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CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Wed Aug 02, 2017 10:23 pm
by Jennifer Steadman
FOCAL is coming back to Birmingham, and that can only mean one thing: it’s the Co:Brum/FOCAL finals double header!

At the end of the busiest ever Countdowning year, just two tournaments will remain - Co:Brum and the FOCAL finals - and once more they’ll be happening side by side. While our top 8 battle it out for who can take the title of FOCAL champion for the year, everyone else can compete for the chance to win their own title: Co:Brum champion 2017! And, as a thank you to everyone for helping this be the biggest, most successful Co-event year ever, we’ve lowered the entry fee from last year, and will be re-investing levies into goodies for attendees.

Date: Saturday 2nd December 2017
Venue: Strathallan Hotel, 225 Hagley Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham, West Midlands, B16 9RY
Admission: £12.50
Doors open: 10.30am (draw at 11am)
Presented by: Jeff Clayton and Ben Wilson
Games to be played: 7 (plus the grand FOCAL final)
Finishes by: 5:30pm

WHAT?
Come along and join us from 10:30am to play seven 9-rounders, before watching (or playing, for 2 of the top 8) the showpiece grand final to decide the FOCAL champion 2017. The event will use a classroom-style format, with the draw done with traditional Swiss pairings after the initial round (as requested by you, the punters, last year).

This year, we’ve decided to theme a little, beyond the standard “It’s a bit Christmassy” vibe, and go for... an “anti-Christmas” theme. Think grinches, bad tempered elves, and fallen stars. We’ll have lots of ways for you to get involved in the unfestivities over the coming months!

WHERE?
Our venue once more is the 4* Hallmark Strathallan Hotel in Birmingham, just a couple of miles from all central bus and rail hubs, and with connections from Birmingham International Airport.

HOW TO BOOK
The entry fee is £12.50 including a buffet lunch; please advise upon booking of any special dietary requirements. Refreshments are not included in the price but are available to purchase. To secure your place, send your entry fee to Chris Marshall, FOCAL treasurer, via PayPal to chrismarshall82@btinternet.com (please remember to select payment to friends and family), or via cheque (address available on request)

Each of the top 8 players will have their entry fee refunded, by way of a prize.

Bookings including the buffet lunch can be taken up and until Wednesday 15th November. After this, entries may still be taken for the full price but players are not guaranteed lunch.

STAYING OVER?
FOCAL have once again arranged for a dinner, bed and breakfast rate to be available for the nights of Friday 1st December and Saturday 2nd December at a rate of £73 per night for single occupancy or £99 per night for double or twin occupancy. You can take advantage of this offer on either or both nights. E-mail focalcountdown@gmail.com to request a booking form, or you can download one from our website.

Hotel room bookings can be taken up to and including Friday 3rd November.

ANY QUESTIONS?
Please feel free to email us at focalcountdown@gmail.com.

See you in Birmingham in December!

Going (36; * means FOCAL finalist):
Zarte Siempre*
Jack Worsley
Paul Worsley
Mike Brown
Adam Dexter
Gevin Chapwell
Tim Down
Graeme Cole*
Tom Cappleman*
Nathan Pace
Tracey Mills
Mark Mills
Chris Marshall
Jayne Wisniewski
Stewart Gordon
Thomas Carey*
Stephen Read*
Martin Thomas
Sam Prouse
Rob Foster*
Jonathan Wynn*
Jen Steadman*
Ashwin Abinashi
David Hilton
Tom Chafer-Cook
Pete Cashmore
Sarah Bladon
Matty Artell
Amar Chotai
Jonathan de Souza
Bradley Horrocks
James Wilson
Katherine Webb
Dan Byrom
Kevin Davis
Callum Todd

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Thu Aug 03, 2017 10:39 am
by Matt Morrison
Jennifer Steadman wrote:
Wed Aug 02, 2017 10:23 pm
After the busiest ever Countdowning year, just two tournaments remain - Co:Brum and the FOCAL finals
Did I misunderstand or did you just take a big steaming dump on Zarte and JR? (and maybe others?)

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Thu Aug 03, 2017 3:00 pm
by Jennifer Steadman
Matt Morrison wrote:
Thu Aug 03, 2017 10:39 am
Jennifer Steadman wrote:
Wed Aug 02, 2017 10:23 pm
After the busiest ever Countdowning year, just two tournaments remain - Co:Brum and the FOCAL finals
Did I misunderstand or did you just take a big steaming dump on Zarte and JR? (and maybe others?)
Z wrote it, so he'd be taking a big steaming dump on himself if so. (Although we know he's a deviant, so...)

