National Finals: Third Section Runners and Predictions
Published in Contest on 2013-09-11 by Empty Chairs
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Seventeen Thirds Section Bands will be competing at Cheltenham Racecourse on September 22nd where Steve Pritchard-Jones and Simone Rebello will be listening to their performances of Simon Dobson's Penlee.
Who do we think will be in the running at Cheltenham? Well, read on as we find out more about these bands...
Amersham – London and Southern Counties
This South Buckinghamshire band can almost consider the National Finals to be a regular event with 4th Section appearances in 2010 and 2012. Winning the 3rd section area at the first attempt seems them return.
Bodmin Town – West of England
A twelfth appearance at the Finals for Bodmin, the last being in the Championship Section in 2000. They have had their problems since them but they may have turned the corner as they are already promoted to 2nd Section for 2014. This appearance at Cheltenham will give the band the opportunity to show they are back.
Dronfield CMW - Yorkshire
Another regular attender at Cheltenham with appearances in 2009 and 2011 the current Yorkshire Area 3rd Section and Holmfirth Contest Champions have had a successful couple of years.
Already promoted to the 2nd Section for 2014 Dronfield will consider themselve in the running for a good result at the Finals.
East Riding of Yorkshire – North of England
East Riding might be of Yorkshire, but in the brass band world they are in the small North of England 3rd section. With only Area contest to their name it's hard to predict from any pattern what might happen on the day.
Eccles Borough – North West
Mareika Gray has not just been working magic with Milnrow in the Championship, but has also taken Eccles to the finals and won them promotion to the 2nd from 2014.
With this experience the Wychavon champions are likely contenders for one of the top spots.
Hawk Green (Marple) – North West
Last year Hawk Green competed in the finals in the 4th Section and they continued their progress with solid results in the 3rd section in 2013.
Hucknall & Linby MC Brass - Midlands
The current Midlands Area, Leicestershire BBA and Bolsover champions have been having a good run under the baton of Paul Whyley. This will be the first visit to the finals for the band which was only formed in 2008.
Ireland Colliery (Chesterfield) - Midlands
It's become an annual event for Ireland Colliery to visit the Finals with 4th Section appearances in 2011 and 2012. As an hard working contesting band, this being their 5th contest this year, the band has a cornucopia of prizes and awards that shows that Ian Knapton has what it takes to succeed again.
LGB Brass – London and Southern Counties
They will be making the long trip from Lewes for the fourth trip to the Finals for LGB, their first in the 3rd section, and promotion to the 2nd section already secured for 2014 means that they are a band on form.
Marple – North West
The current North West Champions have already secured promotion to the 2nd section from next year. Unless results are missing from BrassBandResults the band was last seen in 2001 and 2002 flying high in the Championship Section and the British Open before vanishing, only to re-emerge this year in the 3rd section which they promptly won.
NASUWT Concert – North of England
A third trip to the Finals for the North of England Area Champions and solid results in contests in their brief history means that the band from Chester-Le-Street is one that should be consider contenders for a placing at Cheltenham.
Pontypool – Wales
Owen Farr has been doing the hard work for Pontypool helping them qualify in second place in the Welsh Area and then become 3rd Section Weston-super-Mare champions in May. It's been a good year for Welsh banding and it's quite possible that Pontypool will continue the trend by taking back some more silverware.
Severn Tunnel – Wales
The Welsh Area Champions took the prize in the 3rd Section at the first time of asking back in March. This is their second successive Finals appearance but middling results previously suggest they will need to raise their game to top form to be in the prizes.
Shipston Town – Midlands
Their third place at the Midlands Area saw the band promoted to the 2nd Section for 2014 and won them a place at the Finals. Consistent and steady contest performances throughout 2012 has seen the band progress steadily.
Skelmanthorpe 'B' – Yorkshire
Another band that will start life in 2014 in the 2nd section, Skelmanthorpe 'B' has seen solid results in a range of contests over 2012 and 2013.
St. Ronan's Silver – Scotland
The only Scottish band in the contest and the current 3rd Section Scottish Champions St. Ronan's have the weight and expectation of a nation upon them. The Innerleithen outfit romped to victory in March led by Chris Bradley and hope to repeat the feat on the other side of the border.
Wotton-under-Edge & District – West of England
Relegated at the start of 2013, 3rd Section Champions in March and immediate promotion to the 2nd Section for 2014 gives Wotton-under-Edge the yo-yo award. This is their third tip to the Finals, which as we all know is lucky.
Kingdom 'B' Brass – Scotland – Withdrawn
Who do we think will be in the running? Bodmin Town, Dronfield CMW, Eccles Borough, Ireland Colliery (Chesterfield), Marple, Pontypool are the bands we think we will see near the top.
And you want us to pick a winner? Okay, we'll put our fiver in the 3rd Section on... Eccles Borough.