2009 North West Regional Championship - Second Section: Runners & Riders

23-Feb-2009

The North West has plenty of strength in depth at this level, so which one of these dozen will win through on Sunday?


Winter GardensSunday 1st March
Empress Ballroom
Adjudicator: Malcolm Brownbill
Test Piece: New World Sketches – Dan Price

Draw: 2.00pm
Commences: 3.00pm approx after First Section results
 
 


Besses o' th' Barn
Conductor:
Carl Whiteoak

Last 13 Years:
2008: DNC
2007: 12th (J. Hinckley)
2006: 13th in Championship Section (J. Cant) (rel)
2005: 9th (J. Cant)
2004: 8th (S. Sykes)
2003: 8th (L. Nicholson)
2002: 4th (L. Nicholson)
2001: 6th (G. Pritchard)
2000: 8th (G. Pritchard)
1999: 5th
1998: 8th
1997: 7th
1996: 5th

Great to see Besses back. 30 years ago they were winning the top section under the baton of Roy Newsome, but now they find themselves battling it out to see if they can get to Harrogate.

The experienced Carl Whiteoak will marshall his troops and the sense of history won’t weigh them down we are certain. They need to up their form from Preston though where they came 10th, but hope springs eternal.   


DelphDelph
Conductor:
Phil Goodwin

Last 13 Years:
2008: 7th (P. Goodwin)
2007: 8th (P. Goodwin)
2006: 4th (P. Goodwin)
2005: 8th (P. Goodwin)
2004: 7th (P. Goodwin)
2003: 3rd (P. Goodwin)
2002: 10th (P. Goodwin)
2001: 9th (P. Goodwin)
2000: 9th (P. Goodwin)
1999: 3rd in Third Section (prom)
1998: 6th
1997: 10th in Second Section (rel)
1996: 9th
 
Black Dyke’s Phil Goodwin has done a fantastic job at Delph for years now and is due a bit of luck here.

Usually one of the most consistent bands around  (just look at their returns at this contest over the past few years) they had a bit of a jolt at Butlins where they ended up bottom of the pile in 21st place. That’s hopefully behind them now and a push for a top six place should be the least of their ambitions. 


EcclestonEccleston Brass
Conductor:
Ian Bateson 

Last 13 Years:
2008: 4th (I. Eccleston)
2007: 3rd in Third Section (I. Bateson) (prom)
2006: 8th (I. Bateson)
2005: 3rd (I. Bateson)
2004: 7th (I. Bateson)
2003: 16th (B. Harper)
2002: 12th (B. Harper)
2001: 6th (B. Harper)
2000: 15th (G. Smith)
1999: 14th
1998: 8th
1997: 8th
1996: 8th
 
The form horse? If the band can produce the type of performance that saw them win at Brass at the Guild Hall then they will be in prime position come the annoucement of the results.

In the last two years the band has been revitalised so will they be booking B& B in Harrogate in September? 


FlixtonFlixton
Conductor:

Last 13 Years:
2008: 4th in Third Section (I. McKnight) (prom)
2007: 5th (K. Gibbs)
2006: 2nd (K. Gibbs)
2005: 15th (K. Gibbs)
2004: 9th in Second Section (P. Lockett) (rel)
2003: 10th (E. Campbell)
2002: DNC
2001: DNC
2000: 6th in First Section (C. Tenfijord) (rel)
1999: 9th
1998: 2nd in Second Section (prom)
1997: 4th
1996: 9th in First Section (rel)
 
Alan Hobbins took the band at Butlins recently where they came a slightly disappointing 11th, and they will know that they will have to perform better than that if they are to make any sort of impression on their return to the Second Section.

They are an experienced outfit though and despite that Butlins result they will surely fancy their chances of a possible top six finish.  