Serious answer: misunderstanding - it means 'after the qualifying events have concluded, just two tournaments will remain', but can see how it's probably more easily read as your interpretation. (I'd also be dumping on Eddy and Alan.)

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Thu Aug 03, 2017 3:02 pm
by Gavin Chipper
Matt Morrison wrote:
Thu Aug 03, 2017 10:39 am
Jennifer Steadman wrote:
Wed Aug 02, 2017 10:23 pm
After the busiest ever Countdowning year, just two tournaments remain - Co:Brum and the FOCAL finals
Did I misunderstand or did you just take a big steaming dump on Zarte and JR? (and maybe others?)
It certainly looks like it.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Thu Aug 03, 2017 3:23 pm
by Zarte Siempre
As Jen said, I wrote it, just a sentence that makes perfect sense if you're involved. Clumsy phrasing, no need to start any grumbling. One extra word should make intention clearer :)

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Fri Aug 04, 2017 8:38 am
by Matt Morrison
Honestly one of the worst sentences ever.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 8:55 pm
by Heather Styles
An "anti-Christmas" theme is a terrible idea, even by you guys' standards. It's no better than anti any other religious festival.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:47 pm
by Zarte Siempre
Heather Styles wrote:
Wed Aug 16, 2017 8:55 pm
An "anti-Christmas" theme is a terrible idea, even by you guys' standards. It's no better than anti any other religious festival.
Oh that's a pity, will you not be coming?

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:10 pm
by Heather Styles
If you'd made it an anti-Hannukah theme, would you be imagining that was in any way cool?

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:18 pm
by Heather Styles
(Also, ad hominem attacks are usually a sign of a lost argument.)

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:41 pm
by Matty Artell
Hannukah isn't *quite* as ingrained into our culture as Christmas.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:54 pm
by Heather Styles
Matty Artell wrote:
Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:41 pm
Hannukah isn't *quite* as ingrained into our culture as Christmas.
You're right, Matty. It wasn't an exact parallel. It just makes me sad that Focal, which I worked hard to establish, has come to this. I feel sorry for anyone whose idea of fun is to knock what is essentially a festival of love, light, peace and goodwill.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Thu Aug 17, 2017 9:01 am
by Matt Morrison
I think if Christmas was still a respected religious festival, like Hannukah or Diwali or something still is, then you'd be absolutely right Heather. However, Christmas has become something pretty gross and superficial these days. However one's experience is balanced (individually or as part of a family) to prioritise the good of Christmas (love, goodwill) or the bad of Christmas (commercialism, consumerism, excessive presents, showing off), either way it's become pretty un-religious for most people.

I think typically anything positioning itself as anti-Christmas is not only _not_ trying to be heretic or blasphemous, I don't even think it's really being anti the good-side of the non-religious bit of Christmas, the family and the love and stuff you point out as being good. I think "anti-Christmas" is mostly a mix of being against the _bad_ side of the non-religous bit of Christmas, the shallow consumerism, and expressing a personal disinterest in the light-hearted celebratory side (decorations, singing, traditions).

No one has any problem with being against the consumerism, as even if we all partake in it to some extent we all still know it kinda sucks, and being against the celebratory side is just... that's just the humbug bit. Each to their own. It's not me, as I love Christmas for the reasons you mention, but I'm not offended by anyone not liking Christmas because I don't think they are expressing a dislike in the good honest valid notions you point out.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Thu Aug 17, 2017 2:09 pm
by Heather Styles
Thanks, Matt, for a thoughtfully worded and helpful post. I suppose I would only say that if one means anti-consumerism, perhaps say that, and leave Christmas out of it. In homes and churches in many parts of the world, it still is a meaningful religious festival.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Thu Sep 07, 2017 6:45 pm
by Jennifer Steadman
If you'd like to stay at the venue on the Friday, Saturday or both, details are here!

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Sat Oct 14, 2017 11:22 am
by Zarte Siempre
Good day to you!

It’s now just a month and a half until our end of year event, and so this seems like a good opportunity to announce one of the things we’ll be doing!

See, traditionally at this time of year, many groups such as ours will be having a secret Santa, but for us, the only option was to have a secret Satan!

