Thursday, May 7, 2009
Hi Everyone --
Now that 2009 is fully in gear it's time for a big summer trip. I'm starting a 2009 Big Summer Trip Tomorrow...
- Las Vegas -- Cavendish (well actually WBP Pairs)
- Atlanta (a small vacation...)
- Aspen (teaching)
- Denver Regional
- Palm Beach Gardens Regional
- Vicksburg Regional
- Road Trip to Portland Oregon (another fun trip with some stops for bridge, of course...)
- Penticton Canada Regional
- Las Vegas Regional
- Deerfield Beach Regional (South FL)
I'll post some hands and give some interesting stories from the road... Wish us luck in the Cavendish this weekend!
***Hands from Gatlinburg and Ft. Lauderdale (Southeasterns) to be written up on the plane this
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
TES Notes Update
Just to let you know, I've finally updated the TES notes. They are on the www.notrump.org website under System. These are version 3.3 -- let me know if anything is unclear...
Saturday, March 7, 2009
Races 2008 and start of 2009...
Well, let me start 2009 by congratulating one of my brightest young students (Raphael Schreiber) for his amazing year in 2008. Raphael won both the mini-McKenney and Ace of Clubs for the 50-100 MP category. I am very proud of him and his progression as a player...
Additionally, I like to state a point of pride for myself. I played with a great number of Mini-McKenney winners last year.
Allison Howard (20-50)
Raphael Schreiber (50-100)
Michael Myers (200-300)
Garth Yettick (300-500)
I'm happy that I can be an influence on excited, interested, and talented improving players!
On to 2009. I'm not going to attempt to get caught up on a detailed blog with interesting hands from every tournament I played in the first two months of the year (hopefully I will do that for my future tournaments this year...) Let me just give you a quick list of what takes me from the start of the year into the nationals in Houston next week....
Orlando, FL Regional
Denver, CO Sectional
Charlottesville, VA Regional
Destin, FL Regional
Bermuda Regional -- where I won my first overall regional title!
Aspen, CO Teaching
Palmetto, FL Regional (Sarasota)
Panama City Beach, FL Sectional
Indianapolis, IN Regional
Aspen, CO Teaching
This is quite a tour for just 2 months and I hope you will forgive my lack of typing up interesting hands, etc.. (see the Sunshine Bridge News for a few articles I did write during these travels...)
Later in the year I'm going to do a post dedicated just to Bermuda and the Bermuda Regional. I'm hoping to convince as many people as possible to come back to this tournament next January. It is the single greatest tournament I have been to in the ACBL (by far...) -- and it deserves to grow into a large spectacular event...
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Here are some pictures from my bridge adventures in 2008...
House from the Hilton Head Regional
View my room my room at the Biloxi Regional -- The Gulf Coast!
The playing site for the Detroit Spring 2008 NABC. It was a beautiful, yet cold place to play...
View from the playing site in Jyvaskyla, Finland
One of the playing rooms at the Jyvaskyla Easter Bridge Festival -- Finland!
View from our house in Gatlinburg, TN -- "The Fourth National"
Jesse Stern and Jourdain Patchett with a great performance at the YNABC in Atlanta, GA.
Las Vegas -- A great place for a nationals (Summer NABC)
More Las Vegas... (beautiful)
Our winning team from Ft. Wayne, IN Regional
( back --Jade Barrett, Me, Richard Helams, front -- Karen Barrett, Anne Dawson, Jim Looby)
Seaside, Oregon Coast -- Seaside Regional
Seasdie Regional Playing Site
Mike Dorn Wiss at the Seaside Regional (Author: "The Shadow")
Chris and Tammy at the Seaside Regional
Denver Airport -- I spend a lot of time here...
Palm Springs Regional -- Spectacular in December
Palm Springs Regional Playing Site
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
The end of 2008 and beginning of 2009 have been a complete blur. Time has flown by. The beginning of March is the first time I have had a chance to sit down and reflect on my first year as a full time bridge professional...
2008 was an amazing year. I played in 17 Regionals, 15 Sectionals, and spent another 8 weeks at special events (NABCs, International/non-ACBL Events, and Teaching.) That's a total 40 weeks of bridge tournaments. This is much more than I expected to do when 2008 started. Amazingly, as 2008 ends and 2009 begins I find myself even more energized and optimistic for future great bridge adventures. (The 2009 outlook will be in another blog post.)
Some 2008 Highlights
- Orlando Regional -- new partnerships with Les and Gloria Bart...
- Hilton Head Regional -- First Bracket 1 Regional KO (Thanks Capp, JR!)
- Hilton Head Regional -- Match vs. Meckwell (First of many to come...)
- Detroit NABC -- Finals in all pairs events (Silidor, Mixed, Red Ribbons...)
- Finland Tournament -- Win introductory Pairs at International Event!
- GNT FL District Final --Win Flight B (my team) and Flight C (my students team)
- Palm Beach Gardens Regional -- First Bracket 1 Regional KO win!
