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The July issue of SGB Sports is available online now at www.sgb-sports.com/digital
See exclusive photos from the first day of buying group Intersport’s Q1 2012 show here
PDC number three signs on with Unicorn, the home of 15 times World Champion Phil Taylor
Boxing champion and dart brand to develop ‘most exciting products ever to hit the world darts market’, available worldwide from May
From the selection of entries we had to the 'Harrows at ISPO' caption competition, the winner was...
If you were near the Harrows Darts stand at ISPO, you may have seen some funny goings on with a chainsaw and a sparkly rabbit mask. Here are the results…
DIY chain joins growing list of big-name sponsors using growing popularity of darts as a means to target core audience
James Wade and Mark Webster sign sponsorship deals with Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles
PDC Unicorn Youth Tour to give young darts players a ‘stepping stone’ to the professional game
Harrows claims its Marathon flights have gained an edge with the development of the F.A.T. model, which is thicker than standard marathon flights, with the thicker material intended for improved durability. The flights are designed for pro players looking for a tighter fit in the shaft, as well as the rigid 90-degree cruciform, with a view to providing better accuracy.
For 2011 all models in Unicorn’s World Champion and Maestro Premier dart ranges will come with a completely new packaging concept. Each model in the Black Titanium, Golden Titanium and Tungsten finishes is packaged in an individual carton complete with a series-matching Midi Wallet. The model illustrated is from Unicorn’s Black Titanium.
Winmau’s World Champion brass darts are hand-finished, and created with the intention of providing a quality entry-level set.
The Buzz Wallet is constructed for high visibility and made from practical, tough, wipe-clean material. The wallet’s interior has three individual dart pockets, two security pouches with zip fastenings, three shaft retention holders, and a purse-style money carrier.
Winmau says these are the finest 90% tungsten alloy darts on the market, and the premium missiles are finished with genuine 24-carat gold plating.
Datadart offers what it describes as a top-quality Repointer, which is hand made to order. The company says this machine provides the perfect solution to renewing dart points, promising fast and accurate results.
Two-time World Champion Ted Hankey, the Count, one of darts’ most popular players, endorses these Winmau darts. They are designed to be smooth and tapered, to Hankey’s preference, weighing in at 14g and available in silver finish or smoked atomised.
RRP: £25.99 (silver); £31.99 (Smoked Atomised)
To help retailers maximise the opportunity in the growing darts market, Harrows has created a new promotional merchandiser intended to give darts a striking in-store presence. Constructed from rigid, corrugated cardboard and complete with hanging hooks, the unit is supplied flat-packed for quick building, and free of charge with a stocking order.
Unicorn’s Eclipse Pro board is designed to maximize averages, with a wiring design and staple-free construction, which incorporates an ultra-slim segmentation system that Unicorn says is 30% thinner than conventional round wire boards. This also means an increased target area, especially in those vital doubles and trebles. The championship bristle board is endorsed by the PDC.
RRP: approximately £38
Orion darts were introduced to give serious players a wider choice of grip, without compromising on quality. This range features laser-engraved 90% tungsten barrels and extra-long points, with a view to boosting close grouping and subsequently, higher scoring. A variety of precision grooves and grips are intended to enable every player to find optimum control and maximum comfort, and the darts come in ringer, smooth or shark barrels.
New for 2011, The Power Phase 5 Rosso takes its shape from the renowned Sigma Pro and grip from Phil Taylor’s Purists. Taylor used the specially developed Phase 5 Rosso with DXM flights to hit two perfect 9-dart 501’s on live television at the PDC Premier League Finals in May 2010.
RRP: approximately £100
The Assassin Plus is Harrows’ evolution of its Assassin series, with classic parallel-style barrels designed for close grouping and maximum scoring opportunities. Originally launched with white barrels in 2009, the range has now expanded to incorporate pink and blue barrels.
Multiple tournament champion Mervyn King endorses these match-weighted tungsten darts. King is known for his consistent, steady style, and these darts are designed to complement his precision. They are available in silver or gold colour finish.
RRP: £25.99 (silver);
Winmau says the Blade 3 is new and improved, making it the world’s most technically advanced dartboard. Blade 3 uses a staple-free system, with a new Hi-Carbon steel blade wiring system designed to reduce bounce-outs and extend the life of the board. The Blade 3 comes with a matt-finished black band, anti-glare number ring, darts booklet and checkout table.
