Published: April 30, 2006

Scottish Championships draw announced

The RSPBA has posted the Grade 1 draw for the Scottish Pipe Band Championships in Dumbarton, Scotland, on May 20, with 12 bands entered, eight from Scotland. Conspicuously absent from the list is the St. Laurence O’Toole Pipe Band or Dublin.

According to a reliable source, SLOT did not realize that the RSPBA had received its entry before the deadline and, as a result, the band cannot compete at the first major of the year. The source said that the entry was sent with ample time, but it apparently went missing and the band’s secretary assumed that the RSPBA had received it.

The band apparently had already made airline and hotel arranegements and may be out a significant amount of money. The entry was not sent by registered mail or courier and there is no way to track dates of sending or arrival.

The RSPBA, like most of the world’s pipe band associations, currently has no provision for entering competitions online. St. Laurence O’Toole finished fifth in the 2005 Champion of Champions table and the band’s highest placing at a major last year was fourth at the British Championships.

Also absent from the draw is the David Urquhart Travel Pipe Band, which has been searching for a pipe-major since the fall.

If there were only eight Scottish Grade 1 bands, 2006 would mark the first year ever that North America has more bands in the premier grade than Scotland.

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