Some participants Pipa auction
Some info on champions that auctioned with Pipa.
The name of Boscheind Flyers stands for Andre v d Wiel and his partner Jan Schreuder.
Andre, who always seems to be in a good mood, can show off with breath taking results both with old birds and youngsters, from Short Distance and Middle Distance.
More often he had the fastest bird of the whole release. Andre knew that 'quality birds' are the 2 magic words to be successful, so quality birds is what he was after all his life and he sought them in his own area.
Why try to get good birds far from home if you live nearby monuments such as Janssen Bros, Meulemans and Klak?
With birds off these world-renowned names he built up his own family that was completed by a fantastic breeding hen from Mr Saelen from Mol.
Saelen is the name of the man where Meulemans got that hen that made him world famous.
Andre raced against Klak, he often visited Janssens and of course he knew which were their best birds. Being ambitious as he is even from those champions he only wanted off their best. A look at the results on his site will show you he made the right choices indeed.
Vd Zijde Rens
The name of Rens v d Zijde spread like wild fire in 2000 when he had the National Ace Long Distance. His '141' repeatedly surprised fellow fanciers by winning a 1st prize from a long distance race with head winds and a big over fly.
And everybody knows what it means to win a long distance race in hard circumstances flying the greatest distance.
The bird was bred off 2 Schaerlaeckenspigeons, line Superstar and Sissi.
Naturally the birds were sold but Rens could afford this, since apart from his Schaerlaeckens birds he had direct children off illustrious 'Uno' from Raoul Verstraete in his lofts and direct birds from Ludo Claessens.
Birds that were a mix of these bloodlines kept on winning both for him and some of his friends.
One should know Rens only has few pigeons; he is not a seller but is happy to supply friends with birds that win. People who know Rens also know that if he donates a bird he does his very best to give a good one.
Bas is one of those angry young men that often stunned the nation with results that were described as 'impossible'.
Despite his young age nobody is talked about so much as he is in recent years, and no wonder.
His pigeons sometimes arrive from races from 600 kms in hard weather, as if they were released 50 kilometres from his place.
When others discussed his devastating results some said 'it must be the location or he must have a secret'.
Bas and father Gerard though definitely do not owe their fame to a good location; on the contrary, insiders know as for NPO-races (500 till 700 kms) their location is bad.
When in 2005 a Dutch fancier asked Henk de Weerd if he knew about any secret stuff of Verkerk, the renowned pigeon vet said:
'Yes Verkerk has as secret indeed, I know what it is and I will soon have the same.'
What Henk wanted to say was he had ordered a round of babies from Verkerk.
In pigeon sport fanciers sometimes say 'you cannot buy good birds, you should get them free' and then they refer to people who spent fortunes on birds but failed hopelessly.
The world famous Eyerkamp family have proven you sure can buy yourself a champion provided you are a smart buyer.
And it must be admitted the Eyerkamp family are smart.
Not only did they manage to build up one of the most prestigious furniture businesses ofEurope but since long their name is known in pigeon sport worldwide as well.
They sell furniture of high quality and buy pigeons of high quality.
As for the pigeons they buy they only want the very best which explains that dealers from theFar East often found themselves fighting with Eyerkamp for a superbird.
As for quality it is a well-known fact that if anywhere in Belgium or Holland some one destroys his competitors it won't be long before he will be visited by Eyerkamp.
When negotiating the price is not relevant, good birds are!
Since Eyerkamp is smart enough to realise a reputation is at stake one can be sure their bird will be something exceptional.
Fanciers who have not heard about the name of Engels from Putte are new in sport.
Jos and his brother Jules have been dominating the Belgian Nationals for decades.
Unlike in Holland in Belgium National IS national, which means competing a whole nation. The brothers like to race for big money and in the Nationals big money is to be won.
But' in order to be able to win those immense amounts of money you need to lay out big money as well.
Engels has the guts to pool, since they are not scared of no one, no matter who he is or where he lives.
The reason is they have very much trust in their pigeons.
After a look at the results sheets of the National races in the last decades one will wonder who in Belgium did better.
The location of Engels was also an item in the past after another race was destroyed.
But that was in the past indeed. It has stopped after their birds did the same at other lofts as what they did for Engels: Win!!
Ludo Claessens needs little comment. As for Middle Distance he simply is Holland's best.
People talk about other fanciers when they win; they talk about the Magician from Putte if he does not win!
