Pistes Ready For Play

March 28th, 2019
Pistes Ready For Play
A new home for pétanque players has been established at the Uraidla Bowling Club after work on nine new pistes was completed in October.

A piste is a lane of terrain specially adapted to hold rounds of the game, the modern version of which originated in the French south coastal region of Provence.

The new surface has already delighted seasoned pétanque players such as Ross Sands, former president of the Adelaide Hills Pétanque Club.

“It’s been really fantastic, the surface is excellent to play on,” he said.

Ross has also sat on the Pétanque State Committee and was instrumental in establishing the new pistes, along with Uraidla Bowls Club President Richard Crabb.

“We had discussed the possibility of accommodating pétanque players at the club two years ago,” Richard said.

After a trip to the UK, Richard saw the viability of casual pétanque pistes and was motivated to incorporate them into the Uraidla Bowling Club.

“We had room out the front after the construction of our synthetic green, and around 12 players were interested in becoming members of the club.” Richard said.

There had already been interest at the club from those whose love for the game would see them play anywhere.

“There had been a few muck around games in the carpark, not really the best conditions for it,” Richard said.

The situation could not be more different now, after a civil contractor was brought in to lay the pistes, a process which only took two days.

The pistes consist of a 100mm quarry rubble base, with an 8mm gravel surface.

“There are three main types of pétanque pistes, slow, medium and fast”, Richard said.

“Medium, which is what we’ve gone for, is ideal for non-hurry professionals. Fast tend to be for larger scale professional competitions.”

Each piste can accommodate up to 6 players. 50 or so players can be competing at one time, leaving the prospect open for future competitions.

Approval has been granted by the council to install floodlights over the pistes.

Electrical wiring has been laid underground and new poles have been painted.

Richard expects night games to be possible form next month.

“It’s a good adjunct for the club as it sees wider use of our facilities. It’s also good for the local community to have more people coming in.”

Heather Davies, secretary for three years at the Stirling based Adelaide Hills Pétanque Club is also pleased with the potential for more competition in the region.

“Hearing the rate at with things have happened, I would expect them to be a fully established club in no time,” Heather said.

“We currently have around 90 members after establishing 22 years ago, and once pistes have been lined and lights installed, that’s really the benchmark to being able to play competitively.”

The surface is large enough to fit cars onto and has been used as an area to set up stalls for the Tour Down Under.

Ross completed the lining for the new pistes and is hopeful they will encourage more people to come and join in the fun of pétanque.

“It’s been growing magically – people have been coming from all over the Hills and loving what they see.”

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