Six golds for USA! Passion toppled!

The USA took six golds at Sunday’s World Beard and Moustache Championships in Trondheim, Norway, while Germany claimed seven, including that of overall winner and Freestyle Full Beard Titan Elmar Weisser whose reindeer beard couldn’t be stopped.

American Rooty Lundvahl of the Whisker Club knocked two-time defending world champ Jack Passion off the top spot in the largest category, Full Beard Natural. Passion was second.

American Burke T. Kenny was restored the Full Beard Styled Moustache crown he won at the 2007 worlds in England but then lost in Alaska in 2009. Whisker Club President Bruce Roe won the Hungarian Moustache Division.

Meanwhile, Keith “Gandhi Jones” Haubrich completed the three-peat in Freestyle Moustache. Newcomers to the world stage Bill Mitchell from Georgia and Giovanni Dominice from Arizona won in Partial Beard Freestyle and Imperial Moustache respectively.

The fledgling Northern Los Angeles Beard and Moustache Club, a local chapter of Beard Team USA, took two silvers, one for Jeffrey Moustache in the English Moustache category, and another for John Myatt in Verdi.

The Austin Facial Hair Club, also a local chapter of Beard Team USA, competing independently and rumored to be contemplating secession, was skunked.

Judges included Roe’s wife Tommy and Whisker Club member Dan Sederowsky.

Check back soon for photos and complete results.

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12 Responses to “Six golds for USA! Passion toppled!”

  1. Looks like the battle for world beard domination has suffered a minor setback. Well, I guess there’s no fun in winning unless you have a worthy opponent, so now we’ve got something to prove in 2013.

  2. Politics.

  3. It’s only temporary.

  4. Phil,

    While several of the Austin Facial Hair Club are members of BTUSA, we are not a “local chapter of Beard Team USA.” In fact, we are now voting members of the WBMA.

    We know that all of the men who won yesterday deserved their awards. We do not feel we were skunked. Austin was the most represented city in the world at yesterday’s competition. That achievement, the fun we had, and all the wonderful men and women we met, are our awards.

    –alex

  5. On May 15 I spoke face-to-face with Bryan Nelson, whom I understand to be the president of the Austin Facial Hair Club. I told him I considered the Austin Facial Hair Club to be a local chapter of Beard Team USA competing independently, just as I said in the post. Bryan seemed to agree with this characterization. When I read your comment, Alex, I immediately wrote to Bryan to ask for clarification. I still have not heard a response from Bryan. Until the president of the Austin Facial Hair Club tells me otherwise, I will continue to consider the AFHC a local chapter of Beard Team USA.
    I hope everyone had a safe trip home.

  6. Hey Phil, Alex is more than qualified to speak on behalf  of AFHC, but thanks for your moderation. After you singled us out for being “skunked” when so many other “local chapters” were also skunked, the majority of our club including myself felt alienated and unappreciated by your choice of words, and therefore as a group decided to officially revoke our status as a local chapter of BTUSA. 
    It took a great deal of effort for us to bring 10 competitors to Norway, even though you had visited our pre-Norway logistics meeting in Austin a year prior and discouraged us from attending. 
    The skunk post, your idea of US World Domination, and a few other small managerial issues we have with your leadership of BTUSA are the reasons for our departure from your team. 
    We love the members of Beard Team USA and have had the pleasure of getting to know many of them at various events across the globe. We will continue to represent Austin at many of the upcoming Regional, National, and International events in the future. For us, “bearding” is not a sport, and going to beard competitions is a fun way to travel, hang out with like-minded people and most of all have fun. Thanks!

  7. Hi Bryan,

    Thank you for your message clarifying the status of the Austin Facial Hair Club. I have now deleted your group from the list of local chapters on the Beard Team USA website.

    I am sorry some members of your group took offense to my use of the word “skunked” in the post. I meant to use the word in the sense it is used in fishing. If you go fishing and don’t catch any fish, you get “skunked.” There is no negative connotation. It’s simply a fact. I guess I could have said “the AFHC” didn’t win any trophies” but I was trying to use more colorful language in the post. I “singled out” the AFHC because I knew people were interesting in learning how you did.

    It was never my intent to discourage anyone, including your group, from going to Norway as long as they understood what they were getting into. When I met with you in Austin last August, I said exactly what I said at the BTUSA meeting in Bend, that Norway is an incredibly beautiful country with very friendly people and is a great place to visit, that Norway is one of the most expensive places in the world for travelers, and that some people might not be satisfied with the competition, especially because of the small size of the venue.

    You and I are in complete agreement about that bearding should be – a fun way for people to get together and form genuine friendships across cultural, language, age, and national barriers. I also think bearding should be a way to encourage the growth and acceptance of facial hair worldwide. Since I wandered into the world championships in Sweden in 1999, I have been working very hard to make bearding exactly this and have had the support of many people in doing so. I have consistently tried include more and more beardsmen in the fun, regardless of their nationality, club affiliation, language, or other potentially divisive factors. I have often said things that I know will be provocative, but I think saying these things helps create interest among people who wouldn’t otherwise know about bearding. I am proud of my accomplishments but am also
    the first to admit that I have made mistakes along the way.

    Whether bearding is a “sport” depends on the definition of “sport.” Arguing about that is about as productive as arguing about the meaning of “skunked.” Webster says a “sport” is a “source of diversion,” and bearding certainly is that. Also, like other sports, we have winners, losers, judges, fans, and controversy. And we sing the National Anthem before some of our competitions. That’s good enough for me.

    Congratulations to Austin on being the city with the largest number of participants at the Norway event. I also wish the AFHC well in its future endeavors and I hope to see you at the Nationals this October.

    Best regards,
    Phil

  8. Does “bearding” have losers?

  9. Everyone who participates wins friendship and fun, but as in most sports only some win trophies.

  10. With all of the unnecessary drama at several competitions, I have to really consider giving up, what was a fun hobby for me. I have always had facial hair, and when I discovered BTUSA a few years ago, I was really excited. In fact, I have made quite a few, what I would consider very good friends through all of this. But at some point this is getting a little ridiculous. I have never been one to get caught up in the competitiveness of all this, as I think it’s frankly stupid to really want to fight over who has better facial hair. But, that’s why we have the contests, so that we can all get together and have a good time, and actually compete with our beards/mustaches. I would never expect to win anything at any contest, for me it is just the camaraderie. But if we are going to have an actual contest, it should be fair. This is just getting out of hand, and is leading to negativity and hard feelings between people.

    I’m not sure about what I will personally do in the future, as I too am considering, not dropping BTUSA, but disbanding the group all together, and moving on with my life. We’ve been fortunate enough to raise a little money for charity here, and that makes me more proud than any other accomplishment. But honestly, this started for me because it was something fun. It is rapidly becoming the opposite.

    Good luck to all those that persevere. And just maybe we should ALL stop taking ourselves so seriously. DRAMA IS STUPID!

    Justin Cate
    President
    Stumptown Stash & Beard Collective

  11. Hi AFHC,

    First off, trophies or not, Austin was a memorable presence at the 2011 WBMC. (One of you had that great octopus beard, right?)

    I was just curious… was your withdrawl from BTUSA intended to be in part symbolic of the idea of Texas seceding from the Union? I noticed you all crossed out “USA” and wrote “Texas” on your name tags.

    Until the next,
    - Gandhi Jones

  12. Both of the Stumptown events I attended in the last year were great fun. Both promoted camaraderie among those who attended. Thanks again for organizing them. I hope your group will keep up the good work. What do you suggest for making this more fun? Phil