Racquetball: Double Donut Studios | Racquetball Action Photography

Racquetball Videos – 2008 National Singles Championships

Just as I logged in to www.racquetballonline.tv to catch some of the action for the 2008 USA Racquetball Junior Nationals, I noticed that Pablo and Angela have also been hard at work publishing some new content to the Video on Demand section of the site.  If you’ve got some free time, I’d HIGHLY recommend checking out some of the action from the the 2008 USA Racquetball National Singles Championships.  So far, they’ve got the Men’s Finals (Rocky Carson def. Jack Huczek), Men’s Semifinal 1 (Jack Huczek def. Mitch Williams), and Men’s Semifinal 2 (Rocky Carson def. Shane Vanderson).

June 25th, 2008 by Geoff Thomsen

2008 National Singles: Manufacturers’ Booths

The USA Racquetball National Singles Championships has traditionally been title sponsored by Ektelon, so they have been the only manufacturer allowed to to set up a booth showcasing the new season’s products.  The other companies were forced to host suites back at the sponsoring hotel, where sponsored players would congregate to see the new products and enjoy some snacks.  This year, four of the major racquetball equipment manufacturers had booths in the players’ village.  Ektelon, Head, E-Force, and Gearbox were all on-site showing off new products.

Ektelon – I’d say that Ektelon definitely had the largest presence, with their typical huge banners, and tons of products from their entire line (racquets, apparel, etc) both for see and for sale.  As Ektelon brings this setup to all of the major national events, it’s no surprise that they have a fine-tuned event machine.

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Head – A big presence at the US OPEN, it was nice to see Head with a big display at National Singles.  Besides showcasing the forthcoming technology, they also a HUGE display of old racquets to stir up the racquetball memories.  And to keep you always coming back for more, Head also had a TV in the booth running Fran’s instructional DVD’s, and Tennis Channel broadcasts for past US OPEN events.

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Gearbox – Still relatively new on the scene, Gearbox brought a worthy booth to National Singles.  New apparel, as well as some new racquet designs were on display, and the Gearbox staff of Joel Arredondo and Rafael Filippini were always ready to chat about anything racquetball related.

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E-Force – The guys at E-Force kinda got the bum location of all the vendors, way back in the corner of the players’ village.  You kinda missed it when walking in, and by the time you’re leaving the club after a long day, stopping by a booth seemed like the last thing on your mind.  The new racquets looked and felt GREAT, and I think Chris Crowther was all the advertisement they needed.  He was absolutely CRUSHING every single shot of every rally.  Bar-none, he had the most powerful game of anyone at the event.

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June 11th, 2008 by Geoff Thomsen

Photos: 2008 National Singles

The uploading of photos from the 2008 USA Racquetball National Singles Championships is underway!  I’ve got photos up from the Men’s final featuring Rocky Carson and Jack Huczek, as well as the Women’s Semifinal with Kristen Bellows and Rhonda Rajsich (get well, Rhonda!). I’ll keep adding photos over the next several days, and you can either periodically check back at www.doubledonut.com, subscribe to my feed, or follow my updates on Twitter to know when new photos have landed.

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The latest updates are in the 2008 National Singles Photo Gallery.

There were also a few other photographers in Houston taking photos.  Julian Gomez, from 801Creative in Salt Lake City, was helping me with USA Racquetball duties, and Adam (Aaron?) Clark, a local player from Houston, was sharpening his skills with his new camera.  I’ll be in contact with Julian to see if he intends to post anything online, and Adam has already added some photos to the Racquetball Group on Flickr.  As always, the photo situation on the courts at the Houston YMCA is VERY challenging, with low light, dots on the glass, and lights that cycle resulting in color shifts in all the photos (not to mention that racquetball is one of the hardest sports to shoot!).  Hats off to anyone who gets decent shots (of which Adam and Julian both accomplished!!).

