NE Veteran's storm National Championships!
This weekend saw many fencers from the North East compete at the British Veteran National Championships taking place in Gloucester. This annual event is where all the best fencers in the over 40 age categories fight it out to be National Champion and secure a place on the GB team for the European Veteran Championships in May.
The first day of competition was devoted to the sabre 4 times National champion Beth Davidson from Darlington and previous champion Duncan Rowlands from Gateshead cruised through the preliminary stages relatively unscathed. Duncan Rowlands had a head to head in the quarter finals with former World Veteran Champion Richard Cohen who has a reputation of unsettling opponents but Duncan kept focused and won 10-7. Duncan's later rounds were much more of a nail-biter with a victorys over Chris Prevett, then in the final with Steve Potter both ending in 10-9 to be crowed National Champion for the 2nd time!
Beth Davidson was defending her National title and was ranked No. 1 going into the competition and was not really pushed until the final against former World and European Veteran Champion Jane Hutchinson. Beth who by that stage had qualified for the European Veteran Championships was able to relax and take the title for the 5th time in a row with a final score of 10-5.
Beth and Duncan both train at the Regional Fencing Centre Durham based at Durham University with coach Hungarian Laszlo Jakab who as celebrating his birthday on the same day! Laszlo quotes “This was wonderful birthday present for me! I normally look forward to lots of chocolates but two National Champions are nice alternative!”
In the epee event on Sunday, 5 North easterners were taking part. Newly appointed England President Marie Matheson from West Rainton near Durham, Carole Seheult from Shincliffe, Chris Cranston-Selby from Darlington, Tristan Spicer from Newcastle and Anton Pollard also from Shincliffe had to deal with the largest entry of competitors!
Anton Pollard made the greatest impact on this weapon day by wearing his opponents down with his speed and endurance. There was a bit of a close call in the last 16 elimination fight with Graham Paul but too a victory of 10-9 and continued well till the semi-final with John Leahey where Anton’s campaign came to a halt losing to the eventual winner 10-7 but taking the bronze medal!
Marie Matheson had a good start achieving a rank of 8th after the initial rounds but couldn’t keep the momentum finishing 17th out of 29 competitors. Carole Seheult came 28th, Tristan Spicer came 47th and Chris Cranston-Selby came 57th out of 72 competitors.
For further information
NE Regional Fencing Development Officer Beth Davidson T. 07834884194 firstname.lastname@example.org
British Veteran Fencing website http://www.veterans-fencing.co.uk/