A decision by the European Commission concerning speed skating is set to have an influence on the world of darts as well. Former Dutch athletes Mark Tuitert and Niels Kerstholt had made an appeal of power abuse against speed skating organization ISU.
The ISU prohibited the speed skaters from partaking in competitions that were not organized by their national organization or the ISU themselves.
Tuitert and Kerstholt stepped up to the European Commission three years ago when the ISU had threatened to give them a life ban if they participated in a lucrative exhibition tournament in Dubai. The speed skaters, who have since retired from their sport, decided to take action and approach the European Commission.
Press bureau ‘Reuters’ has stated that the Dutchmen have won the case as the European Commission decided an organization can not prohibit their players from taking part in events not held by themselves. Within a couple of weeks there will be a definitive decision by the commission.
The result could have consequences for other sports as well, including darts. The ISU will possibly be forced to change their rules, and might also be facing a fine.
Especially darts players will take an interest in the view of the European Commission. Lakeside participants, for example, have to sign a contract which states they have to give up their prize money from the tournament should they enter Q-School, a four day-event where PDC Tour Cards are up for grabs. To add, players with a PDC Tour Card or ones that have entered a PDC televised event (excluding the UK Open), are not allowed to participate in a BDO tournament in the same year.
On the other side, at the PDC, there is also a strict ruling concerning tournaments held by other organizations. PDC-players can not enter a televised or streamed event without permission. The decision by the European commission could make all these rules a thing of the past, giving all players more freedom when it comes to entering events.


Author: Bart Timmer