The premise is thus: Anyone choosing to join in has a budget of £5 to come up with the most useless possible gift for the person whose name they receive in a random draw. Such gifts should be bought with a sense of fun, and not designed to offend (gentle ribbing is fine though).

Copouts such as “I just didn’t buy anything because that’s a useless gift” will be punishable by death, then mockery, then some more death.

If you’re interested in getting involved, please leave an “in” reply in response to this message – the random draw will be done 2 weeks prior to the event to give everyone a chance to sort out their pointless shopping! (No need to in if you've done so on the near-identical FB post)

Let’s have some fun!

Z x

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Sat Oct 14, 2017 1:19 pm
by Gavin Chipper
In. But specifically in on the c4c post rather than the Facebook post.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Sat Oct 14, 2017 3:16 pm
by Zarte Siempre
Gavin Chipper wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 1:19 pm
In. But specifically in on the c4c post rather than the Facebook post.
Noted. Eyerolled at, but noted.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:07 pm
by DJ Marky Mark
Me and Tracey Coming in on train at Birmingham New Street at 9am, is there public transport from the station to venue.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Sat Oct 14, 2017 5:38 pm
by Zarte Siempre
DJ Marky Mark wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:07 pm
Me and Tracey Coming in on train at Birmingham New Street at 9am, is there public transport from the station to venue.
If I'm reading it correctly, the numbers 120, 120A, 127 and 128 will all take you to the venue from Birmingham NS

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Sun Oct 15, 2017 9:06 am
by Adam Dexter
DJ Marky Mark wrote:
Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:07 pm
Me and Tracey Coming in on train at Birmingham New Street at 9am, is there public transport from the station to venue.
Yep you'll want a bus heading to Edgebaston or the Hagley Road... there are loads that head down there as it's an artery road to the rest of the West Mids / M5 :)

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 12:37 pm
by Mark Murray
Just over couple of weeks left at which point hotel will want to know details of who will be staying at the hotel Friday/Saturday night or both nights. As with last year, they may consider circumstances for rooms on these nights after this date (dependant on availability), however if you have decided that you will be staying at the hotel either (or both) nights, please send payment to Chris ASAP to avoid disappointment.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Mon Oct 30, 2017 8:31 pm
by Jennifer Steadman
A slight change to proceedings... Ben has kindly offered to host with Jeff again, while I'm swapping to the other side of the room to break up the sausagefest of the Finals.

As James Robinson and Dan McColm are unable to attend the finals, this year's top 8 participating in the FOCAL Finals will be:
Stephen Read
Zarte Siempre
Thomas Carey
Rob Foster
Jennifer Steadman
Graeme Cole
Thomas Cappleman
Jonathan Wynn

There's still time to sign up to the event and to the hotel offer! Get on it :)

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Wed Nov 01, 2017 9:43 pm
by Adam Dexter
The date of this makes it Anti Christmas (for me anyway). I always have a rule that no mince pies or mulled wine until Advent starts - Advent this year starts on Dec 3rd (4 Sundays before Christmas). Bring on the anti-Christmas theme :)

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Thu Nov 02, 2017 2:10 pm
by Gavin Chipper
Adam Dexter wrote:
Wed Nov 01, 2017 9:43 pm
The date of this makes it Anti Christmas (for me anyway). I always have a rule that no mince pies or mulled wine until Advent starts - Advent this year starts on Dec 3rd (4 Sundays before Christmas). Bring on the anti-Christmas theme :)
Have you never seen an advent calendar?

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:32 am
by Mark Murray
Ok so 5 days remaining now when we need to pay hotel/give numbers on how many people will be attending on day and need lunches and also how many people will be staying at the hotel.

If you want to ensure your lunch on the day or need to still sort out accommodation, please send money to Chris Marshall. You can enter still after this date, but lunch at the hotel at that stage will not be guaranteed

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 10:06 pm
by Gavin Chipper
I might do the Cannon Hill parkrun, but it's a bit far out so I'm not 100% sure yet.

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:27 pm
by Callum Todd
ey up. what's the crack with parking at the hotel? do we have to register at reception or something or can we just park for free, no bullshit?

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 4:29 pm
by Ben Wilson
Results from today- final to be played shortly!

STANDINGS

Players are ranked by wins, then points.


