Jan Olieslagers ( May 4, AntwerpBerchem1883 - 23 March 1942) was a Belgian professional road bicycle racer and motor, aviation pioneer and I flying ACE in the first world war. He was also known as "den Antwerpschen Devil".


[hide]*1 early life

Life Course[Edit]Edit

Wheel-and motorcycle rider[Edit]Edit

Oakes was born as the second son in a family with three brothers and two sisters. His father was employed by a company that also had to straighten the Quays of the river Scheldt. At the age of 11 he lost his father and went ob work on the yard. In his free time and weekends, he worked at a bicycle repairman. There he learned secretly cycling in the basement and on the road if he had to deliver it to the bike customers. When he was caught by his boss got his own bicycle as "punishment". After he rides a bicycle from a customer in the practice, he comes to the Belgian Minervabicycle factory. There he began riding cycling races under the banner of the Antwerp Bicycle Club and the Union Cycliste Internationale. From 1900 acquired Oakes itself the right to Minerva motors for sell. He was a member of the Antwerp Motorcycle Club, won a gold medal at the first championship for engines in zurenborg. In 1901 he established a world speed record of 80 mph. it was in this period that he acquired the nickname "den Antwerpschen Devil". According to tradition, was Oakes also the one who (in 1900) the first Minerva motorcycle (actually a bike with a Zürcher & Lühti-clip-on engine) got to running. Very against the wishes of the Director of Minerva did Oakes in 1904 at the motor race Paris-Bordeaux-Paris. This race he managed to win and earned him international fame and a traffic ticket by the French police for driving without a license, but simply not yet such a licence existed in Belgium.During a shooting exercise in 1907 he is hit by a stray bullet. This bullet could not be deleted. However, he continued on the next match after his success. In Neuilly-sur-Seine , he drove a new record on the job and in 1908 he established a new world record by 5 km to go on the course within 2 minutes and 52 seconds. Also, would he have driven faster than 100 km/h. He was a wealthy man.

Aviation Career[Edit]Edit

The pionierstijd perk[Edit]Edit

[1][2]Oakes in Rotterdam

During his stay in Levallois-Perret , he came into contact with Louis Blériot, who drove a flying school at Issy-les-Moulineaux. He put his motor career down and started operations. He bought a Blériot XI and made its first flight under the watchful eye of Blériot itself to Issy-les-Moulineaux. After a successful flight crashes Oakes twice in succession. However, this doesn't stop him from participating in the Antwerp Flying week (23 October-2 november 1909), where he makes a successful flight on the third day. On 31 March he received pilot's licence No. 5 of the "Aëroclub de Belgique". Then he leaves for Algeria where he made the first flight over Algeria above the city of Oran. Then he left for France to Pau. There he met lifelong friend Jules Tamayo. He takes part in many air shows. To Sevillewith a Spanish Unit first, then to Nice (15 to 25 apr 1910), BarcelonaGenoa and Bologna, where he received a prize of 10,000 lire was awarded. This was followed by the famous "La Grande Semaine de la Champagne" in Reims where he put down several world records for longest flight. After the congratulations from King Albert I , among other things, he flies to Stockel again (23 July-4 August 1910), during this flight week comes to death Nicolas Kinet . After he moved to Netherlands to Stockel to amass considerable fame during air shows in Groningen (August 1910), Utrecht (August 1910), Zwolle (september 1910), Amsterdam,LeeuwardenRotterdamEnschede (september-October 1910), NijmegenDen Haag, with even an interim trip in Hamburg. From this time dates the song:

"As Oakes death falls
then we buy a pair of scissors.
And cut quite the curls of his pettelaar.
If we get death than maybe Oakes
half his pennies and his airplane.
Oakes, Oakes, Oakes val but death. "

In Groningen he improved his record to almost 45 minutes duration and Zwolle he takes 52 minutes. At one point he saw a demonstration of the Frenchman Adolphe Pégoud who made a looping . In consultation with Louis Blériot also made Oakes his first loops over Paris during the first aviation salon. He returned again several times, including during the back to Netherlands Entos in 1913. The first world war put an end to the pionierstijd era.

Earnings in the name of Jan Oakes (incomplete)[Edit]Edit

If motor rider

  • 1901, world speed record 80 km/h
  • 1904, winner Paris-Bordeaux-Paris
  • 1908, course record 5 km in 2 min and 52 sec.

As a pilot

  • 7 July 1910, world record distance in closed circulation-255km
  • 10 July 1910, world record distance in closed circulation-392km
  • 10 July 1910, world record distance in closed circulation-625km
  • July 1910, 5,000 feet altitude record-
  • 22 september 1910, first overland flight over Netherlands between Rotterdam and Gouda.

The First World War[Edit]Edit

At the outbreak of the first world war offered Oakes and his brothers Max (1889-1961), Jules and Albert voluntarily with his aircraft, material and personnel to the military Government, including three Blériots XI. They were initially placed with the volunteer regiment Squadron Monoplane which achieves and were led by Henri Cardenas. In March 1915 he collapsed and lay down with his Blériot Jan twenty days in the hospital. He got he was the first non-commissioned officer-he was sergeant-the Knight's cross of the order of Leopold II. He continued his war in the 2me Squadron, where he obtained his first official victory on september 12, 1915. In a Nieuport 10, he took down a German Aviatik C above Oudstuyvekenskerke. There would be until the end of the war five registered victories follow. But probably he had more victories to his name since he 491 flights made and implicated in 92 air battles.


The Antwerp Airport[Edit]Edit

On 3 August 1919 he was demobilized and went ob focus on the development of aviation in Antwerp. He knows to convince the Belgian Government to the creation of an international airport in Deurne, near Antwerp.The current Antwerp International Airport. In 1923 took place the official opening, at which the access road was baptized to Jan Joli Street. In 1927 he founded also the AAC (Antwerp Aviation Club, later the RAAC) and became the first President. In 1934 he was flag-bearer at the funeral of King Albert I and his last achievement was the creation of the aviation Veterans-Association "Vieille Tiges" in 1937, of which he was President until his death in 1942. At his death, in the Church, against all banned from the German occupier in, the national anthem performed the "Brabançonne".


  • His brother Max also tried an aviation career. In 1911, he obtained certification No. 40b. However, he was not nearly as gifted as his brother. In 1911 he flew in Winschoten. At an air show in Leeuwarden in July of the same year he collapsed down which he and several spectators were injured.
  • Founded In May 1953 statue of Jan Oakes near the airport. The statue was designed by Willy Kreitz.
  • In 1976, there in honor of the 75th anniversary of the "Royal Aëroclub of Belgium" a postage stamp released.
  • Christophe Ballard In 2003, a documentary about the life of Jan Oakes.
  • Constantly the Children brought in 1936 a biography about Jan Oakes from; Jan Oakes, the Antwerp Devil