When it comes to World Records it seems that any bizarre or a variation on a theme seems acceptable.
Some people grow insanely long fingernails; some think having the heaviest number of live Bees on your body is a record worth having! While others achieve theirs by being the youngest, the oldest, the tallest, the fastest or to be the first to achieve a feat.
When it comes to darts there are lots of recognised records people have achieved, some will remain unbroken because they were the first to achieve the feat while others are likely to be beaten at some point in time.
For any record to be recognised it needs to be correctly recorded, witnessed and verified. So, if you are knowingly looking to attempt a new World record you will need to comply with rules set out by the Guinness World Records in order for the record to be recorded.
Below I have listed some of the recognised and current, (at the date of publication) records that have been achieved in the sport of darts.
In some cases, the first to achieve a record usually cannot be broken. I say usually because there are clearly records that cannot be disputed while others are what could be known at the time of research. An example could be the first person to dive off Niagara Falls and live! A record may be accepted but later another claim could supersede their claim.
When it comes to Champions this can be considered ambiguous. Does any darts event that has the World in the title mean the winner is a world champion? Well no!
World Masters, World Matchplay the winners are not ‘World Champions’ by winning such an event, however, these tournaments are recognised in their own right.
In 1978 Leighton Rees from Wales became the first recognised World Champion in the Sport of darts. Prior to the World Champions being organised by the British Darts Organisation (BDO), other events were considered to have a similar title such as the ‘News of the World Individual Championships’. However, this event started as a local or regional event in the UK and expanded across the Country. Players winning this event could be considered as the best in the World but not ‘World Champion’
Leighton Rees beat John Lowe (MBE) in the final 11 -7 (legs) at the ‘Heart of the Midlands’ Nightclub in Nottingham to claim the title. The event was broadcast via the BBC was played in leg format not set format as per today.
The Women’s World Championship wasn’t conceived until 2001. Although Women’s international dart events and team matches were being played many years prior to 2001. it took an immense amount of time to convince the BDO to stage a Women’s event. The pressure was on for not only winning the title but also to perform well. The BDO feared if the ladies didn’t play well then, the first World Championship could also be the last.
The ladies, of course, played well and dart averages over the years clearly show they have some of the highest averages regardless of sex:
Trina Gulliver (MBE) became the first Womens World Champion. Trina beat Mandy Solomons 2-1 (sets) in the final. Trina went on to win the next six World Championships, i.e. seven in a row another record (to date). Trina also holds other records when it comes to the World Championships. To date (2020) Trina has won the title ten times and reached the final a total of twelve times.
When the sixteen top dart professionals split from the BDO to form the World Darts Council (WDC), now known as the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC) the first World Championship they formed in 1994 was not treated will the respect it now holds due to the lack of the depth of players the new Corporation held. Of the sixteen players that moved from the BDO World Championship, a number were former BDO World Champions This included the current BDO World Champion at the time ‘John Lowe’. However, it wasn’t John that won the first PDC World Championship or Eric Bristow (MBE), the first player to win five world titles and three World titles in a row. The winner of the first event was Dennis Priestly.
Dennis Priestly, a former BDO World Champion, beat Phil Taylor 6-1 (sets) in the first PDC World Championship. Phil, as most people know, went on to dominate the darts scene during his career winning a total of sixteen World titles.
Fallon Sherrock cemented her name in the history books by becoming the first female player to defeat a man at the PDC World Darts Championships.
On Tuesday 17th December 2019, Fallon defeated Ted Evetts 3-2 in the first round of the 2020 PDC World Darts Championships. Her feat made headlines across the world, featured in newspapers, TV news broadcasts and even prompted a tweet from the legendary tennis star, grand slam winner and fighter for equal rights for female sport, Billie Jean King.
Fallon performance was world-class, averaging more than 90 per throw throughout the match. It was no luck that she won as she outperformed her opponent with her finishing stats. In round two Fallon faced the No.11 seed Mensur Suljović and to the shock of the darting world promptly dismissed him 3-1 with a superb display of arrows. Her PDC World Champion run came to an end in round three as she lost to the No.22 seed Chris Dobey 4-2. Despite taking an early lead, two sets to one point.
In the tournament, Fallon had six 100 plus checkouts, the highest being 142. She earned £35,000 for her efforts, the highest prize a lady has won in a recognised darts tournament to date. (27th December 2019)
Lisa Ashton was the first lady to qualify for a two-year PDC Tour card via the PDC Q-school qualification system. Lisa won one of the 31 tour cards made available for 2020 on 19th January 2020 by acquiring enough points over the four days of daily qualifying rounds.
Lisa narrowly missed out on an automatic qualification on day two losing out to Kai Fan Leung in a final leg decider on day two of the 2020 Q-School qualification. It isn’t the first time Lisa has tried to qualify. In 2019 she missed out by one point!
The main game played at dart tournaments is 501. Most events play the leg in the format of straight off, double finish meaning the score of 501 can be reduced from the first scoring dart wherever the dart lands on the dartboard but the leg must be concluded or finished on a double, the outer scoring segment of the dart board. i.e. 32 means a single dart in the double segment of the 16 wins the leg.
