Brittany Backhold Championships

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Young wrestlers were in action, home and away, last week-end. Carlisle Academy wrestlers, several from Northumberland, travelled the long and winding road to the Open Night at Waberthwaite Academy in West Cumbria, but their journey was as nothing compared to that of a group from Minthorpe Academy which flew to the Brittany Backhold Championships in the town of Carhaix.

Over a hundred wrestlers competed in Cumberland and Westmorland Style Wrestling in the Salle Omnisport in Carhaix, and Sam Wilkinson and Tom Mason of Milnthorpe found themselves in one of the biggest and most competitive groups, the 66kg Under 16 Years. Wrestling in round robins in two separate pools, best-of-five falls, Mason had all sorts of trouble while Wilkinson went through to the cross-tie semi-finals without losing a fall. By error Mason was also put forward and showed his subtle wrestling skills in felling Wilkinson before the fault was rectified. Duly reinstated, Wilkinson then won the re-wrestled semi and the final with his careful style. He mainly went for hold and then rushed his man forward off his hip.

The two other Milnthorpe boys both acquitted themselves well, with Stuart Mason winning the +52kg Under 13 Years, and Douglas Parsons coming second to Colas Caritte, one of the best wrestlers on display. Parsons had some excellent falls in the semi-finals when he buttocked Sezni Le Lay twice. The Breton lad must not have been too upset by that for the Breton Federation e-mailed me with a request from him for a contact address for Douglas Parsons.

The Waberthwaite Open Night ......

......saw the Carlisle contingent dominating the younger age groups. Jack Brown of Haydon Bridge won the Under 11s, Paul Murray of Arlecdon the Under 13s, and Adam Ridley the Under 15s. After that the bigger and stronger lads of the home academy took over with wins for Sandra Woodend (girls), Andrew Mason (Under 18), Philip Cowell (7st), Andrew Mason (11st), James Milburn (13st) and not unexpectedly Joe Lowery in the All Weights. Only Adam Ridley of the visitors figured in the later stages when he won the 9 stones and wrestled up at 11st.

Joe Lowery has been putting a lot of zest into the club and he has plans to take himself and the other Waberthwaite lads to more events than in recent years when the new Grass Season opens in May.

Written by © Roger Robson. Photographs by © Roger Robson, Julian Richardson or Linda Scott (February 10th 2011)

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