Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

Entrants 1966: Belgium (B) • West Germany (D) • France (F) • Italy (I) 

Presenters / Commentators of International Heats:
Paule Herreman and Jean-Claude Menessier (RTB - B)
Tim Elstner, Camillo Felgen, Albert Raisner and Otto Ernst Rock (ARD-WDR - D)
Simone Garnier, Guy Lux, Joseph Pasteur and Léon Zitrone (ORTF -F)
Giulio Marchetti, Nunzio Filagamo and Enzo Tortora (RAI - I)

International Referees:
Hubert Gunsin (Heats 4-5, 8-10, Semi-Final 1 and International Final)
Kurt Hauser (Heats 1-2, 4, 6-8, 10 and International Final)
Hans Jenne (Heats 2-8 and International Final)
Gennaro Olivieri (Heats 1-2, 4-9, Semi-Final 1 and International Final)
Guido Pancaldi (Heats 1-3, 5-6, 9-10, Semi-Final 1 and International Final)
Bernard Stollere (Heats 3, 7, 9-10, Semi-Final 1 and International Final)

Collaborator / Assistant Referee:
André Lange

National Producers:
Pierre Chevreuille, André Lange and Diane Lange (RTB - B)
André Pergament (SSR-SRG - CH)
Wolf Citron and Marita Theile (ARD-WDR - D)
Guy Lux, Roger Pradines and Claude Savarit (ORTF -F)
Luciano Vecchi (RAI - I)

National Directors:
Albert Deguelle (RTB - B)
Jean-Marcel Schorderet (SSR-SRG - CH)
Ekkehard Böhmer and Fred Kraus (ARD-WDR - D)
Pierre Badel and Henri Carrier (ORTF -F)
Pierre Turchetti (RAI - I)

Produced by
RTB (B), SSR-SRG (CH), ARD-WDR (D), ORTF (F), RAI (I)

Key:
International Heats
 
l = Qualified for International Semi-Final / l = Heat Winner
International Semi-Final
 
l = Bronze Trophy / l = Qualified for International Final
International Final

l = Gold Trophy / l = Silver Trophy

DST = Daylight Saving Time
(ONLY Italy observed DST)

D & F

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

Heat 1

Event Staged: Wednesday 1st June 1966
Venues: Marktplatz (Market Square), Eschwege im Werratal, West Germany
and Le Port et Quai de Capitaine Allègre (The Harbour and Captain Allègre Dock),
Arcachon, France

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
ORF (AT):
Wednesday 1st June 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
RTB (B):
Wednesday 1st June 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 1st June 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian):
Wednesday 1st June 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ARD-WDR (D):
Wednesday 1st June 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
ORTF (F):
Wednesday 1st June 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
RAI Due (I):
Not transmitted - no Italian involvement
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Paris, France:
Guy Ackermann (Chairman) [Genève], Lilo Hausener [Zürich] and Mascia Cantoni [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Kurt Hauser and Guido Pancaldi in Eschwege im Werratal, West Germany
Gennaro Olivieri in Archachon, France

Weather Conditions:
West Germany - Warm and Dry
France - Warm and Dry

Themes: Mechanics and Machinery (D) and Hit or Miss (F)

Teams: Eschwege im Werratal (D) v. Arcachon (F)

Games: Captain Allègre's Trawler (in France), Mechanical Bottle Carriers (in West Germany), The Baggage Handlers (in France), Gross or Net Weight? (in West Germany), The Cream Cake Collectors (in France), The Moon Buggy (in West Germany) and Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in France) - A competitor must stand aloft a large inflated ball, facing backwards and traverse a course in both directions. The time taken is deducted from three minutes to give time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - France: Arranging European airports in order of their respective annual passenger numbers; West Germany: Arranging European cities in order of their respective populations;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - West Germany: Matching instruments to their respective famous European musicians; France: Matching European Nobel Prize winners to their respective subjects and years of achievements.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
D 0 2 2 0 0 1 --- -1 -3 ---
F 2 0 0 2 2 1 -1 --- --- 1
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
D 0 2 4 4 4 5 5 4 1 1
F 2 2 2 4 6 7 6 6 6 7

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 F • Arcachon l
 D • Eschwege im Werratal

7
1

The Host Towns and Venues

Eschwege im Werratal, West Germany
 

A view of the Bruckenhausen (bridge house) from the river Werra

 

Eschwege im Werratal is a town in the north-east of the German state of Hesse. It lies on a broad plain of the river Werra at the foot of the Leuchtberg mountain and east of the 753.6m (2,472ft) Hoher Meißner massif. The valley basin where the town is located includes a series of small lakes along the southern side of the river.

The town was first mentioned as "Eskinivvach" in 974 AD, the name stemming from an old Germanic language meaning ‘settlement near the ash trees at the water’. Market rights were granted about 1188, and full town rights followed a century later in 1249. It was at this time that the groundwork was laid for the cloth and leathermaking industry that flourishes still to this day.

Eschwege is home to old barracks, formerly used by the German Army during World War II which were occupied by US Army troops for a short time after the conflict. Today the barracks serve as a training centere for the German Federal Police. In 1971, the town hosted the 11th Hessentag state festival, an annual event, both fair and festival, organized by the German state to represent the different regions of Hesse. The events are shown for a week to the visitors, with an emphasis on cultural displays and exhibitions. It is the oldest and largest state festival (Landesfest) in Germany, and was launched in 1961 by the prime minister of Hesse, Georg August Zinn (1901-76). The event was intended to bring together long-time residents and migrants and to provide a sense of their new home to the many refugees and displaced persons.
 

The market square of Eschwege im Werratal

 

The games at the West German venue were played in the town’s market-place which is quite small in size, triangular in shape and is surrounded by traditional wooden-clad buildings.


Archachon, France
 

Aerial view of Archachon and its harbour

 

Arcachon is a commune in the Gironde département in south-western France. It is a popular bathing location on the Atlantic coast 55km (34mi) southwest of Bordeaux.The town is situated on a huge natural bay called the Arcachon Basin which covers an area of approximately 150km² (57.91mi²). The general shape of the basin is that of an equilateral triangle pointing north, the southwest corner of which is open to the sea. It is crowned by Europe’s largest sand dune, the Dune de Pyla, nearly 3kms long, 500m (1640ft) wide, reaching 107m (351ft) in height, and is today moving inland at a rate of 5m (16ft) per year.

Arcachon is known for the Arcachonnaise, the local name for an Arcachon villa, which is the architectural style of many of the older houses built there. It is a type of Victorian architecture, and was criticized for generations, but is now considered to be charming and deeply human. The town of Arcachon is only 150 years old, being granted its official ‘birth certificate’ by Emperor Napoleon III (1808-1873) on 2nd May 1857. Before this, the area was just a forest of pine trees, oaks and strawberry trees (arbutus), with no road links, and home - mostly when the weather was expected to be warm, and more in wood huts than in real houses - to fewer than 400 people, mostly fishermen and peasants.

While Arcachon is not home to many well-known figures, the writer Alexandre Dumas (1802-1870) once lived in Arcachon's Ville d'Hiver. On the other side of the Bassin d'Arcachon is Cap Ferret, a popular resort for celebrities including French ex-footballer Zinedine Yazid Zidane and Jean Pierre Pernaut, who have holiday homes in the chic resort.
 

Arcachon Harbour and Captain Allègre Dock

 

The games at the French venue were played on the quayside on Captain Allègre’s Dock named after David Louis Allègre, a local sea-captain.

On the night of 28th March 1836, a great storm known as Lou Gran Malour hit the Bay of Arcachon resulting in the loss of six fishing vessels La Teste, Le Jeune Saint-Paul, l’Augustine, La Clarisse, La Jeune Aimée and Saint Français and a total crew of 78 men. Following the deaths, which left 106 children without fathers, Allègre wanted to contribute in making ocean fishing safer and devised a steam-decked trawler powerful enough to weather the storm.

In 1837, his ambition was realised when the world’s first steam trawler, called Turbot, was built of wood from Chaigneau-Bichon near Bordeaux and was equipped with a huge steam boiler. Measuring 28m (91ft 10½in) in length and 4.3m (14ft 1½in) wide, it had a top speed of about 55hp, which was considered very fast at the time.

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - Captain Allègre's Trawler

The first game - 'Captain Allègre's Trawler' - was held in France and was inspired by the boat of the same name. The idea of the game was that a team of four sailors had to cross a greasy bridge carrying containers of water. On reaching the opposite side of the bridge, they had to be emptied via a funnel into a large metal barrel (representing the large boiler tank on Captain Allègre’s trawler), located at the base of the opposite side of the bridge. Two opposing team members were in a rowing boat below which was attached to the top of the barrel by a rope and pulley. On the whistle, whilst the competing team crossed the bridge, the rowers raised the barrel by rowing backwards. As water was emptied into the barrel, the rowers had to prevent the barrel from lowering under the weight of the water. The French team went first and appeared to be having some trouble crossing the bridge due to the grease, but managed to get the barrel back to its starting position in 2 minutes 45 seconds. However, when the West Germans participated they had no such problem and emptied almost double the amount of water that the French had done, but the barrel still remained halfway up the rope. When the cameras panned to the French rowers it was clear that they were applying more of their strength into the rowing to keep the boat in position in the water, than their West German counterparts. The French were awarded the points and were leading 2-0.


Game 2 - Mechanical Bottle Carriers

The second game (the first in West Germany) - 'Mechanical Bottle Carriers' - had a very close result despite the fact the game had many penalties associated with it. The idea of the game was that a tray of springy bottles on the cart of a tractor had to be transported up an obstacle course as quickly or as slowly as possible (dependant on which penalties the teams wanted to avoid). At the end of the course, the tray had to be lifted up by hooks on either side by hydraulic cranes and then transported back down the other side of the obstacle course. Meanwhile, the tractor had to be driven back to the start in order for the tray to be deposited back down on it by the hydraulic crane drivers. However, there were some penalties associated with the game. On the tray was a balloon attached to a lighted fuse and at approximately two minutes into the game, the fuse would explode the balloon and this would give a 30 second time penalty to the time taken to complete the course. Any bottles that fell down each incurred a 10 second penalty. The French team set off at a speedy pace and completed the game in 1 minute 47 seconds, but seven of their bottles had fallen over and they incurred 1 minute 10 seconds in penalties. As they had completed the game in well under the 2 minutes, the balloon had not burst and therefore their final time was declared as 2 minutes 57 seconds. The West Germans took their time and completed the course in 2 minutes 3 seconds, but the balloon exploded just before they had completed the game and incurred the 30 seconds penalty. Fortunately, however, with the slower pace they had used to complete the course, they only dislodged two of the bottles and this incurred another 20 seconds penalty. Their total time was declared as 2 minutes 53 seconds. Both referee Kurt Hauser and West German presenter Camillo Felgen were both surprised at the closeness of the scores and stated that the West Germans had won the game by just 4 seconds! The early gap between the teams had been closed and the score was now level at 2-2.

A point to note with this game was that referee Kurt Hauser had a torrid time when attempting to light the fuses. On his first attempt to light the French fuse, he had to use five matches before the fuse came to life. However, when he went to light the second fuse for the West Germans, things got even worse and not only did he have to use more than five matches but he had to call for assistance from a stagehand to use his petrol cigarette lighter. Presenter Camillo Felgen laughed off the situation by stating that Eschwege im Werratal had a very special strong wind and this met with hilarity from the assembled home crowd.


Game 3 - The Baggage Handlers

The third game (the second in France) - 'The Baggage Handlers' - featured the obligatory, irrepressible bull, and was basically a straightforward game that involved transporting luggage across the arena along different valued podiums whilst avoiding the animal as it ran wild. There were five podiums that the competitors could use to cross the arena, marked from left to right with values of 1pt, 2pts, 3pts, 2pts and 1pt. The lowest value podiums (1pt) were located closest to the fencing on either side of the playing area and simply comprised of large wide hay blocks. The 2pt podiums were planks of wood balanced on a hay block at either end, and these were located closer to the middle of the arena. The highest valued podium (3pts) was a long thin rounded pole, again balanced at either end by a hay block, located in the centre, between the two 2pt podiums. The given values of the podiums were linked with the ease of passage across the arena and ability to escape from the bull. The bull had more chance of ‘spearing’ his prey if a competitor utilised the middle podium rather than the outer ones. To the surprise of the French audience, the West Germans won the four-minute game with a score of 5 suitcases to 1 and with the 2pts awarded they took a 4-2 lead in the competition.


Game 4 - Gross or Net Weight?

The fourth game (the second in West Germany) - 'Gross or Net Weight?' - was unusual and involved a large rectangular net containing balloons and four suspended tyres (two on either side), balanced on the bucket of a mechanical digger. At either end of the net was a small ‘cage’ containing three players from each team. Before the game was started, the large net was raised aloft by the digger, in order that both ‘cages’ were suspended over two pools of water, to represent a set of weighing scales. On the whistle, a player from each team climbed out the top of their respective ‘cages’ and climbed into their end of the net. Once inside, they had to pass through both of their tyres without touching the floor of the net, then return to the start (this time using the floor of the net) and then pass through the two tyres for a second time. If a player placed his feet on the floor of the net whilst passing through the tyres, he had to return to the start. On completion of the second run, the team member had to ring a bell, exit the net via an opening and hand the second player of his team a piece of paper. This prompted the second player to begin his run, and was repeated until all three players had competed. As this game was being played on a set of ‘balancing scales’, the team finishing first automatically dumped any remaining opponents into their respective pool. Whilst describing the game, presenter Camillo Felgen comically explained that whilst each of the pools contained equal quantities of water, the French pool had been filled with water brought from Arcachon itself, because it was warmer than the home town’s! This, as expected, prompted hilarity from the home crowd. Although no times were announced, it was clear that the visitors from Arcachon had completed the game in the faster time and were awarded the 2pts. The French had reversed the result from the previous game and levelled the scores once again at 4-4.


Game 5 - The Cream Cake Collectors

The fifth game (the third in France) - 'The Cream Cake Collectors' - was another one of the ‘avoid the bull’ games, like the previous game held at the venue. On this occasion, players had to build a tower with three large rectangular polystyrene blocks and then place a foam cream pie on top of it. The blocks then had to be raised high enough off the ground so that the pie could be collected by a team-mate who was lying down on a podium which was overhanging the arena. This of course had to be completed whilst trying to avoid the bull, and like the previous French game, opponents were able to entice the bull away from their playing space. This was clearly a game designed for the French and after four minutes of play, they had annihilated the West Germans with a score of 7-2. With another 2pts, the French returned to the lead for the first time since the opening game, with the score standing at 6-4.


Game 6 - The Moon Buggy

The final competitive game (the third game in West Germany) - 'The Moon Buggy' - featured a very large wheeled moon buggy which had a unique form of movement. Inside each of the giant wheels was a player who had to rotate it very much in the manner akin to a hamster in a cage. On top of the vehicle were two 'astronauts' - a driver and a brake operator - and the idea was to move the buggy up an obstacle course and collect a large rubber ball. On reaching the top end of the course, the team had to turn the car around using the ‘three-point turn’ method, deposit the ball on a hook on one of the return obstacles and race to the finish. On reaching the finishing line, the team had to park the vehicle in a garage which was topped with six buckets of water that were designed to drop as the buggy entered. The French team went first and despite having some difficulties at the turn around point (the playing area was much smaller than was needed to complete the three-point turn), they dashed towards the garage at a breakneck speed, the astronauts animatedly jumping around in their seats as if driving horses from a stagecoach. However, as they entered the garage it became suddenly apparent that they were travelling much too fast and consequently they lost control and crashed right through the garage, almost hitting members of the audience. This had caused some damage to the equipment, and it soon became clear that one of the team had been seriously injured as he was seen being lifted from the crash site by two team-mates and shortly afterwards was taken away on a stretcher by a local medical team. Stagehands appeared from everywhere and removed the moon buggy from the tangled mess and lined it up for the West Germans to participate. After a short time, presenter Camillo Felgen announced that the brake handle had been damaged in the crash in such a way as to make it impossible for the Eschwege im Werratal team to participate, and handed the situation over to the Swiss jury in Paris, proposing that the teams share the points due to the equipment failure. Chairman Guy Ackermann and jury members Mascia Cantoni and Lilo Hausener deliberated for a brief moment and then accepted the West German presenter's suggestion, awarding both teams 1pt each. Although the gap had not changed, the score had moved on to 7-5 in Arcachon's favour as the 'intellectual' section of the programme began.


Game of Questions

There was a change to the format of the Game of Questions this year. Unlike last year where the time permitted to answer the questions was dependent on the time it took for an opposing team member to complete a given task for each of the two rounds, this year only one task was executed and at only one of the venues. The time taken to complete the task was then deducted from 3 minutes, and the remaining time was the total amount left to answer both questions over the two rounds.

In this heat, the timing task was to balance facing backwards on top of a large inflated ball, traverse a course and then return to the start. If a player fell off the ball, they could remount until the task was completed. The French team went first and completed the task in just 45 seconds, giving the ‘intellectuals’ 2 minutes 15 seconds to answer both of their questions over the two rounds. When the West German player participated, he was not such a dab-hand at balancing as the Frenchman and he continually fell off the ball. As the time ticked by, the referees announced that the maximum time allowed to complete the task would be 2 minutes, so that the ‘intellectuals’ would at least be guaranteed some time to answer their two questions. However, despite his failure to complete the task, the French team offered a gesture of goodwill to allow the West Germans 1 minute 30 seconds to answer their questions. This was met with appreciative applause from the visiting supporters in Arcachon as well as from the home crowd in West Germany.

The first choice of question and value was offered to the French mayor, and after a short pause he opted for the 1pt question. His team of ‘intellectuals’ were quizzed on a question pertaining to European airports and when they answered incorrectly, they were given a 1pt deduction. The West German mayor, with his team now just 1pt behind at 6-5, also opted for the 1pt question. Again, like his French counterpart, he suffered a penalty when his team could not answer correctly a question pertaining to European cities. There was once again a 2pt gap between the two teams with the score now standing at 6-4 in Arcachon’s favour. The Eschwege im Werratal dignitary now had very little choice as he had to go first in the second round and his team were 2pts adrift from their competitors. He opted for the 3pt question, but with his ‘intellectuals’ once again answering incorrectly, they had not only suffered a 3pt penalty, but had handed the competition to the French team. With the score now standing at 6-1, the team were unbeatable and the French mayor, as expected, opted for the 1pt question. This time, his team answered their question correctly and with the 1pt awarded to the French, the final score of the programme was 7-1 in Arcachon’s favour.

Presenters, Officials and Production Team

Future resident referee Guido Pancaldi made his debut at this heat and stayed with the programme, as did Gennaro Olivieri until is original demise in 1982. However unlike Gennaro, Guido continued on for a further two years from 1988 when the programme returned to the television screens of Europe. Both of them returned to make cameo appearances at the end of the first International Heat of 1996.

Additional Information

Presenter Camillo Felgen revealed at the start of this heat that the programme would also be shown in Austria for the first time via its own national TV service ORF (Österreichischer Rundfunk). Their broadcasts followed the schedule of ARD-WDR, including delayed Saturday afternoon broadcasts for editions not featuring West German teams.

As had been the case last year, the West German broadcaster ARD-WDR transmitted the 1966 series live on Wednesdays (if a West German team featured) or on Saturday afternoons (if the event featured no West German participation).

During 1966, the ORTF (French broadcaster) and RAI (Italian broadcaster) elected not to transmit competitions that did not feature teams from their countries. As a result, these broadcasters carried only seven of the thirteen programmes this year.

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

B & I

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

Heat 2

Event Staged: Wednesday 8th June 1966
Venues: Stade de Football du Pays Blanc (White Country Football Stadium),
Antoing, Belgium and
Piazza Rivarola (Rivarola Square), Tivoli, Italy

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
RTB (B):
Wednesday 8th June 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 8th June 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian): Wednesday 8th June 1966, 10.00-11.20pm

ORF (AT): Saturday 11th June 1966, 3.45-5.15pm (unconfirmed)
ARD-WDR (D):
Saturday 11th June 1966, 3.45-5.15pm
RAI Due (I): Saturday 11th June 1966, 10.05-11.25pm
ORTF (F): Not transmitted - no French involvement
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Zürich, Switzerland:
Guy Ackermann (Chairman) [Genève], Lilo Hausener [Zürich] and Marco Blaser [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Kurt Hauser and Hans Jenne in Antoing, Belgium
Gennaro Olivieri and Guido Pancaldi in Tivoli, Italy

Weather Conditions:
Belgium - Warm and Dry
Italy - Warm and Dry

Themes: Attack, Attack, Attack (B) and The Waiting Game (I)

Teams: Antoing (B) v. Tivoli (I)

Games: The Ascending Platforms (in Italy), The Castle Trebuchets (in Belgium), The Woodcutters (in Italy), The Tubular Tower Climb (in Belgium), The Pole Rollers (in Italy), Motorcyclist and the Guillotine (in Belgium) and Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in Belgium) - A competitor must dribble a ball through a course of obstacles, lifting the ball through holes in the obstacles using only his feet. The time taken is deducted from three minutes to give time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - Belgium: Arranging European countries in order of the total length of their respective rail networks; Italy: Arranging European countries in order of the total amount of commercial freight handled annually;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - Italy: Matching European artists to their respective years of birth; Belgium: Matching European playwrights, poets and essayists to their respective years of birth.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
B 2 2 2 2 1 2 1 --- --- 1
I 0 0 0 0 1 0 --- -3 3 ---
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
B 2 4 6 8 9 11 12 12 12 13
I 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 -2 1 1

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 B • Antoing l
 I • Tivoli

13
1

The Host Towns and Venues

Antoing, Belgium
 

Aerial view of the breathtaking Château d'Antoing

 

Antoing is a town in the province of Hainaut in western Belgium, located a few kilometres south of Tournai, near the French border.

Antoing has one of the most original and well-known castles in Belgium and was home to the Princes de Ligne between the 13th and 16th centuries. Although the castle dates from the around the 12th century, it was redesigned in neo-gothic style in the 19th century by the French architect Eugène Emmanuel Voillet-le-Duc (1814-1879), whose other works included Carcassonne Castle in France.
 

Stade de Football du Pays Blanc at Antoing

 

The games at the Belgian venue were played at Stade de Football du Pays Blanc, the home ground of local football team R.A.S. Pays Blanc F.C. Antoinien.


Tivoli, Italy
 

A panoramic view of Tivoli

 

Tivoli is an ancient Italian town in the Lazio region, about 30km (18½mi) east-north-east of Rome. The town has many quarries producing travertine, a particular white calcium-carbonate rock used in building most Roman monuments. The slopes of the neighbouring hills are covered with olives, vineyards and gardens; the most important local industry is the manufacture of paper. During the Renaissance period, popes and cardinals did not limit their embellishment program to Rome, and erected buildings in Tivoli also.

In 1835, Pope Gregory XVI (1765-1846) added the Villa Gregoriana, a villa complex pivoting around the Aniene's falls. The ‘Great Waterfall’ was created through a tunnel in the Monte Catillo, to give an outlet to the waters of the Aniene sufficient to preserve the city from inundations like the devastating flood of 1826. The water power of the falls supplies some of the electricity that lights Rome. The slopes of the neighbouring hills are covered with olives, vineyards and gardens, but the most important local industry is the manufacture of paper.
 

The turreted clock tower in Piazza Rivarola, Tivoli

 

The town itself is quite small in size and the games at this venue were played in an equally small location - in front of the turreted clock tower in Piazza Rivarola.

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - The Ascending Platforms

The first game (in Italy) - 'The Ascending Platforms' - involved two large platforms which had one end pivoted over the edge of opposite sides of a large pool, whilst the other was attached to a rope which in turn was hooked over scaffolding high above the game. On the whistle, five players from each of the opposing teams had to position themselves on their platform, whilst it was raised to a maximum 90° angle. The majority of the players tumbled into the pool within 30 seconds of the start but one of the players on each team had an advantage of being able to hold a handle which was part of the game’s equipment and were therefore able to hold their position. As the platforms reached their maximum angle it was just a matter of which of the two opposing players had the strength in their hands to hold on. The game continued for an excruciating 3 minutes 42 seconds in total before the Italian player’s strength gave out, and almost two-thirds of that time was just spent watching two players dangling from the two handles. This first result gave the Belgians a 2-0 lead and began what was to become somewhat of a whitewash of the Italians and took all the presenters, commentators and jury by surprise, and even more so the Italian team!


