breakout: normandy [Updated August 2001]

BKN  6 prizes Experienced Swiss Elim Continuous 
   19 in Salon EF or    10  Round 2 15:30 
 Round 3 9  Round 4  14:30 Round 5 20 Semi   Round 6 Final  


Jim Doughan, PA

2001 Champion

2nd: Michael Rinella, NY

3rd: Don Greenwood, MD

4th: Alan Applebaum, MA

5th: Bryan Eshleman, NC

6th: Andrew Cummins, UK
Event History
1991    None      -
1992    None      -
1993    None      -
1994    Jim Doughan      50
1995    Bill Edwards      48
1996    Hank Burkhalter      54
1997    Jim Doughan      53
1998    Don Greenwood      52
1999    Michael Rinella     48
2000    Phil Barcafer     32
2001    Jim Doughan     34

AREA Ratings:

GM: James Doughan

Still hitting the beach eight years later ...

For 2001, the Breakout: Normandy tournament featured a new format and a new schedule, but happily most of the same faces were back on the beaches of France again. The tournament shifted to a Swiss-elimination format, from the Swiss format previously used. This created a four-game Swiss style 'regular season' followed by a two-round single elimination 'playoff'. The tournament also started on Wednesday morning (with an optional Tuesday night round) in hopes of avoiding conflicts with other BPA events.

Under the new format, the focus for the first four rounds was making the playoffs. With a field of 34 players, only two players would be 4-0 after four rounds. This meant that two players with 3-1 schedules would advance (based upon strength of schedule) to the playoffs.

The first two rounds yielded few surprises. In general, the favorites won out, setting up great later round contests. As luck would have it, the third round featured many familiar grudge matches. Jim Doughan and Don Greenwood met yet again, with Doughan coming out on top. Roommates and fierce rivals Mike Rinella and Marvin Birnbaum were paired as well with Rinella taking the win in a game highlighted by short days and weather changes. But the highlight of the round (and one of the more colorful moments of the tournament) was Alan Applebaum vs. Phil Barcafer, a rematch of the 2000 finals.

In last year's championship game, Barcafer defeated Applebaum with the daring and unorthodox 'postal on the coastal' nighttime assault on Ste. Mere Eglise. This gambit, which risks the game on the first roll, provoked much discussion on ConSimWorld, and even spawned a commemorative T-shirt design. Now Alan had his chance for retribution. In dramatic fashion, Barcafer once again 'went postal' on Applebaum, and once again he won the roll. This created calls for a new T-shirt emblazoned with 'The Postman Always Rings Twice'. Barcafer parlayed his successful postal gambit into a win and must now be truly considered Applebaum's personal nemesis. To his credit, Alan took it all in stride. Later in the game, he even pointed out an obvious oversight of Phil's to prevent him from making a blunder.

Going into the fourth round there were four undefeated players remaining -- Rinella, Barcafer, Doughan and Andrew Cummins. Rinella defeated Barcafer to gain a spot in the finals and Doughan did the same with a win over Cummins. As it turned out Applebaum's and Greenwood's 3-1 records were good enough to advance because of strength of schedule, along with undefeated Rinella and Doughan. Now it was time for the single elimination playoffs. In the first semifinal match, Doughan and Applebaum squared off. Doughan outbid Applebaum 25 to 20 for the Germans, and prepared his defense. After some strong initial progress, however, the allied assault lost momentum and was never able to recover. In the other semifinal, Rinella defeated Greenwood with the age-old trick of seizing the 'magic-bridge' and shutting the Americans down in Utah.

The finals were between two prior champions, both undefeated. In addition the match was the first ever meeting for these two players who have championed the opposing sides. Mike 'Caen Meat Grinder' Rinella vs. Rommel award winner Doughan. Interestingly enough, Rinella bid an eye-popping 30 to take the Germans from Doughan who bid a mere 27. So these two experienced players were going to have to play the game from their least favored side.

Poor bombardments and strong interdictions characterized the initial landings. The Allies got ashore in Sword and Juno, but outright lost at Gold. At Omaha they were ashore, but at Utah the coastal interdiction was deadly. In response to this, Doughan took a page out of Rinella's book and went straight at Caen. Excellent bombardments and a large threatened assault forced the German's hand in Caen. Despite clear weather and air interdiction, the critical 12SS and Panzer Lehr divisions were committed to the defense of Caen. They would have to run 'the trail of tears'. 11 die rolls (and a shocking seven aces) later, the German Panzer Divisions were burning on the Caen highway. The city would not hold. In the coup-de-grace, British forces overran Caen and captured Aunay-sur-Odon in one impulse.

In addition to the WBC plaques, Normandy theme prizes were awarded to the first six places. For first place Doughan received a Saving Private Ryan DVD. For Second, Rinella received The Longest Day DVD. For third place, Greenwood took home the coveted bottle of Calvados (Norman apple brandy). Applebaum received a wheel of Camembert cheese for fourth place. Bryan Eshleman won a "Band of Brothers" paperback for fifth place, and for taking sixth place, Cummins will be enjoying the voice of Edith Piaf while listening to her greatest hits. In addition, Eshleman was awarded with the Eisenhower award for best Allied play, Doughan received the Rommel award for German play, and Cliff Hansen received the award for best new player. Extra thanks to the folks at Multi-Man Publishing for the gift certificate prizes.

A total of 34 players played 54 games. The Germans continued their statistical dominance, winning 33 of 54 games (61%). As usual, bids for the Germans continued to escalate in the later rounds between the better players. Finally, a note of thanks to Ron Fedin who ran the tournament for the previous five years: it is no small matter to say that after one year of running the tournament, the new GM has profound respect for the job Ron has done in year's past. This year's tournament would never have been as successful without Ron's efforts in prior years. Thanks a lot Ron.

 GM      James Doughan  [1st Year]  511 Fairview Rd, Narberth, PA 19072   NA

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