Registered for 2014 US National Kubb Championship

After an extensive period of uncertainty the Kubbchucks are excited to announce that we have registered for our third trip to the US National Kubb Championship!

Although not widely known outside the team there was much schedule concern as the US National Kubb Championship is in conflict with the Winnipeg Folk Festival. Kubbchucks blaster Jamie Thingelstad was going to be off the roster for 2014 and instead at the Winnipeg Folk Festival. Jamie had every intention to bring all three Kubb sets he has to Winnipeg and get some Kubb games going in Birds Hill Provincial Park. Upon further planning of the family calendar, the Folk Festival fell off the schedule and the US National Kubb Championship is back on!

Upon hearing this news the Kubbchucks excitedly put their plans back on Eau Claire in July. As early as possible on February 20th team captain Garrick Van Buren registered the Kubbchucks for the 2014 championship!

Wednesday Lunch Kubb @ Gold Medal Park

Today Jim and I met for a 45 minute lunchtime kubb at Gold Medal Park. We were joined by Jason Halvorson of Kubb Nerds (et al). Jason was in town for a conference and after a quick warm up game, 3 of his conference-mates joined us for a 2 match game of 3-on-3.

The grass was thick and still soggy from yesterday’s constant rain. More than a couple times a felled kubb would still be held up by a team of grass.

This kind of grass can either be a boon (likely to stay put) or bust (likely to bounce) for inkasting. No bouncing today. Except for my final inkast, where the kubb bounced right atop a cluster of 5.

Overall, a some very fun games with some solid hits all around.

Competitive Kubb Set Marking

A few tournaments have started painting the kubbs. The common way of painting them is half one color, and half a second. At the 2013 US Nationals the kubbs were painted blue and white for Saturday, and on Sunday the quarterfinals and on were played with red and white kubbs. As a player, there is an interesting dialog that happens when your raising the kubbs with the colors since it makes them easy to identify. “Put that one on white, and that one on blue.” which is a little clearer than “that one goes back, and this one forward”.

It is also common that you have kubbs that are very close on the sideline, raising questions about the kubb being in or out. At tournaments you’ll end up with a player from each team on their bellies eyeing out a kubb and if they can’t agree a referee or tournament director will come over and call it. Many times these kubbs seem in or out by mere millimeters.

I’ve also been curious when scoring games using the Planet Kubb notation and scoresheets about ways to better record the kubb throwing and raising process. There is so much that happens during the kubb raising phase that we aren’t able to record, and honestly I’m not sure we would ever be able to record easily.

Thinking through these things I decided to mark up one of my sets with what I’m referring to as competitive kubb markings.

Marked Kubbs 4Marked Kubbs 1

I’ve put the same markings on all 4 sides. Each kubb is numbered 1 through 10, and each end has a letter A or B.

Marked Kubbs 2

Additionally, lines have been placed directly in the center on both directions at the ends of the kubb.

Marked Kubbs 3 Marked Kubbs 5

The numbers and letters serve the same purpose as the paint color, but more descriptive. Instead of “put that one up on blue”, you can clearly say “put 3 up on A” and everyone knows what that means. This should make it easier to talk through complicated kubb groupings and discuss the strategy. The lines on the ends of the kubb clearly identify the center point and make it much easier to assess if a kubb is in or out.

We are going to play with this set for a while, and hopefully also have some folks play while I score the games and see what possibilities it might open up and how it helps or hinders game play.

F2B Y’all

If you’ve played with me since 2012′s Nationals, you’ve noticed I enjoy inkasting deep. I think it’s a net benefit all the way around. Sure there are times when I inkast short – and really that’s the key benefit. Being able to inkast deep creates more options. More options mean a more anti-fragile level of play.

This winter at the Loppet, the Kubbchucks held in against the Kubb Snipers because of a key FB (field kubb + base kubb) shot. Yes, we still lost. Jeebus, they’re the Kubb Snipers you’d lose too. We held on. That’s what the Kubbchucks do.

Last week, at MN Kubb’s Monday Night Friendlies I was playing with Goplin & Anders. Great kubb players, I love playing with and against both of them them. They asked me to inkast the 1 kubb. One kubb. Where’s the absolute best place for one kubb? In all honesty, my instinct with 1 kubb is to go deep and land it directly in front of a baseline kubb.

This time it landed about 18″ ahead of both the left-most and 2nd-left-most baselines. My first throw – nothing. My second baton nailed that F – followed by the baton hitting the left-most B and the F hitting the 2nd B.

F2B.

See you at Nationals.

10 Ways Kubb is Like Life

  1. Both are obscure games with controversial origins dating back centuries or not.
  2. Both have multiple, often competing, rulesets.
  3. Both have a long game and a short game. The long game is kinda boring. The short game is very dramatic and intense. It’s easy to focus on the short game, but only the long game wins. You’ll need to be good at both.
  4. Everyone is happier when a referee doesn’t need to be involved. Especially because mostly – there isn’t a referee.
  5. Everyone takes both to a different degree of seriousness.
  6. You’re likely your own worst enemy, in both.
  7. Both reward persistence, curiosity, and passion.
  8. Both are more interesting once you declare arbitrary goals for your performance.
  9. It’s not over until someone calls time.
  10. Both are better without shoes.