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Air Baron (ABN) WBC 2019 Event Report
Updated October 7, 2019
54 Players James Fleckenstein 2019 Status 2020 Status History/Laurels
  2019 Champion   Click box for details. Click box for details.

Fleckenstein Stops GM in Final

Air Baron attendance continued its slight decline since 2016 with 54 would-be airline moguls rolling through the Seven Springs Ballroom in an attempt to manufacture the best airline structure and create the best market share during the 2019 Air Baron Tournament. Game play time seemed to be less of a factor in the heats as few of the games went to the full 3 hour adjudication mark – and Andy Gardner may have set a standard for heat play with the first win in the event in roughly 62 minutes. Max Jamelli’s heat 1 win came shortly after at the 70 minute mark. Brad Sherwood was the victor in a first heat game that featured the most calamity token pulls with 9 (which included 4 recessions). The calamity total fell below the 129 total from last year with 115 of those pesky chits getting pulled. The Strike token was by far the most popular – being pulled 5 times in one game and 4 times in two others.

The 115 Calamities were:

  • Local Competitor – 21
  • Crash – 11
  • Recession – 23
  • Strike – 37
  • Fuel Hike – 23

The semifinals began on Friday with 15 unique winners showing up and several alternates – but not quite enough to reach the preferred 25 semifinalist total. With 22 players, the GM divided up two 5-player games and two 6-player games. With a second straight year of 4 semi-tables, the second place finisher with the highest percentage of first score was going to get a ticket to the finals.

Former champ Jim Fleckenstein’s table featured heavyweights John Coussis, Stephane Dorais, Brad Sherwood and Scott Fenn. The Fuel hike was a big factor in this game, being pulled four times. Fleckenstein earned a win with a strong market share. Scott Fenn’s score of 326 was enough to earn him the strongest second place and a place at the final table. Matt Fagan won his semifinal game with a strong market share as well (290 +$32). Matt’s game was one of the cleaner games in the event with only one calamity pulled (a crash). Erika Kirchner joined a table late and was within 3 points of a second place finish, only to watch Tom Bissa roll to a market share of 320 (along with $30) to secure a win. GM Max Jamelli’s semi table was the last to finish as the players drew 7 calamity tokens (spread fairly evenly – but without a fuel hike). Jamelli earned his second trip to a final table with a strong cash presence (260 market share and $66).

The final table was a cash heavy table. The bank roll of $6 gave the players all kinds of financial flexibility. Fleckenstein started that flex early by buying Boston at $9 and Minneapolis St. Paul at $8 in his first two turns. Jamelli’s early pull of the Govt. Contract resulted in him paying $2, but collecting $6 over the course of the first few turns. Players vied for various parts of the country, however Fleckenstein took a single purchase in LAX after initially starting in the Northeast. That led to a fruity pebbles like situation where Fleckenstein, Fagan, and Bissa each held one spoke in LAX by turn four and a jumbo jet fortifying them not long after. None of the LAX spokes were ever attacked either, rendering LAX moot during the game. The jumbo jets would pay off big in turn 12 as two jumbo markers were pulled and everyone earned at least $20 on that pull. As the late game approached, Jamelli had secured all of New York with the exception of Boston and Fleckenstein took a strong fare wars turn to knock him out. Jamelli still had a shot with die rolls in Atlanta, but Fenn foiled him there. Fleckenstein was able to pull out the win by completing the Chicago hub with a win over St. Louis to put him at 280 market share along with $54. Jamelli’s score of 258 earned him a second place with Matt Fagan’s 244 rounding out the wood winners.

I hope to see you all in 2020 in the Air Baron room!

2019 Laurelists Repeating Laurelists: N/A

Max Jamelli Matt Fagan Tom Bissa Scott Fenn Brandon Bernard
2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th
Is it time for Fare Wars? Brandon Bernard working his way to the laurels.
Mike Stanley studying his position. Finalists including GM Max Jamelli.
GM     Max Jamelli [5th Year]   NA
   MaxJamelli1@Yahoo.com    NA