NABC Final Day Results


Four members of the winning squad in the Reisinger Board-a-Match Teams: Tor Helness, Claudio Nunes, Geir Helgemo. Not pictured are team captain Pierre Zimmermann and Franck Multon. The Zimmermann team overcame a string of poor results in the middle of the second final by winning their final seven boards.


Unofficial non-playing captain Jacek Pszczola (second from left) with
four members of the winning squad in Keohane North American Swiss Teams: Apolinary Kowalski, captain Reese Milner, Dennis Bilde and Jacek
Romanski. Not pictured: Anders Hagen and Lars Blakset.

With 348.08 platinum masterpoints earned at the 2012 Fall NABC, Zia Mahmood racked up a rare double – he is 2012 ACBL Player of the Year and winner of the Goren Trophy, awarded to the player who does the best at a Fall NABC. Zia’s total of 348.08 was more than 60 points better that Goren runner-up Justin Lall. The masterpoints Zia won were all platinum, awarded for NABC+ events (national rating, no upper masterpoint restrictions). The Player of the Year is the ACBL member who wins the most platinum masterpoints in a calendar year.

Entering the Fall NABC in San Francisco, Zia had earned 453.96 platinum points. His total in San Francisco boosted his 2012 tally to 802.04 to 724.07 for runner-up Thomas Bessis.

Zia Mahmood

Zia Mahmood


Recap of NABC Day 9

The team captained by Pierre Zimmermann will start play today in the Reisinger Board-a-Match Teams with a carryover lead of 2.03 boards, with the Dan Zagorin team in close pursuit. Ten teams will play two final sessions today. The play can be seen on Bridge Base Online and on television monitors in the lower levels of the hotel.

Zimmermann’s Monaco-based team is Franck Multon, Geir Helgemo, Tor Helness, Fulvio Fantoni and Claudio Nunes. Zagorin is playing with Kevin Bathurst and four members of the Dutch team that won the 2011 Bermuda Bowl: Bas Drijver, Sjoert Brink, Louk Verhees and Ricco van Prooijen.

The James Cayne team, winners of the last two Reisingers, qualified in eighth place.

After two days of play in the Keohane North American Swiss Teams, the squad captained by Carolyn Lynch leads the pack of the remaining 46 teams remaining in the event. Lynch, playing with Mike Passell, Adam Zmudzinski, Cezary Balicki, Andrew Gromov, and Aleksander Dubinin will enjoy a carryover of 40 victory points in today’s two-session final.

In second with a carryover of 26.94 is Mike Levine, Dennis McGarry, Dennis Clerkin, Jerry
Clerkin, Russell Ekeblad and Peter Weichsel. Third place is held by Robert Lebi, David
Lindop, Mitch Dunitz and Iftikhar Baqai.

For a full list of results, click here. To read the full Daily Bulletin, click here.

Something for Everyone

by Roaming Reporter, Peggy Kaplan

Is an NABC tournament an elite competition for the best players around the world?  Indeed it is!

Yet, as exciting as the top events are, NABC’s have much, much more!  Secondary NABC events, regional events, side games, lectures, seminars, entertainment, treats….  And, for those of us who are just learning bridge?  I/N (Intermediate & Newcomer) and 299er games, too!

These players are enjoying a 49er and 299er game on Thursday afternoon.  For some, this is the first NABC they’ve ever attended.

Our newer players can enjoy competition with people of similar experience level, receive assistance finding partners and learn more from expert lecturers, books and Daily Bulletins.

What could possibly be better!?

Welcome to those starting out.  We hope that you attend many more!


Click here to view a complete photo album of the Intermediate/Newcomer events.

Recap of NABC Day 8

The opening round of the Reisinger Board-a- Match Teams saw the field of 42 entrants cut to 20 with Dan Zagorin’s team at the front of the pack. Zagorin, playing with Kevin Bathurst and the Dutch quartet of Bas Drijver, Sjoert Brink, Louk Verhees and Ricco Van Prooijen, scored 17 wins in the first qualifying session and 18 in the second.

In second is Jim Mahaffey who scored a huge 19.5 wins in the first final but only 14 in the second. Mahaffey’s lineup is Tony Forrester, Norberto Bocchi, Agustin Madala, Piotr Gawrys and Sam Lev.

