3rd Gutperle Viernheim Open is cancelled


    EBT News

    Bowling Gutperle Viernheim in Viernheim, Germany (Sep. 8-16, 2007)

    2007EBTLogo_small.jpg Michael Lehman, tournament director of the Gutperle Viernheim Open, has informed the European Bowling Tour director Kim Thorsgaard Jensen, that the richest tournament in Europe in regard to prize money is cancelled.

    In its first two years, the Gutperle Viernheim Open, which was held at Bowling Gutperle in Viernheim, Germany, featured a 100.000 Euro total prize fund (approx. $130,000) including a 25.000 Euro top prize. Both events were won by professional bowlers.

    2006EBT15MichaelFagan_small.jpg 2006EBT15LizJohnson_small.jpg PBA exempt bowler Michael Fagan (left) won in inaugural event in 2005 and former PWBA star and PBA history-maker Liz Johnson (right) topped PBA champion Sean Rash in last year's event.

    Lehmann states that the owner of the tournament and the host bowling center, the Gutperle Group, blames the German Tax Department for the decision, which in 2006 withheld 16.000 Euro tax from the prize money of the foreign participants and additionally claimed another 17.000 Euro value-added tax based on the entry fees from the organizer.

    Scroll down to read Lehmann's letter to the EBT here:

    Dear Kim,

    unfortunately I have to inform you about the cancellation of our 2007 tournament.

    After a long period of discussion we came to the conclusion that a further engagement of our company will not be possible this year for different reasons.

    The most decisive fact for us was the very hard tax regulation of the German government. We had to pay approx. € 16.000 tax for prize money of foreign participants and additionally the tax department claimed another € 17.000 value-added tax on the entry fees even though we make no profit of this. We discussed this problem with the tax department but they were not agreeable to free us from these taxes.

    Regarding our expenses of organization etc. in the amount of € 20.000 we had a loss of approx. € 50.000 in 2006 tournament. This is not any longer acceptable for our sponsor.

    Beside these problems it could be possible that we would have a clash with the date of tournament because we are planning to expand our bowling centre this year and it may be possible that the building project starts in August or September.

    I am very sad about all this, but I have to accept our company’s decision.

    If there are changes in the future, I hope we’re coming back….

    Kind Regards,

    Michael Lehmann
    Tournament Director
    3rd Gutperle Viernheim Open