Game 2 - The Castle Trebuchets

The second game (the first in Belgium) - 'The Castle Trebuchets' - was the classic bombarding of the castle using medieval trebuchets. On one side of the castle façade were two players loading and releasing the balls from the equipment, and two of their team-mates, attached to elastic ropes, were on the other side trying to catch them whilst crossing a greased sheet. The Belgians went first and were able to catch seven of the balls, but it was a different story for the Italians who could not find their footing and were only able to catch one ball. The score moved on to 4-0 in Antoing’s favour.


Game 3 - The Woodcutters

The third game (the second in Italy) - 'The Woodcutters' - was similar to one of the timing tasks utilised in the previous series of the programme. Two woodcutters were sitting above a pool on thick planks of wood opposite each other. On the whistle, it was just a case of sawing through the opponent’s planks and dumping them into the pool below. Quite a simple task one may be led to believe, but it took 2 minutes 37 seconds for the Belgian to deposit his opponent into the pool, despite protests from the Italian that his wood-saw was faulty. The result was upheld and the score was now 6-0 to the Belgians.


Game 4 - The Tubular Tower Climb

The Belgian team followed this up with a fourth consecutive win in the fourth game (the second in Belgium) - 'The Tubular Tower Climb'. The game was a favourite that would be seen in many editions of Jeux Sans Frontières over the years, where competitors had to climb up the inside of a large Perspex tube using just their hands, feet and staying power. On reaching the top of the tube, players then had to collect an apple from a podium and drop it down the tube to the next player to place in a basket. This player then in turn repeated the game. After three minutes of play, the whistle was blown and the final score revealed how close the game had been, with Belgium scoring 11 to Italy's 10! The score was now standing at 8-0 to Antoing and things were not looking at all good for the Italians.


Game 5 - The Pole Rollers

The programme then returned to Italy to witness presenter Enzo Tortota mopping his brow with a handkerchief due to the Italians' poor scoring. He then went on to describe the fifth game (the third in Italy) - 'The Pole Rollers' - which involved a large roller balanced across the pool with players standing on platforms on either side. On the whistle, a player from each of the teams moved onto the roller and it was then a simple task of log-rolling and trying to deposit each other into the pool below. As with the previous two games at the venue, it was just a matter of sitting back and watching an almost stalemate game, although one or two players fell into the pool. The Italians even brought in a 15-year old to compete against his older counterparts, but it was in vain as the game ended in a draw. Finally, the Italians of Tivoli had put a point on the scoreboard. The score was now 9-1 and only a miracle could save the Italians from complete decimation. A point to note was that referee Gennaro Olivieri made his first of very few errors in his time with the programme when he declared this game a draw. Close inspection clearly shows that four of the Belgian competitors fell into the pool, whilst only three from the Italian team suffered the same fate. If this error had been noticed the final score for this heat would have been 12-2!


Game 6 - Motorcyclist and the Guillotine

The final competitive game (the third game in Belgium) - 'Motorcyclist and the Guillotine' - was somewhat of a convoluted affair. The game involved a motorcyclist located underneath a ‘guillotine’ adjacent to a row of five open-ended barrels hanging above a small pool of fresh cream. The idea of the game was that whilst the rider completed laps of the course passing through the guillotine, an opponent made it difficult by closing the guillotine. On the whistle, whilst the rider began his first lap, the opponent passed through the barrels and then made his way to a post with a light at its top which he had to switch on before he closing the guillotine. However, switching on the light signalled to the rider’s team-mate that he could start, and he repeated the same course through the barrels and switched the light off again and then re-opened the guillotine. This was then repeated by both teams until time limit and the team with the greatest number of circumnavigations made was declared the winner. As had been the way all night, the Italians were no match for the Belgians and with another win with a score of 9-5 on the game, Antoing stood proud, leading on the scoreboard by a hugely impressive tally of 11 to Tivoli's 1.


Game of Questions

The competition now went into the Game of Questions and only possible way now for the Italians to scrape victory was for the Belgians to incorrectly answer two 3pt questions and the Italians to answer two 3pt questions correctly. However this was not to be, as the first option of question value went to the Belgian mayor, and it was not a difficult choice to make. He opted for the 1pt question and at that moment any chance of victory by the Tivoli team was over. However, his worries were unfounded as the ‘intellectuals’ answered correctly and the team were now leading 12-1. With the Italians opting for 3pt questions in both of the rounds, one of which was answered incorrectly and the other correctly, the scores remained the same. The Belgian mayor again opted for the 1pt question which was once again answered correctly bringing the final score to 13-1. Incidentally, the mayor’s poor choice of question value in this heat ultimately cost Antoing a place in the semi-finals. As qualification was dependant on the greater difference between opposing teams, if he had opted for two of the 3pt questions (which the ‘intellectuals’ had answered correctly), Antoing would have won the heat with a margin of 16pts (17-1). They would have qualified for the next round by virtue of having scored more points for themselves than Jambes, who had the same margin but with just 12pts scored!

Presenters, Officials and Production Team

This contest saw Guido Pancaldi join Gennaro Olivieri in Italy to referee their first ever International Heat together.

Additional Information

The programme opened in Belgium with presenter Jean-Claude Menessier introducing the normal dignitaries and then this was followed by welcoming both of the mayors from the 1965 joint-winning teams of Ciney and Saint-Amand-les-Eaux who were sitting together in the audience at Antoing. The programme was then handed over to Italian presenter Enzo Tortora in Tivoli, and after much of the same, the games began in earnest.

Not only were all the games unique in Jeux Sans Frontières for utilising the same equipment throughout, but the games in the Italian half of the programme were also unique in that they were all of a non-competitive nature and they were all based on a waiting game.

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

F & I

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

Heat 3

Event Staged: Wednesday 15th June 1966
Venues: Quai Gordon Bennett (Gordon Bennett Quay),
Vieux Port (Old Harbour), Menton, France
and Terme di Montecatini (Montecatini Thermal Baths), Montecatini Terme, Italy

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
RTB (B):
Wednesday 15th June 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 15th June 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ORTF (F):
Wednesday 15th June 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian):
Wednesday 15th June 1966, 10.00-11.20pm
ORF (AT):
Saturday 18th June 1966, 3.45-5.15pm
ARD-WDR (D):
Saturday 18th June 1966, 3.40-5.10pm
RAI Due (I): Saturday 18th June 1966, 10.15-11.30pm
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Milano, Italy:
Guy Ackermann (Chairman) [Genève], Lilo Hausener [Zürich] and Gioia Spataccini [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Bernard Stollere in Menton, France
Hans Jenne and Guido Pancaldi in Montecatini Terme, Italy

Weather Conditions:
France - Warm and Dry
Italy - Warm and Dry

Themes: Nautical (F) and Balance and Dexterity (I)

Teams: Menton (F) v. Montecatini Terme (I)

Team Members included:
Montecatini Terme (I) -
Giovanni Bellini

Games: The Rubber Ring Divers (in France), The Acrobats and the Balls (in Italy), The Captain Always Goes Down with his Ship (in France), The Aqueduct Cyclists (in Italy), The Great Stock-Car Plunge (in France), The Fencing Gladiators (in Italy) and Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in France) - A competitor must swim across the quay to reach a designated platform by passing over and under 14 large tethered barrels in a sequential order. The time taken is deducted from three minutes to give the time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - Italy: Matching European towns or cities to their respective countries; France: Arranging European landmarks in order of their respective heights;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - France: Matching European works of art to the respective cities where they are displayed; Italy: Matching European composers to their respective countries of birth.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
F 0 2 1 0 0 1 --- -3 -3 ---
I 2 0 1 2 2 1 -1 --- --- 1
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
F 0 0 1 1 1 2 2 -1 -4 -4
I 2 4 5 7 9 10 9 9 9 10

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 I • Montecatini Terme l l
 F • Menton

10
-4

The Host Towns and Venues

Menton, France
 

Looking out to sea over the rooftops of Menton
and the Basilique Saint Michel

 

Menton is a commune of around 30,000 inhabitants located in the Alpes-Maritimes département of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region in south-eastern France.

Nestling halfway between the principality of Monaco and the Italian border, the town enjoys a warm micro-climate favourable to lemon, tangerine, and orange groves, and is fondly known as La Perle de la France (The Pearl of France). The lemon features as one of the town’s symbols and is celebrated at the Lemon Festival every February. The festival follows a given theme each year which have included Viva España, Disney and Neverland. The festival lasts a few days, with different bands passing through Menton's streets on foot or on truck trailers. The Casino Gardens in the centre of town are decorated in the theme of the festival, using lemons to cover the exhibits, and huge temporary statues are built and covered with citrus fruit.

In 1814, Menton was included in a reconstituted principality of Monaco which, after Napoleon' Bonaparte’s (1769-1821) Hundred Days in 1815, became a protectorate of the King of Sardinia. In 1848, Menton, along with its neighbour Roquebrune, seceded from Monaco, due at least in part to a tax imposed on lemon exports. They proclaimed themselves a free city during the 1848 revolutions and then two years later placed themselves back under the protection of the Kingdom of Sardinia where, this time theywere administered by the House of Savoy for the next ten years.

 

The old harbour of Menton

 

The games at the French venue were played on the Gordon Bennett quayside in the old harbour district, named after James Gordon Bennett Jr. (1841-1918), a New York newspaper publisher. Bennett enjoyed the ‘good life’ and indulged in private yachts, opulent railroad cars and lavish mansions around the world. In 1866, he won his first trans-oceanic yacht race between three American yachts - Vesta, Fleetwing and Henrietta. Although there were high westerly winds, they started off at Sandy Hook in New Jersey on 11th December 1866 and raced across the Atlantic and finished the race at the Needles (three distinctive stacks of chalk), the furthest westerly point of the Isle of Wight. The race ended after 13 days 21 hours and 55 minutes with Bennett’s Henrietta crossing the finishing line first.


Montecatini Terme, Italy
 

The fountain in the Piazza del Popolo

 

Montecatini Terme is a town of around 21,000 inhabitants and is located in the north-west of the province of Pistoia in Tuscany. It is located at the eastern end of Piana di Lucca and has a strong vocation for tourism, as well as industrial and commercial industries based around the thermal spa, which in turn has increased the interest for hotel accommodation in the region.

 

The thermal baths of Montecatini Terme

 

The games at the Italian venue were played outside the buildings of the thermal baths in the town. Although they had been around since the 14th century, and even after 1530 when thermal baths were constructed and adapted to contain the already known spa waters, they did not achieve their highest international fame until the latter part of the 18th century. Since 1773, the Montecatini spa waters have been famous worldwide for their beneficial effects on the human body.

Recent studies have confirmed the therapeutic qualities of these waters of curing a number of diseases including constipation, hepatitis, liver complaints caused by drugs, osteoarthritis, pyorrhea and rhinitis. Besides all the efficient and rich thermal equipment which is divided into different establishments, the spa complex boasts an elegant and refined look consisting of numerous liberty-style buildings.

After undergoing numerous high-level manifestations, congress structures and additional facilities like the golf course and hippodrome, the town not only provides visitors with a pleasant geographic position, but for many it is seen as an all-in-one holiday resort. The broad parks and the wooded alleys remind visitors of the famous thermal resorts on the other side of the Alps.

During a three minute stoppage on the last game of this International Heat, West German commentator Otto Ernst Rock stated that the thermal springs had attracted many famous people to Montecatini Terme over the years including Gioachino Rossini, Giuseppe Verdi, Léon Carvalho, Giacomo Puccini, Arturo Toscanini and Luigi Pirandello. Royal visitors included the reigning monarchs of Monaco, Belgium and Luxembourg and Hollywood legends Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Deborah Kerr, Mary Pickford, Gary Cooper, Katherine Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, William Holden and Orson Welles.

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - The Rubber Ring Divers

The programme opened in France with the first game, a simple one - 'The Rubber Ring Divers' - which involved players being launched from a large slide over the quayside so they could dive through inflated rubber rings in the water. The slide had a set of tracks built on either side of its descent and, on the whistle, a player had to crouch down on a small roped bogey and be released to descend the slide. On reaching its base, he had to spring himself upwards and dive into one of a set of six rings tied together in a triangular shape of three rows in the harbour waters. Each of the three rows of rings had a different value with the closest row of one scoring 1pt. The second row consisted of two rings each valued at 3pts, and the third row consisted of three rings each valued at 5pts. Despite its simplicity, none of the players were able to reach the third row and with each team participating on five occasions, the game was eventually won by Montecatini Terme with a score of 11-10. The Italians had taken an early lead of 2-0.


Game 2 - The Acrobats and the Balls

The second game (the first in Italy) - 'The Acrobats and the Balls' - involved a player from each team on a trapeze roughly 6ft above the arena floor who had to grab balls which were positioned overhead on two scaffolds in front and behind them. On the whistle, two competitors from each team assisted their players to get going, and once a rhythm had been achieved, the players on the trapeze could grab balls from the scaffold in front of them on the forward swing or from the opposite scaffold on the backward swing. After securing a ball, they then had to drop it into a circular hole, situated below their original starting positions, before attempting another try. Only balls dropped in the holes counted towards the final tallies. The French player got off to a flying start in the normal sitting swing position, but although he was able to grab the balls without much trouble, he was not very good at dropping them in the hole. Meanwhile the Italian player took the classic acrobatic stance and hung from the trapeze with his lower legs folded over the bar. Although it took him some time to find his feet (pardon the pun) he soon got into a successful rhythm. His positioning on the trapeze also made it easier for him to drop the balls into the hole, as his arms were much nearer to the ground than his counterpart’s. Boosted by their competitor's agility, the Italians stormed the game and secured the team’s second win and Menton were already trailing 4-0.


Game 3 - The Captain Always Goes Down with his Ship

The third game (the second in France) - 'The Captain Always Goes Down with his Ship' - was a most peculiar game and had such complicated scoring that the game was declared a draw. The game involved two ships’ captains with a sharpened pole, each standing in a dinghy-shaped wooden boat in the harbour. On the whistle, they had 30 seconds to pierce the boat’s keel with the pole in order to sink the boat, but they had to ensure that they remained standing whilst the boat sank below the waterline. After the 30 seconds, they had to remain standing as the boat became completely immersed in the water and hold firm to prevent it from upending on its descent. Whilst the Italian captain held his footing throughout and at one point even stood erect with a salute as the boat sank (much to the crowd’s entertainment), the French captain was all over the place with the boat, and almost capsized completely, firstly on the port side and then on the starboard side. However, despite protests from the Italian player, he was deemed not to have capsized the boat and the game ended in a draw. Menton scored the first of their points and Montecatini continued to lead the competition by 5-1.


Game 4 - The Aqueduct Cyclists

The fourth game (the second in Italy) - 'The Aqueduct Cyclists' - was a straightforward whitewash victory for the Italian team. Six cyclists had to cycle up two ramps on either side of a large pool (three up each side) to two circular platforms (one on either side) where they had to wait to cross an aqueduct one by one sequentially (one from one side and then one from the other). Although this sounded easy, no player was permitted to put their feet on the floor at any time during the game, even when they were in the holding area of the raised platforms awaiting their turn to cross. In order to achieve this, the competitors had to balance on the cycles moving them inch by inch with their pedals in the fashion of a slow-bicycle race. Each of the cyclists were numbered one to six, with the odd-numbered starting on the right-hand side of the pool and climbing the left-hand ramp whilst their even-numbered team-mates did the opposite. Each player had to cross the pool on three occasions and on their final descent had to finish in the space on the opposite side of the grid to their starting position (players 1, 3 and 5 to finish on the left hand side, with 2, 4 and 6 on the right). The Italian team went first and had no problems ascending the ramps, waiting on the platforms or crossing the narrow 20cm beam representing the aqueduct, and finished the game with a perfect display in 1 minute 47 seconds. Within 10 seconds of the French team starting, they had lost three of their players either ascending the ramps or as they reached the platforms, and within the next 10 seconds, two of the remaining three players had fallen into the pool below on their first attempts to cross. This left just a sole player, who continued to play the game, despite the knowledge that it was a lost cause and he also found himself in the pool after 1 minute 15 seconds. With three defeats and the score now standing at 7-1 to Montecatini Terme, the French team knew they would have to try and pull something out of the bag to stop the massacre. After the game, Italian presenter Enzo Tortora introduced the home crowd to Antonio Maspes, an Italian World Champion sprint cyclist. Active since 1948 and with a host of national championships under his belt, Maspes won seven professional World Championship sprint titles between 1955 and 1964, before retiring in 1965 at the age of 33!


Game 5 - The Great Stock-Car Plunge

The fifth game (the third in France) - 'The Great Stock-Car Plunge' - was played on the quayside itself and although the end result of the game was meant to be predictable, it had a hilarious twist to it. Two players dressed as stock-car drivers had to circumnavigate a rectangular course which was boxed-in on three sides by low walls of straw bales with the fourth being open to the harbour waters below. On the whistle, the two players raced on foot to their cars which had no front doors for safety reasons and began to drive around the course, the idea being to crash their opponents' cars out of the race and into the water below. Within 33 seconds of the start of the game, the French car suffered mechanical trouble and the game had to be stopped whilst mechanics attempted to rectify the problem. The game was restarted after a period of 4 minutes 6 seconds only to have the French car break down again within another 40 seconds following a self-inflicted crash into the straw bales surrounding the course. After conferring with the jury chairman and before restarting the game for a second time, course referee Bernard Stollere stated that if the car was to break down for a third time, then the game would be abandoned and the points would be shared between the two teams. However, following this second stoppage of 2 minutes 52 seconds, everything seemed to work fine but the twist to the game was about to occur. Within 30 seconds of this restart, the Italian driver almost caught the Frenchman off-guard in front of the harbour edge and hit the offside of his car, but failed to push him into the water. The Italian car came to a halt as if with mechanical failure and was facing headlong towards the harbour edge. The French driver seeing this raced around the course and came up behind the Italian car, but he misjudged the angle of impact. His error only managed to push the Italian car forward and horizontal to the harbour edge but the French car continued forward and straight over the edge into the water below. This was a surprise for everyone including the commentators and assembled crowd. The Italian driver circled the course in victory whilst the Frenchman extricated himself from the sinking car (the reason for the absence of doors) and had to swim for shore. The French player had lost the chance to pull back some points, and with Montecatini Terme being awarded another 2pts (their fourth win of the night), they were now leading 9-1 and only a miracle could stop them from being victorious.


Game 6 - The Fencing Gladiators

The final competitive game (the third game in Italy) - 'The Fencing Gladiators' - was hit with problems from the start. The game involved six team members (three from each side, standing face-to-face) supposedly dressed as gladiators with fencing foils, and each had several water bags and containers strapped to the front of his body. As well as this, each of the gladiators was attached to a wire which was connected by pulley above the arena to a heavy weight (roughly the same weight as the gladiator) behind him. The idea of the game was that the gladiators would fight their opposite number and attempt to puncture the water bags and containers with their foils. This would release the water inside and have the effect of lightening the gladiator, which would in turn cause the heavy weight to raise him aloft. The game was a best of three and the first team to raise two of their opposite number would win the game. Before the whistle, it could be seen that some of the gladiators were finding it difficult to stand up because they were not weighted correctly, but nevertheless the game commenced. Within 10 seconds of the start, the game was halted as problems materialised with these two gladiators being unable to place their feet on the floor and fence correctly, and with the wheels of the pulley of another gladiator becoming jammed. After a couple of small adjustments and a stoppage of just over 3 minutes, the game was restarted but the same problems reoccurred and despite the players trying their best to complete the game, the referees deemed the game null and void and both teams were awarded 1pt each. Despite Menton scoring their second point of the night, Montecatini Terme were now leading 10-2. A similar version of this game was used at the Swiss International Heat staged at Arosa in 1978, when competitors were dressed in large Musketeer outfits with pot-bellies.


Game of Questions

With such a difference in points (10-2 to Montecatini Terme) there was only one possible way for Menton to win now and that was for their ‘intellectuals’ to answer two questions correctly (with at least one being a 3pt question). But this would mean that Montecatini Terme’s counterparts would have to answer two questions incorrectly with at least one having a 3pt value!

The programme now moved to the ‘academic’ round and the neutral jury in Milano deemed the team of Montecatini Terme to answer the first poser in the Game of Questions. The Mayor of the town opted for the 1pt question, but the ‘intellectuals’ failed to answer correctly and reduced their lead over Menton to 7pts with the scores now standing at 9-2. This was the French team’s chance and the mayor opted for the 3pt question, but unfortunately his ‘intellectuals’ did not know that the Television Tower in Stuttgart was higher than the Eiffel Tower in Paris and the team was deducted 3pts and it was all over for the French. Their score had dropped below zero and for only the third time in the programme’s history a minus score was displayed on the jury scoreboard - and there was still one round to go!

As was the norm, Menton had to answer again and trying to recoup some respectability, the French mayor again opted for a 3pt question, and fate dealt him a double blow when his ‘intellectuals’ failed to answer correctly again. With the score now standing at 9 to -4, the Italian mayor opted for a 1 pt question to redeem their loss in the first round and his team did him proud and answered correctly. The competition was over and the Italians had a 14pt difference over their rivals with the final score ending 10 to -4!

Presenters, Officials and Production Team

It should be noted that referee Gennaro Olivieri was not in attendance at this heat. This was the first of only three events that he missed in all of the 148 Summer International Heats and Finals of the first run of Jeux Sans Frontières! Olivieri's second and third absences occurred later in the 1966 series in International Heats 5 and 10 respectively.

Returning Teams and Competitors

Italian competitor Giovanni Bellini made the first of nine appearances, which was also the first of five consecutive annual appearances, in Jeux Sans Frontières at this heat. He participated later this year in the Semi-Finals and again in 1967 when Montecatini Terme made a second appearance in the programme as well as the International Final. He went on to make further appearances for Terracina in 1968 (including the International Final), Frascati in 1969 and Ancona in 1970. He made his ninth and final appearance five years later for the Bracciano team in 1975.

Additional Information

This heat, like some of the others in the first two series of Jeux Sans Frontières, was marred by delays, game equipment failure and complicated scoring.

Menton chalked up a very unwelcome record in this heat as the first team to participate in Jeux Sans Frontières who had failed to win a single game. In fact, their only points came from two drawn games, which their ‘intellectuals’ then squandered on answering two 3pt questions incorrectly!

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

B & D

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

Heat 4

Event Staged: Wednesday 22nd June 1966
Venues: L'Esplanade (The Esplanade), Ath, Belgium
and Wallstraße Parkplatz (Rampart Street Car Park), Erkelenz, West Germany

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
ORF (AT):
Wednesday 22nd June 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
RTB (B):
Wednesday 22nd June 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 22nd June 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ARD-WDR (D):
Wednesday 22nd June 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian):
Wednesday 22nd June 1966, 10.00-11.20pm
ORTF (F):
Not transmitted - no French involvement
RAI Due (I): Not transmitted - no Italian involvement
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Köln, West Germany:
Guy Ackermann (Chairman) [Genève], Lilo Hausener [Zürich] and Fausto Sassi [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Hubert Gunsin and Gennaro Olivieri in Ath, Belgium
Kurt Hauser and Hans Jenne in Erkelenz, West Germany

Weather Conditions:
Belgium - Warm and Dry
West Germany - Warm and Dry

Themes: There's Always Obstacles (B) and On the Move (D)

Teams: Ath (B) v. Erkelenz (D)

Games: The Heading Trampolinists (in West Germany), The Hay Lorry Obstacle Race (in Belgium), Moving The Tower (in West Germany), The Charles Atlas Triplets (in Belgium), The Autobahn Snake (in West Germany), Football - Bar Billiards Style (in Belgium) and Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in West Germany) - A gymnast must swing both legs together in order to make 30 complete revolutions of a pommel horse. The time taken is deducted from three minutes to give the time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - West Germany: Matching European writers to their respective countries of birth; Belgium: Matching European concert halls to their respective city locations;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - Belgium: Matching artistic and social movements to their respective countries of origin; West Germany: Matching European writers to their respective literary works.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
B 2 0 0 0 1 2 --- 3 3 ---
D 0 2 2 2 1 0 -1 --- --- 1
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
B 2 2 2 2 3 5 5 8 11 11
D 0 2 4 6 7 7 6 6 6 7

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 B • Ath l
 D • Erkelenz

11
7

The Host Towns and Venues

Ath, Belgium
 

The parade of giants at Ath's colourful Ducasse carnival

 

Ath is a municipality in the Walloon province of Hainaut in Belgium. Known as the City of Giants, named after the giant-sized carnival characters of the Ducasse festivities which take place in the town, Ath was celebrating its 800th anniversary at the time of transmission. Each year the town holds a large carnival lasting several days on the fourth weekend in August, when huge figures representing Goliath, Samson and other allegorical figures are paraded through the streets. The carnival’s highlights include Goliath’s wedding and his famous defeat by David when they are both re-enacted for the crowds. The carnival originates from the 15th century, when it was first held as a celebration of the consecration of the local Saint-Julien church.

