ducat to travel light ...
Eric Brosius (left) gets in
one last fix before the ride home. The quick playing Trans
America was the last event to start at WBC.
Kathy Stroh gets some moral
support in the Final but it wasn't enough to overcome Tony Vickery's
As the 2006 WBC drew to a close, 48 train engineers signed
up to try and build the best routes through America and Europe
in Transamerica. Games consisted of a fixed number
of turns, one for each player in the game, to offset the perception
that there is a disadvantage to being the first player in a turn. Ten
first round games included nine games of Transamerica and the
lone Transeuropa game of the tournament. There were
eight 5-player and two 4-player games in the first round. The
ten winners advanced to two 5-player semi-finals with the top
pair from each game advancing to the Final.
In the opening round, Ted Simmons, Tony Vickery, Ted Mullally,
Jason Levine, and Andy Latto advanced by being the first to connect
on three turns with Ted Simmons accomplishing the feat in a four-turn
game. Jason's third completion in the last round was the only
third turn completion that was necessary to advance with him
barely defeating Bryan Berkenstock.
Aurora Pack, Arthur Field, and Ken Gutermuth advanced on the
strength of two first completions with Arthur's being in the
other 4-player game of round 1. Ken's victory was in the
lone Transeuropa game.
Patrick Shea and Kathy Stroh advanced with only one first
completion. Kathy hung on by a point in the last round as
Brendan Tracey made a late charge. Patrick's game was the
closest as he entered the last round a point behind GM Lisa Gutermuth. However,
Cheryl Merica was able to complete her connections very quickly
and that vaulted her into a tie with Patrick after the last round
and leaving Lisa behind as she scored nine points. Patrick
edged Cheryl out in the tie-breaker by only having gathered one
point when he was 1st player compared to Cheryl's three points
as 1st player.
As the semi-finalists gathered, talk about playing an AOR
game for one of the semis started as six of the ten semi-finalists
were also Age of Renaissance regulars. In the first
semi to complete, Ken Gutermuth rode three strong starting turns
with only one point and Tony Vickery overcame a poor start with
four excellent turns of only two points to advance. Both
were able to exploit Aurora's tendency to take the most direct
route even if it was through cities she didn't own.
In the second Semi which seemed like a marathon, Kathy Stroh's
consistent scores including being first to complete once allowed
her to advance. Andy Lotto and Patrick Shea tied on points
in both the last turn and the game to force a tiebreaker to see
who our last finalist would be. Both players scored two
points while being first player but Andy's completion as the
second player earned him the coveted last seat in thr Final.
The Final was close despite Tony's completion of track in
Turns 1 and 2 as Ken had just two points, Kathy four, and Andy
five. Tony, however, proved that he was the best engineer
as he continued his strong performance by being the first to
complete in all four rounds, earning him the wood for Transamerica. Ken
Gutermuth once again fell short in a Final and for the third
straight year went home woodless.
Congratulations to Tony on a well deserved win as he was the
first to complete his connections in nine of the 14 turns he
Trans America Junior
Adult "coaches" are
always sorely needed in the Juniors events.
Today's beginners are tomorrow's
champions in the making.
The 2006 TransAmerica tournament for the juniors saw
17 little engineers playing four initial games. At Table 1, Brian
Sherwood finally won over Hannah Navolis, Morgan Christie, and
Joshua Weintraub after six rounds. At Table 2, on the other hand,
Nicole Pysnack triumphed over Aurora Park, Caitlin Jaeger, and
Wes Lewis in only two rounds. At Table 3, April Gardner beat
Megan McCorry, Dan Lewis, Brian Pappas, and Erin Treadway. And
finally, at Table 4, Jaclyn Sands beat Willow Barbera, Kaleigh
Jaeger, and Annie Frattali.
For the Final, our four Round 1 game winners: Brian Sherwood,
April Gardner, Nicole Pysnack, and Jaclyn Sands met for the wood.
The first round was won by Brian. The second round was won by
Nicole so convincingly that Jaclyn's scoring train was at the
1-point spot - and the others weren't far behind. The third,
and last round, was won by Jaclyn, saving her from "falling
off the board", but Brian and April were not so lucky. Nicole
ended up winning the game, thanks to her good showing in Round
2. She was followed by Jaclyn Sands, April gardner, amd Brian
Sherwood who finished second through fourth respectively.