HaslingdenHaslingden and Helmshore
Conductor:
David Holland 

Last 13 Years:
2008: 2nd (D. Holland)
2007: 10th in First Section (D. Holland) (rel)
2006: 5th (D. Holland)
2005: 12th (D. Holland)
2004: 3rd in Second Section (D. Holland) (prom)
2003: 5th (D. Holland)
2002: 3rd (D. Holland)
2001: 5th in Third Section (D. Holland) (prom)
2000: 3rd (D. Holland)
1999: 6th in Fourth Section (prom)
1998: 2nd
1997: 9th
1996: DNC

A band that has enjoyed great success over the last couple of years, Pontins champions H&H will be looking to be booking B&B once more in Harrogate come September. 

They do tend to enjoy the seaside more than most, so Blackpool in March should see them feel right at home. 2nd last year, they started 2009 with a decent return at Butlins and then won at that well known coastal resort of Preston a few weeks back. Perhaps the band to beat? 


HooverHoover (Bolton)
Conductor:
Lee Dunkly 

Last 13 Years:
2008: 12th (A. Cooke)
2007: 13th in First Section (R. Cargill) (rel)
2006: 3rd in Second Section (R. Cargill) (prom)
2005: 4th (C. Wormald)
2004: Winners of Third Section (C. Wormald) (prom)
2003: 3rd (C. Wormald)
2002: 13th in Second Section (S. Talbot) (rel)
2001: 12th (S. Talbot)
2000: 16th (S. Talbot)
1999: 6th
1998: 4th
1997: 4th in Third Section (prom)
1996: 4th

Hoover hasn’t quite been finding form here in the last couple of years and they will know that they will have to produce a decent return on the weekend  if they are to banish any relegation fears.

Lee Dunkly takes over the helm with a bit of work to do, but if they can recapture some of the form of a few years back they should just about be OK.  


Middleton
Conductor:
Matthew Stringer

Last 13 Years:
2008: 9th (M. Stringer)
2007: 2nd in Third Section (C. Whiteoak) (prom)
2006: 5th (C. Whiteoak)
2005: 4th (C. Whiteoak)
2004: 10th (B. Warrington)
2003: 12th (G. Smith)
2002: 3rd (S. Foster)
2001: 8th in Fourth Section (B. Warrington) (prom)
2000: 4th (B. Warrington)
1999: DNC
1998: DNC
1997: DNC
1996: DNC
 
Middleton has certainly found its Second Section feet – 9th at Wilkinson’s late last year was followed by them coming 4th at Butlins recently, which was a fine return in anyones book.

More of that and Matt Stringer and his band could well be looking at a trip to Harrogate in September. A band on the up it seems. 


Old HallOld Hall Brass
Conductor:
John North

Last 13 Years:
2008: 6th (T. Halliwell)
2007: 5th (T. Halliwell)
2006: 11th in First Section (A.Jones) (rel)
2005: 7th (I. Porthouse)
2004: Winners of Second Section (N. Parkinson) (prom)
2003: = 8th (N. Parkinson)
2002: 5th (N. Parkinson)
2001: 8th (C. Tenijford)
2000: Winners of Third Section (N. Parkinson) (prom)
1999: Winners of Fourth Section (prom)
1998: 8th
1997: Winners of Fourth Section
1996: DNC
 
John North takes over the helm at Old Hall – and he is a MD who knows how to make an impression.

The band has done pretty well over the last couple of years and were not too far away from a podium finish twelve months ago. If they can just up their form a bit this time around, who knows?  


Oldham LeesOldham (Lees)
Conductor:
John Collins

Last 13 Years:
2008: Winners of Third Section (J. Collins) (prom)
2007: Winners of Third Section (J. Collins)
2006: Winners of Fourth Section (J. Collins) (prom)
2005: Winners of Fourth Section (J. Collins)
2004: DNC
2003: DNC
2002: DNC
2001: 7th in First Section (A. White) (rel)
2000: Winners of Second Section (A. White) (prom)
1999: 2nd
1998: 2nd in Third Section (prom)
1997: DNC
1996: DNC

If Oldham (Lees) win on the weekend then history will surely be made – the first band we can think of that would have won five consecutive regional titles in different sections.

John Collins has really moulded the band into one heck of a competitive outfit (they are Pontins Third Section champions too) and they will not have left any stome unturned in their pursuit of another title. 3rd place at Preston shows just what form they bring here.  


