Pickleball Magazine 2-3 - Page 59

FROM THE USAPA USAPA Approves New Tournament Sanctioning Option BY CHRISTINE BARKSDALE, MANAGING DIRECTOR OF COMPETITION FOR USAPA A s the growth of pickleball continues to surge, the number of tournaments nationwide is growing at a record pace as well. In an effort to encourage more tourna- ment directors to sanction their events, USAPA is pleased to announce a new sanctioning option that will be available starting later this year. This new option offers a one-year waiver for tournaments working to develop the much- needed referee base without having to fulfill the require- ment to have each match refereed. Under this option, tournament directors will be encour- aged to schedule referees for each match, however they will only be required to provide referees for medal matches and the round leading up to the bronze medal match. If a round-robin is being played, referees will be required for all matches. All matches played will be eligible for the new USAPA Ratings System, which is also scheduled for release later this year. “As tournament play expands, we want as many as pos- sible running as sanctioned,” said USAPA Director of Com- petition Christine Barksdale. “Sanctioned tournaments offer consistency in play and ensures that official rules and equipment specifications are followed.” To this point, all USAPA-sanctioned tournaments have had referees for all matches. The new option is not a departure from this requirement but is rather intended as a “test-drive” opportunity for new tournaments. “We know the referee requirement for sanctioned play can be a challenge,” said USAPA President David Jordan. “This is an effort to ease the process and allow tournaments an op- portunity to understand the process and determine how to build and improve for the following year.” Some of the benefits of USAPA sanctioning include: • USAPA General Liability Policy and Participant Acci- dent Policy that provides the required liability coverage for all USAPA-sanctioned tournaments in the U.S. and Canada • USAPA members receive secondary accident insur- ance up to $25,000 for medical expenses with a $1,000 deductible, for injuries incurred while playing in a sanctioned tournament • All matches played under sanctioning count toward players’ ranking under the new tournament player rat- ing system • Use of the USAPA sanctioned logo in all event media • Free listing/advertisement on the USAPA Tournament Calendar • Free inclusion on the “Upcoming USAPA-Sanctioned Tournaments” list in Pickleball Magazine (new) • Eligible to have a portion of the event streamed on the USAPA Facebook page (new) All of the above for only $50-$125 (depending on the sanction tier).  • FIREMEN AND PICKLEBALL - A PERFECT MIX BY MARLENE BERWALD Surprise Pickleball Association held its first Charity Fireman Pickleball Tournament on November 19, 2016. We gave each player a nickname pertaining to the ir job. They each played each other once. We also had a certified ref at the games. Kindling Kevin got the bragging rights to say he won the $2,000 that was donated by SPA to a charity of its choice. These firefighters had plenty of time to practice at their firehouse before the tournament. More tournaments are in the planning!  • MAY/JUNE 2017 | MAGAZINE 57