The older variation and still used in the PDC World Grand Prix. The player must also start the leg on any double and finish on a double to achieve 501.
Regardless of format the least amount of darts to finish a leg is nine. The most common way for this feat is 180,180,141 or in the case of a double start 160,180,161.
As regards the first player to achieve this feat we can really only say the first person to achieve this on TV as it is difficult to obtain records that were witnessed in a way to be recognised.
John Lowe (MBE) was the first player to throw the ‘perfect’ leg. He achieved this feat at the MFI World Matchplay on the 13th October 1984, his opponent was Keith Dellar. John earned £102,000 for his achievement.
John threw 6 x treble 20, treble 17, treble 18 followed by double 18
Believe it or not, there are 3,944 different ways of achieving a nine-dart leg of which 2,296 finish with the bullseye, 672 ends on Double 20, 792 on Double 18, 56 ends on Double 17, 120 ends on Double 15, and 8 ends on Double 12.
A nine-dart leg is a holy grail for most dart players. I only came close once with a perfect eight darts 180,180, 60, 57 but missed the double 12. A nine-dart leg is hard to achieve and usually comes when a player is under pressure to perform at their best. Although I have had many back-to-back 180 starts the 141 has always been my nemesis, I have of course checked out 141 many times but not as part of a nine-dart leg.
Since John Lowe's epic feat for hitting the first televised nine-dart leg, the darter's holy grail has been hit by hundreds of players. Although my personal record is zero! Having missed my only opportunity (to date) by missing a double twelve to complete the leg. Although back-to-back 180s since commonplace these days for many of the top pro's the last three darts can be one step too far.
The high standard of play and the thinner wiring allows a player to score more highly than their counterparts back in the 1970s and fans come to expect a nine-dart leg at major competitions although they are not always rewarded with this feat. One player that tops this tree of competitive (major darts event) is Green Machine, Mighty Mike, Michael van Gerwen.
Michael recorded his record-breaking 23rd competitive nine-dart leg at the PDC Players Championship Round six, on the 23rd February 2020, beating Phil Taylor's career record of twenty-two.
MVG increaed his world record-breaking nine-dart tally to 24 at the 2020, PDC UK Open semi-final against Daryl Gurney. Michael has, of course, hit more since this feat!
Original publishing 8th March 2020
Some records players don’t wish to be associated with one of these is the most darts taken to win a leg of darts! Although I have personally marked a lady’s league single-leg game that took 98 darts, I dare say more darts have been taken to win a leg. The professional scene, however, is something different as we expect players to hit nine-dart legs and have averaged in the 90s and some cases in excess 100 per throw but this isn’t always the case.
In the 2020 BDO Women’s World Professional Darts Championship 2nd round Corrie Hammond form Australia recoded a leg that took 43 darts against England’s Laura Turner. The Winning double, double-one. Although Corrie may like to forget this leg have a thought for her opponent Laura who lost the leg. Both ladies, however, were having a big off day and this doesn’t represent their usual standard of play.
The highest average that can be scored playing 501 games is 167. This is the average for a perfect nine-dart leg. However, this is for a single leg. There are records for all tournaments as regards the who ‘currently’ holds the highest 3-dart average. Some also look at the first nine-darts thrown (known as the main scoring darts) as a separate average as well as double percentages (the number of darts thrown at a double vs the amount achieved).
For records, Keith Deller features in a few. Keith was the first player to achieve 100 average in a recognised tournament. Keith achieved this feat in the 1985 World Champions quarter-final. Keith also holds the record for the fastest 3 legs of 301 just 97 seconds. He also holds the record for the fastest single leg of 301, 36 seconds!
Three dart averages are on the up and change reasonably frequently. The issue of the highest average also can cause confusion because of the length or format of a match tournament. The shorter matches, the more lightly the averages is lightly to be.
Michael van Gerwen is the current world record holder for a televised match with an average of 123.40 thrown 25th February 2016 in the Premier League against Michael Smith. Gerwen won the match 7-5
Fallon Sherrock seems to be rewriting the modern games for women's darts. On 14th November 2021, playing in the PDC Grand Slam of Darts, Fallon recorded a three-dart average of 101.55. Not surprisingly, Fallon beat her male opponent, Mike De Decker, 5-0 in the tournament's round-robin phase.
14th October 2019 Peter Wright hit a three-dart average of 123.5 against Krzysztof Ratajski at Players Championship 29. The best of 11 leg event Peter won the highest average in a live broadcast. Wight won the match 6-0
Highest Youth International Average ‘British Internationals 2019’
Following his Lakeside World Youth Championship success, Leighton recorded the highest average seen in International Darts for a Youth player. Aged just 13 and on his debut playing for England, Leighton achieved an average of 35.79 per dart (3 dart average 107.37) in a best of 5 leg match against Welsh youth player Sion Russell. Leighton won 3-0
After gaining her PDC tour card in 2020, Lisa Ashton has set the highest three dart average for a lady in a PDC major TV event. In her first-round match, in the PDC UK Open 2021, 5th March (second of the tournament), Lisa beat Aaron Beeney 6-2 on the main stage. She recorded a three-dart average of 100.3 to become the first women to hit over 100 average in a PDC major TV event and set a new record for others to follow.