FOCAL Finals
P W Pts
1 Rob Foster 7 7 481
2 Jen Steadman 7 4 448
3 Zarte Siempre 7 4 443
4 Tom Cappleman 7 4 427
5 Jonathan Wynn 7 4 401
6 Stephen Read 7 2 394
6 Thomas Carey 7 2 394
8 Graeme Cole 7 1 395


CoBrum
P W Pts
1 Jack Worsley 7 6 537
2 Callum Todd 7 6 511
3 Tracey Mills 7 5 431
4 Tim Down 7 5 410
4 Tom Chafer-Cook 7 5 410
6 Paul Worsley 7 5 357
7 Martin Thomas 7 4 380
8 Adam Dexter 7 4 376
8 Pete Cashmore 7 4 376
10 Jonathan de Souza 7 4 358
11 Kevin Davis 7 4 353
12 Toby Pereira 7 4 347
13 Stewart Gordon 7 4 331
14 Bradley Horrocks 7 3 387
15 Mike Brown 7 3 356
16 Jayne Wisniewski 7 3 339
16 Matty Artell 7 3 339
18 David Hilton 7 3 325
19 Dan Byrom 7 3 320
20 Nathan Pace 7 3 292
21 Ashwin Abinashi 7 3 281
22 Chris Marshall 7 2 345
23 Sam Prouse 7 2 307
24 James Wilson 4 2 173
25 Amar Chotai 7 1 257
26 Mark Mills 7 1 172
27 Katherine Webb 5 1 105
28 Santa Prune 2 0 0
28 Sarah Bladon 0 0 0


RESULTS

Round 1

FOCAL Finals
Graeme Cole 53 - 78 Zarte Siempre
Jen Steadman 74 - 41 Tom Cappleman
Jonathan Wynn 60 - 45 Thomas Carey
Rob Foster 65 - 41 Stephen Read

CoBrum
Ashwin Abinashi 59 - 49 Jayne Wisniewski
Matty Artell 53 - 36 Mike Brown
Dan Byrom 50 - 54 Paul Worsley
Adam Dexter 44 - 61 Tracey Mills
Jonathan de Souza 60 - 36 Sam Prouse
Bradley Horrocks 52 - 41 Tim Down
Tom Chafer-Cook 62 - 6 Katherine Webb
Callum Todd 81 - 29 David Hilton
Chris Marshall 59 - 54 Pete Cashmore
Mark Mills 16 - 84 Jack Worsley
Stewart Gordon 43 - 39 Toby Pereira
Kevin Davis 54 - 13 Nathan Pace
Martin Thomas 42 - 31 Amar Chotai

Round 2

FOCAL Finals
Tom Cappleman 76 - 56 Graeme Cole
Zarte Siempre 68 - 71 Thomas Carey
Jen Steadman 62 - 75 Stephen Read
Jonathan Wynn 45 - 70 Rob Foster

CoBrum
Toby Pereira 50 - 43 Jayne Wisniewski
David Hilton 48 - 61 Martin Thomas
Mark Mills 12 - 66 Tracey Mills
Mike Brown 68 - 57 Chris Marshall
Tom Chafer-Cook 72 - 39 Bradley Horrocks
Adam Dexter 55 - 29 Kevin Davis
Stewart Gordon 66 - 70 Tim Down
Pete Cashmore 60 - 54 Jonathan de Souza
Katherine Webb 12 - 81 Callum Todd
Sam Prouse 46 - 35 Nathan Pace
Jack Worsley 81 - 22 Ashwin Abinashi
Dan Byrom 45 - 74 Matty Artell
Amar Chotai 40 - 63 Paul Worsley

Round 3

FOCAL Finals
Graeme Cole 63 - 73 Thomas Carey
Tom Cappleman 59 - 55 Stephen Read
Zarte Siempre 56 - 63 Rob Foster
Jen Steadman 63 - 72 Jonathan Wynn

CoBrum
Adam Dexter 39 - 50 Mike Brown
Tim Down 56 - 79 Callum Todd
Chris Marshall 47 - 51 Sam Prouse
Kevin Davis 44 - 34 Ashwin Abinashi
Dan Byrom 20 - 55 Jonathan de Souza
Katherine Webb 18 - 44 Pete Cashmore
Tracey Mills 51 - 69 Bradley Horrocks
Amar Chotai 35 - 40 David Hilton
Martin Thomas 45 -*55 Tom Chafer-Cook
Paul Worsley 53 - 38 Stewart Gordon
Nathan Pace 55 - 25 Mark Mills
Jack Worsley 80 - 21 Jayne Wisniewski
Matty Artell 23 - 62 Toby Pereira