 

The Esplanade of Ath, pictured in 2010

 

The games at the Belgian venue were played on the Esplanade which, at the time, was used as a recreational space and had small cafes around its perimeter. Originally used to provide clear fields of fire for the city’s military in case of enemy attack, today it has been transformed into an all-year round sports facility with five-a-side football pitches and a basketball court. As well as these facilities, the area includes permanent modern art sculptures, a large car park and is surrounded by luxury apartments and bars.


Erkelenz, West Germany
 

The Rathaus (town hall) in Erkelenz which dates back to 1546

 

Erkelenz is a town of 45,000 inhabitants located in the Rhineland, one of several such named areas of Western Germany along the Middle and the Lower Rhine between Bingen and the Dutch border, or between the confluence with the Neckar and Cologne.

Lying about 15km (9mi) southwest of Mönchengladbach, it is a medium-sized town, but is the largest in the district of Heinsberg in North Rhine-Westphalia. The town was celebrating its 1000th anniversary at the time of transmission. Despite the town having more than 1,000 years of history and tradition, in 2006 the eastern part of the borough was cleared to make way for the Garzweiler II brown coal pit operated by RWE Power. Planned to be in operation until 2045, the construction resulted in over five thousand people from ten villages having to be resettled as a result. Since 2010, the inhabitants of the easternmost village of Pesch have left and most have moved to the new villages of Immerath and Borschemich in the areas of Kückhoven and Erkelenz-Nord.

The Catholic parish church consecrated to Saint-Lambert is located in the centre of the town on the Marktplatz. This is not the original building as it had three predecessors. The first was a Frankish hall building which was expanded into a Romanesque longitudinal building early in the 11th century. This in turn gave way to a consecrated building with a Gothic nave in 1418, the latter being destroyed in the Second World War. The current 83m (269ft) high tower was built in 1458 in the style of Flemish Brabant or towers.

 

The Markplatz and St. Lambertus-Kirche at Erkelenz

 

The games at the West German venue were played in the centre of the town adjacent to Wallstraße, in a small area used as a flea market and car park. This area was originally inside the town’s ancient fortified walls and takes its name from the embankment which stood adjacent to it and completely encircled the town. Today the embankment is used as part of the main route through the town from east to west, and is named the North Promenade.

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - The Heading Trampolinists

The competition began in earnest in Erkelenz and the first game - 'The Heading Trampolinists' - involved three trampolines adjacent to each other with a large conjoined net positioned above them which was divided into four compartments, one above each trampoline with the fourth being the 'goal' at the end of the course. On the whistle, a team-mate tossed a ball into the net above the first trampoline which then had to be headed by the trampolinist into the part of the net above the second and this was repeated by the second trampolinist into the third compartment. The ball was finally headed into the ‘goal’ by the third trampolinist. The game was played continually in such that after the first trampolinist had played his part, his team-mate could toss a second ball into his net to await the clearance by the second, rather than waiting for the process to be completed by the third player before restarting. The aim of the game was to score seven ‘goals’ in the quickest time. The Belgians competed first and completed the game in 2 minutes 20 seconds, just 10 seconds short of time limit. The Erkelenz team played second and their heading abilities were not up to the standard of the Belgians and could only manage five goals in limit time. The Belgians took an early lead of 2-0.


Game 2 - The Hay Lorry Obstacle Race

The second game (the first in Belgium) - 'The Hay Lorry Obstacle Race' - involved an open-backed delivery lorry with twelve hay bales being driven around an obstacle course. On the whistle, two team-mates had to ascend a greased ramp with a straw bale and hand it to a team-mate who was attached to a harness on the back of the lorry. He then placed it on top of the twelve (three rows of four bales) which had already been stacked on the lorry. This was repeated until there was a total of 16 bales on the lorry. As soon as this had been achieved, the lorry had to be driven over a course of seven obstacles which was designed to shake and dislodge the bales whilst traversing it. The team-mate aboard the lorry could only use a hay hook to hold the bales in place or to reposition them. The obstacles included logs, large planks of wood, several ramps and humps and even a flight of steps! The West Germans went first but lost time at the start by dropping one of the hale bays whilst it was being handed to his team-mate. Their journey over the course was at a fast, but steady pace. Reaching the end of the course in 2 minutes 21 seconds, referee Gennaro Olivieri explained that as the team had lost eight of the sixteen bales, they had accrued an 80 seconds penalty (8 x 10 seconds per bale) giving them at total time of 3 minutes 41 seconds. The Belgians, having watched from the sidelines, decided to go at a slower speed to achieve a maximum score, but this decision was to bite them in the back. Having already gained a 6 seconds advantage from loading the bales on the truck, they traversed five of the obstacles with the loss of just one bale. On reaching the penultimate obstacle in 2 minutes 21 seconds (the finishing time of the West Germans) and with 15 hay bales still on board, the lorry became stuck when its front and rear wheels became jammed in between planks of wood. With the weight of the bales and the soft ground, the driver could not release the lorry despite all his efforts, and the more he spun the rear wheels, the less of a grip he was achieving. The time ticked by and once the time limit of 3 minutes 40 seconds had been reached, the referee blew the whistle. Ath had been beaten by their own tactics and the Erkelenz team had brought the scores level at 2-2. Although simple in its design and delightful to watch, this was a classic Jeux Sans Frontières game.


Game 3 - Moving the Tower

The third game (the second in West Germany) - 'Moving the Tower' - proved to be another classic. A giant 6m x 5m x 3m windowed tower displaying the Erkelenz coat of arms at the front, was positioned on eight wooden rollers. The idea of the game was for a team of seven players to quite literally move it along the whole length of the course by means of bringing rollers from the rear of the tower to the front as it went along. The windows of the tower were not fixed and any sudden movement loosened them from their mountings and they fell out, but they were attached to wires and would hang down the side of the building. On reaching the end of the course, all the rollers had to be underneath the tower in order for the time to be taken. However, if any of the windows had fallen out along the journey, the team had to reposition them by building human pyramids to reach them and the final time was not taken until all of them were back in place. The West Germans went first and displayed how the game should be completed. In order to ensure that the rollers were all underneath the tower as it crossed the line, the tower had to be slowed down as it approached the end of the course so that the final rollers could be positioned closer together to achieve their goal. Having crossed the line with all rollers underneath in a time of 1 minute 32 seconds, the team had just one window to reposition, and finally completed the game in 2 minutes 2 seconds. The return journey of the tower was to be completed by the Belgians and their coat of arms, which had originally been hanging at the rear of the tower for first round, was now displayed on the front of the tower. The team however had failed to observe the tactics of the West Germans and they set off at a fast pace. This resulted in the rollers being placed with a greater spacing between each of them. Although they had moved the tower from one end of the course to the other in just 1 minute 17 seconds (15 seconds faster than their counterparts), they had failed to slow down on the approach to the finish line, and four of their rollers were not underneath the tower. The referees indicated that they would need to continue to play on until this had been achieved. This ultimately cost them another 38 seconds, and with the clock now displaying 1 minute 55 seconds they also had to reposition one window which had fallen out. They finally completed the game in 2 minutes 26 seconds. Erkelenz had taken the lead with the scores standing at 4-2. This was another simple game which was highly enjoyable to watch.


Game 4 - The Charles Atlas Triplets

The fourth game (the second in Belgium) - 'The Charles Atlas Triplets' - utilised the same number of obstacles as the previous Belgian game, albeit not the same ones, and involved three players tied together holding aloft a giant ball. The idea of the game was that the three players (representing body-building champion Charles Atlas) had to move around a course of obstacles without dropping the ball (representing the earth). If the players fell from any of the obstacles, they had to return to the start of that obstacle. If any obstacle could not be completed after three attempts, the team could move on to the next one, except for the pool crossing where the number of attempts was limited to two. Despite this, there were no penalties for not completing an obstacle. This was a straightforward race which saw the Erkelenz team triumphant and they had extended their lead to 6-2.


Game 5 - The Autobahn Snake

The fifth game (the third in West Germany) - 'The Autobahn Snake' - was to create controversy and confusion with the worst refereeing blunder in the history of Jeux Sans Frontières. The game involved five players in small pedal cars covered in a serpentine costume which were joined together and connected to a small box cart at the rear. Each player wore a swimming cap which had a nail protruding through the top. The idea of the game was that the ‘snake’ had to be driven around a twisting course whilst the player in the first pedal cars picked up 20 buckets of water spread out along the course. These buckets had to be passed back from player-to-player until they reached the end of the ‘snake’ where the final player would empty any remaining contents into the box cart. However, whilst doing this the ‘snake’ had to pass through ten open doors (shaped like large hurdles) which each had a water-filled balloon hanging down from it, and these had to be burst with the nail from the head of any of the players. The game had additional time penalties of 10 seconds for each door that the leading go-kart did not pass through cleanly and 5 seconds for each balloon not burst. The water collected en route was measured and for every centimetre of water there was a 5 seconds bonus which was deducted from the time to complete the course. The West German team went first and completed the course in 3 minutes 45 seconds which was clearly announced by referee Kurt Hauser, repeated by Camillo Felgen and clearly seen on the on-screen stopwatch. Co-referee Hans Jenne then stated that the team had received a 10 seconds penalty ("zehn strafe sekunden") for not passing through one of the doors correctly which should have given the team a time of 3 minutes 55 seconds, but he clearly mistook his original declaration of 3 minutes 45 seconds as 3 minutes 25 seconds and announced a time with penalties of 3 minutes 35 seconds. Camillo Felgen looked down at Hans Jenne‘s notepad and stated “drei fünfundzwanzig plus zehn ist 3 minuten 35 sekunden (three twenty-five plus ten is 3 minutes 35 seconds)”. They then moved to the water and measured 12cm which gave them a reduction of 60 seconds and their total score was announced as 2 minutes 35 seconds.

Whilst Camillo Felgen introduced the Belgian team, chairman of the jury Guy Ackermann asked for the score of Erkelenz to be recounted by the referees and the result confirmed once more as the team had received a 10 seconds penalty and the final times did not add up. Camillo explained to the referees that the jury wanted the time of 3 minutes 25 seconds taken to complete the course to be confirmed. Kurt Hauser and Hans Jenne both looked at Hauser's notepad and confirmed the time taken to complete the course was 3 minutes 25 seconds (which had clearly been seen announced and confirmed previously as 3 minutes 45 seconds) and, with the penalty incurred and bonus awarded, the total was indeed 2 minutes 35 seconds. Camillo then asked the chairman if this was clear, but Guy Ackermann was not satisfied and questioned him further about the original announcement of the time being 3 minutes 45 seconds. Hans Jenne again checked his now incorrect notepad and once again confirmed that the original time was 3 minutes 25 seconds. The jury, looking somewhat bewildered, therefore accepted their decision (as no replay was available at the time) and the game continued.

The Belgian team completed the course in 3 minutes 47 seconds with no penalties. The time declared by the referees appeared to have jogged Camillo Felgen’s memory that the Erkelenz team had finished in 3 minutes 45 seconds and put this to Kurt Hauser. Without hesitation, he immediately pointed to his co-referee’s notepad and said that it was as written down. They then went to the box cart and the team had collected 14cm of water and were given a 70 seconds reduction bringing their total time down to 2 minutes 37 seconds, two seconds short of the incorrectly recorded Erkelenz time. As the ‘result’ was so close, Kurt Hauser asked for the water to be measured again and this was confirmed. Always the gentleman, Camillo Felgen stated that he felt that as the result was so close, each team should be awarded 1pt each. Referee Kurt Hauser had other ideas and stated that the two teams had a difference of two seconds so the points should go to Erkelenz and they were awarded the 2pts amidst the controversy. This result had increased their lead even further with the score standing at 8-2. Guy Ackermann confirmed the score but in doing so he inadvertently added 4pts to the West German team’s score to show 10-2 and handed over to co-juror Lilo Hausener to announce the outcome to Swiss German viewers.

Suddenly, the cameras returned to Erkelenz to witness the Belgian contingent in the audience becoming embroiled in the protest due to the timing error and were jeering noisily. Camillo tried to calm things down, but Kurt Hauser and Hans Jenne intervened repeating again everything that had already been said. Kurt was not going to be moved on his 3 minutes 25 seconds decision despite the presence of the Belgian team captain and other touch judges telling him otherwise. Camillo once again suggested that to calm things down would it not be better to award each team 1pt, and asked the jury for their verdict. Returning to the jury, the scores had returned to 6-2 (the original score at the start of the game) and Guy Ackermann confirmed their acceptance of the suggestion and finally the scores moved on to 7-3 in Erkelenz’s favour. He apologised for the chaos, including the scoreboard errors that he had made, and commented that even he was getting confused while changing the boards by all the mixed messages emanating from Erkelenz. This was met with a little titter from compatriots Lilo Hausener and Fausto Sassi.

The programme was finally handed over to the Belgian venue but it was not to be the end of the matter. Presenter Jean-Claude Menessier faced the cameras and addressed comments to the jury stating that he had spoken with on-site referee Gennaro Olivieri, and he had expressed that if a team had won the game, no matter what the margin, then they should receive 2pts and not just 1pt. This was somewhat of a surprise from the Belgians, seeing as it would have given their opponents another 1pt. But there was a sting in his comments and continued to state that if clearly there had been a mistake and the Belgians had in fact won, then why should the Belgian team suffer a 1pt loss? The crowd erupted with boos and jeers as they too were not happy with the decision, but he went on to state that the night was a celebration of the city’s anniversary and that Ath would accept the jury's decision with good heart. This sent the home crowd wild with cheers to show their good spirit.


Game 6 - Football - Bar Billiards Style

Menessier then turned to Gennaro and at last got the final competitive game of the night (the third game in Belgium) underway. The game - 'Football - Bar Billiards Style' - involved four footballers on each team who had been anchored down with elasticated ropes in a small fenced arena. At each end of the playing area were 20 upended bar billiard poles and it was simply a case of which team could knock down the most poles in the time limit. The game was played over two halves and by half-time it was Ath 14, Erkelenz 12. The second half did not produce such high scores as the first and the end result saw the Belgians victorious by 24-19. This second win of the night gave the team 2pts and closed the gap to just two points with the scores standing at 7-5 in Erkelenz’s favour, setting up a tough decision for the mayors in the Game of Questions. However on returning to the jury, Guy Ackermann blundered again and announced the scores as 7-6. Handing over to Lilo Hausener, whispers could be heard about the incorrect score, and whilst she was talking it could be clearly seen that she was being affected by these and kept losing concentration. At the end of her comments, she stated that the chairman had now corrected the result to show 7-5 and Guy Ackermann bowed his head in shame and stated that he had little confidence in himself this evening, whilst the other two jurors laughed it off. He went on to say that several viewers had called the studio complaining about the 1pt decision in the fifth game but wanted to reassure them that under the rules of the programme the decision of the referees was final and the jury accepted this unequivocally. He also stated that the jury would like to thank the Belgians for their sporting nature in accepting the error.


Game of Questions

The Game of Questions got underway in Erkelenz and the mayor surprised everybody by opting for a 1pt question despite the fact that they were leading on the scoreboard by 2pts. After the first question, his decision was somewhat vindicated as his ‘intellectuals’ answered incorrectly and their lead had been reduced to 1pt with the scores now 6-5 in their favour. The Belgians built on this mistake and opted for a 3pt question which was answered correctly in just 7 seconds! The Belgians now led the competition for the first time since the first game, leading by 2pts at 8-6. Staying in Belgium for the second round, the mayor once again opted for 3pts and the ‘intellectuals’ answered their question correctly for the second time and, incredibly, again in just 7 seconds! The Belgians had turned the competition completely around and were now in an unassailable position leading Erkelenz 11-6. The final question went to Erkelenz and the mayor again opted for a 1pt question stating that he knew the town had been defeated and he did not want to make the difference between the two teams any greater than it could be. Unfortunately for him the team answered correctly and the difference could have been just 2pts, but in the end having opted for the 1pt question the competition ended with a final score of 11-7 to Ath, a difference of 4pts. However, at this point both West German teams had lost their heats and by virtue having had the smaller points difference from their victors, Erkelenz were the current qualifiers for the semi-final.

Additional Information

After the introduction of the jury members and chairman (who was also to make some classic scoring errors throughout the night), the programme was handed over to West Germany. Presenter Camillo Felgen introduced the programme amidst a marching band and the accompanying music gave the programme a carnival atmosphere. In his opening introductions, Camillo announced that Erkelenz was going one better than the Belgians, as the town was celebrating its 1000th anniversary. This was met with a resounding cheer from the audience. He then went onto to explain that Erkelenz was the second West German team this year, and that Eschwege im Werratal had unfortunately lost their heat by a difference of 6pts. Then, in his inimitable style, he riled the crowds by stating that if Erkelenz should lose, then they needed to lose by five points or less to be in the running for a place in the semi-final. This was met by an expected resound of boos and jeers from the home crowd, but then with his wry smile turned to the cameras and stated that they would hope that Erkelenz would win of course!

This heat produced two of the programme’s classic games and like the previous heat was delayed for some time during one of the games. However, this delay was the result of one of the most controversial refereeing errors in the programme’s history.

The fourth International Heat of 1966 had ended. Sadly it will not be remembered for some of the classic games played, but for an error which not only delayed the programme but caused confusion, animosity and controversy.

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

B & F

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

Heat 5

Event Staged: Wednesday 29th June 1966
Venues: Stade Athlétique (Athletics Stadium), Centre Sportif INEPS (INEPS Sports Centre),
Jambes, Namur, Belgium and
Deuxième Enceinte (Second Enclosure), Château de Fougères (Fougères Castle),
Fougères, France

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
RTB (B):
Wednesday 29th June 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 29th June 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ORTF (F):
Wednesday 29th June 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian):
Wednesday 29th June 1966, 10.00-11.15pm
ORF (AT):
Saturday 2nd July 1966, 2.45-4.15pm
ARD-WDR (D):
Saturday 2nd July 1966, 3.10-4.40pm
RAI Due (I):
Not transmitted - no Italian involvement
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Paris, France:
Georges Kleinmann (Chairman) [Genève], Lilo Hausener [Zürich], Daniele Bertolli [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Hans Jenne and Guido Pancaldi in Jambes, Belgium
Hubert Gunsin in Fougères, France

Weather Conditions:
Belgium - Cold and Dry
France - Warm and Dry

Themes: Keeping a Foothold (B) and The Medieval Age (F)

Teams: Jambes (B) v. Fougères (F)

Team Members included:
Jambes (B) -
Alex Collant

Games: Slippery Siamese Football (in Belgium), The Medieval Cyclists (in France), The Water Balancers (in Belgium), The Human Catapult (in France), The Floating Platform (in Belgium), The Tower Climb (in France) and Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in Belgium) - A competitor with four ropes strapped to his body, each rope attached to eight balloons, must run and complete six laps of a given course. The time taken is deducted from three minutes to give time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - Belgium: Matching European orchestra conductors to their respective countries of birth; France: Matching European Roman Catholic Cardinals to their respective countries of birth;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - France: Matching European dramatists to their respective writing works; Belgium: Matching European libretto writers to their respective opera works.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
B 1 1 2 2 2 2 3 --- --- -1
F 1 1 0 0 0 0 --- -3 -3 ---
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
B 1 2 4 6 8 10 13 13 13 12
F 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 -1 -4 -4

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 B • Jambes l l
 F • Fougères

12
-4

The Host Towns and Venues

Jambes, Belgium
 

The town centre of Jambes

 

Jambes is located in the province of Namur in the francophonic Walloon region of southern Belgium. It is known for the former Géronsart Abbey, the 13th century Enhaive keep (donjon d'Enhaive), the old bridge on the River Meuse and the seat of the Government of Wallonia.

At the time of transmission, Jambes was a stand-alone town, but in 1977 it became a suburb of the Namur when it was incorporated into the city’s boundaries. One of its peculiarities lies in the multitude of independent quality shops such as La Moutarderie ‘Bister’ (The Bister mustard shop), Lingerie Bigot (Bigot Lingerie), Opticiens Marlière (The Marlière opticians) and Boucherie Bouillon (The Bouillon Butchery) in addition to numerous pâtisseries lining the streets.

 

The INEPS sports stadium, now known as Stade ADEPS de Jambes

 

The games at the Belgian venue were played at the athletics stadium at the INEPS sports complex (Institut d’Enseignement de Promotie Sociale) which was built in the late 1950s to promote sport and recreation. The organisation (INEPS) was an arm of the Ministry of the French Community of Belgium, and in 1969 was split into two different entities. ADEPS (Administration de l'Éducation Physique, du Sport et de la Vie en Plein Air) for the French community and BLOSO (Bestuur voor de Lichamelijke Opvoeding, de Sport en het Openluchtleven) for the Flemish community. Both organisations are charged with all aspects of sport development in their own territory, from the training of coaches, growth of sporting clubs, events and communal sporting functions.


Fougères, France
 

Fougères Castle, one of the finest in France, dominates the town's skyline

 

Fougères is a town of around 25,000 inhabitants located in the Ille-et-Vilaine département in Brittany in north-western France. The town is home to one of only three belfries in Brittany, whose location serves as the centre of the weekend market. The belfry, built in 1397, has symbolic importance and was funded by local merchants, allowing ordinary people access to timekeeping, previously the preserve of the church and nobility. There was once a thriving shoemaking industry in the town which is now almost extinct, as well as an important glass-making industry.

 

The second enclosure inside Fougères Castle

 

The French producers chose the grounds of the town’s most famous monument and attraction - the beautiful fortress of Fougères Castle - to stage its section of the heat. The castle is a fantastic testament of military architecture and is one of the best preserved fortified castles in Europe. Sited high above the town, the castle with thirteen towers provides spectacular views for many miles around. It was a scene of many battles especially against the English, and in 1166 King Henry II (1133-89) attacked the castle and razed the keep to the ground. This did not prevent Raoul II, knowing the significance of the castle, from rebuilding it into a high-walled stronghold in the 13th century. The area (second enclosure) where the three games were played was originally used for everyday life.

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - Slippery Siamese Football

The first game - 'Slippery Siamese Football' - was held in Belgium and was a simple game of six-a-side football played on a greased area. However, the six players were joined at the ankles and had to play the game as Siamese twins. To make things more difficult for the players, a traditional rugby ball was used instead of a football. Like normal matches the game was played in two halves, and at the end of the first half the Belgian team were leading 1-0. Not to be outdone, the French came back and scored an equaliser early in the second half and the game finished 1-1. Both teams were awarded 1pt each.


Game 2 - The Medieval Cyclists

The second game (the first in France) - 'The Medieval Cyclists' - was a complicated and somewhat confusing game and was played and scored in two distinct parts. On the whistle, four medieval knights (two from each team) had to cycle around a small course five times on two different sized bicycles. One was a small version of the penny-farthing whilst the other was a small-wheeled child’s bicycle. At the end of the race the knight completing the course first was awarded 4pts, second to finish was awarded 3pts, third place was awarded 2pts and 1pt for the last to finish. The totals were added together and with the Belgians finishing in first and third places, they had secured the first 1pt of the game. The second part of the game involved four different knights numbered 1-4 (to avoid confusion when being overtaken on the course) each equipped with a magnetic backpack, standing against a magnetised metal sheet above a small pool. On the whistle, these knights had to pull themselves off the magnetised sheet, jump into the pool and out the other side in order to collect one of two different circus-type bicycles (each team were allocated one of each bicycle), one of which had the classic off-centre hubs. After circumnavigating an even smaller course than the first round, they had to jump into the pool and stick themselves back up on the magnetic sheet. The whole procedure was repeated until each knight had completed four runs, and then points were awarded as in the first part of the game. The French team turned things around in this half, finishing in first and second places and secured the second 1pt of the game. Both teams were then officially awarded 1pt each and the scores stayed level at 2-2.


Game 3 - The Water Balancers

The third game (the second in Belgium) - 'The Water Balancers' somewhat disadvantaged the French team that played in the second round. The game involved four players who had to walk along the edges of planks of wood which were suspended above the ground by small chains, carrying two buckets of water. After the first player had crossed his plank he handed the buckets to the next player and so on until all four had crossed their planks with the water. Any remaining water was then emptied into a large barrel and weighed. Any water that overflowed from the bucket as the players crossed the course fell onto the ground below the planks, and if a player fell from the plank he had to return to the start. The team participating second was Fougères, and they had to contend with the planks being covered with mud from the previous round. The team’s third player was also not adept at balancing and kept falling off and despite his thirteen efforts, he was unable to stay on the planks long enough to pass the buckets to the next player. At one point, Belgian presenter Jean-Claude Menessier asked the spectators to give some respect and reduce the amount of jeering so the player could concentrate. The result of this game gave this heat its first outright win and Jambes led Fougères 4-2.


