St. Albert resident was the driving force behind the project to
honour the outstanding accomplishments of individuals who were
instrumental in the growth and development of the sport.
we don’t do something to make sure that these people are
remembered and get what they deserve as far as the accolades that go
with the way they represented the sport then it’s going to go by
the wayside and before you know it they’re going to be forgotten
so that was one of the main reasons that I felt that we needed a
hall of fame for Racquetball Canada,” said McBride, past president
and current member at large on the Racquetball Canada board of
directors after serving four years as president.
noted some individuals have already been nominated for the
International Racquetball Federation Hall of Fame.
president you’re always looking to see how you can improve your
sport. I’ve been playing now for something like 33 years and I’ve
seen an awful lot of good players and I’ve heard stories about
good players before my time and one of them being a young lady named
Heather Stupp, who was quite dominant in her day and a big star at
that time,” McBride said. “Here is a worthy individual that has
represented Canada internationally and I think she’s won the
Canadian championship something like nine times. I just thought some
of these people that are playing now don’t even know who Heather
Stupp was and the same with Lindsay Myers and Sherman Greenfeld.
There are lots of them.”
a spry 79-year-old who still plays at a high level, got the ball
rolling last year and Racquetball Canada gave the hall of fame its
stamp of approval this month.
drew up, I call it the bones of the hall of fame, and then I took a
committee of three, which was myself and Jan Hanson (Racquetball
Canada director of communications and marketing) from Saskatchewan
and Barb May (of St. Albert), who was at that time the executive
director of Racquetball Alberta, and I said OK, have a look at this
and tell me what you think. Make any changes, deletions, additions
and we’ll discuss it, which we did. Then we presented it to the
board. They thought it was a great idea and approved it and now
we’re underway,” said the North American vice-president on the
International Racquetball Federation executive committee.
Racquetball Canada website, www.racquetball.ca,
will serve as the hall of fame location.“It’s
the best place for the racquetball people to see who is in the hall
of fame,” McBride said. “If it ever got to the point where there
was a facility somewhere in Canada that we could apply to include
racquetball in it then that would probably take place and I hope if
that ever happens it happens in my day because I’d be very, very
happy to see that.”The
deadline for nominations is Jan. 31 and the inaugural hall of fame
induction ceremony is May 27 at Brossard, Quebec during Racquetball
Canada’s awards banquet held in conjunction with the national
forms are available through the Racquetball Canada website.
you nominate somebody it asks you all the questions that the
selection committee needs to know to say ‘all right, this person
should be nominated’ or ‘this person is not ready’,” said
McBride, a member of the selection committee. “We’ve got five
people from across the country that will be sitting on the selection
committee to go over the nominations and then see who should be
to six nominees will be selected for induction the first year before
the quota of two athletes and one builder per year becomes the
are so many in the past that are eligible for nomination or should
be nominated so the first year is to kind of catch up,” McBride
said. “It’s not just for racquetball players, it’s for coaches
and it’s for referees and it’s for builders and administrators
so it’s kind of the full gambit.”
task at hand now is to declare the first wave of inductees.
is a criteria obviously, a protocol for nominating somebody, and
they pretty well have to be retired from major tournaments for three
years and stuff like that,” said McBride, who completed the triple
crown of racquetball at age 75 by winning the 75-plus singles’
championship at the U.S. Open in Minnesota, captured the 75-plus
singles’ title at the IRF World Senior Championships and was
victorious in the 70-plus and 75-plus singles at nationals.
are past athletes that have represented Canada so well, not only
nationally but internationally, and that makes it’s really easy.
It’s not going to be too, too difficult to fill the void in the
first couple of years but I would say four, five years down the road
that it will be a little more difficult to make selections.”