The Fencing Podcast was launched by two Scottish fencers/coaches/nerds in the immediate aftermath of the Rio Olympics. Sean Walton and Gavin McMenemy are the voices of the podcast, after a friend suggested they give the medium a try. Gav has a history of online fencing presence - maintaining the peace as a moderator on Leon Paul’s Fencing Forum (and the US-based ) for many years - and Sean has written fencing blogs, so a podcast seemed the logical next step. While there is a lot of online discussion and writing about fencing, there is little spoken-word output.
They offer a mixture of analysis, discussion and opinion (and some truly terrible pronunciation) as well as looking some of the fencing news and fencing-related topics that capture their attention. You may not agree with every opinion they give but they will get you thinking. Most sports podcasts benefit from a good interview and The Fencing Podcast is no different. So far, Sean has interviewed British Olympian James Davis, GB sabre coach Jon Salfield, Paralympic silver medallist Piers Gilliver, Brooklyn Bridge Fencing Club’s head coach Dan Kellner, FIE referee and FIE Commission member Dave Baker and newly-appointed performance director for Danish Fencing and Team GB Olympian Laurence Halsted. All have offered a genuine insight into international fencing from a variety of different viewpoints as well as being entertaining, intelligent and eloquent.
In the last episode (episode 5, in two parts) Laurence Halsted provided a fascinating history of his life in fencing, Sean and Gav discuss the probable end of British Fencing’s World Class Programme, they looked at the junior World Cup results and rankings, discussed the epee Grand Prix in Doha and the sabre Grand Prix from Cancun, talked about fencers on social media and, in a regular feature, chose the Coolest Fencer on the Planet. A lot of content.
The next stage for The Fencing Podcast is a near-live report from the Paris men’s foil World Cup over the weekend of 21st and 22nd of January where Sean will be following all the action at the Stade Pierre de Coubertin and, hopefully, getting interviews with some of the star performers. An exciting development for the podcast.