Game 4 - The Human Catapult

The fourth game (the second in France) - 'The Human Catapult' - involved competitors being hurled through the air from a giant catapult, and at one point almost caused serious injury to one of the competitors. The game comprised a long rectangular pool bounded on all sides by straw bales covered in plastic sheeting, and at one end was a podium which had a wooden catapult on it. A short distance down the pool was a ‘high-jump’ pole set at 3.4m which would rise in 40 centimetre increments as the game progressed. The idea of the game was for the competitors to be catapulted from the podium in order to clear the pole and then hopefully land in the pool below. Each team was permitted three attempts at each height if they failed. The first four rounds by each team went well with all but two being cleared on their first attempt. The bar was now raised to 5.0m and the French team were unable to clear the bar on any of their three attempts. It was now up to the Belgians to clear the bar in order to win the game. As the tension rose, their first competitor failed miserably but on their second attempt they cleared the bar with ease. The Belgians had scored their second win of the night and were now leading 6-2.


Game 5 - The Floating Platform

The fifth game (the third in Belgium) - 'The Floating Platform' - was similar to the second game in this heat and was played in two halves, but the scoring involved not only the time taken, but also bonuses and penalties and was scored after the two halves had been completed. The game involved three players who had to balance on a podium which was floating in the middle of a pool. On the whistle they had to toss large rings over poles located outside the pool as in a game of quoits or hoop-la. The team had two minutes to get as many rings over the poles within the time. After two minutes the players were given a signal by the referee, after which they had to make a human pyramid on the podium and the top player had to remove four water-filled balloons which were hooked high above their heads without bursting any. The time allowed for this half of the game was also two minutes. When the scoring was announced by referee Guido Pancaldi there was a lot of information to be relayed to the audience. Firstly, the remaining time from the two minutes to complete the second half of the game was converted into seconds and was used as a base score. The number of rings hooked were each worth a 10pt bonus as was each balloon that had been correctly removed. However, if a balloon had burst whilst being removed then each one incurred a 10pt penalty. The first team to compete was Fougères and they completed the second half of the game in 53 seconds leaving a base score of 67pts (1 minute 7 seconds). Having hooked four rings they were awarded a 40pt bonus and three balloons correctly removed scored them another 30pt bonus. However their fourth balloon had burst when removing it from its hook and the team were penalised with a 10pt penalty. Therefore, the score given to the Fougères team was 127pts (67+40+30-10). The Belgians went second and did rather better than their rivals, as in much they did not attract any penalties and scored 185pts (95+50+40). The score moved on to 8-2 in the Belgian’s favour.


Game 6 - The Tower Climb

The final competitive game (the third game in France) - 'The Tower Climb' - was quite daring in its approach. On the whistle, the two teams had to each break down a wooden door using a battering ram. Once completed a player from each team was transported on horseback by a team-mate up a small path to the base of one of the castle’s towers. Once there, he had to dismount and climb up the outside of the 40-metre tower aided only by a rope. On reaching his target he released a flag which fell to the ground and after the rider had caught it, he carried it back with him to the start. The Belgians extended their lead after winning this game and it was now left to the French ‘intellectuals’ to try and salvage some points and respect.


Game of Questions

As the Game of Questions round began the score stood at 10-2 in the Jambes team’s favour, and the first of the questions was given to the Belgian contingent. As qualification was dependant on the greater difference between opposing teams, and already being aware that earlier in the series Antoing had won by a margin of 12pts, the mayor had to try and ensure that his team increased their margin over the French team in this heat, which at present was only 8pts. The mayor therefore opted for the 3pt question and his ‘intellectuals’ did not disappoint him and the score moved to 13-2 in Belgium’s favour. It all now depended on the French team’s choice of question value and how their ‘intellectuals’ performed. The French mayor obviously wanted to increase his team’s score and opted for the 3pt question, but unfortunately the question was answered incorrectly and for only a second time this year, a negative score was seen as it stood at Jambes 13, Fougères -1. As was the norm, the team answering second in the first round, went first in the second round, so the French team had a chance to redeem themselves if only by getting their score back into the black, and opted once again for the 3pt question. However, lady luck was again not on their side and their second question was also answered incorrectly. This finally nailed their fate and the score now stood at Jambes 13, Fougères -4. With Jambes now having a 17pts margin of difference, their mayor explained that he did not think that the winning margin of Antoing’s earlier in the series would be beaten, and he wanted to ensure that the remaining two Belgian teams would have an almost impossible task to beat his team’s score, so he would only chance the 1pt question. This was his best decision of the night as the ‘intellectuals’ answered the question incorrectly and brought the final score to Jambes 12, Fougères -4, a winning margin of 16pts!

Presenters, Officials and Production Team

It should be noted that referee Gennaro Olivieri was not in attendance at this heat. This was the first of only three events that he missed in all of the 148 Summer International Heats and Finals of the first run of Jeux Sans Frontières! Olivieri's second and third absences occurred later in the 1966 series in International Heats 5 and 10 respectively.

Looks Familiar?

The fifth game in this heat - ‘The Floating Platform’ - was copied by the BBC during the second Domestic series of It’s A Knockout in 1967 when the programme was staged at Scott Park in Galashiels. However, on that occasion the game was entitled ‘Anchors A-Weigh’.

Additional Information

In the Game of Questions at the second International Heat, the Mayor of Antoing opted for questions both valued at 1pt each which were both answered correctly by his ‘intellectuals’. However, if he had opted for two of the 3pt questions (the questions were the same irrespective of value), Antoing would have won their heat with a margin of 16 pts (17-1). If this had been the case, it would have given the Mayor of Jambes a difficult choice to make on the second question in this heat. With the scores at Jambes 13, Fougères -4, if he opted for the 1pt question and the ‘intellectuals’ had answered correctly the score would finish 14 to -4, a difference of 18pts and his team would stand as current qualifier for the semi-finals. However, if they answered incorrectly (as they actually did), the score would end 12 to -4, a difference of 16pts and the same winning margin as Antoing’s. With the margins being equal, Antoing would have then been the current qualifier for the next round by virtue of having scored more points for themselves than Jambes (17pts to 12pts). With this being the case, the Mayor of Jambes may well have been forced into a 3pt question to increase the team’s margin. But with the ‘intellectuals’ answering incorrectly this would have ultimately lost 3pts and brought the score down to Jambes 10, Fougères -4, and handed the semi-final place to Antoing. It proves that decisions one makes in life can also be very important to many others!

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

D & I

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

Heat 6

Event Staged: Wednesday 6th July 1966
Venues: Barockes Klosterhof (Baroque Monastery Courtyard), Rebdorf,
Eichstätt, West Germany and
Il Porticciolo (The Marina), Alassio, Italy

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
ORF (AT):
Wednesday 6th July 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
RTB (B):
Wednesday 6th July 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 6th July 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ARD-WDR (D):
Wednesday 6th July 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian):
Wednesday 6th July 1966, 10.00-11.20pm
RAI Due (I):
Thursday 7th July 1966, 10.30-11.45pm
ORTF (F): Not transmitted - no French involvement
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Paris, France:
Guy Ackermann (Chairman) [Genève], Lilo Hausener [Zürich], Mascia Cantoni [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Kurt Hauser and Hans Jenne in Eichstätt, West Germany
Gennaro Olivieri and Guido Pancaldi in Alassio, Italy

Weather Conditions:
West Germany - Torrential Rain
Italy - Warm and Dry with a Strong Breeze

Themes: Fettered and Caged (D) and Obstacled Aquatics (I)

Teams: Eichstätt (D) v. Alassio (I)

Team Members included:
Eichstätt (D) - In West Germany:
Günther Graf, Helmet Hawlata, Josef Hiemer, Albert Kosikowski, Georg Lang, Günter Lenard, Wieland Linhardt, Karl Meyer, Josef Morczinek, Walter Paulik, Hermann Putzer, Werner Schlingelhoff, Helmut Schmid, Klaus Schröder, Harald Sommer, Roland Spiegel and Klaudius Vergho; In Italy: Horst Barnerssoi, Otmar Buchberger, Günther Decker, Anton Gammerl, Ludwig Graubmann, Robert Hößl, Alfred Hufnagel, Josef Kraus, Margaret Kries, Klaus Müller, Günther Reb, Gotthard Reisacher, Elisabeth Rindfleisch, Anton Schmid, Thomas Schmid, Helmut Schuster, Heinz Stelzer, Matthias Stocker, Johannes Strasser, Ursula Strauß, Johann Strobl and Manfred Wölfl;
Alassio (I) - Pino Barto, Franco Ferrando and Angelo Scala.

Games: Beach Ball Bounce (in Italy), Untying the Knots (in West Germany), Anything You Canoe, I Canoe Better (in Italy), The Balloon Cage (in West Germany), The Power Showers (in Italy), Boxing Clever (in West Germany) and Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in Italy) - An underwater swimmer must burst a line of 21 balloons with a harpoon. The time taken is deducted from three minutes to give the time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - West Germany: Matching opera characters to composers of the respective works in which they appear; Italy: Matching operas to their respective European composers;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - Italy: Matching famous European battles to their respective years of occurrence; West Germany: Matching European writers and poets primarily known by surname to their respective forenames.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
D 2 2 2 2 0 2 1 --- --- 1
I 0 0 0 0 2 0 --- -3 -3 ---
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
D 2 4 6 8 8 10 11 11 11 12
I 0 0 0 0 2 2 2 -1 -4 -4

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 D • Eichstätt l l
 I • Alassio

12
-4

The Host Towns and Venues

Eichstätt, West Germany
 

Eichstätt's vibrant Markplatz

 

Eichstätt is a town of around 15,000 inhabitants in the federal state of Bavaria in Germany. It is located along the Altmühl River and is home to the Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt, the only Catholic university in Germany. The highest point in the town is the Stadtberg at 525m (1722ft), with the lowest point of 384m (1260ft) being where the river leaves the city.

Between 1582 to 1723 in the Bishopric of Eichstätt, there were at least 241 people, (which included 211 women (88%) and 30 men (12%)), indicted and arrested on suspicion of so-called witchcraft. Of this number, 222 people (195 women, 27 men) were sentenced to death and executed after being proven in a witch trial. The remainder of these either died whilst in custody or were released. The main phase of the persecution of witches in the area took place from 1617 to 1630 and fell in the reign of the Prince-Bishop Johann Christoph von Westerstetten (1563-1637). The last known execution for witchcraft took place in Eichstätt in 1723.

Eichstätt is famous for the quarries of Jurassic limestone, and it was on the Blumenberg that The Berlin specimen of Archaeopteryx (the third of only three ever found and the most complete) was found by farmer, Jakob Niemeyer, in 1871. Five years later, he sold this precious fossil to inn-keeper Johann Dörr, in order that he could buy a cow from the proceeds. Dörr then sold it to Ernst Otto Häberlein (1819-1896), the son of Carl Friedrich Häberlein (1787-1871), who in turn placed it on sale between 1877 and 1881, with potential buyers including paleontologist, Othniel Charles Marsh (1831-1899), of Yale University's Peabody Museum. It eventually was bought for 20,000 Goldmark (the currency of Germany between 1873 and 1914) by the Museum für Naturkunde - Leibniz Institut für Evolutions und Biodiversitätsforschung an der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (Museum of Natural History - Leibniz Institute for Research on Evolution and Biodiversity at the Humboldt University in Berlin) or the Humboldt Museum für Naturkunde for short, where it now is displayed.

 

The Baroque Monastery Courtyard at Rebdorf

 

The games at the West German venue were played at the beautiful baroque monastery and boarding school, located on the opposite side of the valley to Eichstätt, in the village of Rebdorf.

The monastery itself was built in 1159 by the Augustinian Canons and was secularised in 1806. In 1958, it was taken over by the Sacred Heart Missionaries and work on a boy’s secondary school building began in the courtyard. Established in 1959, the school, which offers boarding facilities, was recognised as a private school and since 1990 it has been under the auspices of the Diocese of Eichstätt. Christian-based, the school not only teaches normal academic studies, but attempts to instill into its students the abilities needed to create relationships, personal care and acting responsibly.


Alassio, Italy
 

Looking back towards the Alassio seafront from the end of its pier

 

Alassio is a town in the province of Savona on the coast of Liguria in northern Italy. It was originally under the control of Sardinia in the early 19th century, but in 1861 it became part of the Kingdom of Italy. Located just 80kms (49½mi) from the French border, Alassio is known for its natural beauty and scenic views. The town is blessed with sandy beaches, blue sea and numerous bars and restaurants on the sea front.

 

Aerial view of the marina at Alassio

 

The old town centre is crossed by the two hidden pedestrianised cobbled streets of Via XX Septembre and Via Vittorio Veneto, which form a long narrow road known locally as Il Budello (The Intestine). Alassio is featured as the location in the long-forgotten 1944 film I Bambini ci Guardano (The Children are Watching Us).

The games at the Italian venue were played in the town’s marina which is located a short walk from the pier known as Molo di Alassio (Alassio pier) or Pontile Bestoso (Bestoso jetty) which offers superb views of the town.

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - Beach Ball Bounce

The first game - 'Beach Ball Bounce' - was one that involved two large playground slides which had springboards overhanging the marina wall at their bases. On each of the springboards were three players and the idea of the game was that a team-mate would roll three large beach balls simultaneously down the slide, and when reaching the base, the three players had to leap in unison to allow the balls to continue along their path and into the sea. Any balls that were stopped or hindered attracted penalties and were counted against them and the team with the least penalties would win the game. The West Germans from Eichstätt took first blood and led the competition 2-0.


Game 2 - Untying the Knots

The second game (the first in West Germany) - 'Untying the Knots' - was a most obscure and difficult-to-watch game involving seven competitors on roller-skates standing on a narrow beam, all of whom were connected together by a mass of thick knotted rope. One end of the rope was anchored to the ground at one side of the course and the other end of the rope, which was somewhere in the mass of knots, was connected to a hook. On the whistle, the teams had to loosen the knots and pass their bodies through the knotted rope in order to untie it. This all had to be completed whilst standing on the beam. Once the rope had been completely untied, a team-mate, attached to a rope anchored to the top of an incline at the other end of the course, descended with a ring. His compatriots then had to roller-skate forward to meet his descent, and the lead player had to hook the rope onto the ring. The torrential rain hampered the competitors to a small degree, but the West Germans finished the game first in 3 minutes 29 seconds and, after the first two games, Eichstätt were already leading Alassio by 4-0.


Game 3 - Anything You Canoe, I Canoe Better

The third game (the second in Italy) - 'Anything You Canoe, I Canoe Better' - was a canoe race over a hurdled course. The game involved a canoeist standing in a small canoe which had to be paddled down a course and as the canoe passed under the hurdles he had to jump them. The first of the West German players set off at a cracking pace and had completed his outward journey before the Italian had passed the fifth hurdle. On the return journey he maintained his lead and handed over to his team-mate to repeat the course. However, the second Eichstätt competitor was somewhat slower than his team-mate whilst the second Italian competitor was quicker than his. The West German maintained the lead on the second outward journey but somewhat faltered at the turnaround, which allowed the Italian to make up some significant ground on him. Despite this, the West German held his lead until two hurdles from home, at which point he slipped and fell face down onto the canoe and passed underneath the penultimate hurdle along with the canoe itself. This allowed the Italian to make up the lost ground and he finally overtook his quarry and finished the race in first place. The Italian team began celebrating in the water but this was to be short-lived as referee Gennaro Olivieri was about to deliver bad news. On the first return journey (which is just caught on camera to the keen-eyed viewer), the Italian competitor failed to negotiate the third hurdle, and although the West Germans had failed to jump over the hurdle on their final journey, it was deemed that they had negotiated the canoe under the hurdle. Eichstätt were again awarded 2pts and they now led the competition 6-0.


Game 4 - The Balloon Cage

The West Germans increased their lead further by winning the fourth game (the second game in West Germany) - 'The Balloon Cage'. Six competitors (three from each team) were inside a large netted cage, and above their heads were two hundred balloons (100 white and 100 red). On the whistle, the players had to jump to retrieve balloons of their allotted colour (West Germany had white balloons and Italy had red balloons) and place them through a hole at their side of the cage into a holding net. To assist the players, a team-mate stood outside the cage with a pressurised airline which he pointed at the balloons to direct them downward and closer to his team’s end of the cage. His counterpart would be trying to do the same for his team on the other side of the cage. The team collecting the greater number of balloons in two minutes would win the game. The West German competitor outside the cage was adept with his airline and for most of the game the balloons remained in his team’s side of the cage, and this resulted in his team-mates not having as far to travel to put their collected balloons in the holding net as the Italian team. Eichstätt ran out the victors on the game by 50-37 and with another 2pts were leading by 8-0 on the master scoreboard.


Game 5 - The Power Showers

The fifth game (the third in Italy) - 'The Power Showers' - was a straightforward test of staying power. Two floating platforms, some 10-15m apart, were positioned opposite each other and on top of each were two players, both with fireman’s hosepipes. Each team also had three competitors in the water in front of their platform. On the whistle, the jet hoses were started and it was a battle of which players could withstand the power of the water hitting them. The players in the water assisted their team-mates by weighing down the front of the platforms in order to give them a better foothold. Although the game was to have lasted five minutes, the West Germans ceded the game 15 seconds before time limit following one of their competitors sustaining an injury from the water jet. Despite this, and with only 15 seconds to play, the Italians had knocked the West Germans into the water on three occasions, whilst they had remained ‘intact’ on their platform throughout. The Italians had finally beaten their rivals and were awarded their first points of the night as the scores stood at 8-2 in Eichstätt’s favour.


Game 6 - Boxing Clever

The final competitive game (the third game played in West Germany) - 'Boxing Clever' - was a humorous and clever game. A competitor inside a hollow wooden box (with top and bottom removed) had to traverse an obstacle course whilst carrying it around his torso. One of the obstacles on the course saw the box having to be fitted inside square tunnels with similar dimensions as those of the outside of the box, and the player had to move along them whilst being crouched down inside. Towards the end of a second tunnel he had to collect 18 small balls from egg-cups which had been placed on top of it, but he was unable to see them due to his positioning inside the box. The method of collection was via holes in the tunnel’s roof and he had to feel around for them with his hands. After exiting the second tunnel, he then had to place the collected balls on six small shelves on the outside of the box, carry them through one more obstacle and then cross a finishing line where the time was taken. In front of the finishing line was a coconut-shy fairground booth with 18 heads sitting on two shelves. Using the collected balls, the player then had to knock down as many of the heads as possible, and for each one successfully knocked down, a 5 seconds deduction was made to his finishing time. The West German competed first and he was quick and completed all aspects of the obstacle course correctly in a time of 2 minutes 41 seconds. He then successfully knocked down nine of the heads gaining a 45 seconds deduction, and he finished the game with a time of 1 minute 56 seconds. The Italian competitor was quite small in stature compared to the West German and whizzed around the obstacles reaching the end of the course in 2 minutes 24 seconds. However during his haste, he knocked off one of the balls on the tunnel’s roof whilst feeling around for it and also dropped three from the shelves whilst placing the box down on the finishing line. This left him with just 14 balls, but with the 17 seconds advantage on his finishing time, he only needed to knock down six heads to win the game. Unfortunately, he did not have such a crack-shot aim and he knocked down five heads with 11 balls. With three balls remaining, he needed only to knock down one more head to win, but his luck ran out after the third miss and he finished with a time of 1 minute 59 seconds. The West German had won the game by a mere 3 seconds and the main scoreboard was showing Eichstätt 10, Alassio 2. As had been the case in the previous heat, only a miracle in the Game of Questions could give Alassio any chance of a respectable score (or even a win).


Game of Questions

The Game of Questions was deemed by the jury to begin in West Germany and the decision of the Mayor of Eichstätt would determine the final outcome of this heat. Opting for the 1pt question, amid some jeering from the home crowd, he had almost secured Alassio’s fate. The West German ‘intellectuals’ correctly answered the question and the score moved on to 11-2 and Alassio were definitely confirmed as being out of the running. They could now only try and improve their score by 6pts. The Italian mayor had nothing to lose and indeed opted for the 3pt question, but unlike his counterpart, the ‘intellectuals’ answered incorrectly and now plunged Alassio into negative scoring. A twelve-point difference had now opened up as the scores were Eichstätt 11, Alassio -1. Staying in Italy for the second round, the mayor once again had no option but to attempt a 3pt question, if not to win but at least to restore his team’s score to a positive one. Unfortunately, for the second time on the night, his players failed to find the correct answer and plunged the town further into negativity with their score standing at -4. With victory already secured some 20 minutes earlier, the West German mayor opted for the 1pt question for the second time, and again his ‘intellectuals’ came up trumps and answered correctly. With another 1pt added to their score, Eichstätt had won the contest by 16pts with the final score being Eichstätt 12, Alassio -4.

Additional Information

The games in Italy all had a nautical theme, were held in the marina and were simplistic in design.

The negative score of -4 attained by Italian team Alassio in this heat equalled that of French teams Menton and Fougères statistically as the worst scores of the year! In reality, Menton only had the third worst score as they had finished only 14pts behind their opponents, whilst Fougères and Alassio had each finished an incredible 16pts behind theirs.

Despite the non-stop torrential rain throughout the programme, West German presenter Camillo Felgen showed true professionalism - he just donned a light-coloured raincoat and presented the whole programme without the aid of an umbrella!

At the end of the programme, jury chairman Guy Ackermann stated that the next programme would be on the 8th August and wished all the teams of Europe good luck in the upcoming tournament. This reference was in relation to the 1966 FIFA World Cup competition being held in England from 11th July where the national teams of West Germany, Italy and France would be amongst those participating.

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

D & F

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

Heat 7

Event Staged: Wednesday 3rd August 1966
Venues: Marktplatz (Market Square), Glückstadt an der Elbe, West Germany and
Carré du Marché (Market Square), Bagnères-de-Bigorre, France

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
ORF (AT):
Wednesday 3rd August 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
RTB (B):
Wednesday 3rd August 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 3rd August 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ORTF (F):
Wednesday 3rd August 1966 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ARD-WDR (D):
Wednesday 3rd August 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian): Wednesday 3rd August 1966, 10.00-11.20pm
RAI Due (I): Not transmitted - no Italian involvement
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Bruxelles / Brussel, Belgium:
Georges Kleinmann (Chairman) [Genève], Lilo Hausener [Zürich], Mascia Cantoni [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Kurt Hauser and Hans Jenne in Glückstadt an der Elbe, West Germany
Gennaro Olivieri and Bernard Stollere in Bagnères-de-Bigorre, France

Weather Conditions:
West Germany - Cold and Raining
France - Warm and Dry

Themes: Keep the Rhythm Going (D) and Just a Lot of Bull (F)

Teams: Glückstadt an der Elbe (D) v. Bagnères-de-Bigorre (F)

Team Members included:
Glückstadt an der Elbe (D) -
Wolfgang Schultz (Team Captain), Kurt Heisiger, Günter Reitz, Horst Smälker;
Bagnères-de-Bigorre (F) - Jean-Louis Gôut.

Games: The Waste Disposal Carts (in West Germany), The Foot-Bull Game (in France), The Water Buckets Swing Relay (in West Germany), The Go-Karts and the Bull (in France), The Battle of the Elbe (in West Germany), Balloons, a Balance and a Bull (in France) and Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in West Germany) - A competitor must burst six balloons by swinging a wooden bird with a pointed beak which is attached to a trapeze. The time taken is deducted from three minutes to give the time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - France: Matching European composers primarily known by surname to their respective forenames; West Germany: Matching European artists primarily known by surname to their respective forenames;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - West Germany: Matching Roman and Greek goddesses to their respective spouses from mythology; France: Matching Roman gods to their respective Greek counterparts.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
D 0 1 2 2 0 0 --- 3 -3 ---
F 2 1 0 0 2 2 3 --- --- 3
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
D 0 1 3 5 5 5 5 8 5 5
F 2 3 3 3 5 7 10 10 10 13

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 F • Bagnères-de-Bigorre l
 D • Glückstadt an der Elbe

13
5

The Host Towns and Venues

Glückstadt an der Elbe, West Germany
 

Yachts in Glückstadt's inland port

 

Glückstadt an der Elbe is a town of around 12,000 inhabitants in the Steinberg district of Schleswig-Holstein in northern Germany. Located on the right bank of the Lower Elbe it is about 45km (28mi) north-west of Hamburg’s northern suburbs. Having been founded by King Christian IV of Denmark (1577-1648), Duke of Holstein in 1617 on marsh lands along the Elbe, the settlers were promised tax exemptions and freedom of religion. The name of the town bears witness to this as it translates into English as Luck City or Fortune City.

