The American Padel Tour makes a sensational entry into the world of padel. With almost 350.000 guests affected, it will be necessary to count on the APT from now on whose ambitions are great.
1ages part of the interview with Fabrice Pastor, the President of APT who looks back on this flawless start.
Second part of the interview: HERE.
The American Padel Tour, a circuit with a lot of ambitions?
We have created the most important circuit in America. And I think it could become even the largest in the world.
Our circuit does not oblige players to participate only in our circuit. Our circuit will not penalize anyone if players of the circuit wish to go to another tournament.
There are no restrictions, no fines for players. This circuit is similar to professional sports circuits that can be seen in tennis for example.
In the space of a few weeks, more than 350.000 people were touched by the American padel tour, more than 50 media who spoke about it, more than 2000 people who participated in the Royal Padel games. We have made an unimaginable start.
You seem to oppose the APT to the WPT in its design ...
The American Padel Tour is a circuit for players. It is not linked to a brand of beer, for example. Imagine the problems it can cause in France or elsewhere. It is an obstacle to the development of our sport. Who can say otherwise?
We must diversify partnerships and democratize the padel as much as possible, with at the center of our project: The players.
For example with our partner Aeroméxico which is the national airline of Mexico, all the players of the circuit have 35% reduction on transport. It is a great first in the world of padel.
The APT in a very short time was applauded by many American countries. Ecuador and Panama will soon join us.
And the players responded. The proof with this first Master to launch the first edition of the APT in Mexico. A huge success that even exceeds our expectations. And that's just the beginning.
Next big meeting: Acapulco
Indeed, after Merida direction Acapulco in Mexico from February 24 to 1er March. A very special Master since it will take place at the same time as the biggest Mexican tennis tournament: The ATP 500 from Acapulco.
The padel event will take place on the same site as the tennis event.
In collaboration with the organizers, we will make sure that the tennis events do not take place during the padel events.
10.000 people a day will come to see tennis, but also padel. We will have television, the press and of course the best tennis players in the world on site.
We are waiting on the padel courts Nadal, Wawrinka, kyrgios…
520 press officers are also meeting at the ATP 500. Imagine the impact of such an event in the world of padel.
Georges Marsan, the mayor of Monaco will do us the honor of being present.
The level of play of the APT exceeds the forecasts?
We have nuggets of the world padel at the APT. Players who are even part of the world elite. And they chose to stay in America. Today, the APT offers them a professional circuit which is in full development. In 2021, we are preparing incredible things for you.
For the record, Bela or Paquito told me that fortunately these top players have stayed in the countries, because there is a pool of exceptional padel players in Latin America.
The players who play the APT are not always known to Europeans. These mainly Latin American players do not necessarily have the financial resources to play in Europe. The APT is a second chance for some, but for others, it is even a first choice.
The APT, ultimately wants to become a first choice for all professional players?
From the first year, we offer significant financial endowments that must also be put in perspective with the cost of living on site.
20.000 dollars in Europe is not the same value as 20.000 dollars in Latin America for example.
The idea is to allow these players from South America not to be far from their families and allow them to live from their passion and their professional activity.
Another interesting element: The padel tournaments are grouped by region, by geographic area to make it easier for the players.
In 2021, are there any novelties planned?
We could see new stages like in Las Vagas or in Philadelphia. Nothing is done, but we are working on it.
2021, it is also the implementation of a quality control on all the padel events of the circuit. Indeed, the tests do not belong to the APT but to the owners of the tests. I don't want the padel to belong only to an institution.
I will have 1 to 2 tests however.
We are also setting up training on arbitration. The idea is to have competent and trained referees in the countries of America. Because the APT wants to play a role in developing amateur padel in the countries where it occurs.
And on a financial level?
We are not going to stop there. From next year, I announce that the financial endowments will increase significantly, between 20% and 30% depending on the tests.
On the Open we will be above + 30% and the Masters + 20%.
And then as in tennis, we will set up for 2021 Grand Slam. We should have 4 eventually. We will come back to this soon.
Franck Binisti discovers the padel at the Pyramid Club in 2009 in the Paris region. Since then padel is part of his life. You often see him touring France by going to cover the big French paddle events.