Tournament Update

Congratulations to Chris French, winner of the Midwest Regional Duelling Championship. French dispatched NOVA regulars Tim Jacques and Norm McMullen in a hard-fought Division 20 duel. French's winning car:

CFI WTE-5K "White Shark" - Mid-sized, x-hvy. chassis, hvy. suspension, large power plant, 4 PR tires, driver, Blast Cannon w/ HESH ammo front, 2 SDs w/Incendiary Ammo linked left and rear, Hi-res SWC linked to the BC. Armor: F75, L60, R60, B70, T1, U4. Accel. 5; Top speed 92.5; HC 3; $18.970; 5,760 lbs. Driver's gear: body armor, flak jacket, AVR (6 shots), $1,030. Total: $20,000.

Origins and the World Championships are still a month away as this is being written, and the Racing Championships won't be for another month after that; we'll have complete reports in the next issue.

Arena Watch

The Golden Rod
Montreal, Quebec

by Francis Lalumiere

The Golden Rod was the first official arena of the Republic of Quebec. It was built in 2033 - the year during which autoduelling became legal throughout the Republic - atop Montreal's highest skyscraper, a 135-story-high building belonging to the National Bank. Even though no longer young and fresh, it remains to this day the best known of the 13 duelling arenas of the Republic.

Designed for four participants (although it can accommodate more), the Golden Rod has two floors, one 15 feet above the other. Neither has any railing. Yes, a vehicle hitting the ground after a 135-story fall is a great show, and the streets around the building are evacuated before each event. Four elevators, each just large enough for a car, bring the vehicles to the top of the building and then start down again, returning only after the event in order to fetch the survivors (if any).

[Map of the Golden Rod]

On the map, the arena is seen from above, with the top floor a narrow "bridge" from one end to the other. The bottom floor is cut in half by a 15-foot-high wall. The four pillars holding up the bridge are 25 feet high and have TV cameras on top of them. The wall and pillars are essentially indestructible. The only way to go from one side of the arena to the other is over the bridge. The four entrances to bridge are guarded by retractable tire shredders that do 1 die of damage to each tire that crosses them (that's less than the normal 2d damage because of their lighter, retractable design). At the beginning of each turn, roll 2 dice; each die indicates which shredder is active for that turn. Each 5 or 6 indicates no shredder is active; if the same number comes up on both dice, just that one shredder is active.

The shaded areas at each bridge entrance are impassable barriers on the bridge, though vehicles moving on the lower level may pass under them. The dotted lines on the bridge indicate the continuation of walls on the lower level. Vehicles on the bridge may trade fire with vehicles on the lower level provided the vehicle on the bridge is within 1" of the bridge edge and the one below is at least 1" away from the bridge. If a vehicle falls of the bridge, follow the normal procedure for falling damage, assuming a fall of 30 feet. If a vehicle falls off the edge of the arena, don't worry about it - the confetti rule will apply after a few seconds.

Only a few events at the Golden Rod are "points oriented," with checkpoints to cross and other goals to meet to score points. Most of the time, it's simple duelling to the finish, and it makes for a great show.

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