- Omaha Regional -- First tournament on a Tournament Bridge Services Team...
- Clearwater Regional -- First win over Meckwell!
- Ft. Wayne Regional -- Team won the regional MP race (well done, Anne Dawson!)
- Ft. Wayne Regional -- new partnership with Jim Looby...
- Seaside Regional -- First tournament played with Jade
- Chattanooga Regional -- First Full Regional with a student from home (great job Raphael!)
The year was just amazing.
- Won over 1556 Masterpoints (had only about 1500 masterpoints to start the year...)
- 18th on the Barry Crane, (list of most masterpoints won each year in ACBL)
- Won the Silver Life Master National Race...
I'd like to thank so many people for all their help, but the list could go on forever... Let me just say, thank you to everyone that helped make this amazing year possible -- you know who you are!
I'll hopefully post a few pictures from some of my favorite events of 2008 soon!
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Chattanooga and Daytona Regionals
Once again, the insanity has won out and I have not updated this blog as much as I would like.
The last several of weeks have been very exciting. I played in two successful Regionals with two of my students. First, I played in Chattanooga, TN with my star "young" student from home (Tallahassee.) We did not have any prearranged teammates and just set things up as we arrived. The tournament was a wonderful experience and I was very proud of my partner -- he played well throughout the week and grew and developed each time he faced new situations. Notably, we reached the finals of a bracket 1 KO and won a bracket 2 KO -- totaling about 55 Masterpoints.
The next week, I played in the Regional in Daytona, FL with a new student out of Jacksonville, FL. The tournament was filled with top level teams and many world champions. In spite of this, my partner and I managed to have good success. My partner and I had very little experience playing together, but she did a great job adapting and learning. I attribute much of our success to partner striving not to make the same mistake twice. In a new partnership with a relatively inexperienced player there will always be many mistakes and misunderstandings, but not repeating the same mistakes is a great predictor of success. We won over 32 Masterpoints and my partner is now shortly to become a Life Master. I was also very proud of her!
I am now off to Boston for the Fall NABC. Exciting updates from the Nationals will follow shortly!
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Mobile Blog Post
I've just installed software on my phone to update this blog from my phone. I'll now be able to take lots of pictures with my phone and upload comments and stories directly from the bridge trail to the blog. I hope this makes the stories more enjoyable and timely.
I'm headed out of LA to Denver for a few days to work with one my sponsors. Then I'm off to the Chattanooga and Daytona regionals. I'll report more from those regionals in the coming weeks.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
The 2008 LA Regional was my first time to play in what use to be the famous LA Bridge Week.
In the distant past, this event rivaled an NABC in both size and skill of the players. It was a bit disappointing to see that this once great event is no longer even a "normal" sized regional. Additionally, the playing schedule had difficult starting times that made it awkward and exhausting to play 3 sessions per day.
In spite of the small turnout and other difficulties, the Pacific Palms Resort was a beautiful playing site, the organizers were gracious hosts, and opponents strong competitors. I hope that in the future the LA area can regrow it's bridge attraction and return to providing a truly spectacular bridge event on the west coast.
**If you have any ideas or suggests please feel free to email them to me.
Monday, October 20, 2008
The New Blog
I've done a horrible job of keeping the www.notrump.org website up to date. With all the traveling, playing, and teaching of bridge I've been doing this year I just haven't made it a priority. But that is about to change! I've decided to start using some blogging software (www.blogger.com) to post to my website and allow me to update information easily from the road.
I hope that everyone enjoys all the bridge stories!
It's been an exciting start to the year for me. I've been playing at the regionals around the South and enjoying a lot of success. If you haven't been before, all 4 of the recent regionals I attended were great:
Hilton Head Regional
The Sarastota regional was my best regional ever - with over 106 MP. I enjoyed the event and was excited to have so much success.
In the coming months I'm also excited about several events (both big and small.)
NABC in Detroit
Easterbridge Festive in Finland (looking forward to playing with all the Fins again!)
Atlanta Super Sectoional - my favoirte place to play bridge!
Mobile, AL Regional
Gatlinburg Regional - "The Fourth National!"
I'll report back about all these events when I return (or from the road...)
The Fall NABC is just finishing in San Fransisco, CA. You will be reading many interesting tales from this exciting event. I want to concentrate on someone who was dearly missed at the event: Paul Soloway!
Many friends paid tribute to him during the first weekend. Take a look and learn something new about this amazing player and person.
Artcle from NABC Bridge Bulletin - .pdf
Also, see the Bridge Feature Article below -- a tribute to a hand played by Paul in the Bermuda Bowl.
The 38th World Team Championships (including the Bermuda Bowl, Venace Cup, Senior Bowl, and Transnational Teams) was just held in Shanghi, China. The event included many great performances and a strong showing by the US teams.
Congratulations to all the US teams:
Bermuda Bowl - USA1 lost the Finals to a strong team from Norway!
Venace Cup - USA1 won the Woman's World Championship!
