Frans and Marcel, and Marcel's son Carl in between them
Of the three first prizes that they won, two were claimed in the renowned Diamandverbond Union. This union, named after the region that was once home to a flourishing diamond industry, is still the leading competition in the sprint, with the best sprint fanciers competing against each other every week. These fanciers work hard every week to earn as much prize money as they can. Fanciers are known to basket only their very best birds, and those that fail to deliver several weeks in a row will inevitably be left out. The number of competing pigeons decreases significantly every week due to this fierce competition. As a result, pigeons that would initially win prizes per ten with ease suddenly fail to win a prize per 3, and these kind of pigeons usually have no place in the racing team in Berlaar. It is in this prestigious union, where only the very best fanciers stand out, that the brothers Marcel and Frans Van den Brande have been top performers for years.
The Diamantverbond Union awarded a title of General Champion Quievrain and Noyon for the first time in 2014. The winners of 2014 were the Van den Brande Brothers. They finished in 2nd place in 2015, before claiming another championship title in 2016 and another second place in 2017. They have repeatedly outperformed their opponents at club level as well, winning the title of general champion in the club 12 times in 18 seasons. They finished in 2nd place in the remaining 6 seasons. They basketed pigeons in Bevel (along the Nete river) for the first time in 2017, and they became 1st General Champion Quievrain and Noyon here as well (Click here for all of their best results over the years). Among the stars that have won so many great results in recent seasons are De Diamant, Blauwe 213, Super Blauwe 401, De Piraat, De Kapitein and Blauwe 512.
Diamant was an exceptional racing bird with 8 first prizes (no doubles) to his name:
1st Quievrain 221 p. 1st Quievrain 186 p. 1st Quievrain 186 p.(not the same race as the previous one) 1st Quievrain 126 p. 1st Quievrain 76 p. 1st Quievrain 200 p. 1st Quievrain 76 p. 1st Quievrain 106 p.
He also wins a 2nd/274 p., a 2nd/1086 p., a 7th/863 p. and 44 prizes in total, including mosty prizes per ten. These results led to a title of 4th ace pigeon YBs Quevrain 2014, 3rd ace pigeon YLs Quievrain 2015 in the Diamandverbond Union, and 1st ace pigeon Quievrain in Bevel 2017. He is now the sire of the 730/17, a talented pigeon that claimed a 10th/380 p. and a 27th/717 p. The sire of Diamant became 1st ace pigeon Quievrain in the Diamandverbond union in 2014, and his grandparents were excellent racing birds as well: 2nd/187, 5th/143, 5th/254, 5th/2,224, 20th/922, 24th/1.740, always from Quievrain. Click here for Diamant's full pedigree.
Blauwe 213 (BE12-6054213)
This was one of the best pigeons ever in the collection of the two brothers: it won 9 first prizes, inlcuding two wins from Quievrain (1st/638 p. and 1st/772 p.) and seven first prizes from Noyon (1st/142, 1st/64, 1st/13, 1st/81, 1st/78, 1st/43, 1st/27), making him the fastest sprint bird in the province of Antwerp several times. His hard work earned him the title of 1st Ace Pigeon Noyon YLs Berlaar and 1st Ace Pigeon Noyon Olds Diamantverbond in 2013 and 2015 respectively. He finished in 2nd place both in the club and in the Diamantverbond union in 2014. His grandfather and grandmother from his father's side were great racing birds as well: together they won a 1st/Quievrain 103 p., a 1st Quievrain 79 p., a 1st Quievrain 444 p. and a 1st Quievrain 388 p. Click here for the full pedigree of Blauwe 213. And he is proving to be a talented breeding bird as well, with such talented descendants as Sagan (BE15-6106531), 772/17 and 771/17. The 772/17 wins an 11th/717 p. Quievrain as a young bird, and his nest mate 771/17 has been quite successful as well, claiming an 11th/284, 6th/244, 8th/132, 9th/494 and 14th/302 Quievrain. Sagan claimed top results both in Quievrain and Noyon but he was particularly successful in Noyon:
1st Quievrain 315 p. 1st Noyon 425 p. 2nd Quievrain 353 p. 2nd Noyon 68 p. 5th Noyon 140 p., 5th Noyon 68 p., 5th Noyon 46 p. (no doubles) 8th Noyon 396 p. 9th Noyon 368 p. 10th Noyon 984 p.
Super Blauwe 401 (BE14-6115401)
Super Blauwe 401 was 1st Ace Pigeon Noyon YLs 2015 and 1st Ace Pigeon Noyon Olds 2016 in the Diamandverbond Union. He wins 3 first prizes in his racing career: 1st Noyon 155 p., 1st Noyon 150 p., and 1st Noyon 134 p. He also claimed an additional 2nd prize, 3 third prizes, 2 fourth prizes and a 5th and 6th from the same release site. And he was successful in Quievrain as well, winning a 3rd/126 p. and a 4th/349 p. Super Blauwe 401 is now the sire of Blauwe 512.
