The 2015-2016 Race 4 Eight V Preview

Posted on Oct 7 2015 - 11:32am by DV

wwwThe World Players of Handball’s Race 4 Eight tour Powered by ESPN returns for its fifth season, featuring two Pre-Race events, seven regular season and playoff events and the world’s best players competing for more than $200k in prize and bonus money. The Watch ESPN will carry weekend coverage of each of the seven regular season and playoff events, presenting 12 hours of coverage on the “Worldwide Leader in Sports” each weekend. The Race 4 Eight will travel to two new cities on the 2015-2016 Race 4 Eight V tour, while returning to five handball hotbeds during the eight-month season that starts in October and ends in May. Everything you need to know about the upcoming R48 V tour is below!

Don’t forget to peruse the WPH Website (use your tabs) to find info on the schedule, format, rules, prize money, how to enter, dress like the pros and more):

 11148451_10153286779423799_8420835606263973131_n (1)The Race 4 Eight V on ESPN!

 The World Players of Handball is thrilled to announce its partnership with ESPN for the entire Race 4 Eight V season! For the second consecutive season, the Race 4 Eight tour will be broadcast live on the Watch ESPN APP (Here), with each scintillating weekend match showcased on the Worldwide Leader in Sports.

“I truly believe that being on ESPN is the biggest achievement in the history of handball,” explained WPH Executive Director David Vincent. “With average audiences above 125,000 per match and possibly a lot more, just knowing tens of thousands of people are exposed to the game is huge for our sport.”

“ESPN has certainly opened the door for handball and is exactly what we need to grow our sport and take the game to the mainstream media and public consciousness,” revealed WPH R48 top 10 pro Stephen Cooney. “It is then the player’s responsibility to dish out entertaining handball to the masses, which I am sure we can do.”

“We already know handball is one of the most interesting and challenging sports in existence and now ESPN is sharing that with the world,” added WPHR48 IV Qualifier Match of the Year winner Adam Bernhard.

IMG_1614“Anytime you mention ESPN and what it means, the image of ‘this is the best of the best in sports’ emanates,” stated former collegiate All-American Jonathan Iglesias. “If handball is on ESPN, that means the momentum and growth of handball is going to skyrocket. Being on ESPN is one of the best chances handball has to make it big.”

“ESPN has generated more exposure than I could have ever imagined for handball,” stated WPH Outdoor star and R48 Qualifier hopeful Sal Duenas. “Because of the WPH, handball is attracting major sponsors and that will undoubtedly add to the excitement and future of the game.”

“Being on ESPN helps the sport to grow and enables thousands of viewers from around the world to watch,” stated Anthony “The Giant Killer” Selestow.

“ESPN has really helped to raise the profile of our game,” stated 2015 Women’s Race 4 Eight Breakout Star Martina McMahon. “The broadcasts allow my family in Ireland to watch and cheer me on, as well as viewers from around the world.”

cdlThe Cities

The Race 4 Eight V season featured two Pre-Race events in Seattle, WA and Coeur d’Alene, ID, and will feature seven official R48 events in Fountain Valley, Tucson, New Orleans, Houston, New York City, Salt Lake City and Portland, with each illustrious handball town providing R48 players a chance at handball riches and glory.

Seattle, WA: Pre-Race Stop #1 at the Washington Athletic Club (September 12th, 2015): The Washington Athletic Club and the World Players of Handball were thrilled to present the Pre-Race 4 Eight V Kickoff Stop #1 Invitational and Instructional Clinics at the famed Washington Athletic Club. The Washington Athletic Club served as the home of the first two WPH Race 4 Eight Player’s Championships in 2012 and 2013 and was thrilled to host the Pre-Race kickoff event to the Race 4 Eight V season. Sean Lenning dominated a stellar field that featured R48 co-#3 Emmett Peixoto, 2015 WPH Rookie of the Year Daniel Cordova and rising R48 star Erik Torres. Recap here

sgusoCoeur d’Alene, ID: Pre-Race Stop #2 at the Jake Plummer Helluva Handball Bash (October 2nd-4th, 2015): Jake Plummer and family and the World Players of Handball were thrilled to host the seventh installment of the Plummer Family Helluva Handball Bash in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. The Plummer Family Bash is widely considered to be one of the best events in handball, combining spectacular handball with incredible Plummer family hospitality. Recap here

