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Scottish Regional Championships

First Section:

Motherwell Civic Centre
Saturday 9th March
Adjudicator: Markus Bach
Commences: 5.00pm approx

Competing Bands: Barrhead Burgh (G. Lindsay): Bathgate (A. Duguid): Broxburn Public (M. Marzella): City of Discovery Brass (B. Fraser): Clackmannan District Brass (N. Law): Dalkeith and Monktonhall Colliery (I. Fleming): Dunaskin Doon (D. Hirst): Livingstone Brass 9A. Samson): Tayport Instrumental (R. McDonald): UDI Aberdeen City (A. Haggart)

A 9 band field in the First Section should make for a close run contest for Markus Bach to adjudicate upon.

Plenty of good quality bands all hoping to push for promotion to the top section and to gain the two qualifying spots for Torquay. If Aberdeen take the title, they would surely have the longest ever journey to a National Finals, but they will face stiff competition from the eight others in the field. Markus Bach is an experienced judge at the top level and he will know what to look out for. It will be very interesting to say the least.

Barrhead were promoted to the first section in 2000 following their 2nd place in the lower section the year before. They have since struggled a little, but Gavin Lindsay should bring his experience to bear and they should improve on their 7th place of last year and 8th of 2000.

Bathgate have their fourth change of MD in as many years at the contest as they bid to make that final push into the top three or even two and gain a qualification spot for Torquay. A series of results from 1998 that read 5th, 5th, 5th, 4th are testament to a very good solid band and they will be hoping to repeat the triumphs of 1997 and 1989 when they went on to win the National title. They recently took the first section title in style at the Mineworkers Championships.

Broxburn return to the first section after four years in the top flight that ended last year after coming 9th. That was a repeat of 2000 and was a slip from the 4th place of 1999 and the 6th of 1998. They are capable of doing well and will be hoping for a straight return back, so watch out to see if they can repeat their triumph here in the first section in 1997.

City of Discovery Brass were 5th last year which was a fine solid return after two years in which they had secured promotion for themselves from the third section in 1999 and the second the following year. That they are now challenging for a possible place in the Scottish premier division is a remarkable for a band that in 1997 was winning the fourth section. Bruce Fraser once again takes the reins.

Clackmannan District Brass will be hoping that Norman Law can once again direct the band to a high placing, and a possible repeat of their 3rd place of last year. They won the highest placed 1st section band prize at the Whitburn contest last year so hopes are high. They have struggled in the top section though and in 1997 they were relegated back to the first section and repeated the feat after just one year in the top flight in 2000.

Dalkeith and Monktonhall Coliery were 8th here last year and have performed consistently here over the past three years since dropping down from the top flight after 1998. Since them they have come 8th, 6th and 8th so they will be hoping push for one of the two qualifying spots on offer this year at least.

Dunaskin Doon have David Hirst at the helm in a bid to gain a place back in the top flight after being relegated last year. From 1999 in the championship section they had come 8th, 7th and 10th after winning promotion after coming second in the first section in 1998. They also also came 9th at the Land O' Burns Contest. They could be up there come the results.

Livingstone Brass and Alan Sampson have had two great years at the contest in 2000 and 2001. First they won the third section title in the millennium year and then last year secured the top prize in the Second Section and went on come 8th at the Lower Section National Finals. They were 11th in the first section in 1999 and were relegated, but have since come back in considerable style. The gap between the sections is large but on their current form, you wouldn't want to bet against them doing well.

Tayport Instrumental are back in the first section after gaining promotion from the second this year and coming 15th at the lower section nationals. They were runners up in 2001 in the second section and they will hope that they will be strong enough to maintain their newfound status this time around. In 1997 they were relegated to the second only to bounce straight back, whilst after coming 6th and 9th in the following two years they dropped down again only to rebound back. Came 6th at Forfar earlier in 2001. Could be interesting then.

UDI Aberdeen have a very consistent record at the contest over the past few years and a record that reads 4th in'97, 7th, 4th, 3rd and 6th last year shows that they are capable of producing the goods. They came 8th at the Land O' Burns Contest and 3rd at Forfar earlier last year. Alan Haggart takes the band for the second time running, and they could well just do enough to gain a qualifying spot.

2001 Result:

1. Johnstone Silver
2. Bo'ness and Carriden
3. Clackmannan and District
4. Bathgate
5. City of Discovery
6. UDI Aberdeen

4BR Prediction:

1. Dunaskin Doon
2. Clackmannan and District
3. Broxburn Public
4. Bathgate
5. Dalkeith and Monktonhall
6. City of Discovery

Dark Horse: UDI Aberdeen

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