Roman Keycards - Version 1430

The Multi Cues enquiry combines brilliantly when followed up by a Roman Keycard ask (in Blackwood, Minorwood and Voidwood). Both concepts were defined by the world famous Italian Blue team in the 1950s.

In its original Blue Team RKC version the meanings of Steps 1 and 2 were in the reverse order.
After a 4NT Blackwood :
Step 1 (5♣) = 0 or 3 keycards
Step 2 (5♦) = 1 or 4 keycards.

RKC "1430"
However after 1 keycard is shown as 5♦ the follow-up asking bid for the trump Queen would be 5♠ in the case that Hearts is the trump suit.
This commits the Partnership to a 6♥ contract, no matter what the answer will be : positive or negative.

The so-called "1430" RKC version overcomes this problem.
After 4NT Blackwood :
Step 1 (5♣) = 1 or 4 keycards
Step 2 (5♦) = 0 or 3 keycards.

Now, after 1 keycard has been shown by 5♣, the asking bid for the trump Queen can be 5♦, and the negative reply of 5♥ keeps the contract at the 5-level whenever Hearts is the trump suit.

After a reply showing no keycards at all (5♦), it is unlikely that the RKC asker wishes to enquire about the trump Queen.

Bridge players find "1430" easy to remember as it is the points score for a Vulnerable Small Slam contract for a major suit trump contract.

RKC "3014"
Players with a wider range of Keycard asking options, such as 3NT or 2NT after a major trump suit agreement, and Minorwood 4♣ and 4♦ after a minor trump suit agreement, the above problem rarely arrives.
In such case it is perhaps better to use the original RKC ask version ("3014") as this mirrors the basic Blackwood Convention.

© 2017 Michael Furstner