Fountain Valley, CA: The Simple Green U.S. Open of Handball (October 22nd-25th, 2015): The Simple Green U.S. Open hosts the Race 4 Eight for the fifth consecutive season, offering the most single-event prize money of any event on the Race 4 Eight V tour. Known as the Festival of Handball for highlighting 1-Wall, 3-Wall and 4-Wall handball, the U.S. Open is a player and fan favorite, as legends are made and born on the backdrop of the Southern California coastline. Info here

cropped-IMG_0059.jpgTucson, AZ: The Memorial (November 6th-8th, 2015): The home of the World Players of Handball hosts its fourth Race 4 Eight event in five Race 4 Eight seasons at the Tucson Racquet Club. The Tucson Racquet Club is home to three of the top seven R48 pros and four of the top 16, making the TRC one of the most formidable handball clubs in the country. Local fans eagerly await the world’s best handball players, as all players are warmly embraced for their skills and talent. Info here

New Orleans, LA: The Mardis Gras Open (January 22nd-24th, 2015): New Orleans will hosts its first Race 4 Eight event and second WPH pro handball event in seven years. WPH pros traveled to New Orleans for an outstanding WPH pro stop that served as a precursor to the Race 4 Eight in 2009, and will return in 2016 to compete in one of handball’s most fan-friendly facilities, featuring a three-glass wall show court. Expect fireworks as pros will dazzle on the courts by day and enjoy Bourbon Street at night. Info here

Houston preview boiler pic 1Houston, TX: The Texas State Doubles (February 19th-21st, 2015): The WPH returns to Houston’s Tellespsen YMCA for the fourth consecutive year for the fourth event of the 2015-2016 Race 4 Eight V season. WPH close friend and former MLB player and manager Art Howe joined the WPH broadcast in Houston last year, and players were treated to an outstanding welcome dinner by WPH R48 host and sponsor Ron Cole. The Space City will be a pivotal event for the R48 pros as each vies to ascend to the top of the rankings. Info here

New York City, NY: The Bert Kossoff NYAC Invitational (March 11th-13th, 2015): The Race 4 Eight V heads to New York City and the famed New York Athletic Club for the third consecutive year, featuring views from Central Park and midtown Manhattan from the NYAC rooftop. The NYAC is the tour’s most historic venue, connecting handball greats from the past 100 years in one of the country’s most highly regarded athletic clubs. Players and their families are treated to an incredible Saturday night banquet, as well as the best amenities of New York City. Info here

IMG_7341_zpsiohycodtSalt Lake City, UT: The Ace Disposal Aces Classic  (April 15th-17th, 2015): The Aces Classic has been voted the “Player’s Favorite” for its sensational hospitality and willingness to show all of the players a great experience in the Rocky Mountains. Hosting the R48 for the fifth consecutive year, the Ace Team hosts an incredible Saturday evening party and a spectacular venue for watching and playing world-class handball. Info here

Portland, OR: The WPH Player’s Championship & USHA Master Singles (May 5th-8th, 2015): The World Players of Handball will travel to the beautiful Multnomah Athletic Club, home of the 2009 World Championships, for the first time to host the R48 Player’s Championship & USHA Master Doubles. The Multnomah Athletic Club is considered to be one of handball’s best facilities, featuring a two-glass wall show court that can accommodate more than 1,000 fans. Judging by past events at the MAC, no seats will be available for the marquee matches, as the eager handball fans from the Pacific Northwest will be keen to watch the world’s best compete for the most prestigious title on the R48 tour. Entry pending

How much are the pros and directors looking forward to the return stops and the newly added stops in the upcoming Race 4 Eight V?

