made easier now by the electronic clocking system," said Landry.

Each bird has a ring around its foot and is tracked on the electronic clocking system that scans the pigeon when it gets home. The first flock of birds to make it back to their home in the fastest amount of time, wins. Landry says he has won several times, but won't reveal how he prepares his birds. "There are secrets to this just like anything else that has to do with racing," said Landry.

Landry hasn't been able to race his pigeons in recent seasons, due to some re-occurring injuries from being in the Navy. But now he feel like he and his birds are ready to race again in Amarillo. "To see a bird come in from a five or six hundred mile race is breathtaking. It's just a marvelous feeling," said Landry.

Members of this club meet at their clubhouse off Amarillo Boulevard and 9th Street. Right now the club is preparing for the next racing season that starts at the end of this month.
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