One of St. Louis's great annual tennis traditions is the West County Ladder which has been going strong for over 30 years. The ladder is hosted by our local tennis shop The Racketman. Both Scott and Stan play on the ladder and Scott finished #1 in singles in 2010 for the first time in 31 years of participation. The annual opening party was hosted this year at Forest Lake Tennis and Swim Club. The club is a nice venue with both outdoor and indoor courts.
West County Ladder works like this for $25 bucks you join the ladder and can enter singles, doubles and mixed ladders. Then you set up matches at a place and time of your choosing. You get to meet a lot of new people and get exposed to a wide variety of tennis styles. It is one of the lowest cost tennis programs around. Scott has played close to 30 matches in one summer in past years.
The opening party is more of a social event with food and drink and a little fun tennis. Scott and Stan hit the courts and were able to play four sets of tennis this evening. The highlight was beating our friend Amit and his partner Sara a 4.5 player by a score of 6-1. Amit is a tough challenge for us always as he is one of the most consistent players around. A match against Amit is often compared to Chinese water torture as he wears you down one stroke at a time. We have often seen him play points of over 100 shots at which point his opponent is usually exhausted and he looks fresh as a daisy. Amit and Sara did not let us savor our victory for long as they demanded a rematch and promptly beat us 6-3 in the second set.
As a facility Forest Lake is pretty good. As you would expect from an indoor facility the courts are in good shape. Lighting here can be a little spotty and the fixtures hang down and can get in the way of your shots if you are pulled out wide. Location is a 10 and court condition a 8.5 for a 9.25 rating. One of our favorite nearby restaurants is The Gulf Shores which specializes in Cajun/Seafood.