“I grew up in Oregon, so returning home will be emotionally fulfilling,” revealed Vincent. “Meanwhile, New Orleans is a special place, but people do not realize that the very best marketable/film-able handball court is located at this facility. Great town, but even better facility.  Can’t wait.”

IMG_9905 (2)“It’s great to see New Orleans and Portland added to the Race 4 Eight schedule,” revealed Stephen Cooney. “Bringing one of the oldest games ever invented to New Orleans, one of the oldest cities in America, will be an ideal setting. It will give me a chance to visit the place also as I have never been there. I was back in Portland for the Worlds in 2009, so it would be good to bring back old memories.”

“I’m very excited to see the WPH reviving Louisiana’s rich handball history,” revealed Bernhard. “And I love beignets!”

“I’m very excited about the past and new Race 4 Eight stops,” revealed Iglesias. “The MAC in Portland is…wow. These two new venues and cities are unbelievable. I like the variety of different stops because you don’t know what to expect. Adding new cities and new clubs makes it more worthwhile to attend. If I could only play in two events, I would go to New Orleans and Portland to experience new events.”

“I’ve really enjoyed each of the Race 4 Eight stops in which I have attended and I would love to travel to New Orleans because it’s a new city in which we Irish would not normally see,” stated 2M Martina McMahon. “I’ve been to Portland in 2009 for the World Championships and really enjoyed it. The facilities at the MAC are second to none.”

For information on how to enter each of these Race 4 Eight V events, click Here

10959760_10153146515943799_1999421903680256277_nThe Players

R48 IV Player of the Year Paul Brady won five of his six R48 IV starts, Sean Lenning claimed the R48 Comeback Player of the Year honors and Daniel Cordova claimed the R48 Rookie of the Year. A number of other players turned in impressive Race 4 Eight IV campaigns, including Andy Nett’s run to the NYAC ’15 finals as a qualifier, Daniel Cordova finishing the season at #7 after starting with no ranking, Naty Alvarado advancing to the semifinals of the NYAC ’14 after not starting a R48 event in five months, Catriona Casey remaining unbeaten in WR48 play, and Ciana Ni Churraoin advancing to the final of the WR48 NYAC ’14 in her first WR48 start.

Paul Brady: The undisputed world and R48 #1 decimated the greatest players in the world in his first full season on the R48 tour, outscoring his opponents 650-257, winning all 20 matches in which he completed and claiming five titles. Brady showed no signs of slowing down after a leg injury suffered in April, as he dominated the field to win his 10th USHA Four Wall National Singles Championship in June. Brady clinched his unprecedented fifth consecutive world title in Calgary, a feat that will very well never be matched

cropped-IMG_0424.jpgLuis Moreno: Moreno has been the tour’s most consistent player throughout four Race 4 Eight seasons, remaining inside the top two in the R48 Power Rankings since January of 2012 and collecting nine Race titles in his career. An uncharacteristic slump in the second half of the R48 IV season saw Moreno fail to advance to the finals of the season’s final four events. A dominant victory at the Pre-Race Stop #2 at the Plummer Bash signaled that Moreno is prepared to reassume his position at the top of the rankings

Emmett Peixoto: Peixoto brings unmatched speed and intensity to every match, making each R48 pro earn every point, while strategically and methodically searching for weaknesses and openings. The Handball Pro Emeritus at San Francisco’s Olympic Club, Peixoto advanced to the finals the R48 IV’s Del Grande Dealer Group Olympic Club Stop #4, defeating Luis Moreno in the semifinals and pushing Paul Brady in the final. Peixoto will be a force in the R48 V season, as he always is

sl_clipped_rev_1Sean Lenning: After uncharacteristically struggling through the R48 III season and starting the R48 IV season with losses in round of 16 and round of 8, Lenning rediscovered the form that has made him the game’s most exciting and electrifying player for more than a decade. Lenning advanced to the final in the R48 IV Houston by defeating Luis Moreno for the first time in Race play and ended his season with an emphatic victory at the R48 IV Player’s Championship, earning him the year-end #3 R48 ranking (tied with Peixoto) and R48 Comeback Player of the Year honors. Expect to see Lenning in the top two of the R48 rankings by November of 2015

