2017 Epstein Cup – Team Europe Wins 121-113!

PrintEUROPE – 121 points
USA – 113 points

It takes 117.5 points to win the Epstein Cup

Team Europe:
Members –> Daniele Acciari, Jorian Engelbrektsson, Jorgen Holm, Mats Runsten, Julio Vicario Soriano, Marcus Hugosson, Johan Genberg and Robert Sutter
Game Choices –> Harlem Globetrotters, World Cup Soccer, AC/DC

Team USA game choices:
Members –> Zach Sharpe, Raymond Davidson, Cayle George, Trent Augenstein, Jason Werdrick, Josh Sharpe, David Riel and Andrei Massenkoff
Game Choices –> Captain Fantastic, Whitewater, Tron

IFPA raises money for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society through Morristown Game Vault tournament

blog post courtesy of Steve Epstein

There is a new place for all gamers to go, the Morristown Game Vault in Morristown New Jersey. The IFPA held a successful 3 day pinball tournament event drawing 60 players from NY, PA, and NJ.

The owner David Balsamin has created a unique space in an old bank. With high ceilings and huge safe vaults there are over 20 pinball machines and 80 vintage video games. These represents just a part of David’s collection. After a successful stint as a Pharmacist, David decided to follow his passion and open The Game Vault. With the help of myself, Steve Epstein, Francesco La Rocca and Steven Bowden, an exciting pinball event was created. With the support of Jersey Jack Pinball, Stern Pinball, and Marco Industries we were able to raise $640 for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society as well as have a $1850 cash prize package for the players. Quite an accomplishment for a first time event.

Plans for future events are being planned. As the IFPA takes strides to advance the  play of pinball we appreciate the passion of people like David who choose to introduce the joy of pinball to a new audience. This is accomplished through taking on the challenge of opening locations and exposing young people to the excitement of pinball. David was able to work with the town and local merchants to open The Vault, where he has attracted patrons with birthday parties, corporate team building, and competitive events for both video and pinball players. Being open just over a year and working up to 80 hours a week, David has reached profitability.

Having operated The Broadway Arcade until it’s closing in 1997 and being involved in a new location for 2 years from 2014 to 2016, I see an upswing of interest in pinball. For far too many years locations have not operated pinball and the manufactures survived with sales to collectors and home enthusiasts. Hopefully that trend is changing as new concepts such as Barcades and Pinaball “Museums” open up and attract new players and excite all the people that grew up playing our games. Having had a long career spanning 5 decades, I remain excited with all these possibilities.

IFPA14 approaches . . . expect approval delays

man hand and arm holding a signboard with the text out of office written in it

With IFPA14 quickly approaching, most of the IFPA staff will be off to Denmark (if not already across the pond). We know how anxious tournament directors and players are to see their calendar submissions approved and results posted quickly, so we wanted to make a quick announcement that there will most likely be a delay on this while we are all out of the country.

If you’re wondering why you haven’t heard back from the IFPA regarding your event, that’s why.

2017 Epstein Cup teams are set!

Team Europe currently holds the Epstein Cup for couple of weeks before it is once again up for grabs at IFPA14 in Denmark. 8 players per side earn the right to represent their country in this prestigious event, so let’s take a closer look at the rosters for both sides.

Team USA includes current world ranked #1 Zach Sharpe from Chicago, 3-time Major Finalist Raymond Davidson from Mukilteo, WA, 2-time Major Champion Cayle George currently living in the Netherlands but representing Seattle, 2-time Major Finalist Trent Augenstein from Delaware, OH, 4-time Major Finalist Jason Werdrick from Park Ridge, IL, 5-time Major Finalist Josh Sharpe from Arlington Heights, IL, David Riel from Pittsburgh, and 1-time Major Champion Andrei Massenkoff from San Francisco, CA. The 8 members of Team USA 2016 have accounted for 4 Major Championships along with 35 Major Championship Top 4’s.

Team Europe includes 4-time Major Champion Daniele Celestino Acciari from Italy, 6-time Major Champion Jorian Engelbrektsson from Sweden, 1-time Major Champion Jörgen Holm from Sweden, 3-time Major Finalist Mats Runsten from Sweden, 2-time Major Finalist Julio Vicario Soriano from Spain, Marcus Hugosson from Sweden, Johan Genberg from Sweden, and 1-time Major Champion Robert Sutter from Switzerland. The 8 members of Team Europe 2016 have accounted for 12 Major Championships won along with 31 Major Championship Top 4’s.

For more details on the event, click HERE.

2018 IFPA Women’s World Pinball Championship – Field Increased to 24 Players

ifpa-jpg-w227h210At the end of 2016 we announced the creation of a separate WPPR ranking specifically designed for Women-only events. We plan on using this separate rankings system to select additional women as Wild Card spots for the IFPA Women’s World Championship starting in 2018.

