Re: Freestyle Competition

Subject Re: Freestyle Competition
From (Andy Wardley)
Date Tue, 16 Jun 1998 16:52:07 GMT
Newsgroups rec.kites
Nick Boucart wrote:
> Can't agree more.  I liked the format very much.  It was intense, i
> think for both the fliers and the audience.

And Nick is just too modest to admit that he won..... :-)=

It was a great, fun competition and we saw some truly awesome flying. I myself had to give way to Nick in the second round after 3 minutes of some of the most enjoyable flying I've ever participated in. Even though I lost I was still trying to wipe the smile off my face an hour later.

The format was simple:

The mood was informal and relaxed and a great deal of sportmanship was shared beetween the competitors. The judging panel was a little haphazard, consisting mainly of myself, James Robertshaw and Hans von Lengerke with additional help from Sean Turpin and any other fliers who happened to congregate near the PA. Jeremy Boyce had the final say. In future, a formal judging panel may be desirable, but in events like this which are "Just For Fun", it seems perfectly adequate (and acceptable to the fliers as far as I can tell) that the fliers pretty much judge themselves. Jeremy ran the audience Clap-O-Meter which brought them into the competition much more and may even have influenced the judges a little on occasion :-)

The defintion of Freestyle Flying is a little imprecise, but we were looking for radical tricks, executed cleanly, with style, flow and form. It's difficult to talk about "choreographing to music" when it's a 30 second burst, but many of the fliers showed definate sensitivity to the music and managed to produce performances that clearly went well with what we were hearing.

There were 2 major highlights for me. The first was watching Andy Preston fly a Stranger Level 7 in his first round match. Awesome! Absolutely awesome! This is the guy who inspired me so much all those years ago and Sunday made me remember why. Unfortunately the wind wasn't so kind in his later rounds and he just got pipped out in the semi-final by Nick's fellow countryman, Sebastian (surname unknown, my apologies).

The second highlight for me was flying against Nick in the second round. I started with some good flying but had a bit of a tumble early on. That was all the chance Nick needed - he put in a blinder. Not to be defeated I responded with some pretty hot stuff. Not good enough, though, because Nick came back even stronger. So I got better... So Nick got better.... After 3 minutes it felt like Nick and I had flown our hearts and souls out and I wasn't ashamed in the slightest to come second in that particular heat. :-)= Massive grinage!

So here are the scores as transribed from a little scrap of paper that was the scoring sheet... I'm afraid I don't have full names for all of the competitors, particular those of our Belgian friends who were over in force. My apologies for that. If anyone can fill in the gaps, I would be grateful.

Round 1:

   Alistair Hammond   beat   Chaz (?)
   Nick Boucart       beat   Hans von Lengerke
   Sebastian (?)      beat   Carl Robertshaw
   Andy Wardley       beat   Sean Turpin
   Andy Phelps        beat   Jan (?)
   James Robertshaw   beat   Chris Matheson
   Andy Preston       beat   Sam Eaton

In the play-offs, the judges felt that both Sean and Carl put in great performances and were hard pressed to decide between them. Carl very generously agreed to step down and let Sean go through. Ali had to leave early, so Carl ended up flying in his place after all.

The first round took about 40 minutes to run. We ran the final rounds a little later in the afternoon which nicely broke up the competition, gave the fliers a chance to rest and freed up the arena for other kiters and displays. This was definately a Good Thing

Round 2:

   Sean Turpin        beat   Carl Robertshaw
   Nick Boucart       beat   Andy Wardley
   Sebastian (?)      beat   Andy Phelps
   Andy Preston       beat   James Robertshaw

   Nick Boucart       beat   Sean Turpin
   Sebastian (?)      beat   Andy Preston

   Nick Boucart       beat   Sebastian (?)

Well done to Nick and all the other competitors, judges and organisers that made it possible. I found it a lot of fun as a competitor, judge and organiser and the response from other people has been encouraging.

I think the great thing about this format is that you can do it strictly for fun, like we did at Hackney, or you could actually take it a little more seriously and run it as a proper competition. It's quick, can be run in phases over a day or weekend, it requires no formal scoring or calculations (although an independant judging panel would be necessary for a "proper" competition), it's very accessible to fliers - there's no need to practice for weeks before, just turn up and fly, and it's also accessible to spectators - no complex scoring or rules and the results are instant.

Now doesn't this sound like exactly the kind of competition that major companies would be interested in sponsoring? A few k in prize money would be all we require to run the "1998 Freestyle Kite Competition"....

It's a nice thought, isn't it?

Here's to the next one.


Andy Wardley  <>     Signature regenerating.  Please remain seated.
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