Tour 2 Review – B Tour

B Tour, Flump, nottingham, Open Tour, Reading Ultimate, The Brown, Tournament Reports, u23, UKUT2
Matthew Parker from the ever rising Flump gives us his review of B tour at UKU OWT2.

After the fantastic weather of London’s Calling, it was more than any self-respecting UK Ultimate player could ask for two tour weekends of good weather, and we were not disappointed. Winds hitting up to 20mph on Saturday, and even more on the Sunday, changed the dynamic of the ultimate, but still producing fantastic games all across B-tour.
Owing to the events of the previous tour, teams were now seeded in closer groups, limiting each teams’ ability to rise and fall. The introduction of newly promoted C-tour team, Flump, into the top 8 and an opportunity to qualify into A-tour, sent rustlings of frustration through many seasoned B-tour teams. Furthermore, as a result of teams dropping out of A-tour and B-tour, ABH, Vision, and Bristol Open, who finished in the bottom 3 at London’s Calling, had another opportunity to hold their place in B-tour. Norwich’s Mustard, although being pipped to the final promotion place last tour, were given an opportunity to join Birmingham and Devon 2 in B-tour. 
Murray from Ireland U23 takes is forced by Reynolds from Brighton Echo. Photo courtesy of Andrew Moss.

So the stage was set in a blustery Nottingham, with newly promoted teams attempting to cement themselves in B-tour, with many teams fighting to do the same and hopefully aim for the coveted A-tour spots being battled out by pools E and F. Saturday morning saw pools E and F play their first two games. Newly promoted Flump and Reading enjoyed their first games of the day with teams trading down-wind for the first few points of the game while they attempted to find their feet. Even though Flump saw the early break, Reading fought back and took the game 11-9. Simultaneously The Brown played the newly demoted Tooting Tigers on the crosswind pitches -The Brown put in a fantastic performance to dispatch the top seed 11-6. The subsequent games saw Tooting Tigers lose in a tight game with Reading 9-11, and Flump pip The Brown in an excellent game which saw fantastic plays by each side, including layouts, hammers, huge grabs, and ending with a single upwind break collected by Flump. 

The final games of Pool E saw an incredible game between Reading and The Brown, which traded upwind almost the entire game, with Reading drawing a small advantage midway, but The Brown pulling back in fantastic style in sudden death to take the game. The game between Tooting Tigers and Flump, saw the London rivals battle out a gritty match with more stoppages than an American Football game. Calls lasting a couple of minutes a piece as players discussed the events of the pitch – sometimes in raised tones – put a damper on the eventual Flump win. With so much at stake in each game at this stage in a tour, it is a testament to both teams’ spirit that in the huddle afterwards, a calm discussion took place between the captains to address some of the issues that had occurred. Each team looked to consider what had been said, and take those considerations into their coming games. Overall, this left Pool E in a confusing state, with The Brown, for the second tour in a row, losing out in a three way tie for the top two positions to Reading followed by Flump, who had proved their worth at the top of B-tour. 


Meanwhile, in Pool F, Ireland U23 were showing their colours, beating each team by at least 5 points. Jest Ridisculous 1 came second in the group, after losing to Ireland U23, but beating Emo 2 by a break, and only beating Brighton Echo in sudden death. The afternoon pools G and H saw newly promoted Devon 2 put out great performances against Mustard – winning by two points – as well as a massive win over ABH.  However, Burro Electro, bemused at not being given the opportunity to fight for promotion, put in a great first day with a series of wins in their group. Newly promoted Birmingham saw an enjoyable first day in B tour, with wins over Bristol and Vision, however losing to GB U20s who confidently dispatched Bristol but lost to Vision (whom they beat by one in the final placement game). 

Sunday saw an increase in the wind and rain as only Nottingham can provide. The first games of the day entertained crossovers in the middle eight, with EMO 2, Burro Electrico, Brighton Echo, and The Brown all cementing their place in the top half of B tour. The semi-finals saw Ireland U23 and Jest Ridisculous 1 play Flump and Reading respectively. In a hard-fought game, Ireland emerged as the deserved winners over Flump, managing to resist a heroic comeback in the cap. Despite being down at the half, Jest Ridisculous also pushed through in an exciting win against Reading, securing themselves a place in the final and a shot at A-tour, leaving old flames Reading and Flump to battle it out for the final qualification slot. 

B tour movers. Courtesy of Wayne Retter.