In a Swiss gambit of sorts, the team captained by Barry Rigal, drilled in the first round of the Keohane North American Swiss Teams, stormed through the field over the next seven matches to take the lead after the first two qualifying sessions.

The team lost by more than 40 IMPs in the first match but gave up fewer than 40 IMPs the rest of the day. Rigal is playing with Glenn Milgrim, Roger Lee and Josh Donn. They have a carryover of 86.43 victory points, just ahead of the Claude Vogel squad, which ended the day with 84.29.

For a full list of results, click here. To read the full Daily Bulletin, click here.

Blue Ribbon Pairs

by Roaming Reporter, Peggy Kaplan

One of the most prestigious events on the NABC calendar is the Blue Ribbon Pairs.  Entrance into the event is limited to only a small portion of players.  The event is a six session, 3 day event – with competition getting stiffer every day.

Merely reaching the final day is an achievement.  Here are shots of those who did – along with the winning pair:  John Diamond and Brian Platnick.  The best of the best in BR Pairs 2012!

John Diamond and Brian Platnick, winners of the Blue Ribbon Pairs

John Diamond and Brian Platnick, winners of the Blue Ribbon Pairs.


Click here to view a complete photo album from the Blue Ribbon Pairs.

Recap of NABC Day 7

Two-thirds of the 2010 world champion John Diamond team took the top two places in the Kaplan Blue Ribbon Pairs, and it was the captain and his partner finishing first by just 9 matchpoints on a top of 38.

Diamond and Brian Platnick, who were third in the Kay Platinum Pairs earlier this year, finished just ahead of teammates Geoff Hampson and Eric Greco. The four of them, plus Fred Gitelman and Brad Moss, won the Spingold Knockout Teams in the summer of 2010 and followed it in the fall with a victory in the Rosenblum Open Knockout Teams at the World Bridge Championships in Philadelphia.

The Blue Ribbon win was the first pairs title for Platnick, the second for Diamond, who won the national Fast Open Pairs with Hampson in 2011.

Blue Ribbon Pairs winners Brian Platnick andJohn Diamond.

Blue Ribbon Pairs winners Brian Platnick and John Diamond.

Despite a poor semifinal round that made Kevin Young and Peter Worby believe they had
not qualified for the final of the 0-5000 Mini-Blue Ribbon Pairs, the duo turned in a strong performance in yesterday’s final to win the six-session contest by almost a full board.

Kevin Young and Peter Worby, winners of theMini-Blue Ribbon Pairs.

Kevin Young and Peter Worby, winners of the Mini-Blue Ribbon Pairs.

Kitty and Steve Cooper of Lakeside CA won the four-session Senior Mixed Pairs, marking the second time the couple has won an NABC title together. The Coopers were lying sixth after Wednesday’s qualifying round. Their final session scores of 52.45% and 59.52% combined with their carryover was good enough to push them into the winner’s circle. Their two-day total was 2041.75.

Winners of the Senior Mixed Pairs: Steve Cooperand Kitty Cooper.

Winners of the Senior Mixed Pairs: Steve Cooper and Kitty Cooper.

The Reisinger Board-a-Match Teams and Keohane North American Swiss Teams events begin today.

For a full list of results, click here. To read the full Daily Bulletin, click here.

Nachtwey and Grant Honorary Members

Millard Nachtwey and Audrey Grant did not move in the same circles, but as of this tournament, the two have a connection of major significance. For the 10th time in the history of the award, the ACBL Board of Directors has selected two major figures in bridge – Nachtwey and Grant – for Honorary Member of the Year.

The honor is bestowed annually for long and meritorious service to bridge. Nachtwey, who died Aug. 3, was a national tournament director and director-in-charge at Fall NABCs who served the Mid-Atlantic Bridge Conference for decades. Grant is arguably the world’s best-known and most successful bridge teacher whose influence is felt by other teachers as well as countless students.

In nominating Nachtwey, ACBL Board Members Bob Heller (District 7) and Margot Hennings (District 6) praised him as “one of our game’s greatest assets. His contributions extended far beyond the selling table or making rulings or supervising colleagues, and that was particularly the case in Districts 6 and 7.”

