HOT NEWS! LE CERCLE DES BOULOMANES CIOTADENS.

Hello everyone and welcome,

In La Ciotat, France, the birthplace of the game of petanque, there is more than on club in town.  Le Cercle des Boulomanes des Ciotadens is one of them.  I was introduced to the club by Raymond Ager, a great English man who moved from England to La Ciotat to learn more about the game of petanque. Everyone knows the (English Guy) around La Ciotat, so we were welcomed like dignitaries at each club.  The Boulomanes was first created in 1924, the current president Georges Herrero shows me the original letter of the creation of the club, so beautiful!  like most petanque clubs around France, there is a corner with secured lockers where you can storage your balls overnight.  That kind of set up let you know you are in a real club, of course they also  have a buvette ( a full operational bar) where the players hang out most of the day playing cards in between games.  It is a little strange for me overtime to enter a buvette because they always want to welcome you with a Pernod or a Ricard but I don’t drink alcohol, so they look at me like if I was from a different planet.  But once I make a joke about it telling them that the very reason why they kick me out of France, they laugh and will offer a cup of coffee instead.  The terrains were great, about forty of them and can accommodate many teams, they have benches in between each courts for the players or spectators to seat and watch the games. We had lunch on the terrace, played a few games and had a great time.  If you happen to be in the south of France, it is definitely a must stop destination.  Thank you for the welcome.

A+ Love Arsene.

 

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HOT NEWS! FIRST SINGLES TOURNAMENT AT EASTWOODS PARK.

Hello everyone and welcome,

Today was the first time that we used a new location in years, Eastwoods Park.   We did our first Singles Tournament there.  It was fantastic.   We had the weatherman against us the whole week long, even until the last minute with  80% chance of  rain.   I was going nuts looking constantly at many different kind of apps with the weather report.   I was thinking for sure I will have to cancel, I have players coming as far as one hour and a half away.    I just can’t let them drive all the way to Austin and have it rain on us.   But the whole time also I had that inner little voice saying don’t worry, just  trust!  And sure enough it was a great day.   We didn’t have any rain at all, just some sprinkles during lunch time.  How perfect!  Twelves brave ones showed up at 8:30 am, not knowing themselves if it would rain or not but they all showed up prepared with all sorts of rain gear.  Rick Armstrong was in charge of the tournament format.   That requires a lot of effort, preparation and attention to run the table.   So I would like to say thank you Rick, for giving to the club in that manner.  The format was, you draw your number out of the magic hat and play randomly against another player 3 rounds of elimination.    That would  get you into the semi finals and finals.  All games started around 9 AM and went all the way to 1:30pm for the final.  The terrain was very challenging.  Most players didn’t even have the chance to play on it before.  But two people shined, Walter Elder and Alain Gimenez.   The finals started very strong for Alain who was leading 9/0, but Walter’s pointing took over and slowly by slowly came back to win 13/11.  It was spectacular.   At the same time both consolante’s finals were going on.  Jim Schwobel had the upper hand on Rick in consultant A and in the consolante B Mystical Michael won over Alain’s wife, Mitzi.   I wanted to say thank you to the three great ladys who played  Marie Claude, Mitzi, Linda.  And thank you to everyone who participated.  I hope we will get to have many tournaments in this new beautiful location.   Merci

Results: Concours.

First place:Walter Elder

Second place: Alain Gimenez

Consolante: A

First place: Jim Schwobel

Second place:  Rick Armstrong

Consolante: B

First place:  Mystical Micheal.

Second place:  Mitzi Gimenez

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HOT NEWS! LA BOULE BLEUE.

Hello everyone and welcome.

La Boule Bleue.  On January 20th, a great raining day,  I had the great opportunity for the first time to visit the ever famous factory in Marseille.  A family affair since 1904.  Wow!  When Félix Rofritsch first started to make only two pairs a day, they were wooden, and studded with nails.  To this day the fourth generation, Hervé Rofritsch, still take great importance on craftsmanship. It was great fun and educative to watch the process of making a ball and see the finished product.  We were welcome by Bernadette Fenech, Fabienne Genevois and Anthony who was one the guy who made the balls.  A 111 years of fabrication of petanque balls, that is just incredible!   Merci to all of you for the private tour.

A special thank you for Chantal who was our host in her beautiful house in La Ciotat.  Merci bien.

A+ Love Arsene

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Chantal.

Chantal.

 

HOT NEWS! THE 7TH ANNUAL HOT TOURNAMENT. APRIL 18/19.

Hello everyone and welcome.

Yehaaaaa!   It is on once again!   The weekend Extravaganza of Petanque.   Two Tournaments on the same weekend.   The Heart of Texas Petanque Tournament at the historic Hangar and the next day at the Zaytouna Lounge .   It is open to everyone, it is a doublette style.  Click on the registration form below for more details.  If you need lodging suggestions or airport pick up please call me.   Please register ASAP so we can make arrangement in advance. Merci.

Looking forward to be with you all again. Merci.

A+ Love Arsene.

 

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2015 Registration form – short

 

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HOT NEWS! MORE ABOUT LES 3 JOURS DE POITIERS.

