French Open competition

Yesterday, the yearly “Festival ACF” was held in Paris, France. This is a combination of lectures, workshops and competitions held by the ACF (Association des Crocheteurs de France), the French Locksport group.

I believe this must be the 4th or 5th time I visited. It was good to meet old friends and make new friends. The first lecture I saw was from a pentester, talking about a red teaming assignment (that did not involve physical security). Next was a historical overview of pump locks from Fichet-Bauche.

After that, the lockpicking championships were held. About 25 people participated. In the first round, people were seated at tables with at most four people, each having to pick three cylinders in less than 5 minutes. I got an Opsial, a Thirard (which felt very cheap) and an unbranded cylinder. The Opsial was my first and I made the mistake not to try and rake it. I spent too much time picking and though I made not even make it past the first round! But in the end, it was me and Wesley both going through, thanks to our quick raking of 2 (me) or 3 (Wesley) cylinders.

The second round I had 2 opponents, and the cylinders were more difficult, a TESA TE5, a Heracles and a Vachette V5. They needed to be picked in under 10 minutes. I opened them all and my opponents opened none, which meant I was in the final!

There were 4 people in the final, having to open 4 locks (BKS 6-pin, DormaKaba, Heracles with a horrible keyway and a GeGe). I needed to relax and try to open something, as I hoped to get a plaque to take home with me. The BKS I could not open, but the DormaKaba I did open in 13’11, so just within the 15 minute time limit. And that was the only one I opened.. Nitiflor opened the DormaKaba as well as the GeGe, Wesley opened just the GeGe (in 9’20) and Hadrian did not open any. Too bad I could not open the GeGe as well, as that would have yielded second place. The final result was: Nitiflor #1, Wesley #2, I came third and Hadrian fourth. But that meant I got a plaque!

The ACF had gotten some really nice sponsoring resulting in nice prizes. Nitiflor got the wonderful Multipick ARES disc detainer pick, Wesly the Kronos electropick, I got a Flipper Zero. And some more goodies including some cylinders (DOM iX TECO, M&C Minos) and a manual pickgun.

I hope to return to Paris next year, and maybe win another plaque. Although my scores are declining, in 2021 I became first (and second in impressioning), in 2022 I became second, this year third. I see a downward trend 😉


One Response to “French Open competition”

  1. […] ACF organized their annual festival in December. Walter traveled to Paris for the event and competition and won the third price. Walter shares his thoughts in this post. […]