As explained at the beginning of Section 2.3 and elsewhere in Chapter 2, the methods and results discussed in that chapter apply primarily to weak minima over curves. On the other hand, we illustrated in Section 2.2.1 that ultimately--especially in the context of optimal control--we are more interested in studying stronger notions of local optimality over less regular curves. In the next chapter we will realize this objective with the help of the maximum principle. The present chapter serves as a bridge between calculus of variations and the maximum principle. In this section, we present two results on strong minima over piecewise curves for the Basic Calculus of Variations Problem. In deriving these results we will depart, for the first time, from the familiar family of perturbed curves (2.10). The maximum principle will require a somewhat more advanced technical machinery than what we have seen so far, and we will now start ``warming up" for it. An added benefit is that we will be able to maintain continuity in tracing the historical development of the subject. As we will see, from the maximum principle we will be able to recover the results given here, and more.