 

Panoramic view of the Markplatz at Glückstadt an der Elbe

 

The games at the West German venue were played in the cobbled market square which is home to the Stadtkirche, the oldest surviving building in the town, and which was built between 1618 and 1623. In 1648 the tower collapsed causing considerable damage to the body of the church. Restoration work was completed in 1651 when a new 53m (174ft) high steeple was erected with a rotating weather vane depicting the ancient goddess Fortuna, considered a symbol of the town and which appears on its coat of arms.

On the northern outside wall of a tower hangs a large anchor taken from a Hamburg warship in September 1630 during the Battle of the Elbe, where the Danish forced a retreat of Hanseatic ships in the Elbe river near to the town. The church dominates the square and overlooks the square-shaped town hall.

A point of interest to note was at the time of transmission the town was preparing for its 350th anniversary year.


Bagnères-de-Bigorre, France
 

A panoramic view of Bagnères-de-Bigorre

 

Bagnères-de-Bigorre is a town in the Haute-Pyrenees département in south-western France. Located at the entrance to the Adour valley, it has a population of around 10,000 people. The town has been a spa since Roman times but it was with Jeanne l’Albret (1528-1572), Queen of Navarre in the middle of the 16th century, that tourism in the town really began, after she frequented the area in sedan chairs and on horseback. Local cuisine consists of good quality meat and an abundance of various legumes, as most is home-grown by local peasants around the town. Trout is also seen on many a platter as it has breeding grounds in the Adour river.

Bagnères-de-Bigorre is the birthplace of French fashion designer, Sophie Theallet, whose clients include US First Lady, Michelle Obama. English writer and comedian, Tony Hawks, purchased a house in a village near Bagnères-de-Bigorre as told in his 2006 book A Piano in the Pyrénées: The Ups and Downs of an Englishman in the French Mountains. The book is an account of his purchase of a house in the Pyrénées in the south of France, after deciding that the two things he wanted in life were to meet his soul mate, and to purchase an "idyllic house abroad somewhere abroad".
 

The market square of Bagnères-de-Bigorre circa 1960

 

The games at the French venue were played in the market place which is surrounded by local shops selling delicacies of the region. One of the town’s local specialities is a dessert known as le gâteau à la broche (the cake of the spindle), which is traditionally cooked over an open fire by pouring a liquid paste onto a rotating spindle. The cake once cooked looks similar in appearance to that of a spiky shrub or bush.

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - The Waste Disposal Carts

The first game - 'The Waste Disposal Carts' - was a unique one and featured two small motorised vehicles adjacent to each other and both were attached to a single pivot in the centre of the market square. The outside car was surrounded by a metal scaffold and above the axle of its attachment to the pivot was a large metal tank containing ‘waste disposal’. The inside car had a lower attachment to the pivot and had a rectangular box attached to its roof. The idea of the game was that as the cars drove round in circles, the competitor in the outside car had to time the passing of his opponent on his inside lane and when level with each other, he released ‘waste’ (which in reality was purely sand) into the box on the roof of his car by means of a lever. The drivers could use their skill and tactics and were permitted to drive in a reverse direction as well as forward. At the end of two minutes, the box was removed and weighed and the game repeated with roles reversed. The French competed on the outside first and managed to drop 17.2kgs of ‘waste’ into his opponent’s box, whilst his West German counterpart dropped only 14.2kgs. The French had surprised everyone and won the first game on away soil and led the West Germans 2-0.


Game 2 - The Foot-Bull Game

The second game (the first in France) - 'The Foot-Bull Game' - was started. As was the norm, the French utilised the obligatory bull whilst the two teams attempted to play a game of football in the small market square. In the middle of the pitch was a small pool which had a bridged platform in it whereon commentator Guy Lux and referee Gennaro Olivieri stood. The pool could also be utilised by the players in avoiding the bull’s horns. The game was played in two halves and after the first, the score was 2-0 in Glückstadt an der Elbe’s favour. The team’s changed ends and just before the start of the second half, a classic moment occurred when the bull decided it wanted a drink and raised itself up and lifted its head over the edge of the pool to lap up some water. The French however levelled the scores in the second half and the game ended in a draw. Both teams were awarded 1pt each and the overall score stood at 3-1 to the French.


Game 3 - The Water Buckets Swing Relay

The third game (the second in West Germany) - 'The Water Buckets Swing Relay' - was a simple game which involved four players from each team sitting directly in front of each other on playground swings. The idea of the game was to get the rhythm of their swings correct so that buckets of water could be passed from one to the other along the line. Any contents remaining in the bucket after being handed to the final player was emptied into a square Perspex container at the end of the course. When the teams had the rhythm correct it was like watching a staged production, but once a player got out of rhythm with his team-mates, it was almost impossible for the buckets to be passed. A straightforward scoring game of four minutes duration saw the West Germans victorious by 61cms of water to 45cms. With 2pts awarded to the team, Glückstadt an der Elbe had pulled the scores level to 3-3.


Game 4 - The Go-Karts and the Bull

The fourth game (the second in France) - 'The Go-Karts and the Bull' - was another simple game and again involved a bull, but this time with wooden-based go-karts. On the whistle, each team of five players had to simply push their go-kart around the pool as many times as they could within the time limit. They were hindered by the bull, which at times came crashing down on the karts, and each team was permitted to entice the bull towards their opponent’s vehicle by running across its path. The West Germans were once again victorious and went ahead for the first and only time on the night, leading on the scoreboard 5-3.


Game 5 - The Battle of the Elbe

The fifth game (the third in West Germany) - 'The Battle of the Elbe' - was a re-creation of the historic battle (although no fighting in the arena occurred) which was fought in reality in the river by which the town stands, in September 1630. Two huge naval ships on sets of castors had to be propelled down the market square by the captain of the actual team, being located underneath the keel of the ship. After reaching the end of the course, the ships had to be turned around for the return journey. As the ship returned up the course, the ship’s captain (who had been on the ship’s bridge steering it) had to ‘fish’ for eight lanterns which had been placed on podiums along the course. Once all of them had been collected, the ship was moved to a giant lighthouse on which he had to hang the lanterns. It was then a simple matter of climbing down a ladder to pull a switch to light the beacon on the lighthouse. Although the West Germans made the game look easy and reached the lighthouse first, the player had forgotten to hang one of his lanterns before descending the ladder. Despite the fact that presenter Camillo Felgen was shouting at him to try and help him (something which in later series would have been unheard of), he failed to hear him. The French team completed the game with all eight lanterns and were awarded the 2pts. Glückstadt an der Elbe had lost their lead (something that the team would not see again all night) and Bagnères-de-Bigorre had brought the game level 5-5.


Game 6 - Balloons, a Balance and a Bull

The final competitive game (the third game held in France) - 'Balloons, a Balance and a Bull' - again featured a bull. The idea of this game was for large balloons filled with water to be passed from the bridge in the pool to team-mates below. In order for them to receive the balloons, one team member had to walk up a plank which was pivoted in the middle on the side of the pool, and which had to be counterweighted by one of his compatriots on the other end. It was then a simple case of avoiding the bull which was loose in the arena, and carrying the balloons and dropping them into a large barrel which was hanging on a set of balancing scales alongside their opponent’s. The French team were victorious and with another 2pts had once again gone ahead, leading 7-5.


Game of Questions

The first question was deemed to be answered by the French team of ‘intellectuals’. The mayor opted for a 3pt question which was answered correctly and Bagnères-de-Bigorre were now leading 10-5. His West German counterpart had no option but choose the same valued question, and like their opponents they too answered correctly. Glückstadt an der Elbe were now back in the competition trailing by just two points with the scores at 10-8. The next decision and question were going to be very important to the West German team as they would need to answer it correctly with either a 1pt or 3pt question (to bring the scores to either 10-9 in their opponent’s favour or 11-10 in their favour) to force their opponents to answer their second question correctly also. The mayor opted for a 3pt question, and chose the envelope about mythology. Unfortunately for him, his ‘intellectuals’ were not so keyed up on the subject as they had been on artists in the first round, and failed to answer the question correctly. With a 3pt deduction, the score returned to 10-5 and resulted in the heat being handed to the French, as nothing now could stop them from winning. But the French mayor knew that Arcachon had won their heat earlier in the series by 6pts, and his team were already 5pts clear of their opponents. To ensure that he would outdo Arcachon’s score, he risked another 3pt question, and was vindicated when his team of ‘intellectuals’ hit the jackpot for a second time with five correct answers. The final score moved to 13-5 and Bagnères-de-Bigorre with a points difference of 8pts were now in the running as the qualifying team for the semi-finals.

Additional Information

After the three-week break and the furore and excitement of the 1966 FIFA Football World Cup, Jeux Sans Frontières returned to the screen and once again to a rain-swept West Germany, where presenter Camillo Felgen introduced the programme from the first game’s equipment. Unlike all other heats so far in Jeux Sans Frontières, the games began immediately before any introduction to the jury or the customary visit to the competing town’s venue.

After the first game, the programme was then handed over to the jury for their introductions and then chairman Georges Kleinmann in turn handed the programme to French presenter Guy Lux in a much warmer and drier Bagnères-de-Bigorre. However, as a way of introducing the first game in France, a short 30-second film showing the English and West German teams running onto the Wembley pitch for the 1966 FIFA World Cup Final was broadcast, complete with views of a young 40-year old Queen Elizabeth II and the then British Prime Minister, Harold Wilson!

An interesting point to note was that with all other heats in the two series so far, the jury had confirmed and announced the scores after each game. In this heat, due to communication problems in this heat with sound, the jury did not appear on screen throughout any of the first six games although each of the commentators audibly handed over the programme to them. All that was shown was the scores on a large television screen, overlaid onto a photograph of one of the competing towns! After their original introduction, the jury was not seen and heard again until the beginning of the Game of Questions round, something that would then continue for the remainder of the qualifying heats.

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

B & I

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

Heat 8

Event Staged: Wednesday 10th August 1966
Venues: Place Albert 1er (Albert I Square), Malmedy, Belgium and
Piazza del Popolo (People’s Square), Todi, Italy

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
RTB (B):
Wednesday 10th August 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 10th August 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian):
Wednesday 10th August 1966, 10.00-11.15pm
RAI Due (I):
Thursday 11th August 1966, 10.15-11.30pm
ORF (AT): Saturday 13th August 1966, 3.40-5.15pm
ARD-WDR (D):
Saturday 13th August 1966, 3.40-5.10pm
ORTF (F): Not transmitted - no French involvement
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Zürich, Switzerland:
Georges Kleinmann (Chairman) [Genève], Lilo Hausener [Zürich], Mascia Cantoni [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Hubert Gunsin and Hans Jenne in Malmedy, Belgium
Kurt Hauser and Gennaro Olivieri in Todi, Italy

Weather Conditions:
Belgium - Warm and Dry
Italy - Warm and Dry

Themes: Luck or Judgement? (B) and Customs and Pastimes (I)

Teams: Malmedy (B) v. Todi (I)

Team Members included:
Malmedy (B) -
Amar Adoux, Dunkel Henge, Roger LeFavre;
Todi (I) - Dante Massico, Giorgio Massico, Giuseppe Massico, Franco Miccirelli.

Games: The Crossbow Target Contest (in Italy), The Carousel Bagatelle (in Belgium), The Reverse Striptease (in Italy), The Crockery Coconut-Shy (in Belgium), The Cheese Rollers (in Italy), The Back-Pass Production Line (in Belgium) and Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in Italy) - A competitor with his ankles tied together must clear five hurdles along a course and repeat the feat on the return journey. The time taken is deducted from three minutes to give the time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - Belgium: Matching European physicians and doctors to their respective towns or cities of birth; Italy: Matching philosophers, mathematicians or poets to their respective towns or cities of their demise;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - Italy: Matching European composers to their respective compositions; Belgium: Matching theologians, statesmen and royalty to their respective towns or cities of their demise.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
B 0 2 0 2 0 2 -3 --- --- 3
I 2 0 2 0 2 0 --- 1 1 ---
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
B 0 2 2 4 4 6 3 3 3 6
I 2 2 4 4 6 6 6 7 8 8

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 I • Todi l
 B • Malmedy

8
6

The Host Towns and Venues

Malmedy, Belgium
 

The rooftops of Malmedy overlooked by the town's 18th century cathedral

 

Malmedy is a town of around 12,000 inhabitants, located in the Walloon region of Belgium. Although it is part of the French speaking Walloon region, Malmedy has a significant German-speaking minority, the result of different rule over the years, and along with Waimes are the only two towns in the region known as ‘municipalities with language facilities’. The population of Malmedy is approximately 80% Francophones (French speakers) and 20% Teutophones (German speakers). The total area is just under 100km² (38.6mi²), giving a population density of around 120 inhabitants per km² (320 per mi²).

The town was originally under German/Prussian rule, but was annexed to Belgium by the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 along with the neighbouring city of Eupen. Between 1940 and 1945 Malmedy was incorporated back into Germany but this was reversed after the Second World War.

 

Place Albert 1er, the main square in Malmedy

 

The games at the Belgian venue were played in the main town square, and although it is not famed as a tourist destination, the town is renowned for its carnival which takes place in February on the days leading up to Shrove Tuesday. The festival is known as Cwarmé and features masked Haguètes wielding long wooden pincers called hapes-tchar.


Todi, Italy
 

Todi has a dramatic setting that offers breathtaking views

 

Todi is a town located in the province of Umbria in central Italy. The town is perched on a tall two-crested hill overlooking the east bank of the river Tiber, and therefore commands distant views in every direction.

According to the legend, Todi was built by Hercules, who had killed Cacus, a fire-breathing giant, in the area and gave the city the name of Eclis.

 

Piazza del Popolo looking from the cathedral steps

 

The games at the Italian venue were played in the town’s main piazza which has become famous for being used for many movie sets. It comprises most of the town’s medieval monuments including Il Duomo (The Cathedral), which has a magnificent rose window and intricately decorated doorway, the Palazzo del Popolo (People’s Palace), the lugubrious 13th century Palazzo del Capitano (Captain’s Palace) which features an elegant triple window and houses the town’s recently restored pinacoteca (art gallery) and archeaelogical museum, and the Palazzo dei Prori (Prior’s Palace).

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - The Crossbow Target Contest

The programme remained in Italy for the first game - 'The Crossbow Target Contest' - which was target-based and utilised real crossbows. Six targets were located on a large wooden hoarding at the northern end of the square adjacent to the cathedral, 30m in front of the competitors. On the whistle, three players from one team fired their crossbows successively and tried to hit the targets which were similar to regular archery targets, but smaller and only red and white in colour. After they had completed this, the crossbows were made safe, and referee Kurt Hauser stepped in to denote the values of the arrows scored. Arrows hitting the white outer area scored 1pt, whilst those hitting the red central area scored 4pts. Once these were announced, a team-mate dressed as a knight was handed a number of small wooden rungs equal to the total of the three archers’ scores. He then had to place these rungs into the grooves of two large poles located up the side of the Palazzo del Capitano to make a ladder for himself in order to climb up and rescue a damsel waiting at the window of a first-floor room. In order for him to reach his quarry, he was required to put 25 rungs in place. However, he only needed to collect 21 rungs as four were already in place at start of the game. The maximum score in any round was 12pts, so it was possible to complete the game in just two rounds. The Belgians went first and could only hit the white outer area of one of the targets, and with only one rung, made little progress up the ladder. The Italians on the other hand were quite good marksmen and scored two whites and one red giving them six rungs. On the second round the Belgians missed all three targets and no further progress was made up their ladder. The Italians, however, did the complete reverse and hit three maximum scores of four and collected another 12 rungs. The knight was now only 3 rungs from completing the game. Although the Belgians successfully hit all three targets on the third round, they still only scored 3pts. With just rung from the first round and four already in place at the start, they were only eight rungs up the ladder whilst the Italians were 14 ahead on the 22nd rung. The Italians now needed only to score 3pts to reach their quarry and win the first game. Their first archer scored a maximum four, and whilst their second scored just 1pt and third missed the target, the team had secured enough points to reach the damsel and led the competition 2-0. It must be noted that with the arrows travelling at 130kph, for safety reasons all personnel, vehicles and spectators were vacated from the steps of the cathedral and adjacent areas before the game was played.


Game 2 - The Carousel Bagatelle

The second game (the first in Belgium) - 'The Carousel Bagatelle' - harked back somewhat to last year’s semi-final staged in Ciney where a similar game was played. The game involved three team members standing on a greased carousel which was attached to a motorcycle on its rim. In front of the carousel was a large bagatelle-type board with four large holes each marked with a different point value. From left to right the holes were marked 4pts, 1pt, 2pts and 3pts respectively. On the whistle, the motorcyclist had to ride around in circles rotating the carousel whilst the players on top had to collect balls, one at a time, from a large overhead basket. These in turn then had to be thrown through the holes in the bagatelle board to score points. The Italian team went first and as soon as the whistle had been blown, the carousel came to an abrupt halt. Despite this, the Italian team continued to play the game unhindered by the carousel’s rotation until 23 seconds into the game, when the referees decided to stop the game. The carousel then had to be lifted up by an army of site personnel (which incidentally comprised mainly of local army volunteers) whilst its mechanism was checked and corrected. The original balls scored whilst the carousel was out of action were nullified and the game was restarted from the beginning. The Italians finished the game with a total score of 38pts (5 x 4pts, 5 x 3pts, 1 x 2pts and 1 x 1pt). The second round featured the Belgians on the carousel and an Italian motorcyclist rotating, and turned out to be a completely different story to the first round, as the Italian competitor was not adept to riding in circles. Coupled with the fact that he rode at a slower rate than his Belgian counterpart and that his opponents were more agile on the greased platform, the Belgians hammered home ball-after-ball into the two highest scoring holes on the bagatelle board. When the final score was announced the Belgians had more than doubled the Italians score with 77pts (14 x 4pts and 7 x 3pts). The Belgians had tied the competition 2-2. An interesting point to note was that when Belgian presenter Jean-Claude Menessier introduced the players on the game, it was revealed that the three Italian competitors were triplets - Dante, Giorgio and Giuseppe Massico!


Game 3 - The Reverse Striptease

The third game (the second in Italy) - 'The Reverse Striptease' - saw the crowd return to the cathedral’s steps to witness a game which involved a trampoline and a male competitor who had to dress himself (rather than the normal undressing). On the whistle, the trampolinist had to set himself in motion and begin to grab items of clothing and accessories dangling from a wheel high above his head. He was not permitted to stop at any time to dress himself, but had to do so whilst in motion. The items had to be grabbed and worn in a set order - two long socks (separately), a pair of short trousers, a waistcoat, a tie, a jacket, two boots (separately), a walking cane and finally a top hat, which he had to place on his head to stop the game. The game was originally timed for three minutes, but as the first competitor, the Belgian, was having some difficulty in gaining height, referee Gennaro Olivieri is seen informing other officials that he was extending the game to four minutes. On reaching the four-minute mark, and the Belgian with two items still to collect, he looked to the officials again and held up five fingers indicating that he was again extending the game to five minutes. However despite this second extension, the Belgian competitor was still unable to complete the game, and was given a score of just eight items. This was the first time that a game’s total time had been increased after the game had started. The Italian competitor played next and made the game look easier, but it must be noted that he was somewhat younger and more agile than his counterpart and completed the game in just 1 minute 58 seconds. The Italians had taken the lead for the second time with the score 4-2 in their favour. It should be noted that to spare everyone’s blushes, the competitors started the game wearing vests and shorts!


Game 4 - The Crockery Coconut-Shy

The fourth game (the second in Belgium) - 'The Crockery Coconut-Shy' - was similar to a coconut-shy stall at a fairground. The game involved 50 ceramic plates hanging by wires from three scaffold poles in front of a large net (which had been erected purely to protect the assembled crowd). On the whistle, a player holding several billiard-type balls had to mount a small angled conveyer belt and set it in motion. Whilst the belt was in motion he had to retain his balance and also to throw the balls at the suspended plates in order to break them. Subsequent balls were passed to him by a team-mate, but if he lost his balance he fell into a pool of muddy water behind him, and his team-mate would then take his place and the process repeated. The Italians went first and could only manage to break six of the 50 plates, but a little controversy was about to brew before the Belgian participation. Whilst presenter Jean-Claude Menessier introduced the Belgian competitors, referee Hans Jenne approached them and pointed out that one of them, Roger LeFavre, was wearing the incorrect footwear for the game. The camera panned down to show him wearing ballet-type shoes and he was told he must wear tennis-type shoes. He then ran off to find suitable footwear, but came back somewhat bemused wearing the same ones as before. Again referee Hans Jenne told him that he had to wear sport shoes and once again he departed. This time the camera followed him and he was seen searching through many shoes attempting to find some that fitted. Whilst this was taking place, presenter Jean-Claude Menessier explained to the home crowd and viewing audience the rules and was met with a volley of boos and jeers. Finally the Belgian competitor returned with the correct footwear and the game could restart. The Belgians surpassed the Italian total early on into their game, and finally ended the game with 12 plates broken. For the second time the Belgians had pulled the competition back to a tie with the score now standing at 4-4.


Game 5 - The Cheese Rollers

The cameras returned to Todi for the fifth game (the third in Italy) - 'The Cheese Rollers' - which featured the ancient pastime of cheese-rolling. Each team had a 56-metre bowling-type alley along which they had to roll wooden cheeses with had holes drilled through the centre. At the end of each alley was an arch which the cheeses had to reach and pass through, and any that were successful would then be utilised as wheels on the axles of a go-kart in which sat a 13th century maiden. The cheeses however, had to be rolled down cleanly without touching the walls of the alley, and any that had were disregarded and not counted. Each team were given 3 minutes 30 seconds to score four cheeses and on the completion of this, the team-mate had to push the go-kart, together with the maiden who steered it, back to the start of the course to get a finishing time. This game was definitely designed with the Italians in mind as they appeared to have some ‘professional’ cheese rollers amongst their team who made the game look easy. Whilst the Belgians scored just one cheese, the Italians romped away completing the game in just 2 minutes 49 seconds. The Italians had taken the lead for the third time on the night with the score standing at 6-4.


Game 6 - The Back-Pass Production Line

The final competitive game (the third game in Belgium) - 'The Back-Pass Production Line' - was a twist on the normal conveyor belt-type games. Covering three-quarters of a conveyor belt was a tight-fitting net which was set at about 1m above it and was laden with balls, whilst the other quarter was set over a muddy pool at a 90° angle to a swinging sack. On the whistle, four competitors had to mount the belt and move along it by bending down quite low to avoid dislodging any of the balls above with their bodies. Whilst three of the competitors remained under the net, the fourth made his way to the open section to collect balls from a holding box. He then had to back-pass the balls through his legs to his team-mates (who could not look up to see him because of the net’s height) whilst trying to avoid the sack being swung at him by an opponent. Once the ball had been back-passed by the next two team-mates in line, the final player had to back-pass it to land inside a large caged box that was positioned on the ground behind him. There were two elements to the scoring with 1pt being awarded for each ball in the box, but a penalty of 2pts was awarded for every ball dislodged by the players from the net. The Belgian team went first and although it seemed they moved at a slow pace, they successfully put 18 balls in the cage. However, they were unfortunate to dislodge two of the balls and received a 4pts penalty, giving them an overall score of 14pts. The Italians followed and they moved at a much quicker pace, but although they were passing the balls along the chain quite swiftly, the final player was not concentrating what he was doing and was back-passing the balls in all directions and missing the cage behind him. The Belgian team having seen what had been occurring, began celebrating after the whistle was blown and before the official result had been announced. Several members of their team began jumping into the pool completely covering their clean outfits with muddy water. With the television cameras filming their antics, they then ran off to get their team manager and dumped him in the pool as well, completely attired in his tracksuit and trainers! It is estimated that the Italian team could have scored at least 32pts if the final player had back-passed more accurately. Instead the announcement from referee Hubert Gunsin was just 10pts, and with five balls dislodged as well, their final tally was given as 0pts! The Belgians had tied the competition for the third time and the scores were 6-6. It now all depended on the courage of the mayors and the knowledge of the ‘intellectuals’ in the Game of Questions.


Game of Questions

As with the previous heat, the jury had only been seen once during the transmission until this point, and they now assigned the Belgians to go first in the Game of Questions. Their mayor opted for a 3pt question and chose envelope A2, which in hindsight was a bad choice, as it appeared to have contained the most difficult of all the four questions on the night, matching doctors and physicians to their places of birth. The ‘intellectuals’ answered the question incorrectly and suffered a 3pt penalty, bringing the scores to 6-3 in Todi’s favour. Handing over to Enzo Tortora, the mayor in Todi opted for a 1pt question which the ‘intellectuals’ answered correctly. A 4pt gap had now opened up and, with the questions staying in Italy, Malmedy’s fate was now in the Italians' hands. Opting for a 1pt question again, to minimise the possible consequence of a penalty, the ‘intellectuals’ did not disappoint. The scores now stood at 8-3 in Todi’s favour and victory was theirs no matter what occurred in Belgium. Although the outcome was inevitable, the Belgian mayor wanted to try and recover some respectability to his team’s score and again opted for a 3pt question. This time his team did not disappoint him, and they answered the question correctly bringing their score back to how it was before the question section and they ended the contest just 2pts behind the Italians at 8-6.

