Organised pigeon racing commenced in Brisbane in 1894 with the formation of the Queensland Homing Society by then Queensland Surveyor General, Mr Archibald McDowall. Thorough-bred racing pigeons were brought to this country from Britain, no doubt by the many British immigrants who had enjoyed the sport back in the home land.
By 1945 there were three organised racing pigeon clubs operating the greater Brisbane area, these were, the Queensland Racing Pigeon Association (QRPA), the Brisbane Homing Pigeon Club (BHPC) and the Queensland Homing Society (QHS). These clubs met on the 8th February 1945 to organise a combine race from Quilpie, a distance of approximately 540 miles, this meeting held in the rooms of the Queensland Homing Society, Roma St, Brisbane was to be the start of the Queensland Racing Pigeon Federation.
Those present at the initial meeting were Messrs H Moxey, A McCormick, A Grice and E Parnell from QHS, Messrs H Knoblauch, H Levett, R Scott and C Parker from QRPA and Messrs V Fletcher, A Lang and A Howard from the BHPC.
These gentlemen set about organising that first combine (Federation) race to take place from Quilpie on the 29th July 1945. New rules had to be established because up until that time the three clubs were all operating separately to each other. Some of the new rules brought in for this race were:
- No limit on the number of birds allowed to be entered by each member
- All birds had to have flown at least 300 miles prior to entry.
- Entry fee of 3 shillings per bird.
- The race to remain open for 7 days and 8 prizes to be paid out but limited to one prize per flyer.
- All one-bird timers were banned and only running clocks were permitted, this limited a lot of flyers because race clocks were scarce due to wartime restrictions.
- Members had to supply their race entry form one week prior to basketing on Thursday 26th July 1945.
Mr Parnell donated a prize of One Guinea (one pound and one shilling) to the wife, daughter or female attendant of a loft with the fastest, but unplaced velocity. A Mr D. Stevenson was appointed conveyor to accompany the birds to the race point and to feed and water them along the way.
On the 17th July 1945 the “combine” was officially named the Queensland Racing Pigeon Federation and official flying rules to take effect on all future Federation races were laid down.
That very first Federation race from Quilpie was won by A Neale & Son, the other 7 place getters were, S Moffat, Howard & Laffa, V Fletcher, H Knoblauch, A Haylock, R Scott and C Parker.
The birds were transported by rail to the Quilpie race and the Federation commenced transporting all birds for the clubs in this manner from 1947. The role of transporting race birds for the affiliated clubs that make up the Federation continues to this day but of course the QRPF now utilises its own vehicle to carry the thousands of racing pigeons to the various race points each week.
The QRPF was incorporated on the 9th of December 1991 under the Queensland Incorporation Act and continues to this day to provide facilities for affiliated club members to race pigeons.
The QRPF races in three different direction, alternating each year, these directions are North, from Gympie to Townsville, West from Jondaryan to Windorah and Sth West from Pittsworth to Noccundra. Race schedules are drawn up each year with races commencing in May and continuing until early October. These schedules gradually increase this distance flown until the final race of the season in early October from approx 1,000 klms.