The 37th edition of the Racing Pigeon Olympiad was supposed to take place in January 2021 in Romania. No one could have predicted the Covid 19 pandemic and its effects on our lives. This is why the 37th edition of the Racing Pigeon Olympiad will take place for the first time in the summer of 2022. We tried to find out from the president of the National Union of Pigeon Fanciers in Romania – “COLUMBA”, Mr. Marius Tunduc, more organizational details about this huge event in pigeon sport, which will be hosted, for the first time, in Romania. We offer you, this great interview, for the first time.
Reporter: Hello, Mr. President! Please tell us why an Racing Pigeon Olympiad in August and why in 2022?
MT: Unfortunately in January 2021 and January 2022 there were restrictions all over Europe and even more, worldwide. We don’t know what will happen in the winter of 2022. Pigeons are moulting in October – November and December and we may have the unpleasant surprise that the Covid 19 pandemic is taking off again in winter. For this reason we chose the middle of August 2022. Even if it is not a perfect time because we still have races with young pigeons, however, it is the safest period in terms of possible travel restrictions imposed by the pandemic.
Reporter: Where will the Racing Pigeon Olympiad take place and during what period?
MT: The Racing Pigeon Olympiad will take place in Oradea, between August 12th – 13th, 2022. Oradea is a very beautiful city in the western part of Romania and is located 5 km away from the border with Hungary. It is very accessible by car for pigeon fanciers from: Hungary, Poland, Ukraine, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Austria, Croatia, Slovenia, Serbia, Bosnia Herzegovina, Albania, Montenegro, Macedonia etc. In fact, for them, Oradea is a few hours away by car and there is also a highway straight to Oradea. Not to mention the 15.000 Romanian pigeon fanciers from the host country.
Reporter: What will be the program of the event for the public?
MT: The official opening of the Racing Pigeon Olympiad will be on Friday morning, August 12th. Summer gives us the chance to create a unique opening moment like I think it has never been before. I invite all pigeon fanciers around the world to be present at the opening to mark the return to normality after the pandemic.
On Friday evening there will be the awarding of Racing Pigeon Olympiac lots 2019-2020 + 2020-2021 and the awarding of World Best Pigeon 2019, 2020, 2021. It will be a new innovation: awarding ceremony will take place outdoor, in the center of Oradea, in „Unirii Square”, a beautiful place, surrounded by Art Nuveau buildings. So this is the first time in the 75-year history of the Racing Pigeon Olympiad that such a summer awarding has been held, and maybe the last one, which is why this is a moment that should not be missed. Details can be found on the website www.olympiad.ro
We will have a concert with a famous artist, both in Romania and abroad, a special auction, as it has never been organized before. We are convinced that we will have over 10.000 people in „Unirii Square” in Oradea and we will all make a historic moment for the world pigeon fancier.
Reporter: 10.000 people to attend to the olympic awarding? That would be unprecedented. How is that going to happen?
MT: First of all, there will be hundreds of seats. For these, there will be tickets for sale on the Racing Pigeon Olympiad website soon www.olympiad.ro. For those who do not want seats or fail to buy, they will be able to sit in the „Unirii Square”to watch the show. In addition, as I said, there will be a concert with very famous artists in Romania, which usually gathers 20-30.000 people in public. We will announce this concert in the press and the „Unirii Square”will surely be filled with the audience from Oradea and its surroundings. This will also make our sport more known and respected in this area. That’s why I recommend buying tickets with space to avoid crowds and have good visibility, especially since they will be quite cheap, around 20 euros.
Reporter: Can you tell us the Saturday schedule?
MT: Yes, of course! The Racing Pigeon Olympiad will be open all day and on Saturday, in the morning, the following competitions will be awarded: The World Championship, the FCI Grand Prix Championship, etc.
Reporter: Where will the exhibition itself be?
MT: The exhibition (during the Racing Pigeon Olympiad) of pigeons will be in the new Polyvalent Hall of Oradea, on Traian Blajovici Street. It is a new construction, very beautiful, inaugurated in April 2022. Here we will have the Olympic pigeons, a fair where will be present companies that sell food, supplements and medicines, but also pigeons for sale. Of course, these details can also be found on the website: www.olympiad.ro .
The Friendship Banquet will take place on Saturday night. A farewell party to celebrate the event and the pigeon fanciers together. We chose to do the award separately from the banquet, on Friday night precisely because there are so many trophies to be awarded and Saturday’s nigh tevent we dedicate it entirely to a party as in the times before Covid 19. Those who will be present will not regret it. They will see Romanian folklore and traditions, but they will also have international music from all over the world.
Reporter: In closing, would we like to know when the pigeons are brought for the exhibition?
MT: The pigeons will be brought in on Wednesday afternoon, August 10th. Only the pigeons present at the Racing Pigeon Olympiad will appear in the Racing Pigeon Olympiad results catalog. The catalog will be printed on Thursday. So far we have 22 countries that will be present with pigeons and others that for various reasons will not bring pigeons but their delegations will be present here.
Reporter:Good luck then!
MT: Thank you! As I said, all the details will always appear on the Racing Pigeon Olympiad website: www.olympiad.ro but also on the Racing Pigeon Olympiad facebook page: Racing Pigeons Olympiad 2022 https://www.facebook.com/Olympiad.ro . We are waiting for you all in Oradea in August for a unique event!