Blauwe 512 (BE15-6106512)
This is a superstar for team Van den Brande. Blauwe 512 became 2nd Ace Pigeon Quievrain YLs and 1st Ace Pigeon Quievrain Olds Diamantverbond Union in 2017. He wins 7 top 5 prizes overall:
1st Quievrain 282 p. 1st Quievrain 202 p. 2nd Quievrain 261 p. 3rd Quievrain 429 p. 3rd Quievrain 264 p. 4th Quievrain 146 p. 4th Quievrain 71 p.
Blauwe 512 is now the sire of a first prize winner from Quievrain against 669 pigeons. The sire of Blauwe 512 is Super Blauwe 401, the dam is Sneeuwwitje 307/19. This Sneeuwwitje is a daughter of Blauwe Aerts 696/12, which is also the sire of such renowned birds as Piraat and Kapitein. Click here for Blauwe 512's full pedigree.
De Piraat is yet another ace pigeon winner in team Van den Brande: he was 2nd Ace Pigeon YLs Quievrain with a 1st/444 p. and a 1st/377 p. The dam of Piraat is Het Vaal, winner of a 1st of 745 p. The dam was a great racing bird, and so was Piraat's grandfather from his mother's side: he claimed a 1st Quievrain of 3,734 p. Click here for Piraat's full pedigree.
Kapitein is a full brother of Piraat, and he inherited not only his dam's pale colour but also her sprint qualities. However, the brothers were not convinced of his potential initially. He did not have a great start with a 373rd/1193 p. and a 570/1997 p. but Kapitein then decided his run-in period was done, and he started to really excel, winning a consecutive 29th/893, 4th/256, and 4th/590. He became 1st Ace Pigeon Quievrain YLs in the Diamantverbond Union in 2016, based on the following results:
1st Quievrain 264 p. 1st Quievrain 45 p. 1st Quievrain 40 p. 2nd Quievrain 353 p. 3rd Quievrain 261 p. 3rd Quievrain 202 p.
Cruyff (BE17-6082714) and Ronaldo (BE17-6082707)
Cruff and Ronaldo appear to be the leading names for 2018. Cruyff, a promising young bird, already won 4 first prizes and a second prize:
1st Quievrain 125 p. 1st Quievrain 717 p. 1st Quievrain 444 p. 1st Quievrain 121 p. 2nd Quievrain 203 p.
And he was off to a flying start in 2018 as well:
1st Quievrain 326 p. 1st Quievrain 196 p.
The sire of Cruyff became 1st Ace Pigeon Noyon YLs in Bevel in 2017, and his grandfather from his father's side was 1st Ace Pigeon YLs Quievrain 2015 in the Diamantverbond. Click here for Cruyff's full pedigree. Ronaldo comes from some talented bloodlines as well: his sire was 1st Ace Pigeon Quievrain olds 2014 in the Diamantverbond, and both his grandfather and grandmother from his father's side were renowned racing birds. The grandfather from his mother's side is none other than Piraat, which we introduced earlier on. Click here for Ronaldo's full pedigree. Ronaldo ended the 2017 season with a 7th/160, 12th/349 and 1st/481, and he has had a great start in 2018 as well, winning a 2nd Quievrain 326 p., a 2nd Noyon 313 p. and a 20th Noyon 578 p.
Frans and Marcel have completed just one shorter middle distance race in their long career, and it was quite a successful event. We reckon their opponents were relieved to hear it was just a one-time experiment. However, The Van den Brande racing birds have shown their potential in the longer distances in other lofts: one team that did particularly well with the Van den Brande breed is the Leideman Brothers and their Goed Grijs. This fantastic racing hen, that has the same grandmother as the talented Cruyff, has won 7 first prizes in her racing career, each time in an important race:
1st NPO Laon 6,371 p. 1st Duffel 5,821 p. 1st Laon 1,502 p. 1st Wijchen 786 p. 1st Heusden-Zolder 656 p. 1st Hapert 231 p.
Pigeon fancier Pasha from Romania has done really well with his Van den Brande investments, winning a 1st Nat. Ace Pigeon title long distance YBs 2016. The Leideman brothers and Pasha are in fact not the only fanciers that did great with the Van den Brande breed; so were Gaston Van de Wouwer, Roger Maris, Alex Docx, Jo Van den Brande, Ludo Helsen, and Laurent Serneels. These renowned fanciers are well aware of the abilities of their Blauwe 213 descendants and other talented birds. In The Netherlands we have the Jager Brothers, the Van Brandenburg Brothers, Sibble Broos and Jan Ban der Putten that have been been able to raise the bar thanks to the relatives of Piraat, Kapitein, Super Blauwe 401, and Blauwe 512. Do you happen to be the proud owner of an excellent Van den Brande bird as well? We kindly ask to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.