Derby City Classic
The Derby City Classic is an annual pocket billiard convention held every January at the Horseshoe Southern Indiana casino in Elizabeth, Indiana near Louisville, Kentucky. It is eight days long and offers various disciplines of pocket billiard competitions for pool players of all caliber. It is often referred to as the DCC.
The annual convention has been in existence since 1997. Diamond Billiard Products, manufacturer of Diamond-brand pool tables, the official table of the US Open Nine-ball Championship, is the title sponsor of the event, and the lead tournament promoter is Greg Sullivan. Over $100,000 is to the tournament payouts. Sullivan was inspired to create the DCC by the Johnston City Classic, a former one-pocket tournament held in Johnston City, Illinois and first organized in 1961 with the purpose of bringing America's top pool gamblers together.
During the eight-day-long convention, competition is held consecutively in three major disciplines, bank pool, nine-ball, and one-pocket. According to Sullivan, "I made it where you're a sucker if you didn't enter." All tournaments are "buyback" competitions in which players can buy their way back in after being first eliminated; matches are races to three sets, much shorter than standard matches; and the entry fee for a tournament is less than that for a spectator's ticket. An All-Around Champion title is awarded each year to an individual player who participates in all three disciplines, and is determined by an ascending point scale and high quality of play, with a prize of $25,000.
The late "St. Louis" Louie Roberts, a legendary American player known for an entertaining style of play and high-stakes gambling , is memorialized by the annual Louie Roberts A&E Award, which stands for "action and entertainment". Attendees of the event vote, and the pool player who displays the most action and entertainment a la Roberts each year wins the award and is thereafter granted lifetime free entry to the Derby City Classic, including a free room at the Horseshoe's hotel during the event. The title was awarded by the DCC from 2003 until 2014, and although it continued in 2015 and 2016 (via fans and not associated with the DCC), it officially stopped being awarded in 2017.
There are also smaller age-restricted competitions for under-16, over-21, over-62, and over-70 divisions, as well as a ladies-only tournament held. Pool industry members bring their wares to the DCC and set up vendor booths, providing a billiard expo for attendees. The vendor booths display a large variety of cue sticks, pool paraphernalia, billiard clothing, books, and instructional DVDs.
To commemorate the great one-pocket champions, OnePocket.org, a website dedicated to the pocket billiard game of one-pocket, hosts an annual dinner gala at the Derby City Classic and inducts two people each year into the One Pocket Hall of Fame.
A formerly run by the late Grady Mathews is another attraction, a ten-ball contest which consists of six players who post an entry fee of $3,000, winner take all. This is recorded live and broadcast via the Internet. Shane Van Boening won the January 2008 event.
Added to the event in recent years is a straight pool competition. The competition begins where players are given an assigned number of chances to make a high run. The players with the 8 highest runs will qualify into a single elimination tournament where every match is race-to-125 points.
Players who participate in the nine-ball, nine-ball banks, and one pocket competitions get the chance to win the overall title called "Master of the Table." It is also possible for a player to win the overall title without winning any of the three competitions.
Along with the three competitions mentioned above, two new competitions have been added and are gaining importance. Although the pre-tournament high run trials for the 2018 straight pool event took place, the tournament itself did not due to scheduling conflicts as the players who were to participate were competing in other events.
|Year||Straight pool||Ten-ball (10' table)|
|2013||Max Eberle||Dennis Orcollo|
|2014||Dennis Orcollo||Shane Van Boening|
|2015||Ruslan Chinachov||Shane Van Boening|
|2016||Dennis Orcollo||Jayson Shaw|
|2017||Chris Melling||Jayson Shaw|
|2018||Tournament cancelled||Roberto Gomez|
|2019||Mika Immonen[note 1]||Chang Jung-Lin|
- After making it to finals of this tournament, Mika Immonen was supposed to play the winner of the other semi-finals match between Lee Vann Corteza and Shane Van Boening. But because the other two players were unavailable for their semis match because they were playing at the nine-ball tournament at the time, the straight pool tournament came to an abrupt end, and Immonen became winner by default.
- Hill, David (February 18, 2014). "Can't Knock the Hustle". Grantland.com. Retrieved March 6, 2014.
- Derby City Classic, DerbyCityClassic.com, retrieved 26 May 2018
- Diamond Billiard Products website DiamondBilliards.com, Retrieved 26 May 2018
- "Louie Roberts Award - Final Year - AzBilliards.com". forums.azbilliards.com. Retrieved 2018-05-28.
- "One Pocket Hall of Fame: Celebrating The Legacy of Pool in Action OnePocket.org, Retrieved 24 May 2008
- "Van Boening Wins 10-Ball Ring Game". AZBilliards.com: The A to Z of Billiards and Pool. Avondale, AZ: AZBilliards, Inc. January 5, 2008. pp. "Independent Event" section. Archived from the original on January 7, 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-24.
- "2015 Louie Roberts Award Winner Announcement - AzBilliards.com". forums.azbilliards.com. Retrieved 2018-05-28.
- "The 2016 Louie Roberts Action and Entertainment Award - AzBilliards.com". forums.azbilliards.com. Retrieved 2018-05-28.