What Claessens distinguishes from others is that his birds not only win against huge amounts of birds, the prize percentage is also amazing.
Ten birds in a race that win ten prizes?
For Ludo that is kind of normal.
If Claessens auctions birds they are mostly sold for crazy prices.
There is only one explanation for that: They win everywhere!
The secret of magic Ludo is his selection.
Birds that would be considered as supers in other lofts he gets rid of since they are not good enough for him.
In this sport there is a saying 'everybody occasionally has a bad year'.
Claessens never ever had a bad year ever since he raced birds.
For him even a bad race is real exceptional, and' what he may call a poor result is considered a good result by many others.
Herman Brinkman is called 'the Marathon man'.
The 2-day races are his domain, he lives in the most Northern part of Holland, so his birds have to fly the greatest distances (from 900 till 1,300 kilometres!), which explains his nickname.
Everybody knows as for the great long distance the over fly has no chance in hard weather, but Brinkman is the exception to the rule.
He doesn't care about the distance nor the over fly, since he knows what kind of birds he has; a type that never gives up.
His basic birds are off spring of the world famous v d Wegen aces such as 'Lamme', 'Barcelona' and 'Oud Doffertje' through Eyerkamp, mentioned before.
These birds were crossed with the 'Aardens' of his father and an explosion of superior great long distance pigeons was the result.
Belgians who noticed the results of those birds from races at a gigantic distance and went to Herman to buy his strain never regretted it.
- Beullens from Heverlee became a star at great long distance with Brinkmanbirds.
- Rans from Herent won 1st National Bordeaux.
- Sas from Vosselaar won 1st National and 2nd International Bordeaux. These are just some examples.
Who will be next?
Geerinckx Bart, Luc, Jurgen
Fellow sportsmen sometimes ask me 'what is the biggest mistake you ever made?'
Then the answer may be: 'I made many mistakes and one of them was not buying birds from Jos Soontjens when I was there long way back.'
In those days William Geerts was the terror of the province of Antwerp. I still remember William's words then: 'I have one problem. To prepare my birds for the Middle Distance races I have to participate a short distance race from Noyon before and from that station Soontjens is unbeatable'.
So to Soontjens I went and when I was there I asked him who his greatest competitor was.
Jos, who was not a bragger at all, said: 'I have only one competitor, the wind.'
Still I did not buy his birds since I was so na've as to think they could only handle the Short Distance. Geerinckx however, who lived in the same town, was smarter than I was.
He imported Soontjens birds and shortly after he became a Champion at short distance, later on at Middle Distance and in recent years he is outstanding at the one-day races.
When I was at Serge van Elsacker's in the summer of 2006 I congratulated him on his fantastic results.
'Thanks' Serge said, adding 'you should congratulate Geerinckx as well, you can't believe how strong he is again this year'.
How good the Soontjens birds are will certainly be confirmed by Herbots and Pros Roosen. .
Introducing Houben is the same as saying that the pope lives in Rome.
When I was a teenager (too long ago) Houben was an outstanding racer, now that the master leaves much work up to son Luc and daughter Nadja he still is and' he was all those years in between.
Photos of up to 100 people in the street in which he lives when birds got home from races such as Bourges show who was considered to be the favourite to win.
Long way back I introduced Ganus from USA to Houben and Ganus and me introduced Dave Clausing.
The American built up a close friendship with the Houben family; he bought many of their birds with the result that not only in America fanciers got to know how good the Houben birds are but people worldwide.
You must know that Dave entered birds for the One Million Dollar races in Sun City for several years.
The name of the fancier who most probably was the most successful in the one million dollar races in South Africa in recent years is Clausing. With his Houben birds indeed.
Marcel Sangers is one of those young men from Holland whose results are sometimes described as 'from another planet'.
Sangers lives in the Zutphen area, nearby Eyerkamp, Van Loo, Petrie and other great names. But this strong competition is not an item for him, since he still manages to destroy Semi National NPO races from 400 to 600 kilometres.
In recent years he has been racing by the name of 'Sangers Ung'.
Mr Ung is a successful businessman from Thailand but apparently he is a smart pigeon man as well. He chose Sangers as his partner in pigeon sport and he sure has never regretted it.
His name and that of Sangers repeatedly were on the National television-station after they had destroyed another NPO race.
Winning 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 10, 17 from Bourges against 10,675 pigeons?
