We can divide racing pigeons into different groups based on their build:
- Sprint (until 300 km), Middle distance (300 – 500 km)
- One day long distance (500-800 km)
- Overnight long distance (800-1000 km), and Marathon long distance (more than 1000 km).
In order to reach these distances, the top pigeons need a perfect build and muscles. There are big and small pigeons between the top pigeons. The weight and dimension of the pigeons can be different. But we consider the average build to discuss forms and proportions. In general, most of top pigeons have a pear-shaped build with the chest as basis. Where is the difference? The shape and the proportions.
To make it easier, we present the ABC principle:
1. depth (A), the least frequent build only in the Sprint and Middle distance pigeons. They feel sharper. You feel it very clearly that the sternum is protruding.
2. normal pear-shape (B), Build in middle distance and one day long distances pigeons. These thicker feeling muscles swell easier. Since you can feel the muscles next to the sternum swelling, the sternum is descended a bit.
3. Spherical (C), Build for sprint, middle and long distance pigeons. This build is the most frequent. The pigeons feel more spherical. The sternum is equal to the muscles.
The 2 vent bones are below at the end of the sternum. These are the 2 bones that feel stub. These must be as close as possible to each other, preferably contiguous. They should feel firm and not simply be pushed away. All the top pigeons that we have examined have these good vent bones.
The back and the tail together are also a part of the build. Most top pigeons have a flat back. In most top level pigeons, the tail is mostly flat (horizontal), small for the eye, 1 tail feather and sometimes slightly pointing downwards. All examined top pigeons that I met, have a tail downwards. All these treated forms and characteristics have a perfect aerodynamic line the aerodynamic shape of the pigeon”.