GREENVILLE – Greenville, the “Horseshoe Pitching Capital of the World,” will host the 56th annual Ringer Classic this weekend in the Greenville City Park.
Competition is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. Saturday and will continue throughout the weekend. The opening rounds of competition Saturday morning include the juniors, elders, mixed and women’s classes.
The men’s competition will begin at 10 a.m. Sunday. Among the competitors will be defending world champion Alan Francis of Defiance, who has won 20 National Horseshoe Pitchers Association World Tournament Championships since 1989. Francis also is the defending champion of the Ringer Classic, having recorded a 90.0 ringer percentage to win last year’s championship.
Several local competitors also will be among the pitchers this weekend. Austin Hill from Greenville is set to compete in the junior division while Shawnda Dehart from Greenville is scheduled to compete in the women’s division.
Ray Beyke from Greenville, Brett Dehart from Bradford, Delbert Fourman from Arcanum, Larry Fourman from Arcanum, Dan Homan from Greenville and Darke County Horseshoe Club President Brian Fisher are among the local competitors set to compete in the men’s division.
Greenville, which has hosted the National Horseshoe Pitchers Association World Tournament five times, is a worldwide leader in horseshoe pitching. Each year the city hosts the Ringer Classic and the Ohio Horseshoe Pitchers Association state championships, which this year are scheduled for Sept. 3-5 in the Greenville City Park.
Greenville also is home to the Ohio Horseshoe Pitchers Association Hall of Fame, which opened during last year’s Ringer Classic.
Kyle Shaner may be reached at 937-569-4316. Follow me on Twitter @KShanerAdvocate or get updates on Facebook by searching Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com.