The captain of Portland Rhino said in a recent Nationals campaign “The hardest thing to do in a tournament is beat the same team twice” [ED: see Chasing Sarasota], and Flump put a claim to that, as they immediately took a break and made Reading work for every downwind point. However, after working exceptionally hard into the wind, Reading managed to take down a dubious looking end-zone hammer and felt the turn of the tide. From there they pushed on to take the half, and finally the game in an A-tour worthy performance over Flump, who were prevented at being the first ever team to be promoted in consecutive tours. 

Ireland U23 finished off their fantastic tour with another win over Jest Ridisculous, and were crowned worthy winners of B-tour. we wish them all the best for their travels across the pond for World U23s next month. Elsewhere, Tooting Tigers were able to pick up their first win of the season against Vision, only to subsequently lose to Devon 2 who have really enjoyed securing their place as a B-tour team this tour. The Brown and Burro Electro, in a fantastic match now look set to attempt a bid at A-tour for next season, while Birmingham have hopefully sealed a place at next tour. 
More to come! Remember to like, share and comment. DP @ tSG.

The Grapevine – 21/06

ECBU, Get Horizontal, Open Tour, The Grapevine, u23, Ultiworld, Understanding Ultimate., uTalkRaw, Women's Tour, world games

This weeks The Grapevine has a bit of Tour 2 with a smattering of news from the continent and a big chunk of ECBU!

Barry O’Kane brings us a great episode of UTalkRaw chatting to Liam Kelly on the Matalan Sporting promise and community clubs.

Benji discusses the age-old one hand vs two hand catch debate on UnderstandingUltimate.

As you all know this weekend is Tour 2, all the information you could need is here. Read our preview or for a different perspective, along with our T1 reviews, and make sure to tweet with the hashtag #ukut2.

At Tour 2 the U23 Mixed team are loaning themselves out (not many left, so get on it) to give massages/get water/carry flags. They have also set up the amazing opportunity to pit yourself against their speed gun to see who is the fastest thrower on the tour! For more details check out their FB page or message them.

World Games is only a couple weeks away! Richard “Gash” Harris has made a small trick shot video, go check it out and follow the WG team on Twitter/FB where player profiles are also being released! Sneak a peak at some of the competition on Ultiworld.

Another big GB tournament begins next Thursday in Calafell, Spain. ECBU2013 will see the maximum 7 GB Beach squads pit themselves against Europe’s finest, catch our exciting preview written for SkyD magazine and follow all the action at live.ecbu2013.org

In preparation for ECBU, four GB teams went to Sunburn last weekend. GB Mixed won the tournament and GB Mixed Masters won spirit! Watch out Europe!

Our partners Get Horizontal are celebrating 3000 likes on their FB by having a beach party at ECBU – if you are there join the fun! Also have a read of their Windmill Windup coverage for some great photos and write ups.



So much going on, and we will cover as much as we can! Still looking for a spectator at T2 for tweeting, apply within! Laters, DP @ tSG. 

The Grapevine – 14/06

ECBU, London's Calling, SkyD, The Grapevine, u23, Understanding Ultimate., uTalkRaw

The Grapevine this week covers ECBU, U23’s and much more…

To start us off Benji asks Who Should You Listen To on Understanding Ultimate.

SkyD magazine announced their coverage of the upcoming European Championships for Beach Ultimate and the organisers have also created a live page ready for results, pics to follow from home.

Make sure to follow all the GB Beach squads going into ECBU on twitter, this helpful hashtag page will assist you. Also if you’re going to Sunburn this weekend you get a chance of playing 4 of the squads (Mixed, Women’s, Grand Masters and Mixed Masters) plus seeing a show game with the two mixed teams!

Now for some shameless plugging: we got a mention on SkyD magazine with the Irish piece from Mark and on …


UTalkRaw who interviewed John Maddox and Hannah Brew from the GB U23 Mixed squad, keep updated on their FB page. Also listen to episode 23 here, particularly the last few seconds. 

Finally, with T2 coming up fast relive T1 through our Twitter and this week’s review coverage.
GB Ultimate 2013.

Keep informed on fb, twitter and RSS feeds on the right! DP @ tSG. 

London’s Calling Review – A Tour

A Tour, Chevron, Clapham, EMO, Fire of London, GB, London's Calling, Open Tour, Tournament Reports, u23
Josh Coxon Kelly brings us this weeks penultimate review of London’s Calling – A tour.

As expected the opening tour of 2013 has brought an exciting start to the UK domestic season. With weather conditions which came dangerously close to ‘summery’ at points, UK clubs were treated to the perfect conditions to start off their season’s battles and rivalries.