Mando Ortiz: After an incredible comeback season in the R48 III that saw Ortiz defeat Peixoto, Alvarado, Lenning and Brady, Ortiz stumbled in the first half of the R48 IV season, losing in the quarterfinals of the Simple Green U.S. Open, the round of 16 in Tucson and the quarterfinals in Houston. Ortiz caught fire late in the season, finding his confidence in a competitive loss to Paul Brady in the season’s final regular season event at the NYAC and carrying that confidence into the R48 IV Player’s Championship, advancing to the final with impressive victories over Emmett Peixoto and Luis Moreno. The enigmatic Ortiz is always dangerous and will be a fixture in the late rounds of the R48 V tour

DSC03760David Fink: The fiery lefty has been just one of two R48 pros to have maintained a top 8 R48 ranking since the inception of the tour in 2011 (Moreno), reaching as high as #2 in January of 2013. Fink played his best ball in the second half of the R48 IV season, notching victories over Mando Ortiz in San Francisco and Emmett Peixoto in Salt Lake City

Daniel Cordova: After skipping the Simple Green U.S. Open to start the R48 IV season, Cordova qualified for the first time on the R48 tour in Tucson and continued to accumulate points throughout the season. Cordova advanced to his first quarterfinal in Houston, claiming fifth with a playoff victory over Marcos Chavez and earned his career-best fourth-place finish at the R48 Player’s Championship, securing R48 Rookie of the Year honors. Cordova’s hop serve has established him as one of the best “hop artists” in the game in his first season on tour, as Daniel creates offensive opportunities and points off his dominating serve. As youngest member of the Elite 8, look for Cordova to continue to climb the rankings, perhaps all the way to #1 in the coming years

NYAC Preview Pic 1 NatyNaty Alvarado: Despite multiple attempts to retire from Race play, the thrill of the competition and challenging the best players on the planet continues to lure “El Tigre” back to the tour. Maintaining his fitness and drive to play with the best in his early 40’s, Alvarado shows little signs of slowing down, defeating Mando Ortiz at the Simple Green U.S. Open ’14 and Emmett Peixoto at the NYAC ’15. Alvarado still possesses one of the most explosive “serve-and-shoot” games in the sport, often needing just one or two swings to earn points. Don’t listen to Alvarado’s retirement decrees, as he will be testing the game’s best players for years to come

Stephen Cooney: Moving to New York City and committing to the Race 4 Eight tour full-time in the summer of 2014, Cooney quickly established himself as a force on the R48 tour. A near miss in the round of 16 at the 2013 Simple Green U.S. Open followed by hip surgery only motivated the “Coondogg,” as he quickly rose to the top 10 of the 2014-2015 WPH R48 Power Rankings with victories over Fink, Iglesias, Bernhard, Perez and Selestow. Armed with one of the game’s best re kills and conditioning, Cooney has his sites set on the pinnacle of the R48 tour in the upcoming season

8Robbie McCarthy: Ireland’s top all-around handball star has made the most of his four Race 4 Eight starts since 2011, finishing first, fifth, second, and first. The 2011 Simple Green U.S. Open Champion and 2014 WPH R48 Player’s Champion is one of the most explosive players in the sport, earning the nickname “Buzzsaw” for his ability to decimate draws with his two-handed attack and devastating consistency. Only Paul Brady has been able to defeat the “Buzzsaw” outside of Ireland since January of 2014, with McCarthy picking up victories against Lenning, Moreno, Peixoto and Ortiz at major events

Diarmaid Nash: “D” is one of only three players (Ortiz, McCarthy) to advance to a Race 4 Eight final as a qualifier, proving that he has the fitness and the game to compete against anyone in handball. Nash is known for his speed, anticipation, and crafty shot selection, catching even the top players by surprise with his deft re kills and clever corner kills. With Race victories over Emmett Peixoto, Allan Garner, Martin Mulkerrins, and Jonathan Iglesias, this lefty is a quiet force on the R48 tour

