This concept was devised and developed by Mr. Leslie C. Bart. The original Bart conventional method was devised to distinguish between a 5-card or 6-card Heart suit after a forcing 1 No Trump response. The concept of the Bart convention is an artificial forcing 2 Diamonds bid used in the following sequence.

Short Biography

Note: Mr. Leslie C. Bart was born in the year 1947 and is of Olney and Potomac, Maryland, United States, presently of Bradenton, Florida, United States. He is married to Mrs. Gloria Bart. As a partnership they won the 2010 North American championship with their win in the Leventritt Silver Ribbon Pairs. His bridge playing skills have resulted in winning various regional tournaments, the Fall Life Master Men's Pairs in 1972, the Mid-Atlantic Summer Open Pairs in 1974, among others.

Mr. Leslie C. Bart also placed first in the Life Master Open Pairs in the year 1972, which was formerly the Life Master Men's Pairs. The tournament is also known as the Nail Life Master Pairs. His partner was Marc S. Jacobus.

Note: In The Bridge World magazine, Volume 71, Number 10, published July 2000, Mr. Marshall E. Schwartz authors a version of Extended Bart.

Original Concept

According to the partnership agreement, the following bidding sequence shows various shapes, many of which include a 5-card Heart suit. If this is the partnership agreement, then the opener will make this assumption. The opener will then bid 2 Hearts with only a doubleton.

Opener   Responder   Meaning
1       Promises opening values and at least a 5-card Spade suit.
    1 NT   The agreement is that this first response is one-round forcing.
2       Natural. (Note: In some agreements the rebid by the opener is to bid the better second suit even though it may be only of 3-card length.)
    2   The Bart convention is triggered by an artificial forcing 2 Diamonds rebid by the responder.
     

General Scheme of Second Responses by Mr. Larry Cohen

The following natural continuances have been suggested by Mr. Larry Cohen on his website. They are included to complete and complement the Bart conventional method. They have also been only repeated on this site for preservation and archival purposes for future reference

Mr. Larry Cohen employs the following bidding sequence, by which the partnership agreement is assumed forcing for one round, or at least semi-forcing.

West   North   East   South   Meaning
1   Pass           Shows opening values and at least a 5-card Spade suit.
        1NT   Pass   Per agreement considered either forcing for one round or semi-forcing.
2   Pass           After the responder has forced the opener to make a rebid, then the responder continues to describe more accurately his holding.
        2       This continuance initiates the Bart conventional method.
        2       Natural, showing weak values.
        2       Natural, showing weak values. Mr. Larry Cohen adds that this rebid by the responder is either a very weak 3-card raise, or more normally a 2-card preference, and about 6-9 high card points.
        2NT       Natural.
        3       Natural. Mr. Larry Cohen describes the raise of opener's second forced suit as more of a courtesy raise. With a better holding he suggests starting with a rebid of 2.
        3       Natural, to play.
        3       Natural. Showing stronger values than a weak 2 rebid.
        3       This is a 3-card limit raise.
        3NT       Natural.

Note: Mr. Larry Cohen, in presenting a basic summary of the Bart conventional method of continuances, reference to a variation designated as Lisa - a Simpsons reference.

Note: There are several versions, modified and varied, regarding the continuances, which are encouraging, limiting, or forcing. These modifications are considered individual partnership understandings.

Short Summary of Rebids by Opener Following the Initiation of Bart

A survey for continuances was compiled by Mr. Steve Moese following a 2 Diamond rebid by the responder. This compilation is comprehensive and all-inclusive and we refer visitors to these web pages.