Additional Information

This was a very closely fought competition, and was the first heat of the seventeen Jeux Sans Frontières broadcast so far that went completely with home advantage. All games that were staged in Italy were won by the Italians, and those staged in Belgium were won by the Belgians.

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

F & I

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

Heat 9

Event Staged: Wednesday 17th August 1966
Venues: Place du Centenaire (Centenary Square), Digue de Mer (The Seawall Promenade), Malo-les-Bains, Dunkerque, France and
Il Porticciolo (The Marina), Procida (Procida), Italy

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
RTB (B):
Wednesday 17th August 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 17th August 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ORTF (F):
Wednesday 17th August 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian):
Wednesday 17th August 1966, 10.00-11.15pm
RAI Due (I):
Thursday 18th August 1966, 11.15pm-12.30am
ORF (AT): Saturday 20th August 1966, 3.30-5.00pm
ARD-WDR (D):
Saturday 20th August 1966, 3.30-5.00pm
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Milano, Italy:
Georges Kleinmann (Chairman) [Genève], Lilo Hausener [Zürich], Fausto Sassi [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Hubert Gunsin and Bernard Stollere in Malo-les-Bains, France
Gennaro Olivieri and Guido Pancaldi in Procida, Italy

Weather Conditions:
France - Warm and Dry with a Strong Sea Breeze
Italy - Very Warm and Humid

Themes: Promenade Capers (F) and Balance and Coordination (I)

Teams: Malo-les-Bains (F) v. Procida (I)

Team Members included:
Malo-les-Bains (F) -
Pierre Lemaire.

Games: The Floating Tower of Babel (in Italy), The Dessert Waiters (in France), The Great Balloon Obstacle Relay (in Italy), The Skating Brushes (in France), On Your Beam Ends (in Italy), The Compendium of Games (in France) and Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in Italy) - A competitor inside an upright steel barrel must paddle from a given starting point to the marina wall using only his hands to manoeuvre. The time taken is deducted from three minutes to give the time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - France: Matching world countries to their respective national car registration letters; Italy: Matching European news agencies to their respective countries;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - Italy: Matching historical world leaders and rulers to their respective hobbies; France: Matching European writers and novelists to their respective works of fiction.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
F 1 2 2 1 0 0 3 --- --- 1
I 1 0 0 1 2 2 --- -3 -3 ---
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
F 1 3 5 6 6 6 9 9 9 10
I 1 1 1 2 4 6 6 3 0 0

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 F • Malo-les-Bains l l
 I • Procida

10
0

The Host Towns and Venues

Malo-les-Bains, France
 

Malo-Les-Bains, where the beach is a major summer attraction

 

Malo-les-Bains is a seaside resort with a population of around 18,000 inhabitants, located in the Nord département of north-eastern France. Founded in the 19th century by first master mariner, shipbuilder and ship-owner Gaspard Malo (1804-1884), son of pirate, William Malo (1771-1835), the resort offers seven kilometres of vast gently sloping sandy beach that stretches all the way to the Belgian border. It was from this location during World War II that over 300,000 Allied troops were evacuated in the epic Operation Dynamo retreat between 26th May - 4th June 1940, and this is the reason many consider Dunkerque such a heroic town.

A stand-alone town at the time of transmission, Malo-les-Bains was merged with its larger neighbour Dunkerque on 1st January 1970, and is now one of its districts. Today known locally as just Malo, it offers a leisure beach as fine as any you would find elsewhere, but it still hasn’t been able to transcend its dark war-torn history and emerge as a seaside resort in the minds of holidaymakers. This is somewhat of a pity, as its beautiful soft sands are ideal for grabbing some rays, and its attractive promenade is perfect for a slow seaside saunter to the majority of cafés and restaurants which are located there.

 

Place du Centenaire looking south

 

The games at the French venue were played at the far western end of the beach at the Place du Centenaire, part of the Digue de Mer, which is a long pedestrianised promenade. A nearby monument commemorates the brave soldiers who fought until 4th June 1940 as well as the 250 boats that were lost in the evacuation.


Procida, Italy
 

The beautiful island of Procida off the coast of Naples

 

Procida, along with Ischia (which itself had been represented in the programme during the 1965 series), Vivara and Nisida, is one of a group of islands called Isole Flegree (or Phlegrean Islands). Sited off the coast of Naples in southern Italy, the island is located between Cape Miseno on the mainland and the island of Ischia, and has a population of around 10,000 inhabitants. It was created by the eruption of four volcanoes, all of which are now dormant.

The island is very small in size with an area of just 4.1km² (1.6mi²) in size, but its coastlines are very jagged with a total perimeter of 16km (9.9mi). The highest point on the island is Terra Murata hill at 91m (299ft).

During the rule of King Charles V (1500-1558), the island was granted to the D'Avalos family. However, during this period the island was subjected to many pirate raids. Particularly notable was one in 1534, led by the infamous Turk admiral Hayreddin Barbarossa (1478-1546).

Every summer the population take part in the election of Graziella (Little Grace), a young woman that wears the customary clothes of the island, referring to the history told in Alphonse de Lamartine's novel, Graziella.

 

The colourful marina of Procida on the island's north coast

 

The games at the Italian venue were played in the picturesque marina on the island, which has been chosen as a film set for numerous films, mainly for its panoramas and its typical Mediterranean architecture. The most famous are Il Postino (The Postman) in 1994 and psychological thriller The Talented Mr. Ripley starring Matt Damon and Jude Law in 1999.

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - The Floating Tower of Babel

Italian presenter Enzo Tortora began his introductions, including that of the newly-elected Graziella and then immediately began describing the first game - 'The Floating Tower of Babel'. Floating in the marina were two large pontoons, one for each team, and these were attached to the harbour wall by wires which each had two smaller platforms positioned along their lengths. Before the start of the game, the teams were permitted to take up their positions with one member standing on each of the smaller platforms whilst four others made their way to the pontoon. On the whistle, a competitor on the quayside had to hurl up to 30 very large rectangular polystyrene blocks to the player on the first platform. He then passed it to the second player, who in turn passed it to the players on the platoon. The blocks had to be used to build a tower as high as possible with a team member standing on the top, and the team which achieved the greater height within the five-minute time limit would be declared the winner. In order to achieve this, the blocks had to be built in such a way as to support the weight of the player and there were no limits to the tower’s dimensions. Both teams started off sensibly by using four blocks for the base and continued upwards, gradually reducing the number of blocks used per row as the tower grew taller. As the five-minute time limit approached both teams had raised their towers to 8 rows each and it looked like stalemate as both teams waited. However, the Italian on top of his tower decided that he would try two single blocks on top of each other to climb higher, but as he stood on top of the blocks, he began to wobble and the whole tower suddenly came tumbling down into the water. The French team on seeing the outcome of this quickly removed some of their top blocks to reduce any risk of a repetition. This was followed immediately with referee Gennaro Olivieri blowing his whistle and when announcing the official result, he surprised everyone by declaring the game as a draw. The French team protested with him but was clearly vindicated in his decision as despite the fact that he had not blown his whistle, the Italian’s tower had actually tumbled after 5 minutes 5 seconds, which was five seconds beyond the time limit of the game. Each team was awarded 1pt, and following confirmation by the jury, the programme was handed over to Simone Garnier in France.


Game 2 - The Dessert Waiters

The second game (the first in France) - 'The Dessert Waiters' - was a slightly slapstick affair, which made a refreshing change from the normal ‘bull-based’ French games, and which was somewhat aided by the strong northerly winds coming in off the English Channel. Simplistic in design, it involved a waiter carrying trays of foam meringue pies up a playground slide and then along an obstacle course, which crossed a pool of water, before presenting them to two female dignitaries sitting at a table on the promenade. With the French collecting four pies to Italy’s two, Malo-les-Bains went into an early lead, which they were to maintain throughout the programme, with the score being 3-1.


Game 3 - The Great Balloon Obstacle Relay

The programme returned to the quayside for the third game (the second in Italy) - 'The Great Balloon Obstacle Relay' - for an exhausting balloon relay race over and under various obstacles, which proved to be one of the longest games in the programme’s history. This game like the other two staged in Italy, was played in unison (something of a rarity in the first two series of Jeux Sans Frontières), with each player being barefoot and wearing a spiked helmet. Before the game began, all players' feet were checked to ensure that they did not have anything attached to them to assist with the game. On the whistle, the players made their way along the quayside, over a course of obstacles bursting balloons with their feet, and those hanging down from an obstacle had to be burst with the spike on the helmet. The most difficult obstacle was to burst 8 balloons which were attached together and floating in a cut-down barrel. As no balloons could be burst by hand, it appeared somewhat of a task to press the balloons down below the surface without the natural tendency for the balloon to re-float itself. Finally after bursting 50 balloons, the competitors had to climb a stile and jump to grab a final balloon. Each player then had to race back to the beginning of the course to tag his team-mate, who then repeated the course. The Italians set off at a cracking pace and were well ahead at the final obstacle on the first leg, but their player fell awkwardly onto the straw matting after grabbing his balloon and injured his ankle. Unperturbed, he slowly hobbled back to the start to release his team-mate, but this allowed the French team to make up some ground on them, and by the halfway mark the teams were level. Following this, the French team never looked back and finally finished the course in 6 minutes 29 seconds, more than one minute ahead of the Italians, who actually finished the game in 7 minutes 35 seconds! However, there was a 10 second penalty for any balloon that had not been burst or burst incorrectly, and even with a 50 seconds (5 x 10 seconds) penalty, the French finished with a total time of 7 minutes 19 seconds. This total was still 16 seconds ahead of the Italians before any penalties were awarded to them. Incidentally, the Italians were penalised with 110 seconds (11 x 10 seconds) and finished with an incredible time of 9 minutes 25 seconds! After seemingly a lifetime, the scores moved on to Malo-les-Bains 5, Procida 1.


Game 4 - The Skating Brushes

The fourth game (the second in France) - 'The Skating Brushes' - was a 5 minute hockey match played in two halves of 2 minutes 30 seconds each. However, unlike normal hockey matches there were several twists to it, with the five players on each team being on roller-skates, the hockey sticks being straw brooms, the pucks being large beach-balls and the goal-posts literally being moved back and forth along the goal-line with the flow of play, by team-mates of the attacking side. The first half ended 0-0, and with no team able to score in the second half either, the game ended in a draw (the second of the night) and the scores moved to 6-2 in Malo-les-Bains’s favour.


Game 5 - On Your Beam Ends

The fifth game (the third in Italy) - 'On Your Beam Ends' - was a game played on large rounded wooden beams overhanging the marina wall. Attached to the end of each beam was a large polystyrene square block, and the idea of the game was for team players to walk along the beam, insert wooden pegs into the blocks, dive into the water below and return to the start of the game. The beams were very springy and once the players had returned from the water, they also became very slippery. The scoring was very straightforward, with the team inserting the greater number of pegs into the blocks being awarded the 2pts. During the game, one of the Italians got above his station and attempted to show the crowd that it was not so difficult to complete the game. On reaching the end of the beam, he stopped to face the crowd behind him and then smiled, but as he went to insert his peg into the block, he lost his footing. In his foolhardy cockiness, he not only failed to stick his own peg in, but also managed to dislodge one of the other pegs which had already been inserted successfully. Despite being an Italian home crowd, they saw the funny side to his misdemeanour as did West German commentators Otto Ernst Rock and Camillo Felgen, and fortunately the error did not make any difference to the outcome. At the end of the game, the Italian team had inserted 20 pegs whilst the French could only manage 8 pegs. With the 2pts being awarded to Procida, they had narrowed the gap on Malo-les-Bains with the score standing at 6-4.


Game 6 - The Compendium of Games

The final competitive game (the third game played in France) - 'The Compendium of Games' - involved a player standing up in a spherical steel cage attempting to complete a series of mini-games. Each game had to be completed within 30 seconds and in no more than two attempts. The first mini-game represented ten-pin bowling and on the whistle his team-mates rolled him down an incline and he then had to steer himself over and around a cambered semi-circle in order to knock down a large skittle. The second of the mini-games was golf, and after being given a start by his team-mates, he had to steer himself over a humped course to the end and stop the cage in a dipped recess (representing the hole) without overrunning. Both of these mini-games were completed successfully by both teams and both had 2pts at this juncture. The third mini-game involved the cage being rolled up a steep incline and after being released, the caged played had to stop the cage at a barrier at the top without crashing through it or falling off the side of the incline. Both teams were successful on their first attempts and each now had 3pts. The final mini-game was more difficult and required some balance and eye coordination by the player in the cage. After being pushed to the beginning of a lesser incline than the previous section, the player had to steer the cage over a narrow beam positioned above a pool. Whilst the French failed on both their attempts, the Italian team were successful on their second attempt and won the game 4-3. With 2pts being awarded to the Italians, they had pulled back their deficit and the competition was all square at 6-6.


Game of Questions

As was now the norm since the seventh heat in this year’s series, the jury did not appear on-screen again after their original introduction at the start of the programme, until the start of the Game of Questions. As the teams were tied on points, a toss of a coin determined the order of play and the honour to answer first went to Malo-les-Bains.

At this point with the scores level at 6-6, it was unthinkable that Malo-les-Bains could overhaul national rivals Bagnères-de-Bigorre’s score earlier in the series, when they had achieved a difference of 8pts over their opponents. The Mayor of Malo-les-Bains quite rightly opted for a 3pt question and the ‘intellectuals’ were presented with a question about matching five world countries with their national car registration letters. The five countries in the frame were China, Finland, Liechtenstein, U.S.S.R. and Yugoslavia. These had to be matched to FL, RC, SF, SU and YU. The ‘intellectuals’ scored a direct hit with the correct answers and pushed the overall score to 9-6 in their favour. Interesting to note from this question is that now in 2012, only one of the letter codes still exists, whilst the other four have either been changed by world events or national legislation. RC stood for Republic of China (not to be confused with the People’s Republic of China whose code is CN, although it is not recognised by the UN) which is now more commonly known as Taiwan. SF stood for Suomi-Finland but since 1993 has been FIN. SU stood for the U.S.S.R. (or Soviet Union) but since 1992 has been RUS. Yugoslavia was represented by YU, but following the country’s break up in 1992, the coding continued to be used by Serbia and Montenegro. After 2003 when these two countries split into two separate entities, the coding became obsolete and is no longer used. The only one still in use today is FL (Fürstentum Liechtenstein) for Liechtenstein, a doubly landlocked alpine country between Switzerland and Austria.

With the outcome of the previous question, the Procida mayor had no choice but to follow suit and opt for the 3pt question. However unlike his counterpart, his ‘intellectuals’ answer incorrectly to a question about European news agencies, one of which was Reuters of Great Britain. This gave the Italians a 3pt penalty and with the score now standing at 9-3 to Malo-les-Bains, it needed their ‘intellectuals’ to answer a 3pt question correctly and then wait and hope that the French opt for a 3pt question also and answer it incorrectly. With this in mind the Italian mayor opted once again for the 3pt question and, as previously, his ‘intellectuals’ disappointed by answering incorrectly. The team were again deducted 3pts and they had returned to where they started at the beginning of the programme with a zero score. It was all over for the Italians as the French were leading by 9pts with the score standing at 9-0.

The French mayor now had to think hard about his question value option, as Malo-les-Bains was the last of the five French competing teams in this year’s series, and the outcome of the ‘intellectuals’ answer would ultimately decide the qualifier for the upcoming semi-finals. If he opted for a 1pt question and they answered correctly, the team would automatically qualify with a difference of 10 pts. A correctly answered 3pt question would do the same, making their difference 12 pts. However, if they answered incorrectly their difference would be just 6pts for a 3pt question or 8pts with a 1pt question. The latter would give them the same difference as Bagnères-de-Bigorre, but his team would miss out on a semi-final place by virtue of having scored less points. He opted for the 1pt question, which was surprisingly met with a few jeers from the French crowd, and waited with bated breath. The question centred on writers and their various works of fictions, and when the board was turned around to the camera with the ‘intellectuals’ answers, it was still unclear what the outcome was. But then presenter Léon Zitrone began reading the correct answers and one-by-one the answers came up as correct. As the fourth answer was denoted as being correct, the home crowd went wild as Malo-les-Bains had qualified for the semi-finals by the skin of their teeth, winning by 10pts over their opponents, with the final score 10-0.

Additional Information

For the first time since the programme began in 1965, questions asked in the first round of the Game of Questions were not themed around Belgium, Switzerland, West Germany, France or Italy, the five countries involved in producing Jeux Sans Frontières.

At the end of this programme the first two qualifiers for the semi-finals had been decided. For France, as previously stated above, it would be the team of Malo-les-Bains with a difference of 10pts, and they would compete in the first of the two semi-finals against the Belgian qualifier (to be decided after International Heat 10). As Procida had failed to overhaul their qualifying target score, the Italian representative would be Montecatini Terme with a difference of 14pts, but they would compete against the West German qualifier (also to be decided after the final heat of the series) in the second semi-final.

This heat almost qualified as being the first Jeux Sans Frontières to be held on an actual beach. Whilst the games were played on the promenade which literally butts up to the sands in Malo-les-Bains, the spectators’ stand was built on the beach so that full use could be made of the promenade itself! The first actual beach venue was not to feature in the International Series until 1971, when the Italians held their International Heat at Riccione.

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

B & D

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

Heat 10

Event Staged: Wednesday 24th August 1966
Venues: Parc du Neufmoustier (Neufmoustier Park), Huy, Belgium and
Elbealleeplatz (Elbeallee Square), Sennestadt, West Germany

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
ORF (AT):
Wednesday 24th August 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
RTB (B):
Wednesday 24th August 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 24th August 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ARD-WDR (D):
Wednesday 24th August 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian):
Wednesday 24th August 1966, 10.00-11.20pm
ORTF (F):
Not transmitted - no French involvement
RAI Due (I): Not transmitted - no Italian involvement
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Köln, West Germany:
André Rosat (Chairman) [Genève], Max Ernst [Zürich], Fausto Sassi [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Hubert Gunsin and Bernard Stollere in Huy, Belgium
Kurt Hauser and Guido Pancaldi in Sennestadt, West Germany

Weather Conditions:
Belgium - Cold and Dry
West Germany - Cold and Dry

Themes: Overcoming All Obstacles (B) and Working as a Team (D)

Teams: Huy (B) v. Sennestadt (D)

Games: The High and Low Obstacle Race (in Belgium), The Water Carriers (in West Germany), The Blindfold Obstacle Race (in Belgium), The Bagatelle Carousel (in West Germany), The Path to Glory (in Belgium), The Great Human Sack Roll (in West Germany), Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in Belgium) - A competitor must return 15 tennis balls over a net that are served to him from a machine. The time taken is deducted from three minutes to give the time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - West Germany: Matching European female love interests to their respective beaux; Belgium: Matching characters from European operas and plays to their respective professions;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - Belgium: Arranging planets in order of their respective distance from the Sun; West Germany: Matching Greek Muses to their respective assigned roles.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
B 0 0 0 0 0 2 --- 3 3 ---
D 2 2 2 2 2 0 1 --- --- -1
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
B 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 5 8 8
D 2 4 6 8 10 10 11 11 11 10

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 D • Sennestadt l
 B • Huy

10
8

The Host Towns and Venues

Huy, Belgium
 

Huy cathedral with the city's castle in the background

 

Huy is a Belgian city of around 22,000 inhabitants in the Liège province of the Walloon region, lying along the River Meuse, at the mouth of the smaller Hoyoux river. It is located in an area known as the sillon industriel (industrial valley), the former industrial backbone of Wallonia, running from Mons in the west to Liège in the east, and which is home to about two-thirds of the Walloon population. The city of Huy was the recipient of the first historically known charter of the Alps, confirming it as a city in 1066.

Thanks to the cloth industry, the city had boom times during the 13th and 14th centuries. The castle, built on the hill in the middle of the city, was used in times of war and strengthened the town, and by the 15th century had become the town’s symbol. The following two centuries witnessed a gradual decline in the city’s fortunes, due in part to the strategic value of its location along the Meuse, and during the reign of Louis XIV (1638-1715), the city was repeatedly attacked and put to the sword. The inhabitants were so infuriated and frustrated by this continuous bombardment, that they dismantled their own castle in 1715. It was not until 1818 when the Dutch built a new fortress on the site of the old one, that the city’s fortunes were once again revived, with the prosperity of the paper and other industries.

Today in less hostile times, Huy is home to the finish of the La Flèche Wallonne (Walloon Arrow), an important 1-day cycling race held midweek in mid-April. The race traverses, and finishes, at the summit of the Mur de Huy (Wall of Huy), a climb of about 1km (5/8mi) with an average gradient of 10%, although some sections are up to 20%. Every seven years, a religious procession takes place in the so-called 'septennial festivities' in commemoration of the end of a drought in 1656. The last one took place on 15th August 2012.

 

Neufmoustier Park, located to the rear of the
Internat Autonome L'Europe in Huy

 

The games at the Belgian venue were played in the Parc du Neufmoustier to the rear of the Internat Autonome L'Europe, which is sited on the east bank of the River Meuse. The establishment works with local schools at primary, secondary and further education levels to offer classes and activities for young people with boarding an option and uses the park for sports activities. The park is approximately one hectare in size and takes its name from l'Abbaye du Neufmoustier which stood on the site until 1797. The abbey was founded in 1101 by Pierre l'Ermite (Peter the Hermit) on his return from the first crusade. Two wings of the old monastery survive today and are sited just off Avenue Louis Chainaye which runs along the eastern perimeter of the park.


Sennestadt, West Germany
 

Aerial view of Reichowsplatz, Sennestadt, photographed in the 1970s

 

Sennestadt is located in the North-Rhine Westphalia state of Germany with a population of around 21,000 inhabitants. Although the area had been part of the city of Bielefeld since the 11th century, it grew out of two areas known as Senna I and Senna II which were only small rural communities.

At the beginning of the 19th century, during the latter part of the Industrial Revolution, the area began to prosper when a saw mill, a paper mill and iron foundry were established. Following the end of World War II, and the destruction from it, the area remained in a state of decline. But in 1956, following the need for more social housing, a competition was held to regenerate the area, and was won by architect and urban planner, Hans Bernhard Reichow (1899-1974). His plan was to build a whole new settlement, especially for refugees and other displaced people to live. The Sennestadt GmbH (Gesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung) - translated into English as ‘company with limited liability’ - acquired the necessary land of approximately 400 hectares, and provided the financial means for the area to be cleared, and for the space opened up to be sold for investors and property developers. The first homes were purchased in 1958 and by the early 1960s the development was finally completed.

Following an official deed, the town of Senna was given new-town status and had its name changed to Sennestadt on 14th May 1965, and it now stood alone from its big neighbour of Bielefeld. However, the town was to lose its identity again eight years later, when following a municipal reorganisation, it was incorporated as a suburb of Bielefeld on 1st January 1973.

In appreciation of the work Hans Bernhard Reichow provided in the rebuilding and regeneration of the town, the Reichowsplatz (the square in which the new town hall stands) was named in his honour.

 

An overhead view of the playing area and
crescent-shaped apartment block

 

The games at the West German venue were played in the Elbeallee housing estate in Sennestadt on the forecourt and grounds outside a crescent-shaped apartment block. This must rank as one of the more mundane venues ever utilised for any variant of Jeux Sans Frontières, but it was no doubt chosen to give publicity to the impressive programme of regeneration undertaken in the town.

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - The High and Low Obstacle Race

With his introductions completed, Jean-Claude described the first game - 'The High and Low Obstacle Race' - which was a relay race over a number of obstacles. The players began on some scaffolding above the game and in turn they had to descend by wire to the ground, whilst knocking down five wooden boards interspersed between five hurdles which had to be avoided by means of raising their feet. After reaching the end of the wire, the player then had use a pogo stick to negotiate 2 small obstacles, climb two steps to cross a plank over a shallow pool and down steps again to clear a further 2 obstacles. If the player failed to clear any of the obstacles, he had to return to the point immediately in front of that obstacle. The section over the pool had to be completed within three attempts, after which he then had to use the ground adjacent to the pool. On reaching the end of the course, the game was repeated by the second player. One of the pogo stick runs had to be completed by a player using just one hand with the other hand held aloft, with the choice of player being at the team’s discretion. The game was repeated until time limit of 3 minutes was reached and had somewhat of a complicated scoring system. For each complete run over the course there was a maximum score of 7pts, comprising 1pt for each completed descent down the wire, 1pt for each of the four hurdles cleared and 2pts for any successful crossing of the pool in their three attempts. If players were unsuccessful in crossing the pool, they lost time repositioning, but scored no points for that particular section. There was also a 1pt penalty for any of the upper obstacles that were knocked down during the descent.

