Never heard of the EPBF before? Relax, you're in good company. The EPBF is the European Paint-Ball Federation. (Yeah, I know. They're European. Do I need to say more?) The brain child of Euroland's paintball elites it began as a dream. If some bureaucracy is good, and who can doubt that it is, then more must be better and the EPBF is intent on proving it. First there was the Intercontinental Cup in '06 (in which 4 sacrificial CPL got mowed at WC and the paintball world yawned.) (True story.) Today--or rather this upcoming weekend--years of EPBF determination will result in a Nations Cup event played during Campaign Cup, or rather, after each day's regularly scheduled matches. (And the nations cheered. Yea.)
Okay, there's more to it than that. There's also an international ranking system, take that, APPA, based (sorta) on the model of tennis. (Yes, I know. But they're European. I thought you understood that part.) Complete with Grand Slam events, Masters events & a few others with big numbers. I confess however to being slightly confused. You see, a lot of the numbers (teams will be assigned based on where they finish) overlap. For example, the second division at a Grand Slam maxes out at 1000 points for the winner. I take that second division to be the equivalent of the Millennium's SPL--largely 'cus all but one of the Grand Slam events is a Millennium event. But then the top division of a Masters event maxes at 1000 points too. That makes them equivalent, right? But are they really? And look, the way the points overlap the back half of the CPL teams, for example, will be well behind the top SPL teams, or whatever they choose to call the divisions in an EPBF future. If I really cared how this was supposed to work I might have tried to figure it out. Since I don't I'ma give the EPBF the benefit of the doubt and assume it actually makes sense even if, at a cursory glance, it doesn't appear to. (Yes, I know they're European. I'm the one who brought it up in the first place!)
Perhaps more impressively the EPBF have strong-armed a number of different paintball leagues into joining and EPBF future. In the case of the Grand Tour--remember them?--all it took was to give them one Grand Slam and consider the rest of their circuit Masters events. If that doesn't help the league pull more than their usual 20-25 teams then nothing short of free play will accomplish that miracle. Beyond that the EPBF has signed up a list of some of the major national level tournament series. Although "signed up" may not tell the whole story. Let's just say it wouldn't surprise me if a few horse's heads didn't show up in a few beds.