Court Pace Index: Tennis court speeds

#1
This is a thread about court speeds and not the overall conditions, which is impacted by various other factors such as how hairy the balls are and how hot and sweaty the weather is and such.








There are indications that there has been a very sudden and quite big change of the court speed at the Paris Masters and the World Tour Finals in London from 2015 to 2016.
 
Last edited:
#3
Funny. Miami seems a lot slower than IW and Cinci seems a lot faster than Canada (both Toronto and Montreal)
I forgot to mention, this is just about the court speed. Although tests presumably still are impacted by conditions outside of strictly the court, it cannot fully account for the typical weather conditions that a tournament will be subject to, nor the balls themselves.

Point being that this is a thread about surface speed rather than the overall conditions. The conditions at Miami might be slower because of the humidity that generally plagues the event.
 
#6
27,3 for IW this year is just preposteros. That shouldn't even be considered a HC anymore. The more surprising how Fed dispatched Nadal so easily.
Honestly I like this change. Hear me out.

I think it would be good to have at least 1 really slow HC tournament, though maybe that should be Miami instead of IW - dunno. Then along with that it's good to have some medium paced and fast-medium paced HC. What we need is a legit fast HC big event. Now, why I like the change in combination with speeding up of Paris and London is that it creates greater variance of conditions at both ends and a better spread within the boundaries (albeit the top end isn't actually changed because Shanghai remains the fastest, so one of those events needs to officially hit the "fast" category). On top of this, I'd like grass to be a bit quicker and at that point I think we'd have a more or less perfectly balanced tour in terms of available conditions.

There's more I'd like to see happen, such as an even longer grass-court season and a grass-court Masters. Then things would become truly balanced.
 
#9
Madrid it's said the conditions are quicker because of altitude, yet it's rated slower than Monte Carlo which we know from watching Monte Carlo is slower.
Yes, this is a thread about court speeds (Court Pace Index: Tennis court speeds). Miami is probably slower than IW despite the court pace index ratings.
 
#10
Madrid it's said the conditions are quicker because of altitude, yet it's rated slower than Monte Carlo which we know from watching Monte Carlo is slower.
Yeah altitude and/or how the ball flies thru the air (IW low altitude but ball flies relatively due to desert) also affects how they play.

Miami definitely plays slower than IW.

Monte Carlo is clearly effectively the slowest tournament on tour.
 
#11
Yeah altitude and/or how the ball flies thru the air (IW low altitude but ball flies relatively due to desert) also affects how they play.

Miami definitely plays slower than IW.

Monte Carlo is clearly effectively the slowest tournament on tour.
Also the balls since they vary from tournament to tournament. We all know Melbourne the "conditions" seemed quicker because it was said they were using different balls than past years.

Federer playing the other day against Nadal made it look like medium hardcourt since the night conditions at Indian Wells are far different than the ones like today when he played Sock.
 
#12
Yes, this is a thread about court speeds (Court Pace Index: Tennis court speeds). Miami is probably slower than IW despite the court pace index ratings.
No I understand, but people that think Indian Wells conditions are slower than Miami need to get checked. As Iv'e said here like 10 times in the last week, Indian Wells is dry heat in the desert, Miami is full of humidity so the court is stickier and the conditions are slower. Makes perfect sense since it segues right into clay season.

The chart shows Madrid to be rated slower when anyone here who's been watching tennis for a while can tell you Madrid play is not slower than say Monte Carlo.
 
#13
Rob Koenig mentioned in the Fedal match that the index AFTER factoring into conditions were 49 for RLA and 29 for IW (have to rewatch to check though).
 
#14
No I understand, but people that think Indian Wells conditions are slower than Miami need to get checked. As Iv'e said here like 10 times in the last week, Indian Wells is dry heat in the desert, Miami is full of humidity so the court is stickier and the conditions are slower. Makes perfect sense since it segues right into clay season.

The chart shows Madrid to be rated slower when anyone here who's been watching tennis for a while can tell you Madrid play is not slower than say Monte Carlo.
The chart shows the court pace to be slower I'm guessing because it was in that year. The overall conditions at Madrid play faster than at Monte Carlo, however. Miami is typically regarded as the HC Masters event which plays the slowest. Apparently, it having a slightly faster court speed isn't enough to counteract the weather conditions that typically impact the event. I don't know if the balls used there are different to IW but even if they are the same, the weather conditions probably have a significant impact on how the balls age and fluff and on how much moisture they retain. The surface speed/pace is one aspect of the overall conditions at a tennis event.

On a fundamental and theoretical level, if a clay and grass event have exactly the same court pace index rating, have exactly the same weather conditions and use exactly the same balls, the clay event is still going to play substantially slower (because the balls pick up more rubbish) and the surface still inherently demands different technique, especially for movement.
 