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If anyone else at the event has pictures you’d like to share, I’d HIGHLY recommend posting them to www.Flickr.com, and then adding them to the Racquetball Group on Flickr.  In fact, I’d recommend adding ANY racquetball photos to that group so the world can see!!

June 11th, 2008 by Geoff Thomsen

New Racquets from Gearbox

Gearbox made a big splash at this year’s 2008 USA Racquetball National Singles Championships with a large booth showcasing the new frames for 2008-2009.  After some product training from Joel Arredondo and Rafael Filippini, I got a pretty good feel for the new racquets from Gearbox.  Building off the popular Gearbox GB250 (170g), two new frames will debut this season.  They will both feature the same design as the GB250, but will offer two new weights – 165g and 185g.  The GB250 from last year will get a graphics refresh with gold letter replacing the silver versions.  There was a also a pink GB250 (170g, I believe) in the Gearbox booth, but I didn’t get a close-up (manufacturer’s booth photos coming soon).  Rafael was also telling me about his road trips in the Gearbox RV, spreading the good racquetball word across the nation.

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June 9th, 2008 by Geoff Thomsen

Racquetball Photos – 2008 National Singles

Just getting underway chugging through the ~3,200 photos (hmm, am I slacking this year?) from the 2008 USA Racquetball National Singles Championships.  Rather than take forever to process all the shots and then post in a big batch, I’ve decided to post them as they come.  To kick things off, I’d like to introduce Ruben Gonzales and Thomas Fuhrmann in the Men’s US Team Qualifier, round of 32.

Racquetball Photo Gallery: 2008 National Singles

Racquetball Photo Gallery: M32 – Fuhrmann def. Gonzales (13, -7, 9)

Racquetball Photo: Thomas Fuhrmann dives for a shot at National Singles

Racquetball Photo: Thomas Fuhrmann hits under Ruben Gonzales

May 28th, 2008 by Geoff Thomsen

Racquetball Update

Racquetball Tournament in HOUSTON, TXJust wanted to congratulate everyone that went and competed in Houston this past week at the USA Racquetball National Singles Championships.  The US Team Qualifying Divisions were won by Cheryl Gudinas Holmes and Rocky Carson.  They have earned 1 year appointments to the US National Racquetball Team and should be in Ireland later on this summer representing the US at the IRF World Racquetball Championships.

Next up on the indoor circuit will be the Junior Nationals in Concord, CA June 25-29.  Once again, racquetballonline.tv will be there to stream the best matches live to everyone.

The tournament website is:

http://www.r2sports.com/tourney/home.asp?TID=2466

For those of you attending, you can enter online at this site.

As previously mentioned, I will not be there this year, but I will try to keep everyone updated as I receive word from several people that will be there this summer.

That’s all for now.

1 comment May 27th, 2008 by Adam Katz

2008 Racquetball National Singles Players’ Village

Matches really started going off today at the 2008 USA Racquetball National Singles Champs. The village is bustling with activity as people check-in for matches, look over the auction items, and visit the vendors to check out the newest swag.

Racquetball: 2008 National Singles

Racquetball: 2008 National Singles

Racquetball: 2008 National Singles

Racquetball: 2008 National Singles

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Racquetball: 2008 National Singles

Racquetball: 2008 National Singles

Racquetball: 2008 National Singles

Racquetball: 2008 National Singles

Racquetball: 2008 National Singles

2 comments May 22nd, 2008 by Geoff Thomsen

Off to Nationals

Off to Nationals

Little family emergency made for a stressful night/morning, but I’m now at the gate ready to board for Houston. Hopefully Twitter doesn’t have another big outage as I plan to provide frequent updates from the event!

2 comments May 21st, 2008 by Geoff Thomsen

2008 USA Racquetball National Singles Championships – Info

USA Racquetball Time is fast approaching for the 2008 USA Racquetball National Singles Championships.  This is the last big adult national level event of the year, and winners of the National’s Qualifier divisions will be appointed to the USA Racquetball National Team to compete at the 2008 World Racquetball Championships.

