Monday, June 21, 2010

2010-2011 IRT Schedule

The International Racquetball Tour (IRT) has put out its tournament schedule for the 2010-2011 season. There are 20 (yes, twenty) main events on it. That is, 20 events that are either Tier 1 or Grand Slam events. This is over 100% more than this past season, when there were 9 events on the schedule.

Thus, the season's pretty jam packed with events. Consider that it begins the second weekend of September and runs through to the end of April (with one more event in May). Over those 34 weeks, there are 20 events. If you knock off a couple of weeks for the year end holidays, it means there will be an IRT main event about 2 out of 3 weekends from September through April. That's a lot of events.

That's going to be quite the grind for the top players who have to be at every main event. Let's see you go through next season undefeated Mr. Waselenchuk!

Some of the events returning events are in Los Angeles, Long Island, N.Y., Sarasota, Fla., St Louis and Tijuana, Mexico. The Terre Haute event is also back, but has been moved from September to January. There are also a few events returning from past years, including those in Kansas City, Seattle, San Diego and Boston.

The big changes in the schedule are a Grand Slam event in Cali, Columbia in September and four events in November and December when there were none last season. The Cali event is interesting, as we believe it's the first IRT main event to occur outside of North America, or event outside of the USA, Canada, and Mexico, so the IRT is going outside its comfort zone, and we applaud them for doing so.

Nonetheless, new events bring uncertainty as to how they are going to go. But Cali was the host city for the 2009 Pan Am Championships and will be the site of the 2013 World Games, so there's an active sports community there that appreciates racquetball.

Now the IRT's schedule has never been as firm as some other sport organizations, so whether these 20 events actually happen remains to be seen. However, it's certainly great to see that this is the plan.

2010-2011 IRT Tournament Calendar
Tier 1 (T1) and Grand Slam (GS) events

September 9-12 GHOST OF GEORGETOWN - Kansas City (T1)
September 15-19 CALI, COLUMBIA - GRAND SLAM - Cali, Columbia (GS)
September 30-OCT 3 SAN DIEGO RACQUET HOUSE IRT Pro/Am - San Diego (T1)
October 20-24 U.S. OPEN - Minneapolis (GS)

November 11-14 ROSE CITY Pro/Am - Portland, Ore. (T1)
November 18-21 CORONA OPEN - Chihuahua, Mexico (T1)
December 9-12 MARKET AMERICA Pro/Am - Greensboro, N.C. (T1)

January 6-9 COAST TO COAST CALIFORNIA OPEN - Los Angeles (T1)
January 13-16 NEW YORK CITY Pro/Am - Long Island, N.Y. (T1)
January 20-23 LAWLER SPORTS Pro/Am - Terre Haute, Ind. (T1)
February 17-20 SEATTLE OPEN - Seattle (T1)

February 24- 27 SAN DIEGO OPEN - San Diego (T1)
March 10-13 FLORIDA SPRING BREAK Pro/Am - Sarasota, Fla. (T1)
March 17-19 SALT LAKE CITY Pro/Am - Salt Lake City (T1)
March 24-27 ST. LOUIS OPEN - St. Louis (T1)

April 7-10 ALISO VIEJO Pro/Am - Aliso Viejo, Calif. (T1)
April 14-17 MEXICO OPEN - Tijuana, Mexico (T1)
April 21-24 BOSTON Pro/Am - Boston (T1)

Follow the bouncing ball....

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