Off and Running - Full Steam Ahead
by Pat Webb
Great start everyone. I'd like to thank all my league players new and old for a successful launch of the City Amusement league program this fall. Over 300 players have thrown in just the first few weeks. With eleven leagues running four nights a week you are part of a great dart family and one of the most competitive league systems in the country.
As the weekly grind of league play continues its important to keep challenging yourself and your teammates to improve. Teams whose players are practicing together on a weekly basis seem to somehow find themselves higher in the standings at seasons end. Keeping track of your PPD and MPR weekly is an easy way to see if you're improving. But the key stat that each player should be looking at is your win total. Each player on your team should ideally be at a 25% winning percentage. For example if you've played in 42 games you should have around 11 wins to be pulling your weight for your team.
Using these numbers should help your practice sessions. If you see your 01 average is slightly higher than your Cricket try throwing less at bulls and more Cricket numbers when practicing. Same with your win total. If you're lacking under 25% on your wins more than likely you are not hitting your outs in 01 games. Try practicing more on hitting all the single numbers instead of just throwing count up game after game and thinking you've accomplish something. Bermuda Triangle is a great practice game to put in your routine. It not only moves you around the board at different numbers it adds pressure to not miss.
Try a few of these but the key is to actually practice and improve not only yourself but hopefully your team to the top of the standings.
With that being said its time to look forward to the next few months and what's happening in the world of soft tip darts. We are just coming off a very exciting weekend of action at AE Bottoms Up in Huntington WV. Over $5000.00 in prize money was awarded over the two day event. Players were in from all over the Tri-State area and provided some awesome games and matches. A big thank you goes out from City Amusement and the Bottoms Up owners to all who attended.
On the national scene a unique event is happening at the end of September in Las Vegas. A new company called Dartslive is hosting a stage of their World Tournament. This will no doubt be attended by the top players in the world as there is a $15000.00 first place prize in the singles event! I'll be in attendance as a player and investigating any opportunities this company may provide to improve our league programs. This event will be broadcast live on Ustream so check out Dartslive website for more details.
As things move into October we have a regional Bullshooter event in Hudson, Ohio. This is a good event for better players to match their skills with players from the Midwest region. Top finishers in this event qualify for the World Bullshooter tournament in Chicago over Memorial Day weekend.
I'll bring you up to date on all these events and more in the November/December On Target.
Hometown - Hamlin, WV
DOB - 06/30/74
Darts - Shark Fin 16g by Dart World
Flights- Delta Tri-Fin by Fit Flight
Shafts - Nylon Fit Flight In Between length
Tips - Lippoint long
Years Playing - 20yrs
If you've been playing long at all and been out for a night of darts or tournament action anywhere in the Tri-State area then you've no doubtly come across our spotlight player Rick Scarberry. The giant teddy bear of a guy usually can be heard across any bar room around. He's always looking for a challenger to take on usually followed by a yelp of "whose next". But being one of the most dominant players around Scarbery can usually be found at the top of the tournament charts or just socializing with his "Scarberry fans". He's also undoubtly the king of any dart trick shot and the master of the Hi-Ton out. Whether its beating somebody for five bucks in Cricket from his knees or throwing a dart into a beer bottle twenty feet away Scarberry always provides the fun and stories to tell. But despite his sometimes crazy antics Rick is very good hearted player who loves the game and the comradery of his fellow players.
Rick has been throwing darts for about 20 years now. Like a lot of players, he began just throwing some steel tips occasionally when a board was around or a small tournament. But having great hand-eye coordination and a competive spirit he evolved immediatley onto the soft tip scene as it's popularity exploded. He has attributed his success in darts to countless hours of practice to help with his muscle memory and his continued commitment to local league play. When asked what he liked to do to prepare for league night or a tournament he responded "get there early" with a laugh. He highly recommdend to players to arrive with enough time to get plenty of warm up darts, get used to the lighting and the board. Be ready to preform at your best right from the start.
Rick has played in hundreds of tournaments from local draws to the highest of stages in Las Vegas. His most recent top achievements have been a Level 1 501 Team Championship in 2011, and a first place in the Pro Doubles in the Ohio Bullshooter. In addition, over the years he has won dozens of Team Dart trophies, state tournament titles and local league championships. This year looks to be a huge success too. Participating in three local leagues helps keep his game sharp. So as local league play heats up and the big tournaments begin we will all be looking forward to more first place titles and Scarberry stories to tell..
November/December Player Spolight is on - Hall of Famer and Portsmouth's own
Legendary Dart King Ron Andre
City Dart - On Target - Performance Section
- How Can I Get Good?-
Talking with a lot of players I always get asked "what do I gotta do to be good." And my normal response is always"practice". But a key that I think a lot of players don't do is practice correctly.
I would bet a lot of money that 95% of players practice routine is either at the house or local bar throwing a few games of count up, maybe a cricket match or two and feeling if they hit an occasional good shot that they've really practiced. When in essence a half hour later you couldn't remember one thing you did that you can take to the next league match and apply. So lets try to work on practicing better. Here's a few tips form me and Darts Performance Centre.
1. Work on the part of your game that needs work. Before you start write down three things you'd like to improve on. Then write down a practice routine that you feel will help your weakest points.
2. Whether it be bullseyes, doubling in or out, cricket numbers, whatever it is have a written plan and follow it. Set target goals mentally and performance wise you'd like to achieve each practice session.
3. This may sound dumb but just do it. Put on your whole attire. Whatever shirt you normally wear. Shoes, watch, jewelry everything you normally have on. Have your darts in top shape. Have good flights, shafts and tips ready to go.
4. Try to make the enviroment as similar to your league or tournament conditions as possible. If you play where the juke is cranking then turn some music on. If its dark try to duplicate the lighting.
5. Try to plan your practice when you won't be disturbed. This is always a tough one for me. Turn off the cell and the TV. You can't focus, throw darts watch TV and text at the same time.
6. Do some stretches and throw warm up darts before your practice routine actually begins.
7. Most importantly keep a record of your practice. Everyone loves to look at what they threw in league last night. I'll bet if you had some practice sessions notes to look at you'd be a lot happier the next time you check your league stats.
Give these a try. And remember always Focus- On Target