Now that the Professional Darts Corporations (PDC) Las Vegas Desert Classic darts tournament has come to a close and its inaugural champions -- Americans Ray Carver and Carolyn Mars -- have been crowned, it's time to wrap up this little series of reports and return to real life.
But first I need to correct some misinformation that I have inadvertently promulgated over the course of the past week. The fact is I was drunk (on SIX DOLLAR beers that came in PLASTIC bottles) pretty much one hundred percent of the time. Not that this is an excuse. However, this has enabled me to better understand just exactly how someone could loose their underwear, right off of their body, and not technically be aware of it.
Unfortunately, the first bit of misinformation I must set straight is in the very first paragraph above.
Although Carver tied with Paul Lim to place highest among the American men participating in the shoot (and will travel to England at the end of the year as the wild card entry in the PDC 2003 World Championship) he did not actually win the Men's 501. It was Phil Taylor, with an awesome 104 points per three dart average (meaning that every time he threw a ton he HURT his average), who wowed the crowd to defeat Ronnie Baxter and take home the $20,000 top prize. Of course, Uncle Sam took a thirty percent cut because he can't throw darts worth crap to earn a living himself.
On the ladies side, despite jumping off to a one set lead, Mars ultimately went down two sets to one to the former world ranked number one, England's Deta Hedman. Mars did her fans proud though and was extremely gracious in defeat, congratulating Hedman and then, in numerous interviews, complimenting her opponent as the "best shooting potato head I've ever come up against."
Speaking of potato heads, let me also -- once and for all -- assure the esteemed new leader of the American Darts Organization (ADO), Mr. Bickie, that when I wrote the phrase "potato head" and said it was a "direct quote" I did not mean to imply that it was one of his minions on the ADO Board who used such dastardly terminology to refer to our British brethren.
It turns out Mr. Bickie does more than just steer the ADO to greatness. He is also a professor in the Department of Pathology at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston. And an expert in his field. It is therefore, with all due respect that I recommend to Mr. Bickie that he undertake to have the appropriate surgery performed on that portion of the brain that differentiates between reality and bullshit. Apparently there's a pathogen of some sort wiggling around inside of his.
A few other corrections:
Now that we have all that settled, I have just one last breath of a message left in me about this whole Desert Classic thing.
As everybody knows, some controversy surrounded this British invasion. For various reasons some people just did not attend. Fair enough.
Those that did not attend missed an incredibly well run tournament and a simply awesome display of darts talent. Not a single American I spoke with over the course of the week indicated anything less than their enthusiastic intent to return next year, if there is an event next year, and do it all again.
So I encourage those who did attend to fan out across American and share their experience with those who didn't .
To the extent there are any doubters left it is important lay the doubting to rest.
That's because this was GREAT for darts.
And that's because Barry Hearn and Tim Darby and Phil Jones and Dick Allix and Gayle Farmer and Russ Bray and Bruce Spendley and Fred Williams and, yep, even Tommy Cox ARE COMMITTED to an encore next year.
It would be a shame if anybody missed it.
From the Field,