Sitting pretty at the top of the pack, Clapham’s O line showed throughout the weekend why they were given the number 1 seed as the only non-movers of the A-tour. Bolstered by a returning Giacomo Maltman and new recruits Magnus Wilson (Tooting) and Rob Schumacher (Fire), the Clapham machine showed its capabilities with a clinical weekend – with their closest test from Bad Skid (15-13 Clapham) overshadowed by a decisive victory over the same team in the final. With the D-Line ‘dogs’ woofing their way to third place, the current UK and European champions have succeeded in a strong statement to start their competitive year.

Chevron captain Mark Penny lays out for the grab against CUSB 
Chevron proceeded through pool play unscathed, and found their form of the weekend for their quarter final matchup against the GB U23 squad which despite being largely outnumbered and losing 8 players to the opposition, they came out of with a 15-10 victory. Unphased by the aggressive offence and screaming defense Chevron showed an early sign of the form they will need to replicate if they hope to challenge for the long coveted National and European titles later in the year.

The GBU23 team had one of the most controversial seedings pre-tournament at 7th. They rose to beat this by two, but will be unhappy to not have had a shot at a Tour final. The young squad showed flashes of brilliance throughout the weekend, and displayed one of the more formidable defensive squads at the tournament. However, an occasionally stuttering offense was exposed by the most experienced opponents with losses to Clapham and Chevron. When this team plays at the top of their abilities they are strong enough to take on any domestic club – but will they be able to sustain this level of play to get the result they want at Tour 2?

EMO 1’s ascension of three seeds is maybe the story of the weekend, and a considerable move at such a high level of competition. Despite missing the leadership and pitch length throws of Joe Wynder, EMO showed themselves as a strong geo-team that has full intentions of challenging for the top 4 this season. They have stars Rich Gale and Dan ‘Colonel’ Furnell from the recent GB Open squad (Rich will also be attending World Games), backed up by plenty of pace and athleticism from a solid squad. EMO have reported consistently high numbers at trainings, and this is reflected in large squads attending Tour events for the recent years. Most importantly the team are starting to play with the belief that is needed for giant killings – keep an eye on these boys for potential major upsets later in the season.
A tour movers. Courtesy of Wayne Retter.


Fire of London found themselves in tough matchups for their quarter-finals (Bad Skid) and the 5-8 playoff (a livid u23 squad). The resultant 7th place position will be disappointing, but does not in any way suggest that Fire are not going to be fighting hard for finals berths as the season continues. Once again recruiting heavily, and importantly retaining GB Open/World Games Matt Parslow, Fire are strong once again and, importantly, are a team that knows how to peak later on in the season.

Outside of the top 8 we find Kapow!, who after an upset in Fire 2’s favour on Saturday will have been disappointed not to have been in the top 8, but have shown their intentions for bigger things by taking 9th over Cota Rica. Bear Cavalry more than validated their A Tour starting seeding, rising 8 seeds and finishing over Brighton, a top 4 team of recent years. Refreshed DED and Tooting squads both saw falls of 6 seeds – it will be interesting to see if the new faces on these squads will be able to return their teams to top 8 contention, or if their season will be more about staying in the A tour altogether.

With the current strength of the B Tour, teams traditionally used to A Tour ultimate such as BAF, Cambridge, Fire 2, Devon and Tooting may find re-qualification harder than ever before. The Tour season has got off to a strong start, but with shifting squads and various non club entries it is hard to get a picture of Nationals yet. Consistency is key to the Tour, and with competition rising at all levels, no game will be won easily in Nottingham.

Almost there, tomorrow we have saved the best till last: Women’s review! Remember to like, share, comment and contribute! DP @ tSG. 

London’s Calling Preview (Women’s).

Iceni, London's Calling, Nice Bristols, Previews, Seven Sisters, SYC, u23, Women's Tour, world games
Charlie Blair, the UK’s international poster girl, gives us her preview for the Women’s division at London’s Calling (WT1). 

London’s Calling is by far my favourite event on the calendar. The event where all teams come both determined after month’s of pre season fitness, training and bonding, and charged by the anticipation of the first tour event, to make their mark and set the tone for the season ahead. So much so that it has become a worthy lure of international competition. Last year’s event itself didn’t disappoint for upsets, with the reigning champions Iceni being relegated to sixth position. London rivals SYC, being the sole representative of the English contingent, against the German national team in the final. This year, the stage is set for more teams to challenge the very top spots.

It appears that the broad selection of players up and down the country that were picked to represent GB last year has really benefitted investment in women’s clubs. As a result it is by no means a two horse race to the final any longer. With Nice Bristols, SYC and the newly rebranded Brighton outfit, Seven Sisters, having all come runners up at each of the tour finals, it thus goes without saying that all will be looking to better their 2012 performance.