Harrows says that, thanks to its Isostatic Cold Extrusion (ICE) process, its 90% tungsten darts are the world’s most advanced. 90% tungsten powder is mixed with iron, nickel and zinc to create a high density projectile, with each barrel individually machined to create a unique radical shape, boasting reverse-cut grooves designed for extra thrust.
Unicorn claims this dart defies the laws of physics. New super-lightweight magnesium shaft alloys, combined with a Screw-in Zigma Zero D titanium nose cone, are designed to reduce deflections. The new Sigma XL Pro comes with longer finger grip points, Sigma Pro Magnesium side load shafts and Sigma Pro flights. The dart is available in three weights: 21g, 23g, and 25g.
RRP: approximately £100
Darts increasing profile has raised demand for darts products. With a high replacement ratio, as darts wear and tear from impact, new darts products are always in demand, and this gives retailers a chance to develop repeat business.
For over 70 years, Unicorn has been at the forefront of darts technology and development - they recently unveiled innovative new products in all categories and price points, along with the introduction of two new World Champions and a new website. Spearheading the new darts range is World Champion Titanium Black, with an ultra hard grip and superb feel throughout the throw.
With five high-profile World Champions and their dartboards exclusively used at the Lakeside World Professional Championship and the Winmau World Masters - Winmau's has exposure to millions of darts players live on BBC TV and worldwide. Also Winmau's drive to better their tungsten range has helped retailers improve dart sales of their latest World Champions darts ranges: Andy Fordham, Dennis Priestley, Trina Gulliver and Mark Webster, which are amongst the best seller's month in month out. The top product in terms of sales though is the Winmau Blade III which continues to steam-roll ahead with the best sales ever on any single product - which Winmau say, "has even surprised our own manufacturing team!"
Founded in 1974 Datadart is one of the most recognised dart brands anywhere in the world. Datadart prides itself on British manufacturing and it's product range appeals to all players, from players looking for their first set of darts through to the seasoned professionals. Over the years Datadart has supported many top professionals reach the highest levels of darts, most recognisably Jocky Wilson crowned world champion in 1982 and 1989. Currently, Datadart are working closely with top players such as Martin Adams and Gary Anderson. Datadart stocks a large selection of players' darts, including Jocky Wilson, Gary Anderson, Martin Adams, Gary Robson, Darryl Fitton and John Walton to name but a few.
Wayne "Hawaii 501" Mardle is one of the worlds most colourful, charismatic and likeable players. On the PDC Pro Circuit, he has risen to the very top of the sport, winning tournaments worldwide and entertaining his vast fan base along the way. Harrow say, "come 'on board' with Wayne's superb Silver Surfer Darts and ride the crest of a wave - like Hawaii 501 himself!"
The Target Play Slot Lock rings are designed to lock the flight onto a NYLON shaft using its immense gripping power. The ring squeezes the shaft petals preventing flights from falling off - saving the pain of picking up flights off the floor after a throw at the Oche! The aerodynamic contours of the Slot Lock Ring help to deflect dart points so this helps with tight grouping and accuracy. they have also been designed to fit the Target L-Flight, which means they are an ideal replacement for the Target L-Flight and L-Ring - so easy and simple. There are six colours available which are all included in one pack.
For the best part of a century, Unicorn has remained at the epicentre of the sport of darts. It was the company's founder, Frank Lowy (see panel), who initiated the evolution of the crudely constructed pub dart into the aerodynamic, highly technological variety of precision missiles that sell in their millions today. It was Unicorn that dragged professional darts out of the smoke-filled, beer-sodden clubs and transformed the game into a glamorous and exciting spectacle fit for national television in the 1970s, and today, Unicorn remains central to the game at all levels, as is vividly illustrated by the release of its 2010 Book of Darts on July 14.
Frank Lowy emigrated from Hungary to London in the 1920s, where he worked as a patents translator. On a family holiday to Devon, a farmer invited him to the local pub one evening, and across the smoky bar, and above the straw-covered floor, Lowy caught his first glimpse of the game of darts. Typically in the 1920s, darts were constructed from a piece of wood with a shard of lead forced into one end, and a folded piece of paper serving as the flight at the other. No two darts were identical, and they were sold individually from tea chests in markets or hardware stores.
This range of soft-tip darts includes four unique barrel designs (Machete, Kukri, Skinner and Ax) that cater exclusively for different markets