Nachtwey was born in Washington DC and grew up in Bethesda MD. He earned a bachelor’s degree in English at Bucknell University, where he met his life partner of 40 years, Doug Grove. Nachtwey began his directing career in the early Seventies and operated his own club, Millard’s Bridge Studio, from 1978 until the fall of 1983, when he began to direct tournaments full time. His reputation as a master of tournament operations quickly grew, and he became the chief director for the MABC, a position he held for 20 years.

Nachtwey also lent his organizing expertise to the American Bridge Association, which has a presence in the Washington DC area, where Nachtwey and Grove lived. The ABA prevailed upon his volunteer spirit to mentor ABA directors on how to make a tournament experience the best it could be. ABA tournaments continue to be successful to this day, thanks in large measure to Nachtwey.

Heller and Hennings said that when the Gatlinburg Regional grew from about 4500 tables
to more than 10,000, more than the usual expertise was needed to make the tournament run smoothly. Nachtwey provided that skill.

“Millard always was in the vanguard of those changes,” they wrote, “recognizing that our
tournament future was in the common players, not the elite. He and Doug always were looking for ways to make the schedule as attractive and alluring as possible to as many players as possible. Millard dealt effortlessly with hotel personnel when there were room-contract or snack bar problems. He could run the events with one hand and be de facto tournament chair with the other.

“Millard’s volunteerism never stopped—the number of hours he dedicated to his local unit, to the district, and to the MABC is staggering and throughout it all, Millard continued to play bridge often. Those who were fortunate enough to play with him counted him as one of their ‘best partners,’ not only for his bridge play but for his demeanor both at the bridge table and away from it.’”

Millard Nachtwey

You wouldn’t know it to look at her today, but Grant grew up on a farm in Burlington ON, near Toronto. Early on, she developed a thirst for learning and a strong desire to help others grow.

“My 96-year-old mother is always learning,” Grant says, “I came by that honestly, and it’s not a chore. It’s more fun to keep learning than to stay put. I work at it.”

Grant has parlayed that natural desire into a career as one of the most successful bridge teachers in the annals of the game. Players flock to her courses and bridge cruises. Bridge teachers line up to find out what Grant knows about conveying information. Teamed up with her husband of 33 years, Grant has written books, publishes a bridge magazine and will soon unveil Audrey Grant’s Daily Bridge Column, available online and via an application for smart phones and tablets.

After moving to Toronto, Grant studied philosophy and education at McMaster University. She also has a separately earned teaching degree. “It was a foundation I have found to be extremely useful,” she says.
Before turning to bridge teaching, Grant taught everything from kindergarten to post-graduate university courses and was a consultant to the Toronto School Board, designing teaching courses. Grant learned bridge during her first marriage. Her husband belonged to the IMB Golf and Country Club, so she took up the game as a way to make
friends. She met Lindop at the Kate Buckman Bridge Studio in Toronto.

In establishing their bridge enterprise, Grant and Lindop “went to the best players to get the best information.” Grant’s first two books – The Joy of Bridge and Bridge Maxims – were written with world champion player and renowned theorist Eric Rodwell.

In running the Toronto Bridge Club, Grant developed some theories of how clubs should operate that she believes can help any club grow. One of them involves the posting of results at the end of a session. In Grant’s club, only those who placed had their names listed. The rest of the results were there, but only by table numbers. No one was embarrassed for coming in last, she says: “When clubs do this, it increases attendance.”

Always looking for opportunities to expand her mind, Grant has taken up yoga and meditation and she is never without a book. At the NABC in San Francisco, she is carrying around a copy of The Zen of Creativity by John Daido Loori. When she and Lindop played in the World Mixed Pairs in Philadelphia two years ago, she made a basic mistake on defense and was troubled by it. Not long after that, while at an airport, she spotted a book, Why We Make Mistakes, by Joseph Helleman. As she read the book, she gained a better understanding of why she made the bridge mistake in Philadelphia.

At home, Grant has a box labeled “Precious Notes.” It’s a collection of cards and letters about success stories from “people I have taught to teach.” That is her life’s work. “I love doing it,” she says. “If you discover something, you should pass it on.”

The list of other Honorary Members is impressive, and Grant understands that she is in elite company now. She plans to work hard so that she deserves her place on the list.
“I am always trying to get to the next level,” she says. “I want to keep improving as a teacher.”

Audrey Grant