Killian Carroll: Despite making just one start in his Race career, the 22-year old Cork man has grabbed the attention of the handball world. Known for being one of the game’s greatest gentlemen, Carroll owns an undefeated record against Race stars Luis Moreno, Emmett Peixoto, and Andy Nett. A sensational run to the finals of the 2015 World Handball Championships announced Carroll of one of the game’s elite, capable of outlasting and outplaying the best in the sport. Look for Carroll to take his outstanding all-around game to the Race 4 Eight V tour and quickly rise towards the top of the rankings

11150522_10153293143393799_981700593362996095_nCatriona Casey: Casey is the only player to have ever started a Race event and never lost a match. This impressive 22-year old phenom may be the world’s best and most dominant athlete, compiling a 12-0 match record on the WR48 II tour with four titles and an astounding scoring ratio of 4.2:1 during the WR48 IV season. Casey is perhaps the most skilled women’s player in history, possessing no discernable weaknesses, two equally strong hands and the ability to make match-changing adjustments on the biggest stages. Casey plays must-see handball, as her on-court elegance and grace in unmatched in today’s game

Aisling Reilly: Reilly is the 2012 and 2015 Women’s World Singles Champion and the game’s #2 ranked pro. Reilly’s power and finesse is lethal combination, as the Belfast superstar can end rallies from anywhere on the court with either hand. Reilly has not lost to any player other than Catriona Casey in more than two years, while handing Casey consecutive losses in the 2014 and 2015 All Ireland Senior Championships. Reilly nearly defeated her greatest rival in at the WR48 Player’s Championship and the USHA Four Wall Nationals, splitting the first two games and losing the tiebreaker in both encounters. Reilly is one-half of the greatest rivalry in the sport, with the undeniable ability to claim the top spot in the coming season. Reilly played in her third consecutive world championship singles final Calgary, defending her 2012 world championship with a scintillating three-game victory against Casey

11884626_10153596535913799_8908189939132959974_oCiana Ni Churraoin: Ciana Ni Churraoin took the Women’s Race 4 Eight tour by storm, advancing to the final in her first WR48 start at the 2015 NYAC Invitational. Demonstrating the poise of a veteran, CNC eliminated then #2 WR48 star Jessica Gawley and WR48 Breakout Star Martina McMahon en route to the final and became the first woman to win a game in WR48 play against Catriona Casey, rallying from a 7-1 second-game deficit to push the WR48 #1 to the limit. CNC possesses the two-handed power and athleticism to make her one of the game’s top stars for the next two decades

Martina McMahon: McMahon plays one of the smoothest and seemingly effortless brands of handball in the pro game. Never appearing to be rushed or out of position, McMahon unleashes one-inch high kill shots from virtually anywhere on the court with her devastating left hand that is as pretty as it is effective. McMahon ended the WR48 III season with consecutive third-place finishes against the strongest WR48 fields in history.  “2M” will be a player to watch in every event she enters

IMG_7313_zpsy59vtbmyMarcos Chavez: The two-time defending SR48 Player of the Year and SR48 Player’s Champion is a force on not just the SR48 tour, but the R48 tour as well. Playing as well in his early 40’s as he did in his mid 20’s, this crowd-favorite dazzles galleries and frustrates opponents with a mixture of finesse, speed and sneaky power. Chavez will be gunning for his third consecutive SR48 Player of the Year and SR48 Player’s Championship in the upcoming season and judging by his recent play, his rivals will have a difficult assignment in trying to stop him

The R48 V will not only feature the superstars highlighted above, but also the top players from around the globe looking to break into the game’s elite. Expect to see rising stars Stephen Cooney, Luis Cordova, Vic Perez, Jonathan Iglesias, Martin Mulkerrins, and many others knocking down the door to R48 stardom.

