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Ace of Aces (AOA) WBC 2016 Report
Updated Dec. 1, 2016 Icon Key
42 Players Bill Burch, MD 2016 Status 2017 Status History/Laurels
2014-2016 Champion Click box for details. Click box for details.


The Ace of Aces tournament remained robust despite the venue change that afflicted overall WBC attendance. The same format provided four heats, dubbed Flying Circuses, each attracting a target rich environment for dogfights, allowing opportunities for six players to qualify for the Final round robin playoff round. In addition to the four Circus heats, there was a single Flight School (game demo). The Flight School brought in several new pilots and hopefully future contenders.

Attendance was up from last year, with 42 individual pilots logging 149 sorties. Some of the renewed interest can be attributed to the recent reprint Rotary Series books allowing a new, younger generation of pilots to take to the skies. Special thanks to the Dice Loving Canucks, the Greensboro Greenspielers and the Greenville Mafia for showing up en masse. Reinforced by this new blood, each Flying Circus had a good turnout with pilots logging flights well past the scheduled time allotted for each heat.

The ability to earn the distinction of Ace Pilot status was continued in 2016. In order to become an Ace, a player must score five victories (shoot downs) against five different opponents. Four players earned that distinction: two-time defending champ Bill Burch, 2005 champ Richard Irving, Doug Porterfield and Bill Burtless. Those skirmishes also allowed Bill “Bulletsponge” Burtless to maintain a firm grasp on the Bulletsponge Award with 94 shots taken versus 77 shots given.

The Final round gathered Bill Burch, Richard Irving, Doug Porterfield, Derek Whipple, Andrew Drummond and Bill Burtless for five more flights each. Defending champ Bill Burch revealed he was not infallible when shot down by Derek Whipple in Round 4. Entering the fifth and final dogfight, Burch, in danger of being shot down again, saved the day and his title with a decisive 2-point shot vs Doug Porterfield to win the round and the tournament. In the process he became the first 4-time champion and passed Richard Irving as the alltime leader in AOA laurels.

Look for some new and exciting changes in 2016 to encourage even more pilots to join the fray and enjoy this classic game with the possible addition of a team squadron category!

2016 Laurelists Repeating Laurelists: 3

Bill Burtless, SC Richard Irving, CA Doug Porterfield, VA Andrew Drummomd, on Derek Whipple, WA
2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th

Jeff Martin curses the red baron as he
goes down in flames in the Grand Ballroom. Who needs a circus?
Elaine Pearson's rear gunner appears to be out of position
as she engages Richard Irving over the new aerodrome.

These pilots have it made
with cushy seats and drink holders.
It does no good to sneak up on Doug Porterfield ...
he guards his back with lead.
Carl Sykes and Sara Ward get their flight instructions from GM Bill Burtless at his spiffy new aerodrome in the Dogwood Forum.
GM  Bill Burtless  [1st Year]  NA
 BBurtless@Bellsouth.net  NA