Dates: May 21-26th, 2008
Location: Downtown YMCA / Hyatt Regency, Houston, TX
Entry Deadline: WEDNESDAY, MAY 7th

Quick Links:

Evening Events:

  • Wednesday – Party in the Park Bar (Hyatt)
  • Thursday
    • Ladies Night Out! (Hyatt)
    • Retro Bingo and 70′s Costume Contest (bring your best 70s outfit!!) – Sponsored by Aflac
  • Friday – Texas Hold’em Tournament /Head Penn American Idol Contest (Hyatt)
  • Saturday – USA Racquetball Banquet “Celebration: The History of Racquetball” (Hyatt)
  • Sunday – Farewell in the Bar (Hyatt)

update 5/3: added bingo & 70′s costume contest info

May 1st, 2008 by Geoff Thomsen

Photos – 2007 National Singles

I’ve been somewhat tardy in getting things posted this past month, so I won’t let my plans for future 2007 Singles posts delay me from getting the gallery link posted.

Double Donut Gallery – 2007 USA Racquetball National Singles Championships

Due to some time restrictions, I arrived in Houston on Friday night.  I started shooting the Casino Night, and then semifinal matches on Saturday (no quarterfinal pics this year!).

I plan to follow this post with some match re-caps, and also some behind-the-scenes type photos.

Enjoy!

June 15th, 2007 by Geoff Thomsen

Time for National Singles?

It seems just like yesterday that I was watching the incredible Men’s Open Finals match between Jack Huczek and Rocky Carson (Rocky would go on to make the racquetball “trifecta” of winning National Singles, National Doubles, and Outdoor Nationals in the same year).  As much as the “dots” on the court glass irritate me (from a photo standpoint), there is no other event in racquetball geared for “the players”.  Every single day of competition ends with a tournament-wide event.  Poker night, sports night, the Banquet .. no limit Texas Holdem’ in the hotel bar.  Fun, fun, fun.

Well, it’s not too early to start making plans.  Leo Vasquez, Event Media Manager, has already launched an awesome website dedicated to the event.  Check it out here – 2007 USA Racquetball National Singles Championships.

So far, it looks like we’ll have: Live internet radio coverage (no mention of live video at this time); and Online draws from R2 sports.

Check out the and take the survey: Would you like to see the Pros play in a separate division at Nationals?

So far, 66% say YES.

February 28th, 2007 by Geoff Thomsen

2006 National Singles – Venue

Here are some shots of the Dowtown YMCA, which is the venue for the 2006 USA Racquetball National Singles Championships.

View coming down the elevator at the Hyatt:

Tournament Desk (from atop the media platform):

Ektelon and Lawler Sports booths, in the check-in area:

Check-in desk and VIP tent:

Another shot of the tournament desk:

Draws:

Media platform behind the main court:

4 comments June 12th, 2006 by Geoff Thomsen

2006 National Singles Photos – Men’s and Women’s Finals

Men’s Final – Rocky Carson def. Jack Huczek (15-10, 13-15, 11-3)

- Full Double Donut Match Gallery

Women’s Final – Rhonda Rajsich def. Cheryl Gudinas (15-5, 15-8 )

- Full Double Donut Match Gallery

June 10th, 2006 by Geoff Thomsen

2006 National Singles Photos – Men’s Semifinals

MS1 – Jack Huczek def. Shane Vanderson (15-11, 15-1)

- Full Double Donut Gallery 

MS2 – Rocky Carson def. Jason Thoerner (15-4, 15-5)

- Full Double Donut Gallery

June 10th, 2006 by Geoff Thomsen

Photos – Women’s Semifinals – 2006 National Singles

WS1 – Cheryl Gudinas def. Tammy Brown (15-9, 12-15, 11-1)

- Full Double Donut Match Gallery

WS2 – Rhonda Rajsich def. Kristen Walsh (15-7, 11-15, 11-9)

- Full Double Donut Match Gallery

June 10th, 2006 by Geoff Thomsen

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