Round 4

FOCAL Finals
Stephen Read 36 - 68 Graeme Cole
Thomas Carey 52 - 62 Rob Foster
Tom Cappleman 71*- 61 Jonathan Wynn
Zarte Siempre 51 - 68 Jen Steadman

CoBrum
Mike Brown 51 - 58 Tom Chafer-Cook
Dan Byrom 38 - 51 Stewart Gordon
Chris Marshall 40 - 70 Tracey Mills
Amar Chotai 37 - 58 Adam Dexter
Bradley Horrocks 42 - 67 Callum Todd
Nathan Pace 54 - 46 Jonathan de Souza
Matty Artell 44 - 47 David Hilton
Sam Prouse 47 - 62 Paul Worsley
Pete Cashmore 50 - 57 Martin Thomas
Kevin Davis 51 - 60 Tim Down
Katherine Webb 18 - 68 Jayne Wisniewski
Toby Pereira 34 - 71 Jack Worsley
Ashwin Abinashi 35 - 47 Mark Mills
James Wilson 48 - 0 Santa Prune

Round 5

FOCAL Finals
Graeme Cole 55 - 73 Rob Foster
Stephen Read 62 - 66 Jonathan Wynn
Thomas Carey 48 - 73 Jen Steadman
Tom Cappleman 58 - 63 Zarte Siempre

CoBrum
Callum Todd 73 - 63 Jack Worsley
Paul Worsley 54 - 72 Tom Chafer-Cook
Tracey Mills 56 - 74 Martin Thomas
Tim Down 56 - 47 Jonathan de Souza
Pete Cashmore 39 - 61 Mike Brown
Bradley Horrocks 49 - 55 Stewart Gordon
Matty Artell 62 - 52 Adam Dexter
Toby Pereira 72 - 47 Sam Prouse
David Hilton 56 - 64 Kevin Davis
Nathan Pace 50 - 62 Chris Marshall
Jayne Wisniewski 61 - 23 Mark Mills
Ashwin Abinashi 51 - 37 James Wilson
Amar Chotai 33 - 62 Dan Byrom
Santa Prune 0 - 51 Katherine Webb

Round 6

FOCAL Finals
Jonathan Wynn 70 - 50 Graeme Cole
Rob Foster 63 - 43 Jen Steadman
Stephen Read 58 - 64 Zarte Siempre
Thomas Carey 46 - 64 Tom Cappleman

CoBrum
Tom Chafer-Cook 47 - 74 Callum Todd
Paul Worsley 21 - 74 Jack Worsley
Tim Down 72 - 64 Martin Thomas
Mike Brown 34 - 60 Tracey Mills
Kevin Davis 46 - 51 Toby Pereira
Stewart Gordon 31 - 30 Matty Artell
Jonathan de Souza 39 - 27 Chris Marshall
Adam Dexter 73 - 60 Bradley Horrocks
Jayne Wisniewski 33 - 61 Pete Cashmore
David Hilton 47 - 36 Sam Prouse
Ashwin Abinashi 32 - 47 Nathan Pace
Mark Mills 5 - 58 Dan Byrom
James Wilson 42 - 20 Amar Chotai

Round 7

FOCAL Finals
Graeme Cole 50 - 65 Jen Steadman
Jonathan Wynn 27 - 63 Zarte Siempre
Rob Foster 85 - 68 Tom Cappleman
Stephen Read 67 - 59 Thomas Carey

CoBrum
Tracey Mills 67 - 56 Callum Todd
Jack Worsley 84 - 54 Tom Chafer-Cook
Tim Down 55 - 39 Toby Pereira
Martin Thomas 37 - 50 Paul Worsley
Stewart Gordon 47 - 55 Adam Dexter
Jonathan de Souza 57 - 56 Mike Brown
David Hilton 58 - 68 Pete Cashmore
Kevin Davis 65 - 53 Matty Artell
Nathan Pace 38 - 76 Bradley Horrocks
Jayne Wisniewski 64 - 53 Chris Marshall
James Wilson 46 - 47 Dan Byrom
Sam Prouse 44 - 48 Ashwin Abinashi
Mark Mills 44 - 61 Amar Chotai

Re: CoBirmingham/The FOCAL Finals 2017

Posted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 5:43 pm
by Graeme Cole
I just came on here to paste the results in, thinking I was doing it really early. Then I find that Ben has been even keener and has already done it.

Still one result to go, though...

Rob Foster won the final against Jen Steadman, 76-42.