Can Anyone Beat a Healthy Paul Brady or Catriona Casey?

Paul Brady has completed dominated men’s handball since winning his first USHA National Four Wall singles Championship in 2005. Brady has lost just two matches in the past 10 years, while winning five World Open Singles titles, 10 USHA Four Wall National Singles Titles, and nine WPH Race 4 Eight Titles. As Brady approaches his mid to late 30s, he appears to be as dominant as he has ever been, routinely dismantling the best players in the game in the game’s biggest events. Brady decimated the fields in every Race 4 Eight IV event in which he completed, winning his first five starts with astounding ease and assuming the number one R48 ranking.

At just 22 years of age, Catriona Casey is quickly establishing herself as one of the greatest female players to ever play the sport. Alongside her contemporary and rival Aisling Reilly, Casey and Reilly have appeared in every major Women’s Final since the start of 2013 in the U.S. and Ireland. Casey is the only player to have ever started a Race event and never lost a match, winning all seven Women’s Race 4 Eight events held since the start of the WR48 in 2014, including two Simple Green U.S. Opens and two WPH WR48 Player’s Championships. Casey plays with ruthless precision, making each of her opponents earn every point, a daunting task for even the best women’s players in the game.

pbcc2Is there anything that any of today’s stars can do to stop Brady and Casey from sweeping another Race 4 Eight season?

“There are players that could beat Paul, but that person has to get over the mental edge that Paul has laid over the land,” stated ESPN lead play-by-play analyst David Vincent.

“It’s extremely unlikely that we’ll see Paul Brady lose next season,” stated a pragmatic Adam Bernhard. “In 2015, Brady appeared to be as good or even better than before. Amongst the guys that can push him, two things would probably have to (somehow) change: the ability to successfully and consistently return his “A” serve; and being fit enough to withstand the pressure that Brady applies during every rally.”

“I believe that Sean Lenning has the best chance to beat Paul in the upcoming season, based on how well Sean has been playing,” stated Lenning’s 3-Wall and 4-Wall doubles partner Marcos Chavez.

“I believe Paul could be beat next season because players like Luis, Sean, and Emmett have understood that it requires a higher level of training, nutrition, and overall wellness to dethrone him,” stated WPH R48 #12 Jonathan Iglesias. “The training regimen is being changed by all of the top players and that is going to make a difference.”

“Catriona is a very good player,” revealed Martina McMahon. “She is so consistent and has few weaknesses. To beat her, you have to try to match her consistency 100%.”

“Perhaps Catriona’s greatest strength is the ability to make mid-match adjustments,” stated ESPN lead broadcast analyst David Fink. “To beat Catriona, a player must execute all of the shots, but also be adjusting to Catriona’s adjustments throughout the match. Playing Catriona is truly a chess match, and to beat her requires the highest level of concentration and execution.”

To watch Paul Brady- Losing is Not an Option courtesy of the GAA, click Here

cropped-IMG_7287.jpgThe Preparation

Hundreds of hours go into every Race 4 Eight ESPN broadcast, with WPH staffers preparing videos, previews, filming, announcing, editing, setting up and breaking down equipment, traveling, writing, researching and so much more. WPH Team Captain and Executive Director David Vincent orchestrates the traveling circus of highly trained professionals and manages the ambitious operation. “A lot of people don’t realize just how much goes into each of these broadcasts. An NFL or college football broadcast has more than 70 full-time staffers working the cameras alone. We have four people at these events doing the job of 80 people and working close to 20 hours per day. We are very lucky to have the most passionate and qualified group in the business.”

Not only do WPH staffers endlessly prepare for each Race 4 Eight event, the players are also logging hundreds of training hours to showcase handball in the greatest light for the world to see. Despite not making the guaranteed $100 million contracts that athletes garner in baseball, basketball or football, handball players train with the same intensity and desire.

“Getting my mind and body ready for the season requires a lot of planning and preparation,” revealed WPH R48 #9 pro Stephen Cooney, who moved from Ireland to New York City to have the opportunity to compete on the R48 tour. “I won’t go into details as I like to keep some secrets but I will be giving myself every chance to bring my best game to the tour.”