Hello everyone and welcome.

By now I am back in Austin Texas.  But memories from Poitiers are still fresh. Labrue Ludovic, Helfrick Chris and Malbec Kevin won the National of the 3 days of Poitiers in the final against Mense Jacky, Lartigou Philippe and Zerdoun Emmanual. When I get to watch those guys play in the final I feel like they play the game of petanque like chess and I play checkers. It was unbelievable the shooter of the winning team Christ never missed and had to shoot some extremely challenging balls. They surely dominated and deserved the winning game.  Malbec did shine here like I saw him play in the final with Damien Hureau in Draguignan at the PPF.  Some of the top guys like Foyot, Quintais, Fazing didn’t make the cut. But I got to see them play up close. Real fun.
This is the end of our Tour de France of Petanque. A full month of incredible tournaments. We went to: the PPF Final in Draguignan, La Ciotat the birthplace of Petanque, Nice at the World Championship representing USA and les 3 Jours de Poitiers. What an amazing Tour! We were the first delegation of HOT to have done such a tour and probably the first American team too. I will recommended it to anyone who wants to learn more about the culture of the game and the French hospitality, we were received like kings every where we went. Merci to you all. See you back in America.  

A+ Love Arsene.

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Dylan Rocher’s dad Bruno Great guy!

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HOT NEWS! LES 3 JOURS DE POITIERS

Hello everyone and welcome.

Les 3 Jours de Poitiers.  Oh my god it is just unreal 512 triplettes indoor, the biggest indoor Tournament of France maybe even Europe.  We are lucky to be here because of the nice invitation of the president of the event Bernard Chasseport whom I met in a tournament in Lafayette Louisiana a few year back.     This event consists of three different tournaments in 3 days: the Veterans, the National and the Grand Prix.  If you get to do the 3 events like we did, it does feel like the real battle of Poitiers.  It is so intense because of so many games each day, but we have been ecstatic.  In between our games, we have had the chance to watch great players like Foyot, Fazzino and Quintais up close.  It is a huge stadium hosting 512 teams of triplettes: the first wave start at 8 am and the second at 9 am.  The noise level is unbelievable but it is so cool to hear so many carreaux at once and to hear the boules against the wooden rails.   On the first event we did great.   We made it all the way to 32 second of final.    It was unreal with the field that is here.  In the National, we got to play against some top-of-the-line teams.   One of them had a kid like many in France.   He was 15 years old and with the cochonnet  at 6 meters or 10 meters, this kid never missed.   It was great to play with the new generation.  Everybody won, no matter the score.   Thank you to the organizer Bernard Chasseport, his wife and the entire team of volunteers.  Just the best!  Since we are the first American team to play in this tournament, It is truly now an international event.

 A+ Love Arsene.

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Radnick, one of the top guys in the world.

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Bernard Chassport, Les 3 Jours de Poitiers’s director

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Sweet to hang with Marco in Poitiers.

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We tried anything! but…

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The Women were there too She won Millau twice in single Elisa Parmentier Roy WOW!

The Women were there too She won Millau twice in single Elisa Parmentier Roy WOW!

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Try to imagine 168 courts indoor.

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A gem! Damien Hureau’s  dad.

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Some of the players from Angers, the sister City of Austin TX..

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International referee Roland Armand

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In action le Roi Quintais.

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Le joueur du siècle Fazzino.

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Marco, the master in action.

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He won the Veterans, great player.

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This kid was 15 years old, he was unreal.

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HOT NEWS! ANGERS TWIN SISTER CITY WITH AUSTIN.

Hello everyone and welcome.

The Heart of Texas Petanque Club sent his first delegation to our sister city Angers, France.   Jim, Jo and I were the pioneers to  establish the relation between our two cities for the game of petanque and we were welcomed by Yvan the president of the Ligue des Pays de Loire Comité Departmental FFPJP, and Jean Marie the vice president of the local club and as well by the Mayor of Angers..   At the Hotel de Ville, they had a full reception for us with various dignitaries from the City.  That was exceptional to be able to establish this relationship.   Angers does have fantastic players, like Daniel Hureau, who is native and started at the local club.   They invited us to play at their indoor boulodrome of the ASPTT.    Of course they had prepared a strong team to play against us, but we did good regarding the fact that the piste was completely new for us and a different type of flooring.   Most indoor boulodrome are made of  concrete  with a small layers of tiny rocks on the top of it.  Until you get used to it, it is a very challenging type of terrain to play on.   It was great fun.   Merci to everyone in Angers.  Our trip around France going from competition to competition is coming to an end.   During this trip we  had the chance to see all the top players in the world.  But it is not completely over yet, we have one more great event, we have been invited to participate in Poitiers at the National Tournament of Les 3 Jours de Poitiers where once again all of the top guns will be there.   First game 8 am 512 triplettes indoor from all around Europe.  Yehaaaaa!

More to come.

A+ Love Arsene.

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Yvan Epaillard. Président du Comité Départemental de Pétanque du Maine et Loire

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Two Vice President.

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At he Mayor’s office in Angers they had a longhorn flag.

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Great welcome at the ASPTT Boulodrome.

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