santa fe rails [Updated October 2006]  

2006 WBC Report     

 2007 Status: pending December Membership Vote

Bob Wicks, CT

2006 Champion

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Event History
2003    Andy Lewis     28
2004    Tom Stokes     22
2005    Bill Peeck     23
2006    Bob Wicks     36


Rank  Name              From  Last  Total
  1.  Rob Kircher        RI    06     36
  2.  Bill Peeck         NY    06     28
  3.  Bob Wicks          CT    06     20
  4.  Tom Stokes         NJ    04     20
  5.  Andy Lewis         DE    03     20
  6.  Tom DeMarco        NJ    04     18
  7.  Jeff Bakalchuk     NY    03     12
  8.  Tom Saal           MI    05     10
  9.  Chris Palermo      NY    05      8
 10.  Doug Smith         PA    04      8
 11.  Stan Hilinski      MD    06      6
 12.  Patrick Mirk       FL    05      6
 13.  Mike Backstrom     MN    06      4
 14.  Karl Musser        MD    03      4
 15.  Roger Whitney      FL    06      2
 16.  Rob Winslow        NY    05      2
 17.  Donna Balkan       ON    04      2
 18.  Lee Presser        NY    03      2

2006 Laurelists

Rob Kircher, RI

Bill Peeck, NY

Stan Hilinski, MD

Mike Backstrom, MN

Roger Whitney, FL

Past Winners

Andy Lewis,DE

Tom Stokes, NJ

Bill Peeck, NY

San Francisco or Bust ...

We had a very successful year. 36 engineers ran the western trains which was a record number and a 63% increase over last year. Over the two heats we played nine games with eight winners opting to advance to the semi-finals.

The playing styles varied greatly in the preliminary games. In 4-player games, Andy Lewis had the most cash (80) with the highest winning score 194. Bob Wicks had the lowest winning score (125) while never getting the short trains out. In the 5-player games, Rob Kircher had the highest cash (64), Mike Backstrom took top score with 161 and Chris LeFerve only needed 66 points to win in a short game.
The first semi was a very tightly contested battle, just 15 points from top to bottom. Cash was a tight race between Chris LeFevre (58) and Bill Peeck (55).  Mike Backstrom didn't play any city cards below 5 and topped out the five cities with 13 connections. The game played just about all the trains to help Bob Wicks with ten connections with seven city cards. Bill was very balanced with his city card play and tied Bob in the end with 166 points to advance to the Final.
Semi #1
Bob Wicks  166
Bill Peeck   166
Mike Backstrom 160
Chris LeFevre  151
In the other semi-final game cash was scarce. Everyone was playing defensively. Stan Hilinski was tops in cash with a mere 40. Both past champ Andy Lewis and Rob Kircher, known for collecting, combined for 41 between them. Andy had a rough game - never drawing a 7-point city card. Stan used Denver, Amarillo and Dallas as the cornerstone for collecting 60 points from 4-point cities. Rob was centered in the southwest using Phoenix and Las Vegas as his power base for ten connections to 6-point cities.    
Semi #2
Rob Kircher  168
Stan Hilinski 152
Roger Whitney 124
Andy Lewis   91
 The Final had two new faces present with Stan Hilinski and Bob Wicks earning their first laurels. Rob Kircher and defending champ Bill Peeck have been frequent finalists. The game started off with the Kansas Pacific Railway running  north to Duluth in the first four moves which would be a costly forgotten train in the end.  Rob went for the cash early, trying to turn his cards over for better. Bill played mostly southern cities while working the Southern Pacific and Santa Fe lines. Bob flew under the radar playing the northwest cities of Seattle, Portland and Boise.  In the 12th turn, the Great Northern Railway was established for both Stan and Bob to both play 2X cards to run the train through Portland and Seattle netting 12 cash for both. Rob and Bill were caught napping and neither bought a branch for the Kansas Train sitting in Duluth. Both had Amarillo and Denver cards in play. As a result the Great Northern Railway ran out of trains to end the game. Cash was pretty close. Rob was ahead with 44, but Portland brought Bob to parity with 44 also. Stan and Bill collected well with 32 each. In the summation the combo of Sacramento, Portland and Seattle for 42 points in 7-point cities gave Bob the win.
Final Scores:
Bob Wicks 147
Rob Kircher 137
Bill Peeck 132
Stan Hilinski 122
I would thank everyone for playing.  Please remember to vote for your favorite games in December. Since Santa Fe Rails crossed the 32 player threshold, I will be taking a minimum of 16 semi-finalists next year for four 4-player games with winners advancing to the big game.

 GM      Rob Kircher  [3rd Year]   NA   NA

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