RainfordRainford
Conductor:
Neil Samuel

Last 13 Years:
2008: 5th (N. Samuel)
2007: 9th (N. Samuel)
2006: Winners of Third Section (N. Samuel) (prom)
2005: 8th (N. Samuel)
2004: 6th (A. Jones)
2003: 14th (B. Harper)
2002: 6th (L. Nicholson)
2001: 11th (L. Nicholson)
2000: 12th (L. Nicholson)
1999: 9th
1998: 17th
1997: 4th in Fourth Section (prom)
1996: 6th

Neil Samuel continues to make excellent progress with Rainford and in the past two years they have matured into a competitive band at major contests – they were 2nd at Pontins late last year.

Now perhaps is the time for them to take the next step up in class, but they will have to perform a great deal better than their 10th place at Preston recently if they are to do that. 


Silk BrassSilk Brass (Macclesfield)
Conductor:
James Cant

Last 13 Years:
2008: 10th in First Section (J. Cant) (rel)
2007: 11th (J. Cant)
2006: 6th in Second Section (M. Obermuller) (prom)
2005: 5th (K. Mackintosh)
2004: 4th (K. Mackintosh)
2003: 10th (K. Mackintosh)
2002: 2nd in Third Section (K. Mackintosh) (prom)
2001: 3rd (K. Mackintosh)
2000: 10th (K. Mackintosh)
1999: 6th
1998: 9th
1997: DNC
1996: DNC

Not even the experienced James Cant helped to save Sik Brass last year from relegation, after two years in which they found the step up in class just a bit much for them. 

With the loss of sponsorship the band will want to focus its musical energy on a good performance here on the weekend.   


unitedUnited Co-operatives 2000 Brass
Conductor:
Jamie Meredith

Last 13 Years:
2008: 8th (J. Meredith)
2007: 7th (J. Meredith)
2006: =7th (J. Meredith)
2005: 2nd in Third Section (J. Meredith) (prom)
2004: 2nd (J. Meredith)
2003: 11th (A. Helleur)
2002: 8th (A. Helleur)
2001: 8th (A. Helleur)
2000: 17th in Second Section (A. Helleur) (rel)
1999: 10th
1998: Winners of Third Section (prom)
1997: 6th
1996: 11th

United Co-op has held its own with a degree of comfort in the last few years, and under the Welsh baton of Jamie Meredith they have become a solid contesting outfit, coming 7th late last season at Pontins.

Now perhaps is the time for them to push for a top six place or even better as they make their contesting debut for the season. 



Past Qualifiers: 

2008: Wardle & District Anderson Brass, Haslingden & Helmshore
2007: Wardle & District Anderson Brass, Blackpool Brass
2006: Blackpool Brass, Bollington
2005: Wire Brass, Diggle
2004: Old Hall Brass, Wire Brass
2003: Bollington, Manx Concert Brass
2002: Moston and Beswick, Lancashire Life Morecambe
2001: Dobcross Youth, Poulton le Fylde
2000: Oldham Brass, Pemberton Old Wigan
1999: United Norwest Co-op Milnrow, Oldham Brass ‘97
1998: Ashton Under Lyne, Flixton
1997: Haydock Travel, Tyldesley
1996: Berisford Cardway, Mossley
1995: United Co-op Crewe, Moston and Beswick  


North West bands at the Finals: 

2008: 2nd, 7th
2007: 6th, 9th
2006: 2nd, 9th
2005: 2nd, 4th
2004: 6th, 12th
2003: 2nd, 8th
2002: 4th, 6th
2001: 7th, 13th
2000: 1st, 5th
1999: 2nd, 9th
1998: 1st, 11th  



4BR Prediction: 

Plenty of good bands to enjoy and it promises to be a cracking contest. A couple of bands do stand out though, and Haslingden & Helmshore should be the band to beat, with the likes of Oldham (Lees), Middleton, Flixton, Rainford and United Co-op 2000. Eccleston are our dark horse.

1. Haslingden & Helmshore
2. Oldham (Lees)
3. Middleton
4. Flixton
5. Rainford
6. United Co-op 2000 Brass
 
Dark Horse: Eccleston Brass

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