#16
Wow well if adjusted for conditions then 49 would have been higher than USO and definitely higher than any hardcourt event this year.

For relativty sakes, if IW is 29 after adjustments, then Miami has to be about 25-27. It plays just that slow.
 
#17
The chart shows the court pace to be slower I'm guessing because it was in that year. The overall conditions at Madrid play faster than at Monte Carlo, however. Miami is typically regarded as the HC Masters event which plays the slowest. Apparently, it having a slightly faster court speed isn't enough to counteract the weather conditions that typically impact the event. I don't know if the balls used there are different to IW but even if they are the same, the weather conditions probably have a significant impact on how the balls age and fluff and on how much moisture they retain. The surface speed/pace is one aspect of the overall conditions at a tennis event.

On a fundamental and theoretical level, if a clay and grass event have exactly the same court pace index rating, have exactly the same weather conditions and use exactly the same balls, the clay event is still going to play substantially slower and the surface still demands different technique, especially for movement.
Nah it's because the court in Madrid is very slow in a vacuum but the altitude makes the ball fly and effectively play fast for a clay court
 
#19
The chart shows the court pace to be slower I'm guessing because it was in that year. The overall conditions at Madrid play faster than at Monte Carlo, however. Miami is typically regarded as the HC Masters event which plays the slowest. Apparently, it having a slightly faster court speed isn't enough to counteract the weather conditions that typically impact the event. I don't know if the balls used there are different to IW but even if they are the same, the weather conditions probably have a significant impact on how the balls age and fluff and on how much moisture they retain. The surface speed/pace is one aspect of the overall conditions at a tennis event.

On a fundamental and theoretical level, if a clay and grass event have exactly the same court pace index rating, have exactly the same weather conditions and use exactly the same balls, the clay event is still going to play substantially slower (because the balls pick up more rubbish) and the surface still inherently demands different technique, especially for movement.
I agree completely.

I think the tour is designed so everything transitions...

Year starts in theory medium hardcourt (Dubai is somewhat of an outlier here). It slows down to slow hard court with Indian Wells then slowest hard court with Miami. Then slowest clay in Monte Carlo, to fast clay in Madrid, to medium-slow clay in Rome to medium clay in RG (or you can flip with Roma). Halle is faster grass than Wimby but it also doesn't have as much abuse so it can stay fast for a week unlike Wimby which has to take into account both men and women playing on it everyday for 14 days+. Wimbledon in theory is medium-fast and then it goes to Toronto which in theory is supposed ot be faster than IW-Miami but slower than Cinncy. Cinncy is supposed to be slower than USO and USO is supposed to be fastest outdoor hardcourt which transitions to indoor where London supposed to be fastest indoor followed by Bercy then Shanghai.
 
#20
Nah it's because the court in Madrid is very slow in a vacuum but the altitude makes the ball fly and effectively play fast for a clay court
But that's what I said.. that it measured slower on the test but it plays faster (because of the conditions, which in this case is the altitude and how that affects the ball in flight).
 
#21
On a fundamental and theoretical level, if a clay and grass event have exactly the same court pace index rating, have exactly the same weather conditions and use exactly the same balls, the clay event is still going to play substantially slower (because the balls pick up more rubbish) and the surface still inherently demands different technique, especially for movement.
Yep that's why in theory grasscourt specialists and clay court specialists are supposed to be almost opposite sides. But because the game has evolved to baseline play grasscourt doesn't hold it's speed for 2 weeks. To me it makes the Big 4's achievements even better because for the most part all 4 have been able to translate their games to all surfaces and conditions. There are still specialists like Dustin Brown who don't do anything on clay but are a threat to upset on grass.
 
#22
I agree completely.

I think the tour is designed so everything transitions...

Year starts in theory medium hardcourt (Dubai is somewhat of an outlier here). It slows down to slow hard court with Indian Wells then slowest hard court with Miami. Then slowest clay in Monte Carlo, to fast clay in Madrid, to medium-slow clay in Rome to medium clay in RG (or you can flip with Roma). Halle is faster grass than Wimby but it also doesn't have as much abuse so it can stay fast for a week unlike Wimby which has to take into account both men and women playing on it everyday for 14 days+. Wimbledon in theory is medium-fast and then it goes to Toronto which in theory is supposed ot be faster than IW-Miami but slower than Cinncy. Cinncy is supposed to be slower than USO and USO is supposed to be fastest outdoor hardcourt which transitions to indoor where London supposed to be fastest indoor followed by Bercy then Shanghai.
The final thing to consider is bounce height...not only does that help certain players (Nadal), a higher more vertical bounce will make the court play slower...I think RG is a bit faster, but also higher bounce than Rome. USO is actually not as slow as people complain (one of the fastest HC on tour) but there is a solid height bounce there that allows retrievers to do better than you might think/have more time, which has to be an effective boost to how slow a court is?
 