The West German team went first and it appeared as if they were making a complete mess of the game, when the first player to participate failed to knock down any of the wooden boards and in addition to this failed to cross the pool. The second player clumsily knocked down one of the hurdles on his descent, but successfully crossed the pool, whilst the third player completed everything correctly except for crossing the pool. With time running out, the fourth player (a repeat run by the first) was only able to descend the wire and clear two of the ground obstacles before the referees blew the whistle. This gave them a total score of 19pts (4pts + 7pts + 5pts + 3pts), but with the second player knocking down one of the high obstacles they incurred a 1pt penalty and ended with an overall score of 18pts. The Belgians, playing second, tactfully descended the wire at a slower pace on their runs but performed even worse than their opponents, despite the first player scoring maximum points on his run. With the slower pace, the team found time was catching up on them, and although the second player only failed to cross the pool, it left very little time for their next player. Like the West German’s fourth player, the Belgian’s third player could only manage to clear the second ground obstacle before time ran out. Their overall score was declared as 15pts (7pts + 5pts + 3pts). The first 2pts went to the West Germans from Sennestadt.


Game 2 - The Water Carriers

The second game (the first in West Germany) - 'The Water Carriers' - was one that was simple in design but produced some entertaining and amusing moments, not only for the crowd and viewing audience, but also for presenter Camillo Felgen and referees Kurt Hauser and Guido Pancaldi. The idea was for seven competitors standing on a single pair of long skis to traverse a mock ski slalom course through gates and 8 arched obstacles. To make things more difficult they had to complete the course whilst carrying a large hammock-type frame filled with 150 litres of ‘schönen, klaren Sennestadte wasser’ (Camillo’s words, not ours) above their heads. The final obstacle however proved the most entertaining, and involved the team having to ski up a very greasy incline to a podium and then side-step up a flight of three steps. On reaching the top, the teams then had to drain any water remaining in the carpet into a Perspex container, for which the team would receive a 3 seconds deduction from their time for each centimetre of water collected. The final task was for the team to descend another incline comprised of rollers and then cross the finishing line. The Belgians participated first and after a few mishaps at the start in achieving a rhythm, the team began chanting “un, deux, un, deux” throughout the game in order to keep everyone in step. The real laughs came towards the end of the game when the seventh competitor’s feet kept coming free from their straps and he continuously had to chase after the rest of the team, with his hands still attached to the frame above his head. Coupled with this, the sight of the team struggling to climb the greasy slope made it a crowd-pleasing game. The Belgians completed the course in 4 minutes 31 seconds, and with 16cms of water collected, they received a deduction of 48 seconds, reducing their total time to 3 minutes 43 seconds. The Sennestadt team participated next and the home crowd really got behind them with a “links, rechts, links, rechts” call throughout the game to encourage the team to keep in step. Having reached the top of the steps in 3 minutes 46 seconds (surprisingly 6 seconds slower than the Belgians!), the team swiftly emptied the water into the container, and it was clear that they had retained a considerably greater amount than the Belgians. The team then made a rapid descent down the incline and completed the course in 4 minutes 18 seconds. With the 13 seconds advantage on their finishing time, the West Germans only needed 12cms of water to win their second game of the night. When the announcement came, the team had actually collected 27cms of water giving them a 1 minute 21 seconds deduction. Their total time was 2 minutes 57 seconds, and after being awarded the 2pts, they were now leading Huy by 4-0.


Game 3 - The Blindfold Obstacle Race

The third game (the second in Belgium) - 'The Blindfold Obstacle Race' - was a test of pure nerve, coordination and trust in one’s team-mate. The idea of the game was to traverse an obstacle course of fences and gates in addition to crossing over a small pool. The only difference to other games of this ilk was that the competitor had to participate blindfolded. On reaching the midway point of the first three obstacles, he was required to knock down balls, located on adjacent podiums, with a medieval mace in the guise of another football. The only assistance he was permitted was from a team-mate giving him blasts on a klaxon informing him in which direction to move. In the words of West German commentator Tim Elstner, “one honk was for right, two honks for left, three for forward, four for backwards and three short blasts to stop”. The Belgians went first and the opening obstacle was a small see-saw with an off-centre pivot, and although he completed the task in eight attempts with the mace, it was to prove to be his most taxing. The second obstacle was a narrow beam which he had to reach by climbing two steps, and he completed it in just two attempts. The third of the five obstacles was to cross a small pool by means of a wooden plank which had small podiums of varying heights along its length. Edging tentatively across the podiums, he reached the tallest of the podiums and in just one single swipe, he incredibly knocked the ball off its stand. This was met with loud appreciative applause, but the audience was requested to remain silent by Belgian presenter Jean-Claude Menessier, in order for the competitor to hear any further instruction from his team-mate. At this point, he was then able to discard with the mace and move on to the fourth obstacle, which relied heavily on his body posture and slow speed. On top of five different gates which had to be passed through, were a varying number of buckets of water. These buckets were sitting on pieces of wood that were balanced on the uprights of the obstacles, and if any contact was made with them whilst moving through it, would result in the buckets tipping over and drenching the competitor with water. Again with great dexterity, he passed through all five obstacles unscathed, and it was now a simple task of retrieving a ball from the top of a podium to end the game. The game was completed in 3 minutes 45 seconds without any penalties and appeared to be unbeatable.

However, the West German team had other ideas and their competitor set off at an incredible rate and knocked down the first ball on his first swipe of the mace. Although he then encountered a little trouble in trying to locate the second obstacle, he appeared to have forgotten to knock the ball off its podium and continued on to the end of the beam. Fortunately for the team, he remembered just in time before dismounting the beam, and although it was somewhat of a stretch for him to hit his target, he completed the task in just two swipes. The West Germans were now on a roll and ahead of the Belgians on elapsed time, and approached the third obstacle over the pool. Again, like his Belgian counterpart, the West German needed only one attempt for the ball to drop. Moving onto the five-fenced obstacle, he was clearing them at an unbelievable rate until he knocked the buckets off the fifth one. As he was aware that this mistake would incur penalties, the West German now had to increase his speed to complete the fifth obstacle and the game. In his haste, he edged passed the podium missing the chance of a faster time than the one achieved, but still completed the game in 3 minutes 23 seconds, some 22 seconds ahead of the Belgians. Fortunately, the penalty for displacing the buckets on the fourth obstacle was only 10 seconds and the overall total time for Sennestadt was declared as 3 minutes 33 seconds. For the second time on the night, they had taken 2pts from the Belgians on their home soil and were now leading 6-0.


Game 4 - The Bagatelle Carousel

The fourth game (the second in West Germany) - 'The Bagatelle Carousel' - was played on a large wooden fairground-like carousel shell. The underside of its base was shaped rather like that of a spinning top, which allowed for it to rock like a see-saw, and all around the underside of the rim were piles of tyres. The flat roof of the carousel had many holes punched in it to allow balls to drop through, and protruding out from the side were four long wooden poles which had large keep-nets attached to their ends. On the whistle, five competitors standing inside the carousel and attached by elasticated ropes to the uprights of the its frame, had to rock the contraption in order for balls, which had already been placed around the rim of the roof before the start, to drop through the holes to be caught. Any balls that were caught could then be hurled into the large nets, and the team with the greater number of balls netted would be deemed the winner. Amongst the balls were also several water-filled balloons which were the same size as the footballs, and some players were drenched with water if any dropped through the holes or burst whilst rolling around on the roof. The time limit for the game was 2 minutes 30 seconds and the West Germans went first and successfully netted 7 balls. The Belgian team fared less well and could only net 4 balls. With their fourth successive win, Sennestadt were leading Huy 8-0.

Points to Note: Firstly, the scores were updated and overlaid on-screen before the official announcement by the referees. Although this may not sound unusual, it must be remembered that this programme was being broadcast live at the time, and only they knew the exact result until announced. Secondly, the balls used in this game were all printed with ‘Tokyo 1964’ on them, which was the venue of the Summer Olympics that year, and in which the football competition ended with a unified team of Germany finishing in 3rd place and collecting the bronze medal. Despite the fact that Germany had been split into two countries after World War II, East and West Germany continued to compete in the football competition as a united nation in the Games until 1964. Since the Mexico Games of 1968, West Germany has competed under its own entity. However, despite it being a ‘united’ team, all the players in the 1964 squad were actually from East Germany!


Game 5 - The Path to Glory

The fifth game (the third game in Belgium) - 'The Path to Glory' - had a duration of 4 minutes and was played over water. It involved three players endeavouring to make a path on the other side of the pool to reach a member of the opposing team standing inside a Perspex container. In order to do this, the competitors had to walk across the pool by means of a trapeze wire with a plank of wood, at the same time as avoiding being bombarded by sacks which were being swung at them by three of their opposition. Once across, they then descended a flight of steps and began to place the planks on small stands and then return to the start by the same route. This not only hindered the following player from crossing, it also assisted that player by shielding him from the sacks. A total of six planks were needed to make the path and once completed, all three players then made their way to the edge of the pool adjacent to the container. It was then a race against any remaining time to fill and empty buckets of water into the container to drench the opposing player. The Belgian team went first and crossed the pool with all six planks in 3 minutes 25 seconds, leaving themselves just 35 seconds to collect the water. At the end of the 4 minutes they had filled the container with 65.5cms of water. The West German team looked stronger and completed their path section in a faster time of 2 minutes 53 seconds, giving themselves 1 minute 7 seconds to complete the game. Their speed at filling buckets was also at a quicker rate than their rivals and they finally succeeded in collecting the maximum amount of 150cms in 3 minutes 50 seconds, at which point the game was stopped. Things were looking bleak for the Belgians with the score now standing at 10-0 to Sennestadt, whilst the West Germans began to believe that the 16pt difference set by Eichstätt in International Heat 6 was well within their sights. As with the previous game there are also two points to note. Firstly, it is at present unclear the reason for the competitor to have been in the Perspex container as he served no purpose in the scoring, and secondly at the end of this game, Sennestadt became the first team to win the first five games in a heat outright, a record which still remains intact to this date!


Game 6 - The Great Human Sack Roll

The final competitive game (the third game in West Germany) - 'The Great Human Sack Roll' - was a straight-forward sack race with a difference played out over a 40m course. On the whistle, four players from each team ran the 40m length to a start point, and then three of the players clambered into a giant sack which was then fastened with a rope. The players then had to return to the end of the course by rolling on the ground inside the sack. The fourth player assisted the others by shouting instructions as well as poking individuals with a large pole if he required them to move to get the sack back on course. In order to finish the game, all of the players had to cross the line, get out of the sack and then stand up and ring a bell. The game appeared as if it was on course to be one of the fastest on record in the first two series of Jeux Sans Frontières, when the Belgian team reached the end of the course in just 1 minute 8 seconds. However, the team members became entangled against the hay blocks which divided the course and came to a halt with just one of the players over the line. Despite all of his efforts, the Belgian assistant could not get his team to move, and after witnessing their predicament, presenter Camillo Felgen suggested that he should give them a little help, and assisted them to get free (something that not only would have been frowned upon, but not permitted in later series). With the West German team still halfway back down the course, the Belgians eventually finished the game in a time of 2 minutes 19 seconds, and had finally broken their duck and scored some points. Sennestadt were still leading by 8pts with the score standing at 10-2.


Game of Questions

As with most of the heats in the first two years of the programme, there was always a possibility that the team trailing before the Game of Questions could still theoretically win, irrespective of the difference in points between the two teams. This heat was no different as the Belgians could pull victory out of the bag by answering two 3pt questions correctly, if Sennestadt answered two incorrectly (with at least one being a 3pt question). On the other hand, the West German intellectuals of Sennestadt needed to answer two 3pt questions correctly and for their opponents to answer two incorrectly (with one at least being a 3pt question) to give them a difference of either 18pts (1 x -3pts and 1 x -1pt) or 20pts (2 x -3pts), and guarantee them a place in the second semi-final.

The programme was now handed over to the Swiss jury and they deemed that Sennestadt would answer the first question. After the timing task had been completed in Belgium, the programme returned to West Germany where the mayor shocked everybody by opting for a 1pt question. Without a question even being answered, his decision had instantly deprived Sennestadt the chance of attaining a lucrative place in the semi-final to represent West Germany. After the ‘intellectuals’ had answered their question correctly, the score moved to 11-2 in Sennestadt’s favour, and with the Belgian contingent also answering a 3pt question correctly, the score moved to 11-5. Although the West German mayor’s choice may have been looked upon as a bad decision at the time, it would have made no difference now, as the Belgians would have prevented them from scoring a greater difference than the 16pts necessary to qualify. However, nothing except a disaster could prevent Sennestadt from winning the heat as they were now leading by 6pts. The Belgian mayor’s choice of another 3pt question in the second round was vindicated for a second time, as his team answered correctly and closed the gap between them to 11-8. The Belgians were now hoping that the West German mayor would opt for a 3 pt question and have it answered incorrectly to force a draw. However, the mayor held his nerve and opted for the 1pt question again, and any hopes that the Belgians had were now gone. This time the Sennestadt ‘intellectuals’ failed to answer correctly and suffered a 1pt penalty bringing the final score to 10-8 in their favour.

Additional Information

At the end of this programme, and after thirteen long weeks of waiting, the final two qualifiers for the semi-finals had been decided. For Belgium, it would be the team of Jambes with a difference of 16pts, and they would compete in the first of the two semi-finals against Malo-les-Bains from France. For West Germany, it would be Eichstätt also with a difference of 16pts, and they would compete in the second semi-final against Montecatini Terme from Italy.

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

Teams Qualifying for International Semi-Finals

Country

 Team Qualifying Heat Position Pts. Diff.
B  Jambes 5 B F 1 16

D

 Eichstätt

6 D I 1 16
F  Malo-les-Bains 9 F I 1 10
I  Montecatini Terme 3 F I 1 14
 

B & F

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

1st Semi-Final

Event Staged: Wednesday 31st August 1966
Venues: Stade Athlétique (Athletics Stadium),
Centre Sportif INEPS (INEPS Sports Centre), Jambes, Namur, Belgium
and Place du Centenaire (Centenary Square), Digue de Mer (The Seawall Promenade),
Malo-les-Bains, Dunkerque, France

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
RTB (B):
Wednesday 31st August 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 31st August 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ORTF (F):
Wednesday 31st August 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian):
Wednesday 31st August 1966, 10.00-11.20pm
ARD-WDR (D):
Saturday 3rd September 1966, 3.45-5.15pm
ORF (AT): Monday 5th September 1966, 5.00-6.30pm
RAI Due (I):
Not transmitted - no Italian involvement
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Paris, France:
André Rosat (Chairman) [Genève], Lilo Hausener [Zürich], Fausto Sassi [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Hubert Gunsin and Guido Pancaldi in Jambes, Belgium
Gennaro Olivieri and Bernard Stollere in Malo-les-Bains, France

Weather Conditions:
Belgium: Cold and Dry
France: Cold & Dry with a Strong Sea Breeze

Themes: Round and Round in Circles (B) and On the Run (F)

Teams: Jambes (B) v. Malo-les-Bains (F)

Team Members included:
Jambes (B) - in Belgium:
Alex Collant;
Malo-les-Bains (F) - in Belgium: Pierre Lemaire.

Games: The Motorcycle Carousel (in Belgium), The Bull and the Showers (in France), The Motorised Roman Chariot (in Belgium), The Pugilistic Railway Porter (in France), The Human Windmill (in Belgium), The Chess-Playing Bull (in France) and Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in Belgium) - Three competitors playing individually must pass a ball through three high targets in order for it to reach a fourth player, who must then score a basketball goal. This must be repeated until three baskets have been achieved and the time taken is deducted from three minutes to give the time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - Belgium: Matching International organisations to the locations of their respective headquarters; France: Matching European stretches of water to their narrowest widths;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - France: Matching European artists to their respective works; Belgium: Matching five of the Seven Wonders of the World to their respective locations.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
B 2 0 2 2 2 0 -1 --- --- 1
F 0 2 0 0 0 2 --- 3 -3 ---
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
B 2 2 4 6 8 8 7 7 7 8
F 0 2 2 2 2 4 4 7 4 4

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 B • Jambes l
 F • Malo-les-Bains
l

8
4

The Host Towns and Venues

Jambes, Belgium

Previously visited in Heat 5.

As was the case in the qualifying heat, the games at the Belgian venue were played at the Athletics Stadium at the INEPS Sports Centre.


Malo-les-Bains, France

Previously visited in Heat 9.

As was the case in the qualifying heat, the games at the French venue were played in Place du Centenaire on the Digue de Mer (Seawall Promenade).

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - The Motorcycle Carousel

Without further ado after Jean-Claude's introduction, the programme immediately went to the first game - 'The Motorcycle Carousel' - which involved a Perspex tube pivoted at one end to the centre of the arena, with the other end attached to a motorcycle which had to be ridden around in circles by an opposing team member. The middle of the tube had been blocked except for a hole, large enough for a ball to pass through, and at the pivoted end was a basket of balls. Whilst the tube was being pulled by the motorcycle, a participating player had to pass balls from one end of the tube to the other to a team-mate, who then had to try and hurl the balls into any one of four cages as it moved around the circle. Once a ball had been deposited in the cage another team-mate on the side-lines had to enter and climb through a playground climbing-frame maze, and on his exit had to retrieve the ball from the cage and bring it back to a holding box. Although more balls could be deposited whilst players were utilising the maze, only one could be collected from a cage at a time, and only after the maze had been climbed on each occasion. Only balls collected and deposited in the holding box within the 2 minutes 30 seconds duration, would count towards the final total. French team Malo-les-Bains played first, and in opposition was Alex Collant, a 41-year old Belgian, who fell off the motorcycle after just 16 seconds. Despite this, he picked himself up and restarted the bike and with his continual movement, he prevented the French team from depositing any balls in the first 50 seconds of the game. At the end of the first round, the French had only deposited 4 balls into the holding box. The Belgian team went next and their players in the tube were more adept at passing the balls and had deposited a ball within 11 seconds of the start. As balls continued to be deposited (although only those collected by the other players counted), the French motorcyclist accidentally stalled the motorcycle, and perpetual motion kept the tube moving and ultimately crashed into the rear, causing him to be flung from the seat. This collision somewhat affected the mechanism of the bike as it could not be started. With the bike stalling between boxes, the Belgian team took full advantage of it, and their player continued to hurl balls successfully into the box. Although eventually the motorcycle restarted, it was all over for the French and at the end of the game the Belgians had collected 6 balls, which took them into an early lead of 2-0.

Following the first game and a short introduction of the jury members, after which chairman André Rosat wished both teams good fortune for the competition, the programme was handed over to presenter Guy Lux on the seafront at Malo-les-Bains inside a cage which was adjacent to the obligatory French bull. For this semi-final, the French TV producers had covered half of the Place du Centenaire with a deep layer of dry sand from the beach to appear as if the games were being played on the actual sands themselves. Close inspection of the games clearly shows that the ground beneath their feet was actually solid under the layer of sand, rather than the natural sinking one would expect to see under the weight of the participants.


Game 2 - The Bull and the Showers

The second game (the first in France) - 'The Bull and the Showers' - as suggested by its title involved a bull and two large pump showers. On the whistle, two opposing team members sitting in two small baths (in reality merely inflatable pools) on opposite sides of the arena had to pump water from a large tank behind them by means of a hand pump. The tanks themselves were constantly being filled by a main source, and in order to stop the flow to them and divert it to the ground, other team members attempted to stand on large cubes to reach a rope, which when pulled would achieve this. However, this was not so easy to achieve, due to the fact that there was a bull in the arena running wild, which obviously had to be avoided. During the game, the bull seemed to take a liking to the Belgian cube and is seen playing with it and tossing it all over the arena. This was met with hilarity from presenter Simone Garnier who stated jokingly that this was not in the rules, and Gennaro Olivieri is heard replying by stating that it was okay because the bull did not know the rules. With the bull ‘taking sides’ as it were, the French team were able to divert most of the water away from their tank whilst the Belgian tank was filling up very quick. After 4 minutes play, the result was an overwhelming victory for the French and they had levelled the scores at 2-2.


Game 3 - The Motorised Roman Chariot

The third game (the second in Belgium) - 'The Motorised Roman Chariot' - once again involved a motorcycle, but this time it was attached to a small Roman chariot. The idea of the game was that whilst being pulled around the course, a ‘gladiator’ (deemed the opposition) on the chariot carrying three balls with him, had to knock off water containers from a plank which was being carried by the competing team over a course of 11 small roller hurdles. The chariot had to make two circumnavigations of the course before the play could commence to allow the rider to get a feel for the speed and ground conditions. The French competed first with the Belgians in the chariot in opposition, but the game had to be restarted when the French team set off as soon as they heard the whistle and a false start had to be declared. The game was then restarted and during its course there were two sets of players traversing the rollers at the same time behind each other. Jean-Claude Menessier asked referee Hubert Gunsin if this was permitted and he stated that he would refer it to co-referee Guido Pancaldi. At the end of the game, the French team had carried 14 containers across the course and Guido Pancaldi stated that it was within the rules to make two journeys at the same time and therefore those containers had been accepted. Although the French ‘gladiator’ was not so adept with his aim as his Belgian counterpart, the Belgian team still only succeeded in carrying 15 containers across the course. With their second set of 2 points, the Jambes team led the competition for a second time with score now standing at 4-2.


Game 4 - The Pugilistic Railway Porter

The fourth game (the second in France) - 'The Pugilistic Railway Porter' - was one that had a few mishaps and which had to be restarted on two occasions due to unforeseen circumstances. It featured a small SNCF train carriage with a pugilistic porter standing on top. The carriage was sitting on a track which had three small tunnels along its length, each with a cube on its roof, and along both sides of the track were a total of 10 pylons which also had cubes on each. On the whistle, two opposing team members pushed the carriage down the track and then released it at a given point. As the carriage proceeded along, the pugilist on top had to knock down as many of the cubes from the pylons, as well as jumping onto the tunnels’ roofs as the carriage passed through them. Whilst manoeuvring over the roof, he also had to dispense with a cube with his feet, and then make his way to the other end of the tunnel to meet the carriage as it emerged, in order to step back onto its roof as it moved towards the next tunnel. At the end of the course, the carriage was pushed back to the start empty by the opposition, whilst the porter ran back under his own steam to tag the second player on the game. It was the task of other members of the competing team to replace the cubes on the pylons and tunnels as quickly as possible before the game was restarted. Each team were allowed 4 runs down the track and the Belgians of Jambes played first. On the first and fourth runs the competitors knocked off the ‘tunnel’ cubes with their hands and were not counted, and on the third run the competitor accidentally kicked one of the cubes in to the path of the carriage and prevented it from entering the third tunnel. The game was stopped and Gennaro Olivieri stated that the third run would have to be restarted and all the cubes that had been knocked off were replaced to their original positions before the start of that run. The Belgians finished the game having knocked down 39 out of a possible 65 cubes (5 x 13). The home town team went next, and on the first run their competitor fell badly from the moving carriage and was seriously hurt after hitting his back on the roof of the second tunnel and then falling heavily onto the arena floor (despite the layer of sand). Medical aid was at hand immediately and he was led off to the side-lines for treatment. Due to this unforeseen injury, the French team were permitted to restart the game again with one of their other players and eventually after five runs, knocked off a total of 37 cubes. The home crowd were not happy with the result and began booing and jeering the Belgians. Presenter Guy Lux stepped in and asked for some sporting applause for the Belgians, which was not forthcoming, but his request certainly dampened down the jeering. With the Belgians scoring a victory over the French on their home soil, they now led Malo-les-Bains by 6-2.


