We are delighted to announce the latest arrival to our Elite 1 programme, James Beeton.
James is one of darts brightest young prospects - he exploded into the limelight in 2019 after throwing a 9-darter during the PDC Development Tour at just 16 years of age, making him the youngest player in history to throw a perfect leg at a PDC event, followed by Elite 1's Sebastian Bialecki (17) & programme graduate Keane Barry (17).
The 18-year-old sensation managed to pick up 13 youth titles in 2019 as well as making multiple Quarter Finals in senior events. He now has his sights set on PDC Q-School in 2022 where he feels confident that he can pick up that all important PDC Tour Card.
In response to the young star joining Elite 1, Target Dart's managing director James Tattersall was thrilled about the prospect of working with him "James is a very talented young player with a big future ahead! We are going to be working closely with him to develop his equipment and support him in any way we can to help him develop his game."
We sat down with our newest addition to find out more about him:
How does it feel to sign with Elite 1?
I am delighted to sign for Elite 1, to be a part of a team that has produced World Youth Champions feels special. Joining a manufacturer like Target that has some of the best players in the world is great, it is a company that is on the up and I am excited to be a part of their journey.
What made you want to play for Elite 1?
It's is all about the players that are already here, when you look at companies you make your decisions based on the players they have and Target have multiple World Champions, Premier League Champions and so on - this just shows you that this is a massive company that have the right people working behind the scenes supporting you which is really important.
How did you first get into darts?
When I was about 10/11 years old my mum and dad bought me a dartboard for Christmas, I didn't think much of it at the time and then I started playing and here I am today.
How good were you at darts when you started playing?
I wasn't the best in all honesty, but I kept practising and put in a lot of hard work. That is what you need to do to master something like darts.
What's the darts scene like where you are from?
In Chester, there is a lot of leagues that run throughout the week, there are some very good standards here so I would definitely say it is a darting city.
What is your biggest achievement in your darting career so far?
Definitely my 9-darter at the PDC Development Tour in 2019, I am the youngest player to ever do it in a PDC competition which I think is a brilliant statistic to put to my name.
Who is your darting idol?
It used to be Michael Van Gerwen but since moving to my new management company, I have met Glen Durrant and play alongside him and he has been a great role model to me, so it would have to be him now.
What are your plans for the rest of this year?
I have the Development Tour this year which I am getting myself ready for but my main focus is preparing myself for Q School in 2022.
How do you feel you would compete at Q School?
I think I can get a Tour Card 100%; I am confident with anything I throw myself into.
What sort of goals have you set for yourself?
For me playing on TV is huge, I don't like to put a limit on how far I can go but playing on TV and competing in PDC tournaments is my main goal. I want to be able to make a living out of playing darts, earning money from something you enjoy is everybody's dream.
What is the biggest stage you have played on so far?
I played in the Dutch Open in front of 6,000 fans and I think I coped really well; I enjoy playing up on the stage a lot more than being in the floor events.
Which darts player are you most excited to play?
Michael van Gerwen - when I was first getting into darts he was the best player around so to go up against him on stage would be incredible, and to beat him of course!
How do you usually practice?
I train by playing 501 matches for my local team; however, I do sometimes practice my 121 & 170 checkouts, trying to hit it in 6 darts.
How do you cope with nerves?
I don't really get too nervous; I get a little bit nervous when I really want to win but I suppose that is good nerves as it helps me focus and get on with the job in hand.
Welcome to the team James!