Will an influx of fresh blood into SYC from those representing the u23 squad make the difference this year? SYC have clearly shown themselves to be formidable opponents but struggled to maintain consistency last year. Their strong start at London Calling ended up never bettered, or even matched at subsequent events. However, was this simply a result of their infancy as a club? They have never lacked quality, with a roster full of international experience. And so with another year under their belt, are things set to change?

Will Brighton’s famously incessant flair continue to baffle teams who prefer a more disciplined and regimented style of play? They are a team that thrive off the harsh conditions that the south coast hurls at them. Underestimate them at your own peril! Headed this year by Kent superstar, Kate Ford, rest assured, this is a team whose spirits will be near impossible for the most formidable of opponents to crush, and for whom the hammer is always ON.

Will Nice Bristols be able to maintain the momentum of last season having been the only other English team to join Iceni at EUCF 2012? Still with a handful of experienced, international players at the helm, they appear to continue building on solid foundations. They boast big turnouts at training have made getting on their first team fiercer than ever. In contrast LeedLeedsLeeds (LLLs), have lost many key personnel, including one of their most invested and influential players, Gemma Taylor. Consequently, the focus at LLLs is very much on their up and coming talent this year. With nothing to lose, will these fresh faces cause some surprises?

Equally, how will the first appearance of ROBOT fare? A team where much of LLL’s departed experience has ended up. Essentially an all-star masters team, ROBOT boasts the return of former captains of Leeds and Iceni, Sally Fraser and Whitney Kakos, who were last seen together on pitch competing against each other in the xEUCF 2009 final. The disappearance of Bears and ISO at London Calling this year, also begs the question of how these players have redistributed among other teams/clubs. In the case of the southerners at least, the demise of ISO has given rise to two new teams, Discie Chicks and Something Different.

Finally, last year’s tour champions, Iceni will be determined to defend their home turf, in their quest to retain both domestic and European domination. Like last year, they have picked a very big squad to keep the level of competition and play, within the club as high as possible. And with four GB World Games player’s setting the standard, the bar is indeed high. Will this dynamic again led to Iceni Savage (their iron man spin off) upstaging Iceni ‘full fat’ at London Calling as they did last year? Unfortunately, the former will not have the chance to repeat their impressive victory over the German national team, with Parisian based YAKA being the only international team to attend this weekend. Yet, having been freshly crowned champions of France for the sixth time in a row just last weekend, will they continue to ride high on success over the Channel and be the source of the biggest upsets?

Just as last year, I am continually excited by the development and level of increasing investment in women’s clubs. As such, this year, I genuinely believe the competition to be wide open. None of the teams working hard for those top spots deserve to be underestimated. However, as an Iceni warrior myself, named after the tribe that so happened to famously dominate the St Albans area two thousand years ago, I’ll be attending London Calling with every belief in my team coming out on top!

UKU Open/Women’s Tour 1: London’s Calling! 
So who are you backing? Comment, like, share and more! Use the #ukut1 hashtag over the weekend and keep an eye on here for scores. Watch out for our Open preview, soon…

The Grapevine – 24/05

Get Horiztonal, London's Calling, Open Tour, PushPass, Secret Frizzer, The Grapevine, u23, Understanding Ultimate., uTalkRaw

This weeks The Grapevine covers A LOT! Get clicking!


Barry O’Kane interviews the one and only Melissa Witmer author of “The Ultimate Athlete Handbook”, in Episode 20 of UTalkRaw.

Understanding Ultimate discuss the idea of the ‘Magic Hour’ of a training session.

Full team list for London’s Calling next weekend released including CUSB (Italy), Cota Rica (Italy), Yaka (France) and Bad Skid (Germany)! 

Mark Earley writes for Get Horizontal on the recent Irish Mixed Beach team win at Calafell Arena

In the second Road to Worlds blog the Open squad give their views on the run up to Toronto.

With the return of the Secret Frizzer he (or she) published a gossip piece on player movement and what it might mean for the upcoming open tour. Upon reading this EMO Captain, Joe Wynder, wanted to set things straight from his perspective and promptly got an interview.  Interesting read and great banter, watch out for more from tSF here!

With USA College Nationals this weekend see what hosts Wisconsin have been up to in the work up to Madison.

PushPass have been working hard to get all of the University Nationals 2013 games online (in great multiple angle HD quality) buy the subscription here. Highlights can be found here along with 4 PP shorts: Who is fouling whom?, What’s going on here?, When it goes a bit wrong and Worst Pull ever; highlighting the funnier side of Ultimate. 



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