Christmas Newsletter

As the winter months set in and Christmas drew closer ICFC was busy fighting, competing having fun and procrastinating our heavy work loads. Training has continued as normal, with highlights  such as ambidextrous fencing, and our  strength and conditioning coaches  attempting an Iron man of foil, epee and sabre matches and novel foil scoring system involving balloons for the novices for the end of term.


BUCS matches have continued, both the men’s and women’s 1sts having there first weekend fixtures. The men dominated their weekend in Oxford on the 16 and 17th of November, although with some almost photo finishes they won all th, see Camille’s match report for the full story. The women’s 1st team struggled more on their weekend hosted by Surrey on  23rd and 24th November , as although the epee and sabre teams did well, they were weak on foilists, see Emma excellent match report coming soon. The womens seconds have got through the first round of the cup on the 11th December and the men’s seconds and thirds continue to hold there own in there leagues and look forward to their cup matches. Thanks and good luck to everyone on the teams this term!

Socially the club has continued to be very active, as well as Union/Eastside trips after training,  we had Christmas dinner (organised by our lovely social sec becky ) which was a success with over 25 people coming down to Hammersmith to listen to me make a fool of myself eating Christmas pudding and be festive. As a end of term treat our valiant Vice President Loek lead an expedition to our enemies to the North, aka UCl in a friendly match where we won 110-109, congrats guys.


In individual competitions we also had a very good term, the National Novice Championships at Warwick we sent out a few enthusiastic novices for their first taste of competition and they all did incredibly well  with our very own Novice Captain Cosmin placing 3rd in foil.  At the Beazley British National Championships sabreurs Maiyuran and Zoe both won bronze. Also Imperial Men’s Sabre team won the team nationals making them the best sabre team the country, well done guys!


Next term we looking forward to a huge amount of BUCs including the Individual Championships on 21st to 23rd February and BUCS Big Wednesday on the 26th March. Also over Valentine’s weekend we are going to Paris to fence at the Ecole Polytechnique in a team and individual competition called Challenge international d’escrime 2014. Watch your emails for detail on all of these!  At the start of term the intermediate course is starting up for all novices continuing into the new year.


Its been a great first term for ICFC and we are looking forward to the new year,


See you on piste!




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Men’s 1sts Match Report BUCS Weekend

The first fencing premiership BUCS tournament was held in Oxford two week ends ago, where the home crew as well as Cambridge, UCL, Bristol and the mighty Imperial crossed swords once again.
For two days, the valiant teams competed to take lead in the race for the coveted league title. Saturday started with an early 9am match against Bristol. Winning the weapon’s order toss, we decided to start with our foilists who were so pumped they had begun their warm-up the night before. Despite a tricky opposition, the team pulled off a promising 45-42 win. Sabre was up next, and we decided to sharpen the game. A ruthless and almost perfect performance by Chris “8pak” Lawrence lead to a 45-15 sweep, and left no time for the opposition to realise that their match was getting out of hand. This inspired the epee to finish off the match, scoring 41 points and giving the newly named “Pimperials” a comfortable win, 131-102.


Next on the list was the talented Cambridge team, an old rival that has been known to give Imperial fencers a hard time… Foilists were put up first and trailed by a few hits against a strong side. However as the match progressed, Imperial fencer “Super-Soren” Pfizer got increasingly angry, leaving no chances for a terrified Cambridge team. A beautiful finish by Glen “The Beast” Ostacchini turned the tables round and ended the match in a 44-42 win. Sabre was up next and felt pressured to perform after the textbook foil win. But the sabreurs were too proud to be outdone by another weapon and slashed their way through the opposite side to fetch a brutal 45-18 win. This provided a precious lead against Cambridge’s tricky Epee team. The epeeists did not take this as a sign to rest though, and battled to the finish getting an impressive 35 hits. This totalled to a 124-105 for Pimperials, showing the opposition who was really dominating the tournament. Not this year, Cambridge2far.


