Last Sunday, wine store and grocery owner Mitch Ancona set a new world record in the sport of sabrage in a tent set up in the parking lot of his Ridgefield store. In this lesser known sport, competitors remove the tops from Champagne bottles using only a saber. Ancona shattered the previous record of 32 bottles in one minute, topping 35 bottles in that time.
Ancona lined up a row of Piper Heidseick champagne bottles at a long table, and quickly moved down the row, grasping each bottle with his left hand and topping each bottle with the saber in his right hand. In a couple of instances, the bottle resisted and he needed to take a second blow to remove the top.
The event which ended in a champagne brunch was also a fundraiser for the Ridgefield Library. Ancona and his staff carefully disposed of the bottles and champagne, since it would have contained glass shards, but provided new bottles for the brunch.
Ancona and his official timekeepers from the Wolfpit Running Club and witnesses, including Ridgefield First Selectman Rudy Marconi will submit this record attempt to the international standards body (who does not want their name mentioned) for certification.