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Grand Prix Q & A
Grand Prix Q & A - what is changing and why.
What’s new? We are introducing the Grand Prix Series!
What is the Grand Prix Series? Besides being NRTs, there will be five tournaments designated with Grand Prix status. Kind of like Grand Slams in tennis or Majors in golf.
What is special about the Grand Prix Series? For the first time outside Nationals, there will be guaranteed points.
Which events are designated as Grand Prix? The Patterson Club Open, Chicago Charities, Duane Hayden/Long Island Women’s Invitational, Midwesterns, and Philadelphia Open.
Are these designations permanent? No. At the end of the season we will re-evaluate and perhaps keep the Grand Prix designation on those same events or not.
What are the pre-ratings for these events? Grand Prix events will have a minimum rating. Rating could also be higher based on player participation.
Is there anything else special about the Grand Prix Series? Yes! All events will be streamed live on the APTA Network and all semifinals and finals will be umpired by APTA certified umpires.
Are there any prizes for teams that do well in the Grand Prix Series? While we are still ironing out all details, and a lot depends on sponsorship support, we will present the “Blanchard Cup” to the men’s team and the "Childress Cup" to the women’s team, winners of the Grand Prix Series. What does that mean? That we will keep a Grand Prix Leaderboard and reward the winners with the Blanchard Cup (named after the co-founder of our sport Fess Blanchard) and Childress Cup (named after multiple national champ Madge Childress Beck), similar to the Wannamaker Cup, Claret Jug, Stanley Cup, etc. awarded in other sports.
Why did we come up with the Grand Prix Series concept? The time has come to make the game more accessible to all players and fans as well as to make it more significant for the top competition. The Grand Prix Series will bring more exposure and will help us to attract sponsors while continuing to expand into new and established platform tennis areas.
Who can play in the Grand Prix? Everyone who is a member of the APTA or buys a temporary membership is invited to play. The Grand Prix tournaments will continue to offer at least three matches for all teams and therefore multiple backdraws. These tournaments are not just for the top ranked teams, but for all who enjoy playing in tournaments.
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions, concerns or have any ideas that could help us as we navigate these new and exciting times. -Max LePivert, Tournament Super Committee Chair