Dread Pirate Robertson Fencing Tournament
by Anessia Hubler
With only 45 seconds left on the clock UAF fencer Joel Juenke scored the point that allowed him to take first place in the annual Dread Pirate Roberts Fencing Tournament.
“A year ago when the club changed officers we decided to make this event to get fencing out into the community, and to just have fun too,”President of the UAF Fencing Club Derek Williams said.
The fencers wore protective masks and suits. The suits have sensors in them which register hits from their opponents. When they get hit, a light will appear behind them and their opponent is awarded a point. This tournament used the Epee style sword and rules. “Epees have blunt ends on them that push down, and you have to push them down all the way to make a point,” senior biology student Sierra Corsetti said.
The event had bracketed rounds, the winner of one round would move on to fight the winner of a different round until one person was left. Each round was made up of three three-minute rounds with a minute break in between. The winner was decided by who reached 15 points first, or who had the most points at the end of the round.
“I like how every round is different because everyone has their own style, and even if you go up against the same person they are always learning and getting better so it keeps you on your toes,” Corsetti said.
The competitors can also receive different colored cards. These cards are given out if the person is being distracting or cheating in anyway. First the competitor can be given a yellow card as a warning. After that the competitor could receive a red card which would give their opponent a point. Finally, the competitor would receive a black card. The black cards are very serious, as you not only get disqualified from the competition, but could also get your name removed from the records or even be banned from any other fencing events.
“Not only can I give the competitor these cards but I can also give them to any member of the audience that is misbehaving,” Williams said.
Fencing is not all about one thing or another, it takes a lot of different thing to make a good fencer, “It combines speed and technique,” senior criminal justice student Chris Castillo-Romo said.
Castillo-Romo moved to Fairbanks from Long Beach California five years ago and was excited to find that Fairbanks had a fencing team.
“Growing up I had always wanted to be like the people on TV with their sword, but in California there was never a chance for me so when I moved up here.”
Fencing is a one credit class that people will be able to sign up for through the Fairbanks University on Nov. 3. There is a beginners class that goes from 5:30 p.m.- 7:00 p.m., as well as advanced and master classes.