Senior Bowl - USA2 won the Senior World Championship!
The Bermuda Bowl Final was a battle of heavyweights. The USA1 team headed by Zia-Rosenberg (two of the best players in the world) faced a Norweign team headed by the top Nordic partnership of all time: Helgemo-Helness. Norway played solid bridge throughout the finals and they were never really in danger of losing control. The match wasn't a blowout, but Norway stayed strong and won a well deserved world championship.
I hope that everyone will attend the Fall 2007 NABC being held in another great location - San Fransisco, CA.
The Summer NABC in Nashville has come and gone (with mixed success for me and my team) and we are now starting the late Summer-Fall tournament circuit. Florida and Georgia are filled with fun Sectional tournaments in the coming monthes. Some of these great events are listed here.
Jacksonville, FL Sectional: August 3-5, 2007
Belleair, FL Sectional: August 9-12, 2007
Macon, GA Sectional: August 17-19, 2007
Atlanta, GA Labor Day Regional: August 28-Sept. 3, 2007
Titusville, FL Sectional: Sept. 6-9, 2007
Panama City Beach, FL Sectional: Sept. 21-23, 2007
Naples, FL Regional: Sept. 24-30, 2007
Gainesville, GA Sectional: Sept. 28-30, 2007
Valdosta, GA Sectional: Oct. 5-7, 2007
Jacksonville, FL Sectional: Oct. 12-14, 2007
Ft. Walton, FL Sectional: Oct. 12-14, 2007
I recently took a day trip to the Jacksonville, FL Sectional and I was pleased to see a great turnout and lots of excellent players. For a Sectional tournament there were a tremendous number of nationally known players and the field was a challenge to play against. I commend Jacksonville on such a great tournament and I hope their future Sectionals will attract such a large turnout and such skilled players.
The US National Team Trials in Chicago, IL last month were an amazing experience. Many of the best bridge players from all over the country were there, competing to become USA2 and win the right to go to the World Championships (Bermuda Bowl) in Shanghi, China this Fall.
This was my first trip to a US Team Trials and my first time playing in the event (hopefully there will be many more to come.) Though our team did not have a lot of success, my partner (Chris Moll, an excellent Professional player) and I enjoyed the event and felt that we played good bridge.
(See SBN article, below, for an interesting hand we played at the Trials.)
The World Bridge Championships are being held at the World Mind Games Championship in Shanghi just before this years Olympic Games. The World Mind Games is a movement to get games of mental skill into to the modern Olympic Games. It should be a great event!
The Summer NABC in Nashville, TN is coming soon. There will be great events like the Grand National Team, Spingold, Life Master Pairs, and many more... I hope to see everyone there!
US National Team Trails (Chicago, IL): May 30-June 3, 2007
US Senior Team Trials (Maryland)
Summer NABC (Nashville, TN) and Grand National Teams: July 19-29, 2007
Congratulations to my friends in Finland that recently won the 2007 Nordic Championships for the first time in many decades. They deserve it!
My apologies for the long delay in updating the blog. Much has occurring in the bridge world in the last several months - both locally and around the world. Let me catch you up on what has been going on!
In Tallahassee, I'm proud to announce that I'm opening the Tallahassee Bridge Center (TBC) this summer. The bridge community in Tallahassee, FL has long suffered from the lack a facility dedicated to bridge. I am opening a center that will allow for more bridge games, teaching, and flexibility. More details on this in the coming months.
The Spring NABC in St. Louis was terrific. There was a great triumph in the Vanderbilt Teams. Roy Welland and Christal Henner-Welland were the first husband-wife team to win since the Culbertsons (in 1962.) Many of the top teams changed their makeup and added excellent international players This made for many terrific matches and a truly great tournament (see the Bridge Feature below.)
Some great post-Thanksgiving bridge is taking place in Hawaii at the Fall NABC. Many of the top players in the world competed in the finals of the Blue Ribbon Pairs. One of the top pairs in the past five year, Fantoni-Nunes (Italian), had another impressive win!
This weekend, these players will team together with many others to battle in one of the most difficult events in all of bridge - the Reisinger Board-a-Match Teams. Follow the action live on Bridgebase Online (BBO) or get the results at the ACBL website.
Enjoy the great bridge!
Watch as players from across the country and around the world try to qualify for the World Bridge Championships. Many of these interesting matches can be seen live on BBO and Swan Games..
2006 United States Bridge Champions (White Plains, NY: August 18-28, 2006)
The winner will be USA1 for the 2007 Bermuda Bowl in Shanghai, China
48th Procom Software SA European Bridge Chamionships: (Warsaw, Poland: August 12-26, 2006)
This event will determine Europe's participants in 2007 World Bridge Championships in Shanghai, China (Bermuda Bowl, Venice Cup, and Senior Bowl.)
I would also like to point your attention to an interesting article about a hand played in the 48th Procom Software SA European Bridge Championships. It is written by Kauko Koistinen - one of the top players in Finland and a long time member of the Finnish Open Team.