Bram Chardon is following his father Ijsbrand’s footsteps by taking the Driving world by storm…
Bram, just 25 years old, has just enjoyed a fantastic first season amongst the sport's elite, reaching the final of the FEI Driving World Cup™ alongside his dad, Ijsbrand – a legend of Driving who has medalled at every World Equestrian Games (WEG) since 1990.
As the Dutch masters build up to Tryon 2018 in two months' time, Equestrian World visited the Chardons’ stable in the Netherlands to find out more about this talented and passionate family...
With both now being at the top of the sport, we wondered how their relationship has changed…
Bram says the pair’s rivalry is healthy, as they “keep each other sharper and sharper and push each other to the limits”.
“We go to a competition as one, and even though we both won't have the first place we still go as one team,” Bram says.
“There are never fights over family dinner about who's better or crazy arguments. We're still having fun as one!”
Bram is hoping to make WEG in September and already looking forward to the next FEI Driving World Cup™ season after achieving his maiden win in Geneva at the start of this year. He's participated at WEG before, having been part of his dad's onboard team in 2010 and 2014.
WEG has been a happy hunting ground for Ijsbrand, who took Individual gold in 2002, and has a total of 12 Individual and Team medals over the last 28 years.
“It’s amazing what he’s achieved,” says Bram. “I think there will be very few drivers who can even get close to what he's done through all the years, not just for himself but also as an ambassador for Driving sport.
“He’s really the one who stepped out and got the first big big gold medals into the Netherlands and now we're one of the leading countries in Driving sport.”
The Chardon farm is a busy place with Driving running alongside Eventing and pony teams.
Bram adds: “We always need people behind us. If we go to competitions there are still plenty of horses staying at home and they need to be worked, need to stay fit and need to be taken care of.”