The 1987 Juniors Championship was a competition among friends. Close friends.
In fact, the first and third place finishers, Curt Bonnem and Mark Faje, have been performing together since they learned to juggle a little more than a year ago. And David Cain, the second place winner, was competing against his twin brother and partner, Scott.
This friendly atmosphere made the competition all the better.
"It was fun competing against Mark," said Bonnem. "We learned together and have the same style, but Mark is really the better juggler."
Nonetheless, it was Bonnem who most impressed the judges.
His routine began with a "cave man" opening as he juggled a skull, club and bone. He quickly moved into flashy three and five ball patterns. Using acrobatic leaps and flips as transitions, Bonnem ended with three and four clubs.
David Cain's second place finish was highlighted by an excellent three, four and five club routine which garnered him the highest technical score of the competition. He also juggled three and four balls and five rings.
"Clubs are my forte," he said, "and I really nailed them today. I think the drops I had in my ball routine made me do better in the clubs."
Like Bonnem, Faje had a flashy acrobatic routine featuring three and five balls, five rings, and three, four and five clubs. His five ball work included a difficult multiplex bounce pattern. He also managed a chin roll with four clubs, which he considered his most difficult move.
Among the other competitors were:
Total Tech. Perf. age home town 1. Curt Bonnem 56.40 24.65 31.75 16 Elmhurst, IL 2. David Cain 52.80 27.90 24.90 17 Middleton, OH 3. Mark Faje 52.45 23.95 28.50 17 Elmhurst, IL 4. Jamie Adkins 46.25 21.20 25.05 16 San Diego, CA 5. Tony Palomino 42.12 11.82 30.30 11 Gresham, OR 6. Matt Linnell 40.05 16.35 23.70 15 Albuquerque, NM 7. Eric Parkey 37.88 17.58 20.30 13 Krum, TX 8. Jason DePuy 35.65 13.90 21.75 15 Albuquerque, NM 9. Scott Cain 32.90 12.90 20.00 17 Middleton, OH 10. Jonathan Rosenberg 32.24 11.34 20.90 12 Oswego, NY 11. Kenny MacLean 15.90 7.40 8.50 11 Brentwood, TN
Judges: Paul Bachman, Craig Barnes, Brian Dube, Michael Kass, Scott Meltzer, Todd Smith. Timing and scoring: Paul Belanger, Adam Levine.