#24
Yep that's why in theory grasscourt specialists and clay court specialists are supposed to be almost opposite sides. But because the game has evolved to baseline play grasscourt doesn't hold it's speed for 2 weeks. To me it makes the Big 4's achievements even better because for the most part all 4 have been able to translate their games to all surfaces and conditions. There are still specialists like Dustin Brown who don't do anything on clay but are a threat to upset on grass.
Well, it's a novel approach to the argument which provides a foil to the typical "the 90s had super polarised conditions" argument, which is very unsatisfactory anyway.
 
#26
Sorry, I thought you meant in that year it uniquely played slower
Nah, just wanted to be precise because I only see the data for one year, so it might have actually registered faster the year before. The scores are so close though that they could probably have been reversed if the courts were tested on different days. The main point though is that they are roughly the same in a vacuum but that MC definitely plays slower, and if I recall the stats for things like aces would bear that out?
 
#27
27,3 for IW this year is just preposteros. That shouldn't even be considered a HC anymore. The more surprising how Fed dispatched Nadal so easily.
I guess the overall condition was still quite fast and maybe there are reasons why IW organisers keep the surface speed as it is. This is what Roger said after 3rd rd.


Imagine what it would be like if the court was fast as well.
 
#28
Nah, just wanted to be precise because I only see the data for one year, so it might have actually registered faster the year before. The scores are so close though that they could probably have been reversed if the courts were tested on different days. The main point though is that they are roughly the same in a vacuum but that MC definitely plays slower, and if I recall the stats for things like aces would bear that out?
Ah I see, yes I think so they would. I also recall those types of stats (aces, tiebreakers played etc) show Wimbledon is still relatively fast (ish) besides constant complaints
 
#29
So an obvious talking point is this: What do you guys make of the recent blatant speeding up of conditions in Paris and London as well as what we believe to be the speeding up of the AO in 2017? Interviews with the players and organisers seem to suggest that the court surface did play quicker this year, though I don't have comparable court pace index ratings for the previous years. Maybe they exist on the main ITF site.. guess I should look into it.
 
#30
The AO this year was 45.9 I thought? Thats what the commentators said during the Fedal IW match. How does this compare to all the slams last year?
 
6

6-3 6-0

Guest
#31
The AO this year was 45.9 I thought? Thats what the commentators said during the Fedal IW match. How does this compare to all the slams last year?
IIRC from the infographics shown on TV, RLA was faster than both Wimbledon and USO. I really hope they speee both those slams up eveb if its by a bit specially the grass slam.
 
#32
27,3 for IW this year is just preposteros. That shouldn't even be considered a HC anymore. The more surprising how Fed dispatched Nadal so easily.
Listen, if that court was any faster, my first ever fed match in the flesh (2nd round) would have ended in ten minutes instead of 55. I spent 70 bucks on night session tickets just to see fed play and had barely got settled in my seat before the first set was over. So even though I am all for speeding up courts, I will make an exception for this one. Let it play slow.
 
#33
So an obvious talking point is this: What do you guys make of the recent blatant speeding up of conditions in Paris and London as well as what we believe to be the speeding up of the AO in 2017? Interviews with the players and organisers seem to suggest that the court surface did play quicker this year, though I don't have comparable court pace index ratings for the previous years. Maybe they exist on the main ITF site.. guess I should look into it.
Paris and London were supposed to be fair. They slowed it down heaps in 2012 and 2013.
 
#34
IIRC from the infographics shown on TV, RLA was faster than both Wimbledon and USO. I really hope they speee both those slams up eveb if its by a bit specially the grass slam.
Yeag but does any have the actual numbers for last year's slams? Will be interesting to compare.
 
#39
Funny. Miami seems a lot slower than IW and Cinci seems a lot faster than Canada (both Toronto and Montreal)
Yes agreed but i think often court spees are done to accomodate the climatic conditions. So indian wells would be far too fast if anything other than a really slow couet was put down.

That said indian wells seemed quicker this year than ive seen before. Dont remember such short rallies in most matches
 
#40
No way WTF surface is that fast.. These numbers seem suspect. It should be noted, however, that there are many other factors that affect court speed. Also the height of the bounce should be noted.
 
#41
No way WTF surface is that fast.. These numbers seem suspect. It should be noted, however, that there are many other factors that affect court speed. Also the height of the bounce should be noted.
Can anyone post height of bounce stats for all the masters 1000?

Also would like to see speed and bonce stats fkr the majors
 
#49
So Shanghai is the fastest court followed by London ? That comes as a surprise to me.

Would be good to see the relative speeds of 500s too (Dubai and Basel)
 
Top