The bidding sequence is:

Opener   Responder   Meaning
1   1 NT    
2   2   This continuance initiates the Bart conventional method.
Rebid   Points   Spades   Hearts   Other   Meaning
2   12-14   5   3+       Shows only 3 or more Hearts, but the opener may have only 2 Hearts.
2   12-17   5+   0-2       Shows 0-1 Hearts; sometimes this rebid shows only 2 Hearts.
2 NT   15-17   5   2       The general pattern is assumed to be 5-2-3-3.
3   12-14   5+   0-2   5+   Shows a 5-5 minimum pattern. No interest in Hearts.
3   12-14   5+   0-2   5+   Shows a 5-5 minimum pattern. No interest in Hearts.
3   15-17   5+   3+       This rebid is game invitational.
3   15-17   15-17   6+       This rebid is game invitational.
3 NT   15-17   7+   0-2       This can be either a Gambling 3NT or it may show a solid Spade suit: AKQJ.
4   15-17   5+   3+   5+   This is a Splinter rebid showing a void.
4   15-17   5+   3+   5+   This is a Splinter rebid showing a void.
4   15-17   5+   3+       Promises a Minor suit singleton such as 5-4-3-1 or 5-4-1-3 or more distribution.
4   12-17   7+   0-2       Shows a holding opposite a 3-card limit raise and a distributional pattern.

The Five Hand Patterns

The five hand patterns are based on the described guidelines as presented above. All continuances are also based on these parameters. The following hand patterns illustrate the employment of the Bart conventional method following the forcing 2 Diamonds rebid by the responder.

1. The responder holds a 5-card Heart suit and a 2-card Spade suit and approximately 8-10 points. The responder plans to pass after any rebid by the opener. The options of the opener are also shown in the following example.
Opener   Responder
1   1 NT
2   2
   
105
KJ974
Q105
J84
Continuances
2   Pass
2   Pass
     
2. The responder holds a doubleton Spade honor with 9-11 high card points. The responder will correct a rebid by the opener of 2 Hearts to 2 Spades, pass a rebid of 2 Spades, or raise a 2 No Trump rebid to 3 No Trump. The options of the opener are also shown in the example.
Opener   Responder
1   1 NT
2   2
   
K6
AJ84
1097
Q854
Continuances
2   2
2   Pass
2 NT   3 NT
     
3. The responder holds a game invitational hand with a good to excellent Diamond suit. The responder, over any rebid by the opener, will bid 3 Diamonds to clarify.
Opener   Responder
1   1 NT
2   2
   
74
Q95
AKJ986
93
Continuances
2   3
     
4. The responder promises a good 4-card or 5-card Club suit raise and approximately 10-11 points. The responder, over any rebid by the opener, will bid 3 Clubs. The options of the opener are also shown in the example.
Opener   Responder
1   1 NT
2   2
   
9
AJ5
J862
KQ1095
Continuances
2   3
     
5. The responder, over any rebid by the opener, will rebid 2 No Trump with a 4-card Club suit support and approximately 10-11 points. The options of the opener are also shown in the example.
Opener   Responder
1   1 NT
2   2
   
87
AQ6
Q984
K1093
Continuances
2   2 NT
2   2 NT
2 NT   3 NT

Immediate bids of 2 Spades or 3 Clubs by responder are similar but weaker.

Many professional bridge players have different opinions about the Bart conventional approach for such holdings. Below is a portion of the interview conducted by bridgematters.com with Mr. Chip Martel. The excerpt is directly quoted from this interview.

Chip Martel: I think Bart is useful, since 2 conveniently shows 5 or 6 hearts, or a good club raise, or a constructive hand with a doubleton spade. That’s a pretty large gain compared to the long diamond hand that a 2 bid would normally show. There is a downside. Playing standard and holding 1-4-5-3, an awkward shape, you can rebid 2 hoping that partner, with 5-3-1-4, will then bid 2. Playing Bart with these shapes, you are sort of locked into passing. That means on some hands you can end up playing in a 3-3 club fit instead of a 5-3 diamond fit. (End quoted text.)

 

 

If you wish to include this feature, or any other feature, of the game of bridge in your partnership agreement, then please make certain that the concept is understood by both partners. Be aware whether or not the feature is alertable or not and whether an announcement should or must be made. Check with the governing body and/or the bridge district and/or the bridge unit prior to the game to establish the guidelines applied. Please include the particular feature on your convention card in order that your opponents are also aware of this feature during the bidding process, since this information must be made known to them according to the Laws of Duplicate Contract Bridge. We do not always include the procedure regarding Alerts and/or Announcements, since these regulations are changed and revised during time by the governing body. It is our intention only to present the information as concisely and as accurately as possible.

 


     
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