“During the off-season I have focused on dynamic weight training and agility workouts to improve my lower body strength and endurance,” revealed Harvard-educated Austin-based attorney and top 25 R48 pro Adam “Weekend at Bernie’s” Bernhard. “In the court, I’ve been working on new shots and adding a bit more offense to my game.

“I am focusing on my overall wellness and fitness and setting goals,” revealed world-traveler and top 20 R48 pro Jonathan Iglesias. “I’ve spent time in Tucson, New York and anywhere top games can be found to play against the best to be prepared for the upcoming season.”

“As I’ve always done, I’ll spend as much time in the court as possible to be prepared for the upcoming Race season,” stated one of the WR48’s breakout stars and fan-favorite Martina McMahon. “I play good challenge games against the Senior (elite) men’s players in Ireland and that really gets me ready!”

BoBJunior Clinics at Race 4 Eight Events

Junior WPH has hosted more than 600 junior handball clinics per year since 2013, with WPH Certified Instructors hosting clinics at athletics clubs, YMCA’s, schools, colleges, summer camps, and handball tournaments. Many of the Race 4 Eight events have also included exciting junior handball initiatives, as juniors attending the Race 4 Eight events having the opportunity to learn from the best handball coaches and players in the world.

The World Players of Handball will proudly continue its tradition of inspiring the next generation of players at Race 4 Eight events, as WPH Certified Coaches and WPH R48 Pros will teach clinics for junior players between matches at Race 4 Eight stops. “We are extremely proud of the commitment our coaches and pros have made to introducing and teaching the next generation of players at Race stops,” declared WPH Youth Donor and Development Director David Fink. “Race events provide opportunities for new players to not only watch the best players in the world from the front row, but also to share the court with the greats of the game in structured and fun clinics.”

The Pre-Race Plummer Bash featured an exciting clinic with NFL legend Jake Plummer, with the local Coeur d’Alene press covering the clinic for seven new players under the age of 10. The Tucson Race 4 Eight Memorial will feature the Battle of the Border II team competition rematch between Junior WPH Juarez and the Fred Lewis Foundation, as well as junior tournament divisions starting with nine-and-under. The Tucson R48 Memorial will also feature a junior clinic and target-hitting competition. Junior WPH is very excited to host clinics at the upcoming 2016 Race 4 Eight V stops, giving young people the opportunity to learn and develop skills to make the game more fun.

wfrThe Rules

Many of the rules from the Race 4 Eight IV will season will remain intact, as all Qualifier and Playoff matches will be one game matches to 25, win by two, with the three-minute halftime starting when the first player reaches 15, and all main draw matches best of three, all games to 15, win by two in each game. Players will be granted three 60-second timeouts in the one game to 25-point format and two full timeouts per game (60 seconds) and one 30-second per game in the best of three- game format. The R48 will play with the WPH R48 ball, with the WR48 using the USHA Red 21.

The Race 4 Eight V R48Pro season will feature a slightly different rankings system, as five of the best seven events will count towards the R48Pro rankings. “We feel that by taking a player’s best five of seven events that we will be able to better identify the world’s best players,” revealed WPH Executive Director David Vincent. “We realize that there are a lot of great players from North America and Ireland that cannot travel to every event and we want those players to have the opportunity to be ranked among the elite if their performances dictate so, even if they have to miss a few events.”

The WR48 and SR48 will include not only WR48 and SR48 play, but also the major events throughout the year, to include the USHA Four Wall Nationals, the 2015 World Championships in Calgary, the USHA Master Nationals and the USHA Women’s Classic.

To view the full WPH rule-book, click Here

To view the Race 4 Eight Rankings:

R48Pro: Here

WR48Pro: Here

SR48Pro: Here

To view the History of R48 Champions, click Here

To Purchase WPH Gear, click Here

by, David Fink, WPH Senior Writer

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