Game 5 - The Human Windmill

The fifth game (the third in Belgium) - 'The Human Windmill' - involved a large windmill with two wooden sails and a competitor strapped to each end facing outwards. The competitor that was attached to the bottom sail at the start of the game was upside-down. However, he would become upright during the game with the reverse being said of the one starting on the top sail. Before the game began, the competitors had to get the sails in motion with gravitation and accomplished this with the top player leaning to his left. After 15 seconds, the whistle would be blown, and the competitors then had to catch a ball being thrown at them from team-mates each time they began their upward revolution. On reaching the top of the windmill, they had to aim the balls towards an adjacent tall tower which had been divided into three sections with values, from left to right, of 40pts, 20pts and 30pts. It was a straightforward game to see which team could score the highest tally of points in the tower. Belgium participated first but began to collect balls almost immediately instead of waiting for 15 seconds. The referees denoted this to presenter Jean-Claude Menessier, who announced for them to stop, but as the windmill was now in full motion they carried on. Although they did not score with any of the balls during the first 15 seconds, it somewhat threw the referee’s timing (see note below). The referee then blew the whistle and the game started in earnest. After what appeared to be 3 minutes of play, the referees began to count the number of balls collected, and it showed the team had done extremely well, when they amassed a total of 800pts (6 x 20pts + 17 x 40pts). The second round saw the Malo-les-Bains team in action, but there was a delay at the start after a problem had been encountered whilst strapping the second of the two French competitors onto the sail. Jean-Claude Menessier used the time to explain to the crowd and television audience that things do not always go the way they are planned and explained that the competitor was slightly taller than the rest of the competitors and that the mountings on the sail were having to be adjusted accordingly. He then went on to tell the audience that the competitors’ safety was the most important thing. Referee Hubert Gunsin was called-in for an update as to what was happening and along with this he also explained that the Belgian team had protested that there had been a problem with the equipment on their run. Despite this, he continued by stating that everything had been checked and the score that they had achieved would stand. Still stalling for time, Jean-Claude asked him to re-confirm the Belgian score of 800pts, which due to the over-ruling of the protest, appeared to rile the crowd into some slight jeering. This all helped pad out the programme for just over 2 minutes 30 seconds, after which the all-clear was given and the windmill was set in motion. The French score was confirmed as only 600pts (4 x 30pts + 12 x 40pts) and the Belgians had increased their lead over their rivals to 8-2.


Game 6 - The Chess-Playing Bull

The French obsession with bulls continued in the final competitive game (the third game in France) - 'The Chess-Playing Bull' - and involved four players from each team wrapped in foam rubber bibendums (representing chess pawns) standing on podiums on the rims of two small pools of water on either side of the arena. On the whistle, a bull was released from its holding pen, and another player from each team simply had to entice the bull to their opponents’ area and get the bull to knock down the competitors. The scoring was not as easy as one would imagine from viewing the programme and was somewhat complicated and not explained until the end of the game. Apart from a few near misses of injury to the competitors and a moment of interest when the bull refused to move and ended up being splashed in the face with water by the French player, the game finally ended after 4 minutes of torture for animal lovers and anti-cruel sports supporters. Referee Gennaro Olivieri then explained that each team had started with four members and then stated that the French team would lose one of their players because they had knocked down one of the Belgians in a manner that was against the rules. He continued by stating that the Belgians had knocked down two of the French team in the same manner, and would therefore lose two of their players. With both teams also deemed to have had one of their number knocked down by the bull, the French were declared the winners as having two players still standing as opposed to one of the Belgians. The French had clawed back some of their deficit and were now trailing Jambes by 8-4.


Game of Questions

After the timing task was completed, the first question in the academical round was deemed to be answered by the Belgian team. With his team leading the competition with a 4pt advantage, the mayor of Jambes unsurprisingly opted for a 1pt question. His choice was quickly vindicated when his ‘intellectuals’ answered a question on international organisations incorrectly. This brought the scores to 7-4 in Jambes’ favour and the competition was now well within the reach of the French. The programme was then handed over to Simone Garnier in Malo-les-Bains standing with the French mayor. After being asked for his choice of question, he stated that he really had no choice but to opt for the 3pt question, which was met with cheers from the home crowd. After answering the question correctly, the French ‘intellectuals’ set-up a nail-biting finish to this first semi-final by bringing the scores level at 7-7. The French mayor then chanced his luck with his ‘intellectuals’ and opted for the 3pt question again in the second round. However, the team were not so fortunate this time around and on the very last of the five-part answers they faltered and answered incorrectly. All their hard work from the first round had been wiped out and the score had returned to 7-4 in Jambes’ favour. With this, the competition had been handed to the Belgians (unless their mayor was to have an awful brainstorm), who were now guaranteed a place in their second successive Jeux Sans Frontières International Final. The mayor of Jambes took no chances and opted for the 1pt question which pleased the home crowd immensely. However, he need not have been so cautious, as not only did the team receive the easiest of the four questions in the programme, but his ‘intellectuals’ recouped the point they had lost on the first question. The final score at the end of the Game of Questions was the same as it was at the start, with Jambes running out the winners 8-4.

Additional Information

Two interesting points to note from the fifth game were firstly that at the start of each round, viewers were treated to the sight of the competitors being strapped into their harnesses, not by members of the production team but, for safety reasons, by members of the local Jambes fire brigade service. Secondly, due to the mix-up at the start of the first round, the referees had inadvertently counted the 15 seconds into the Belgians playing time and, they were in fact only given 2 minutes 50 seconds in total after the starting whistle, whereas the French were given the full 3 minutes of play after the 15 seconds start! However, from the result above this did not affect the overall outcome of the game in this instance, but if the scores had been closer it could have resulted in a completely different outcome.

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

D & I

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

2nd Semi-Final

Event Staged: Wednesday 7th September 1966
Venues: Barockes Klosterhof (Baroque Monastery Courtyard),
Rebdorf, Eichstätt, West Germany and
Terme di Montecatini (Montecatini Thermal Baths), Montecatini Terme, Italy

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
ORF (AT):
Wednesday 7th September 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
RTB (B):
Wednesday 7th September 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 7th September 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ARD-WDR (D):
Wednesday 7th September 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
TSI (CH-Italian):
Wednesday 7th September 1966, 10.00-11.20pm
RAI Due (I):
Thursday 8th September 1966, 10.15-11.30pm
ORTF (F): Not transmitted - no French involvement
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Teams: Eichstätt (D) v. Montecatini Terme (I)

Team Members included:
Eichstätt (D) - In West Germany:
Helmut Betz, Fritz Dietrich, Dietfried Flassig, Erwin Geier, Andreas Graf, Horst Graf, Alois Haas, Horst Hase, Theodor Haupt, Helmut Hawlata, Walter Jägle, Dieter Kiefel, Hans Krauter, Peter Kroitz, Helmut Kröppel, Heinz Krümpel, Georg Lang, Günther Lenard, Hans-Peter Mahnke, Josef Morczinek, Klaus Müller, Alfons Niefnecker, Hermann Putzer, Karl Heinz Reuß, Helmut Schneider, Peter Stütz, Gerd Tiefenböck, Anton Wirler; In Italy: Josef Art, Horst Barnerssoi, Giovanni Barone, Michael Beck, Otmar Buchberger, Heinz Donaubauer, Clemens Groß, Kurt Hekele, Josef Hiemer, Robert Hößl, Wolfgang Jägle, Albert Kosikowski, Horst Lindner, German Merz, Herman Miermeister, Günter Popp, Horst Randelshofer, Günter Reb, Elisabeth Rindfleisch, Jürgen Schäffer, Wolfgang Schimmel, Werner Schlingelhoff, Anton Schmid, Heinz Stelzer and Volker Walchshäusl;
Montecatini Terme (I) - Giovanni Bellini.

Games in West Germany: Unknown;
Games in Italy: Unknown;
plus Game of Questions (in both locations):  The Human Stopwatch.

Game Results and Standings

Result

 Team

Points

1st
2nd

 D • Eichstätt l
 I • Montecatini Terme
l

12
10

The Host Towns and Venues

Eichstätt, West Germany

Previously visited in Heat 6.

As was the case in the qualifying heat, the games at the West German venue were played in the Barockes Klosterhof (Baroque Monastery Courtyard) in Rebdorf, Eichstätt.


Montecatini Terme, Italy

Previously visited in Heat 3.

As was the case in the qualifying heat, the games at the Italian venue were played in the Montecatini Thermal Baths.

Made in B/W • This programme may exist in European archives

 

Teams Qualifying for International Final

Country

 Team Qualifying Heat Position Pts. Diff.
B  Jambes SF1 B F 1 4

D

 Eichstätt

SF2 D I 1 2
 

B & D

Jeux Sans Frontières 1966

International Final

Event Staged: Wednesday 14th September 1966
Venues: Stade Athlétique (Althletics Stadium), Centre Sportif INEPS (INEPS Sports Centre),
Jambes, Namur, Belgium and
Barockes Klosterhof (Baroque Monastery Courtyard),
Rebdorf. Eichstätt, West Germany

European Transmissions (Local Timings):
ORF (AT):
Wednesday 14th September 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
RTB (B):
Wednesday 14th September 1966, 9.00-10.15pm (Live)
SSR (CH-French):
Wednesday 14th September 1966, 9.00-10.20pm (Live)
ARD-WDR (D):
Wednesday 14th September 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
ORTF (F):
Wednesday 14th September 1966, 9.00-10.30pm (Live)
RAI Due (I):
Wednesday 14th September 1966, 10.00-11.45pm (Live - DST)
TSI (CH-Italian): Wednesday 14th September 1966, 10.00-11.20pm
Not transmitted in Great Britain

Neutral Jury in Köln, West Germany:
André Rosat (Chairman) [Genève], Max Ernst [Zürich], Fausto Sassi [Lugano]
(No interpreter on this jury)

Referee Locations:
Hubert Gunsin, Gennaro Olivieri and Bernard Stollere in Jambes, Belgium
Kurt Hauser, Hans Jenne and Guido Pancaldi in Eichstätt, West Germany

Weather Conditions:
Belgium: Warm and Dry
West Germany: Warm and Dry

Themes: On the Move (B) and Slapstick Comedy (D)

Teams: Jambes (B) v. Eichstätt (D)

Team Members included:
Jambes (B) -
Alex Collant;
Eichstätt (D) - In West Germany:
Josef Art, Michael Beck, Josef Blöchinger, Fritz Dietrich, Erwin Geier, Michael Glosser, Horst Graf (*), Helmut Hawlata, Kurt Hekele, Rudolf Hoffmann, Josef Morczinek, Gotthard Reisacher, Thomas Schmid, Wolfgang Schimmel, Johann Selb, Peter Stütz and Volker Walchshäusl; In Belgium: Horst Barnerssoi, Hartmut Binner, Otmar Buchberger, Dietfried Flassig, Horst Graf (*), Victor Gröbmair, Peter Hagen, Josef Hiemer, Gert Hirschelmann, Alfred Hößl, Alfred Hufnagel,  Ilse Jägle, Josef Kraus, Karl Lang, Günther Lenard, German Merz, Klaus Müller, Walter Niederer, Günter Reb, Werner Schlingelhoff, Peter Schmidtner, Horst Schubert, Heinrich Steinberger and Gerhard Winzer. (* = Horst Graf listed for both locations!).

Games: Motorbike Basketball (in Belgium), The Wheeled Lindworm (in West Germany), The Stilted Water-Carriers (in Belgium), Triangular Hoop-la Bicycles (in West Germany), The Roller-Skating Waiters (in Belgium), Dickerschön & Dünnerschön (in West Germany) and Game of Questions (at both venues).

Game of Questions:
Timing Task (in Belgium) - On three occasions, a competitor must climb a rope to reach a bar, which he then has to cross whilst suspended from his hands and finally slide down a pole on the other side. The time taken is deducted from three minutes to give time available to answer both questions;

Question Subjects (Round 1) - West Germany: Matching European lakes to their respective km² surface areas; Belgium: Matching European islands to their respective km² surface areas;

Question Subjects (Round 2) - Belgium: Matching the deaths of European politicians to their respective centuries of demise; West Germany: Matching the births of European writers and playwrights to their respective centuries of birth.

Game Results and Standings

Games

Team / Colour 1 2 3 4 5 6 GQ1 GQ1 GQ2 GQ2
Points Scored
B 0 0 2 1 2 0 --- -3 3 ---
D 2 2 0 1 0 2 -3 --- --- 3
Running Totals
(Leading teams shown in red)
B 0 0 2 3 5 5 5 2 5 5
D 2 4 4 5 5 7 4 4 4 7

Result

 Team

Points

Final Scoreboard

1st
2nd

 D • Eichstätt l
 B • Jambes
l

7
5

The Host Towns and Venues

Jambes, Belgium

Previously visited in Heat 5 and 1st Semi-Final.

As was the case in the qualifying heat and semi-final, the games at the Belgian venue were played at the Athletics Stadium at the INEPS Sports Centre.


Eichstätt, West Germany

Previously visited in Heat 6 and 2nd Semi-Final.

As was the case in the qualifying heat and semi-final, the games at the West German venue were played in the Barockes Klosterhof (Baroque Monastery Courtyard) in Rebdorf, Eichstätt.

The Games in Detail

Game 1 - Motorbike Basketball

The first game - 'Motorbike Basketball' - was played in Belgium but it got off to a bad start. The idea was simple in that two players on transporters were driven around a cylindrical course in opposite directions by a motorcyclist. At a given point, one of the transporters had to stop behind a goal in order for the player to catch two footballs in a net as they were being thrown to him by a team-mate. However, an opposing player was standing in front of the goal with legs astride two rounded springy platforms, and it was his task to try and prevent the balls from getting through or over the goal using only a hockey stick. Only one transporter could be behind the goal at any one time and each player had to catch two balls before moving off. The home team of Jambes competed first and within just 30 seconds of the start of the game, a wheel on one of the transporters had become entangled in the plastic meshing which was being used as the pathway on the muddy arena and it could not be released. With the team’s efforts being hampered due to only being able to score with one of the transporters, referee Gennaro Olivieri stopped the game after 1 minute 2 seconds play and explained that it would have to be started again from the time the game was stopped. Following a delay of around two minutes, the game was restarted and the Belgians ended the game having 17 collected balls within the 2 minutes 30 seconds time limit. The West German team participated next and they were able to collect 20 balls due mainly to the weakness of the opposition goalkeepers, who appeared to spend more time in the pool than out of it, permitting the goal area to be left open for the balls to be collected unhindered. The first 2pts were awarded to the visiting team and Eichstätt were leading 2-0.


Game 2 - The Wheeled Lindworm

The second game (the first in West Germany) - ‘The Wheeled Lindworm’ - was a straightforward one and involved a strange contraption consisting of a long plastic tube with a wheel mounted at the front. This was meant to represent a lindworm (a wingless bipedal dragon with a venomous bite) with a wide-open mouth. On the whistle, a player positioned himself in the mouth of the creature so that only his head was in view, and whilst he was completing this, a team-mate would attempt to throw balls into the ‘back end’ of the creature. After 15 seconds, he was not permitted to throw any more balls and had to proceed to place his head in the rear end of the creature and transport it in the style of a wheelbarrow through an obstacle course. On reaching the mid-point of the course, the creature had to be turned around and steered into place so that its mouth was over a small box. The player at the front then climbed out and any balls that had been successfully thrown in the creature dropped into the box. These balls, if any, could then be used as missiles to dislodge buckets of water perched above a wooden frame to earn bonus seconds which would be deducted from the time taken to complete the course. The two players then had to resume their positions in the lindworm and return to the start using the other side of the obstacle course. The Belgian team played first and after only managing to get one ball in the lindworm’s rear within the first 15 seconds, they lost a lot of time steering the equipment into the area where they could free any balls collected. Having missed all of the six buckets that were available with the one ball in their possession, they repositioned themselves and completed the game in 1 minute 1 second. The West German team participated second and the target appeared easy to beat if they could dislodge the buckets. Their two players were both local policeman and received a resounding cheer from the assembled crowd, but as with the Belgian thrower, they also could only get one ball in the creature’s rear. Having seen the Belgians mishap at the turnaround point, they raced down the course and guided the creature perfectly. However, their ball thrower was also off target and missed all the buckets with his one ball. The two players raced back to the start line and completed the game in just 44 seconds and the home crowd erupted. With another 2pts awarded to the West Germans, they were now leading 4-0.


Game 3 - The Stilted Water-Carriers

The third game (the second in Belgium) - 'The Stilted Water-Carriers' - involved two teams of stilted walkers wearing hats that resembled trays on which they could place up to three jugs of water. The game was played in unison, and the teams had to walk along a parallel course of three small hurdles which led to a small set of two steps up to a podium. Above the podium was a spinning carousel of small sandbags which the stilt walkers had to avoid making contact with. After passing the carousel, they had to descend a further two steps and then negotiate another three hurdles before a team member could collect any jugs still intact and deposit them on a high table. The players were permitted to duck down or lean forward to avoid the sandbags, but being on stilts this was made even more difficult. So that no advantage was gained by the teams having the carousel spinning in different directions as they passed underneath it, the game was played in two halves of 1 minute 45 seconds, so that each team passed under both sides. The first half of the game saw the West German team transport just one jug whilst the home side from Belgium had transported five. The teams changed sides but the West Germans fared no better and again only transported one jug of water whilst the Belgians doubled their original score and transported 10 jugs. With the game finishing 15-2 in favour of the Belgians, they were awarded the 2pts and they closed the deficit with the overall score standing at 4-2 to West Germany.


Game 4 - Triangular Hoop-la Bicycles

The fourth game (the second in West Germany) - 'Triangular Hoop-la Bicycles' - was played over two rounds and involved four players on small penny-farthing bicycles (similar to those used earlier in the series at Fougères in France), one from the playing team and three in opposition. Attached to the bicycles of the opposition were large triangular frames and these were used by the playing team as ‘hoop-la’ targets. On the whistle all four cyclists had to manoeuvre around a very small square arena and the opposition had to avoid having rubber rings hurled over their triangular frames. The game lasted 2 minutes 30 seconds, but it was stopped if any of the cyclists fell over or a foul had been committed. Play would only be restarted when all players were back in their original starting positions, which ultimately resulted in valuable seconds being lost whilst players manoeuvred around again. Despite its simplicity, the game came in for some serious jeering and wild cheering from the crowd when the results were announced. Eichstätt played first and their cyclists successfully hooked 19 rings onto his opponent’s bicycles, but Guido Pancaldi explained that 3 rings were deducted due to fouls and infringement on his competitors. Their final score was declared as 16 rings and this was met with angry discord from the crowd. After the Belgian team played however, their score was declared as 16 rings, but whilst Guido Pancaldi explained that 1 ring was deducted for a foul, the crowd went wild with cheers. However, this was to be short-lived because Guido also explained that the West German cyclist had ‘accidentally’ removed one of the Belgian rings during the game and therefore the score was raised back to 16 rings. The crowd turned again with loud jeering, which was so loud that referee Kurt Hauser had to shout in to the microphone to award each team 1pt each. The score at this point was 5-3 in Eichstätt’s favour.


Game 5 - The Roller-Skating Waiters

The fifth game (the third in Belgium) - ‘The Roller-Skating Waiters’ - was a slightly slapstick affair which involved male competitors on roller-skates collecting foam pies. At the start of the game, a team member was sitting underneath the end of an inclined conveyor belt with his back to the game. A participating team-mate stood facing him with his arms aloft pointing towards the raised end of the conveyor belt. On the whistle, another team-mate began placing foam pies on the base of the moving belt at the rate of two every 10 seconds, and the participating player had to grab them as they came over the end of the belt (as well as trying to protect his team-mate from being covered in foam). Once the pies had been caught, he had to climb a flight of stairs and then roller-skate down the incline on the other side, which led onto a two inclined narrow beams (one upwards and the other downwards) positioned above a pool. In order to cross the pool and reach a small raised podium on the other side, he had to roller-skate across the beams on just one foot, but could use his other foot for balance and as a brake. Any pies still in his possession on completion could then be placed on top of the podium. He then returned to the start of the game but this time was permitted to use both feet to do so. A second competitor, who had already collected his two pies, was waiting at the top of the steps for his team-mate’s return, and once he had passed by, was then able to repeat the game. The game continued until time limit and the greatest number of pies collected would win the points. It should be noted that the team member underneath the conveyor belt took no real part in the execution of the game and was there purely for the slapstick effect.

The home team participated first and made eight flawless crossings, and were deemed to have collected 15 pies in the time limit of 2 minutes 30 seconds. Belgian presenter Jean-Claude Mennessier then challenged referee Gennaro Olivieri to cross the narrow beams on foot without falling into the pool. Gennaro accepted his challenge but before he was able to commence, fellow referee Hubert Gunsin stepped in to announce that the actual score for the Belgian team was 16 pies, which was met with much pleasure from the home crowd supporters. Gennaro then proceeded with his challenge and made it look somewhat easy, but almost came a cropper before reaching the base of the second beam. The West Germans, in the second heat, were not so adept on roller-skates, resulting in them being slower and not making as many flawless crossings, and finished the game with just 12 pies collected. With the 2pts being awarded to the home team, the Belgian’s had pulled the scores back, to level the competition at 5-5.


Game 6 - Dickerschön and Dünnerschön

The programme then returned to West Germany for the final competitive game of the night. The game (the third in West Germany) - 'Dickerschön and Dünnerschön' - was based on silent film-stars Laurel and Hardy and was represented by two brothers called Dickerschön und Dünnerschön (loosely translated into English as ‘nice thick and nice thin’). As the title suggests one of the brothers was short and fat (by the fact he wore a padded costume) and the other was tall and thin. On the whistle the two brothers had to move along one side of an obstacle course picking up small balls. Dünnerschön led the way and he had to drop them in a net carried by Dickerschön. On the return journey the brothers had to cross a large trampoline with ten water-filled balloons hanging above it. During their passage across, Dünnerschön had to bounce up and grab the balloons and drop them in the net with the balls. After this they had to go through a set of cages, each of which had inward-opening doors. The race ended with a straight ‘run’ to the finish line. Scoring was based on time and bonuses, and for each ball and balloon collected the time to complete the game was reduced by five seconds. The Eichstätt competitors were quite adept on this game and collected all six balls and ten balloons in 2 minutes 12 seconds. With a total bonus of 80 seconds the net time (pardon the pun) was just 52 seconds! The Belgian team played second and also collected all the items, but they completed the course in a slower time of 2 minutes 43 seconds. However two of their balloons were burst whilst traversing the cages and they were only given a 70 seconds reduction, finishing with a net time of 1 minute 33 seconds. With the West Germans victorious the overall score stood at 7-5 to Eichstätt.


Game of Questions

The first round of questions was held in West Germany and the mayor opted for a 3pt question but the ‘intellectuals’ answered incorrectly and the Belgians suddenly found themselves leading Eichstätt by 5-4. In order to put pressure on the West Germans, the Belgian mayor also opted for the 3pt question, and like his counterpart, his ‘intellectuals’ also failed to answer correctly, reducing the scores to 4-2 in Eichstätt’s favour. Staying in Belgium, the second round commenced and the mayor had no option but to opt for the 3pt question. On this occasion his ‘intellectuals’ did not let him down. Answering a question on European politicians, they came up trumps and returned the score in their favour to 5-4. The mayor of Eichstätt now had a difficult choice, whether to opt for a 3pt question and win the International Final outright (assuming the question was answered correctly) or opt for the 1pt question and tie the programme 5-5 (again with the same assumption), and continue answering questions until a winner was found, as was the case in last year’s Final. He took the gamble and opted for the greater value. Answering a question on European writers and playwrights, the ‘intellectuals’ vindicated his choice and answered correctly. The score finished 7-5 to Eichstätt, and Jeux Sans Frontières had got its first outright winner.

Presenters, Officials and Production Team

On introducing the teams, West German presenter Camillo Felgen somewhat riled the home crowd by stating that whilst both the teams had winning margins of 16pts, Jambes were being classed as the dionsaurs whilst Eichstätt were considered the insects. This was met with jeers and boos from the assembled spectators, but with a wry smile to the camera from the presenter!

Additional Information

The International Final opened in Rebdorf at the same location as their qualifying heat and semi-final. The opening camera shot was that of the Jura Museum located higher up on the side of the valley and is dedicated to Natural History and has an extensive exhibit of fossils from the Jurassic period. The shot then segued into the clock towers of the monastery, and with a full brass band playing, the teams paraded into the arena followed by West German presenter Camillo Felgen on a small trap being pulled by a Shetland pony.

This was to be the first of seven Golden Trophies that West Germany won in their 16-year association with the programme. An impressive record of winning a Golden Trophy on average every second year!

At the end of the contest, the civil dignitaries of the losing semi-finalists were presented with a trophy marking their achievement. The two competing teams in the International Final were each presented with the same winner’s trophy, but the victorious side also received a cheque for 40,000 Deutsche Mark (500,000 Belgian Francs).

Made in B/W • This programme exists in European archives

 

JSFnetGB Series Guide pages researched by
Alan Hayes, David Hamilton, Neil Storer, Christos Moustakas, Philippe Minet,
Sébastien Dias, Ischa Bijl, Paul Leaver and JSFnet Websites