Winning 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 16 from Orleans against no less than 18,127 birds?
Such things are only possible with birds that are superior to others.
van de Merwe Peter
Many outstanding champions have been introduced already, but as for Peter van de Merwe we can be short and I want to be short, since he is a close friend.
In 2006 he simply was the best of ALL Holland.
With 'ALL Holland' we talk about 30,000 fanciers.
I even daresay never before any body else did what Peter did in 2006.
Describing his results is almost a mission impossible since the question is where to start and when to end.
He is a super champion at Short Distance, he is a miracle man at Middle Distance, and most probably he got the best results ever at Long Distance (one day races) both with old birds and young birds, both with cocks and hens.
One piece of advice for those who do not have a strong heart; please do NOT look at the results published on his site.
Van Gils Frans & Paul
Frans van Gils from Ravels was one of the very first to notice that as for the 2 day races Dutch pigeons were superior to those of Belgium, Germany or whatever country.
Long way back, before other great long distance fliers from abroad went to Holland to buy pigeons he had them already in his loft, which is understandable.
He lives close to the Dutch border; he could compare the arrivals from races such asBarcelona and notice the difference between Holland and Belgium.
At the time Schellekens from Riel raced outstanding from Pau, Barcelona, Sint Vincent and so on. So to the late Sjef Schellekens he went, they became close friends, so it stands to reason that he got from Schellekens birds off all his best.
The result was that within a few years he had turned into one of the best Belgian fliers for the greatest distances.
Like Brinkman in Holland he lives in the most northern part of his country but this hardly made any difference in the Nationals for the birds he got from his Dutch friend.
How good these pigeons are at the great long distance is proven by the fact that he representsBelgium at Olympiad in Oostende January 2007.
Whereas most fanciers nowadays specialise on short distance or long distance, on middle distance or great long distance, on racing hens or young birds, throughout the years Jos and his son Lars have created a family of birds that is All Round.
In the past he mainly focussed on old birds but in recent years he also competes the strongest young bird racers, both on provincial and national level.
Especially in 2006 he had a sensational young bird team.
Like Engels Vercammen also like to race for money and are not scared to pool against no one.
The question is who won as many championships at the highest level as Vercammen did in recent years and even more who won as much money as he did.
Typical for Vercammen is also he does not depend on just a few birds.
I remember that real hard race from Vichy in 2005.
Vercammen wanted to save his best pigeons and only entered babies he wanted to get rid of. Despite the hard circumstances and the fact that he did not enter his best birds the races was destroyed.
Qualities of the Vercammen birds are the following:
- They are All Round, which means they perform from all distances both as young birds and old birds.
- They perform under all weather conditions.
We mentioned Geerinckx as a guy who races outstanding with the Jos Soontjens birds, but there is somebody else who comes close to him; Hugo Vlaeminck.
80 Percent of his birds are Soontjens origin and in the early 90-ies they performed so well that Hugo was expelled from the short distance races.
One combine after the other said 'thanks for the lessons Hugo, you are not welcome any more, please race somewhere else'.
The butcher from Rupelmonde was at his wit's end and did not know what to do, either quit the sport or try Middle Distance.
'Why he had this dilemma' one may wonder?
The reason was he doubted if his birds could handle the middle distance races.
He chose not to quit, accepted the new challenge (Middle Distance) and much to the surprise of his fellow sportsmen and himself his birds performed even better.
From Short Distance his aces managed to win 2 minutes ahead, from Middle Distance 5 minutes or more.
His Crack (97-344) won 1st prizes 5 to 7 minutes ahead against average 500 birds.
He won 9 firsts total and was 4 times beaten by a loft mate. His 99-132 won 7 minutes ahead from 1,387 birds (fastest 26,000); his 97-307 was once fastest 18,000 birds!
In 1999 Hugo became 3rd National Champion KBDB Middle Distance and in 2001 he became 1st Provincial Champion (12,409 fanciers) with his so-called Sprint birds.
What else can we say?
De Heijde Cor
In the last few years many birds from champions are auctioned for charity or organisations that are beneficial for pigeon sport such as Pipa.
People can bid on the Internet or by means of a magazine.
If Cor de Heijde donates a pigeon or voucher his are always among the highest bids.
Also in Japan his pigeons are immensely popular.
He also has a family that is especially fit for the 2-day races.