Of course, anyone that follows lady’s darts will know this isn’t the first time a lady has achieved a 100 plus average in a match, but it is the first in the PDC
Paul Lim has a string of dart titles to his name in both soft-tip and steel-tip darts. He was also noted for his nine-dart leg in the BDO World Championship in 1990. Over the years Paul has played for more than one Country, the USA and Singapore. In June 2019 at the age of 65, Paul again played in the PDC World Cup of Darts for Singapore making him the oldest player to play for his Country in a darts competition at this time.
Success can be measured in several ways. The most titles, most wins, highest average, nine-dart finishes, number of three dart checkouts, most recorded 100 plus averages. But most agree the title of World Champion is the pinnacle of any sport. Winning a World Championship tests any player to the full. Phil Taylor won a total of sixteen World Championship titles, a feat that is likely to be unbeaten.
Phil dominated the sport from the early 1990s. In 1990 he won his first BDO World Darts title and repeated the feat in 1992. That same year, the famous dart player split happened, with sixteen top players splitting to form the WDC (World Darts Council), later becoming the PDC (Professional Darts Corporation). Their first World Championship was played over the 1993/94 Christmas / New Year period. Phil went on to win a further 14 titles under the PDC, now considered the definitive World title.
Ladies’ darts has been part of for many decades. However, it took some persuasion to stage a Women’s World Championship. The fear of the BDO and sponsors was would the event be a sideshow, poor play that could adversely affect their male counterparts event. The BDO need not fear as their first Women’s World Championship in 2001 was a spectacular success and became a pinacol darts event for female players. Although the PDC say their World Championship is open to both male and female players since 2018/2019, they have made two places available for women.
Trina Gulliver MBE is undoubtedly the most successful female player when it comes to the BDO World Championships. Trina won the first event stage in 2001 and won a further nine titles, while the event was staged, a total of ten in total. Trina also holds the top three averages recorded in the World Champions and qualified for all of the events from 2001 – 2020. Trina didn’t compete in 2020 due to illness.
|Trina Gulliver||95.97||2006||Semi-Final Verses||Clare Bywaters|
|Trina Gulliver||94.92||2001||Semi-Final Verses||Crissyy Manley|
|Trina Gulliver||90.24||2004||Semi-Final Verses||Karin Krappen|
There are a lot of World Records relating to darts that are not related to professional darts. Some of these relate to dart marathons, most bullseyes in a given time; most scored within a set time, least darts used for marathon legs, 1,000,001 and 100,001 and some even more bizarre.
These are correct at the time of posting and if you want to try and better the records, I suggest you check with the Guinness World Records first to make sure your attempt will be recorded and to make sure the detail I have below is current and correct.
James Wade holds the Official World record of hitting inner and outer Bullseyes in one minute. He hit 15 at the Motorpoint Arena on the 23rd September 2016
The furthest distance a dart was thrown at and hit the bullseye on a standard dartboard is 6 m (19 ft 8.2 inches). This was achieved by Matthew Prouse (UK) in Reading, UK, on 30 April 2017.
This attempt took place to raise funds and awareness for child and adolescence mental health issues.
The least darts to score 1,000,001 by a team of eight men was 35,698
The team of eight included Mickey Mansell, Mickey Taggart, Felix McBrearty, Daryl Gurney, Campbell Jackson, Ronan McMahon, Eamonn McGovern and Thomas Stoga. They achieved the recognised feat at The Weigh Inn Bar in Omagh, UK, from 21 to 23 August 2010.
Included with claim were scoresheets for all darts thrown and video of the entire attempt.
The team averaged 28 per dart or 84 per throw
Chris Gray holds the current record for the least darts used to achieve this feat. Chris achieved 100,001 in 3,579 darts. Chris set the record at the Dolphin, Cromer, Norfolk on 27th April 1993.
For some extra guidance, Chris averaged 29.94 per dart or 83.82. A very good average over a long period of play, however, I am sure some of you may think you could better this!
The highest darts score in one hour by a men's team (eight players) is 35,087
This was achieved by the Cork Darts Organisation (Ireland) at the St. Vincent's GAA Club in Cork, Ireland, on 20 March 2010. The team members who participated were Martin Cotter, Damian O'Driscoll, Steven Coveney, John O'Shea, Craig Sproat, Jason Kavanaugh, Kevin McDonnell, and James Corcoran.
Why not apply to achieve this record?
There are lots of other dart records that I haven’t published. However, if you want to know more about Official Dart World Records, please consult the Guinness World Records. Please do not send me your darting achievements. If you have bettered any of the records listed above again please contact the Guinness World Records. If you can prove the record and it was conducted under the right conditions for the record to stand then they will publish/record the record and issue you with a certificate to prove your record is a World beater.