RA SUPERFLY GAMEFARM’S 5 KEYS TO WINNING IN THE SPORT OF COCKFIGHTING
*Stag by RA Superfly Gamefarm
In one of our CVBA stag derby last year, I happen to come across this animated guy who told me the story of how his uncle had acquired with great pains and conjuring, the “BEST” bloodlines from the states, from breeders considered the main source of such coveted blood. The list of the breeders mentioned is a virtual who’s who of American cocking legends. You name it and this guy has it. And, the price at how much those fowls were acquired would be enough to feed a small third world country. I was naturally in awe of such a feat and you could sense the others hearing the story turn green with envy. The eagerness to see those fowls in action became an anticipation of domination.
When their first fight entered the pit, I noticed something was off in their fowl. It just stood in the middle of the pit, feathers are dull, and the handler instead of focusing on his fowl was busy attending to their bets. It did not have zip and started real slow but surprisingly won the fight with the help of one lucky head shot. The guy asked me what I thought of the fight and told him that his fowl was very sluggish. He told me their second and third fights would surely put on a show. I had to give the guy the benefit of the doubt. After all, a win is a win. To make the long story short, their second and third fights both looked as sluggish as the first, spilled blood all over the pit and this time could not anymore muster a miracle. Both lost rather embarrassingly. In the succeeding derbies, their entry got hammered even worse and I never heard the guy talk about their legendary lines anymore. So what went wrong folks?
Having a great bloodline is no guaranty of success in this sport as learned from the story above. When a game fowl loses, it is almost always a combination of many small things rather than a big one. Here are some tips that I hope could help our beginners get on the road to winning. Some of these, I bet you have read or heard of already but kindly indulge the writer and read some of it again.
Here they are:
1. Focus on only a few bloodline. Have you guys noticed that real good breeders made a name for themselves courtesy of one great line? Harold Brown and his Hatch, Gary Gilliam and his Roundheads, Johnny Jalandoni and his Lemons, Nene Abello and his Sweaters and the list could go on and on. Years ago I was also guilty of going after any bloodline I could get my hands on. Those were also the years I had bad win records. Quality over quantity is the key phrase. When you focus on fewer lines, you will be able to know your fowls more and improve them thru better selection and a deeper understanding of their strengths and weaknesses.
3. Learn the basics of conditioning and pointing yourself. Have you ever figured out why some of our handlers would ask a raise or a big bonus every time you win a derby? If you do not know how to condition or point your own fowls, they know you are dependent on them and they know you will not win without their “expertise.” I have seen many entries do good one year and completely bomb out the following year because their handlers abandoned them. If you know how to condition and point your fowls yourself, you will win more irregardless of the experience of your handlers and their assistants. Proper conditioning and pointing are products of good observation and common sense. Believe me, you have more common sense than most superstar handlers. You will also learn more about your fowls when you spend time with them in the keep.
4. Remember that cutting ability is the name of the game. This is a line repeated hundreds of times but one so misunderstood by most. A colleague of mine was preparing a show for a 6 cock derby. It was his last day of sparring his candidates and I was asked to help him select the ones to be fought in it. I saw four that were throwing their feet at full extension and feathers would fly every time they hit. I asked what they were and was told that they were from his uncles old lines that I know can cut. I asked my friend of his choice and pointed me to six real beautiful birds with long flowing tail feathers that I thought were hitting all over the place and missing every time they throw licks. I asked him why he would fight those when they sparred average at best. He told me they would look real great when walking in the pit or ruweda. I never saw my friend win a good derby but he always had the prettiest roosters in the pit.
5. Health is wealth. It bears repeating again and again that conditioning does not start on the first day of a 21 day keep but rather on the first day of a baby chicks life. The amount of care our fowls received during the entire course of their existence will play a vital role in how they will perform at the pits. It is the difference between a win, a draw, and a loss. Use the best feeds as much as your budget would allow, have an ironclad vaccination program, disinfect your farm regularly, give your fowls regular exercise, keep them away from fat, and give them the best facilities and environment when you can and if you can. Some of the more consistent entries I have seen do not even have great conditioning and pointing behind them, but the superior health of their fowls have carried them to victory countless times.
My warmest regards go out to each and every member of our most "quintessential" Asil Club!:>