We’re excited to announce that there will be EIGHT of these Wild Card spots up for grabs for the 2018 IFPA Women’s World Pinball Championship, increasing the field to 24 players.

These Wild Card spots will go to the 8 highest ranked women in the Women’s WPPR ranking that haven’t already qualified for a spot in the championship through the Main WPPR ranking system.

For example, both Robin Lassonde and Hannah Holmberg are both currently in the top 16 women ranked in the Main WPPR system, so they would be skipped when looking at the Wild Card spots available in the Women’s WPPR rankings system. The first Wild Card spot would go to Echa Schneider, followed by Ellen Frankel. Louise Wagensonner and Zoe Vrabel would be skipped, making Megan Brown the 3rd eligible Wild Card spot . . . and so on.

The Women’s WPPR ranking used for these Wild Card spots are available here:


The highest ranked women under the Main WPPR ranking system can be found here:


Eric Stone wins FWTG “Final Showdown” at Cooper’stown

The 2016-17 IFPA Flippin’ With the Greats Final Showdown at Cooper’stown was a Rocking success!  In a nail biting Showdown, Eric Stone barely edged out Bob Matthews to Score an autographed “Alice Cooper’s Nightmare Castle” Pinball Machine.  Full tournament results are posted here:  https://www.ifpapinball.com/tournaments/view.php?t=18133#

We were honored to have Charlie & KT Emery in attendance for the festivities and to discuss Spooky’s upcoming Nightmare Castle Pinball.

Everyone in attendance received Awesome raffle prizes, and Alice Cooper personally awarded and Autographed each of the Skill level prizes.

All of the Photos from this great event can be viewed at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/274537899559147/photos/

Thank you from Alice & Coach Ditka to all who participated in the regional tournaments and the Cooper’stown Final Showdown.  Your interest in their charities and involvement in the FWTG Hall of Fame Series is greatly appreciated.

For Info on the upcoming 2017-18 FWTG Series, Join the IFPA / FWTG Hall of Fame Pinball Series group on FB: https://www.facebook.com/groups/274537899559147/

Lots of big surprises to come!

Coming 2018 – Official IFPA Challenge Matches!

Back in December 2011 the IFPA announced the implementation of the IFPA Ratings system for the 2012 season. Currently the IFPA Ratings System uses an unmodified version of the Glicko rating system.

We’re excited to announce that starting in 2018 we will officially be accepting IFPA Challenge Matches as part of the IFPA Ratings system. Here’s how it works:

  • Two players compete in a head-to-head match. Both players must have a registered IFPA profile.
  • The match must be a best of 7 series. Higher seed has choice of game or position for Game #1, with the loser of each subsequent game having that choice going forward. No game can be played twice in the same IFPA Challenge Match unless no other machines are available to be picked.
  • That match will be submitted to the IFPA calendar so results can be submitted. No 30 day rule will be in effect for these IFPA Challenge Matches.
  • The winner of the IFPA Challenge Match will be listed as 1st place, with the loser listed as 2nd place.
  • IFPA Ratings will be impacted off of this result for both players.
  • These IFPA Challenge Matches will go towards the event count for players, so anyone looking to become an IFPA Rated player can earn that experience through these matches rather than only through endorsed tournament play.

In addition, with the IFPA endorsement fee starting in 2018 for US/Canada events, we plan on allowing events to continue to submit to the IFPA calendar as “non-point” events. No endorsement fee will be charged, and while no WPPR points will be awarded, the IFPA Ratings for all players will be impacted by these results.

710KNUS – Kelley and Kafer

Kelley & Kafer have a weekday afternoon talk show on 710 KNUS Denver, and recently had Escher Lefkoff on to discuss him knocking IFPA President Josh Sharpe out of the PAPA finals in the Semi-final tiebreaker. Click HERE to listen to the interview. Interview starts at 35:20.

The world’s best pinball player is 13 years old and living in Longmont

LONGMONT, CO – APRIL 17: Escher Lefkoff, a 13-year-old Longmont shows off his skill on the Attack from Mars pinball machine on April 17, 2017 at his home in Longmont. The 13-year-old is now the new pinball champion of the world, following a stunning upset at the international finals in Pennsylvania. (Photo by John Leyba/The Denver Post)

The media blitz continues for the youngest World Champion in pinball history. The Denver Post stopped by the Lefkoff Barn for some more coverage. Click HERE.

Meet Buffalo’s Pinball Club with Kevin O’Neill

NBC2 in Buffalo, NY posted a piece on the resurgence of competitive pinball in the area. Check out the coverage HERE.