The rural town of Templeton might be receiving an economic shot in the arm this fall. The United States Tennis Association (USTA) has chosen the Templeton Tennis Ranch (TTR) to be the location of the first ever Central Coast Pro Tennis Open (CCPTO). The USTA women’s $60,000 pro-circuit event will run from Sept. 24 to Oct. 1, 2017. The USTA estimates that the event will draw “more than 80 up-and-coming tennis professionals ranked from 100th to 300th in the world,” according to their press release. The pros are expected to bring with them their support teams and families in tow making the number of visitors to reach into the hundreds. Vineyards and restaurants can expect a week-long surge. Needless to say, the Templeton Chamber of Commerce is thrilled with the thought of all those tourist dollars coming to the area, not to mention international recognition. Players from all over the world are expected to compete.
“This is an exciting event showcasing the beautiful Templeton Tennis Ranch facility,” said Sarah Maggelet, CEO of the chamber, “and the community of Templeton as a whole. The Chamber and the local businesses’ look forward to welcoming the USTA.”
Not only is this the first professional tennis tournament for the Central Coast, it is also the first time for Ralph Goehring, proprietor of Templeton Tennis Ranch, to showcase such an event. His goal was always to host a professional tournament.
“The USTA looks for stadium courts and that’s one reason why we put in a stadium court,” said Goehring. Despite his hope coming to fruition, Goehring was hesitant about the event, but the organization offered a time slot that he could not pass up. USTA designs a schedule where and when the tournaments play. Once a spot is designated it is guaranteed annually. Goehring could not take the risk of losing a place that ensures perfect weather conditions on the Central Coast.
“We want to have evening play so that people who work for a living can come out and watch tennis,” said Goehring, “and of course the last week of September, the weather is beautiful.”
The USTA is working closely with TTR to ensure the tournament is a success for the players. Officials measured courts, checked lights and examined the venue to confirm that it meets their requirements. “The USTA is excited to bring professional tennis to California’s Central Coast and to Templeton Tennis Ranch,” Danielle Gooding, senior manager for the USTA Pro Circuit stated in a press release.
CCPTO is one of the many tournaments hosted by USTA throughout the nation. Tennis opens enable players the opportunity to compete on a professional level in tournaments like the Wimbledon and U.S. Open. USTA holds tournaments with the goal to spread enthusiasm for the sport and to bring more American players into the national spotlight.
“The whole goal of the tournament for us is to get people more exposed to tennis,” said Goehring. Each match played allows the competitors to gain points that establish rank in the national realm. The more points acquired the higher the rank. “As you move up in world rankings,” said Goehring, “then you have the opportunity to compete in the bigger tournaments.”
The contest runs for a week beginning with a wildcard tournament with singles finalist receiving a spot in the Qualifier. Sat., Sept. 30 will have a semi-finals match followed by a live concert with food available. The week culminates after a brunch on Sunday with the double final match followed by the singles final. An award ceremony will be held after the final match.
-Photos by Ralph Goehring , Story by Mark Diaz