After a long tiring day of winning, the Imperial fencers gathered their forces to fight the Blues for Saturday’s last match. To the keen Imperial foilists’ disappointment, the weapon’s order toss was lost so the sabreurs reluctantly warmed up to start the match. Just kidding, they absolutely could not wait to kick some butt. The trio sharpened their swords and slew the Oxford sabreurs 45-15 with a star indicator by Didier “Old-School” Nolhmann. As Oxford’s strengths lying in Foil and Epee, the next match promised to be challenging. However Pimperial foilists kept it together, and with some swift attacks from Clyde “The Beard” Fare, reached a safe 36 hits against their on-form adversaries. The tension was at its peak as Epee started the last leg, needing 25 hits to win against the Blues. A difficult start showed that it was not going to be an easy finish. Wanna-be epeeists Camille Van Hoffelen and “M-Iron Man” used their sabre speed to confuse the opponents, pushing the Oxford team’s pride a little further into the ground with Maiyuran’s toe shattering foot flick. In the second half of the match however, Oxford changed tactics and played time. They were trying to avoid being hit, betting that their anchor would be able to catch it all up against our second-finisher. Little did they know that Jonathan “Ice-Croft” Ashcroft was the coolest man alive, and slowly took apart the top Oxford epeeist’s game in a thrilling penultimate bout. This gave the leverage for Harry “The Flick” Gulliver to finish off the match 45-25, winning overall by one point. Or as we like to call it, “one-ing” against the Blues.

After a well deserved lie-in on Sunday, Pimperials got ready for the last match of the tournament against an impressive, newly promoted UCL team. Sabre was set to start. The on-form UCL side fenced really well, but the sabre trio kept focus and won a comfortable 45-25. Epee was granted the arrival of resident star Jamie “The Hulk” Simpson direct from Bratislava U20 World Cup. His intimidating shouts and signature Green Mask spurred the team forwards. Harry “The Flick” Gulliver proceeded to destroy the opposition with his flawless technique in a 12 hit run, leading to a huge 38 points against an international standard UCL side. This left foil with a tense finishing task. A combative UCL side grinded away hits and kept up the suspense down to the last few seconds. Despite the building tension, a solid performance from “Super-Soren” and “Is it a sabreur, is it a foilist, is it an epeeist, no, it’s M-Iron Man” carried the Imperial team 2 points from the win in the penultimate bout. This paved the way for Glen “The Beast” Ostacchinni and his imperturbable concentration to shine at the tensest of moments and take the win by scoring 4 consecutive parries over the UCL finisher. Pimperial won the last match of the weekend 118-114, coming back home with a clean sheet and hunger for many more.
This week end proved to be a massive team effort, where the 10 Imperial men came together and showed how strong and talented they were. The other universities of the premiership have now been warned. Imperial is the team to fear for this year’s BUCS title.

Camille Van Hoffelen

Mens 1st Captain

The team
The team


Glen in action fencing foil.
Glen in action fencing foil.

Autumn Term Newsletter

We have had a great start to this year! Firstly, a big Imperial Fencing Club welcome to all of our new members. It is great to see so many new people joining us this year.


We thoroughly enjoyed partaking in Freshers Fair; drawing in the crowds on Dalby court with fencing demonstrations. It was a great success, as we had many people signing up to our mailing list, team trails and taster sessions. Many thanks to our club members for their help with this event.


We saw some brilliant fencing at our competitive team trials. Congratulations to those who made it onto one of our fencing teams and best of luck with your matches! We also have a large turnout every Friday of enthusiastic beginners for our novice course, which will run until the end of term. Many of our novices have entered the National Novice competition in Warwick (which will take place on November 30th. We wish them the best of luck!


Our BUCS results so far:


Imperial Men’s 3rds:

16th October: Imperial 62 – 135 UCL 2nd Team


23rd October: Imperial 131 – 103 Hertfordshire 1st Team

London Team Trophy



30th October: Imperial 88 – 131 City
Imperial Men’s 2nds:

13th November: Imperial 135-65 Sussex


Imperial Women’s 2nds:

76-135 – Royal Holloway

120-130 – Queen Mary

38-135 – UCL

Freshers Fair


The Men’s 1st Team had their first matches of the year last weekend, and won all their matches! More results to come soon.83-127 – Sussex
131-107 – Brunel

So overall massive congrats to everyone on the teams!


The Women’s 1st Team have their first matches tomorrow (20th November) and this weekend – good luck!


More BUCS matches will happen every Wednesday for the rest of term.


Congratulations to our club members Glen Ostacchini and Zoe Robinson who came 2nd and 9th places, respectively, in the Welsh open. Additionally, in the London Team Trophy, our epee team came 1st place and our sabre team came 2nd place. Well done!

The year has also kicked off with some great social events. Firstly, getting to know all the new club members over some delicious cocktails at B@1, and last week we had our annual Freshers bowling event, where many of us showed that we’re better fencers than bowlers.

Finally, we would like to welcome our new coach, Giorgio, to the club. He is proving to be a very popular teacher, skilled in all three weapons. Thank you for your great tuition so far!