In the 90-ies it was his 'Klamper' that got stunning results at those races, later on it was mainly its off spring that was responsible for no less than 250 'top 100 places' at his loft and others. One of the most sensational long distance birds with De Heijde blood in its veins was 97-488 (gr.daughter 'Sint Vincent') that won National Soustons 10,953 p ' 3rd, National Mont de Marasan 17,205 p ' 16th and National Dax 14,226 p ' 74th.
These were all 2-day races from about 1,000 kilometres.
Furthermore one should know that sensational 'Miss Waalre' from Koopman descends from De Heyde birds ('Klamper' and 'Sint Vincentduif)' and B Jansen won the 'Europe Cup' in 2004 also with partly De Heydebirds.
If people worldwide want his birds so badly for so much money this can only have one reason!
Devooght Danny & Wijlen Gaston
There is a saying 'God calls the best people first' and sometimes it seems there is much truth in it. Gaston Devooght was one of those nice people that only had friends but unfortunately he passed away much too young in 2006.
In the past he and his partner Norbert Norman dominated Belgian pigeon sport for decades, when later on Gaston started to race on his own with his son in law Danny successes followed real soon again.
One of the high lights in his career was 2005, the year in which he became National Champion of All Belgium.
Meanwhile he had also built up a great name in the Far East.
People who are familiar with pigeon sport in Taiwan know that one of the greatest champions over there, if not THE greatest, is Mr Ming Chiuu Lai.
He is a professional racer and in Taiwan millions of euros are at stake.
So understandably he buys the best pigeons he can buy.
The last European birds he bought were 2 rounds of babies from Devooght in 2005 and he had put an order for 2006 as well. The reason is clear:
Mr Lai bought many birds but those of Devooght were among the best in recent years.
In pigeon sport long distance is often divided in 2 categories:
- One-day races.
- Two-day races.
People assume that it requires 2 totally different types of birds to deal with these different races, which seems to be a fact indeed.
However sympathetic Chris Hebberechts has a sort of birds that can handle both the one-day races from approximately 600 kilometres and races such as from Barcelona, about 1,100 kms.
In Western Europe very few fanciers have that type of bird.
And believe me Chris is good at 'Fond' whatever the distance is.
When in 2005 the late Gaston Devooght became National champion he was so fair as to admit:
'I won the title indeed, but I was kind of lucky. Honestly speaking Hebberechts was better but my good luck was to clock early pigeons that were pick birds.'
Gaston was right.
If we say Hebberechts was Belgium's best on Long Distance in the early years of this century very few will protest.
It is also interesting that in Holland some 'Long Distance guys' say: 'there are few Belgians that can compete us from races such as Barcelona. Hebberechts is on of them.'
Hendriks Florian & Jo
Florian Hendriks is the youngest champion that we introduce.
But he is certainly not the dumbest.
Very few are so well informed about good pigeons than he is and good pigeons is where he is after. He started hunting and buying youngsters, brothers or sisters of the very best pigeons inBelgium and Holland about 5 years ago and only 3 years later the whole province of Limburgknew his name.
A striking thing about this young man is also that he knows how to grade pedigrees.
The origin is important but no more than that.
Late 2006 we were discussing a pair of 2004 birds that were off a very famous breeder.
He had paid good money for them and the birds were nice.
But' since he was not happy with the few babies he had off them they could move and did not get a second chance.
Florian wants super birds only; he imported off spring of super birds only and has little patience. The birds he got should produce winners real soon or'
Now he is already the man to be beaten and we would not be surprised if he will hardly be beatable in a real near future.
Jan van Oeckel
Jan van Oeckel lives in Oud Turnhout, nearby Frans van Gils mentioned before, so in the Northern part of the country, close to the Dutch border.
Jan had been racing very successfully at Short and Middle Distance before but a couple of years ago he decided to switch over to one-day races as well.
Fellow sports men told him he made a big mistake, since he had no chance at his location for the Nationals.
'If that is a fact I just need birds that are superior to others to overcome that handicap' he claimed ironically.
Jan decided to participate the long distance races indeed and even entered his birds for the Nationals!
Now his friends that told him he had no chance realise they made a mistake.
Jan van Oeckel even managed to classify birds in the top 10 National Bourges.
Harm Vredeveld is one of those guys from Holland that achieved results that were often described as 'impossible'.
If it is not clear to you what 'impossible' means just some examples:
Chimay 17,077 p: 1, 2, 3, 11, 14, 15, 1,9, 20, 21, 30.