We’re down to the second to last month of 2015 and we’ve witnessed many a great sports moment. That doesn’t mean, however, that there aren’t a few more moments left on the calendar for you to witness in person. The end of the baseball season comes with the final games of the World Series. Basketball and hockey go through their second month of the season. We all know the NFL is in full swing as we cross the halfway point. European soccer leagues continue through their long yet exciting season. And then there are these five wonderful events that you should schedule a trip to before the month is over.
The Grand Slam tournaments in tennis get all the attention, but no tournament has the best players in the world playing as many matches against each other as the ATP World Tour Finals does. Taking place from at the O2 Arena in London, the ATP World Tour Finals features the eight best men's singles players and eight best doubles pairs in the current men's tennis season. It's a great opportunity to see plenty of Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Andy Murray, Rafael Nadal, and the Bryan brothers. The tournament is set up in a round-robin format to have each individual play three matches and then the two best players and pairs in each round-robin group advance to the semifinals. London is one of the easiest cities in the world to travel to given the larger number of flights going there from the United Tastes and its proximity to the rest of Europe. The ATP World Tour Finals provides a nice excuse to jump across the pond for some tennis and some sightseeing wrapped up in one trip.
Euro 2016 Qualifying Playoff: November 12th to November 17th
Euro 2016, the tournament crowning the best soccer nation In Europe, doesn't start until next year, but qualifying wraps up this month. 20 teams have already qualified for the 24-team tournament and the last four sports will come down to a two-week playoff between the remaining eight teams. Norway plays Hungary, Bosnia and Herzegovina faces the Republic of Ireland, Ukraine goes up against Slovenia, and Sweden takes on Denmark. Euro 2016, officially known as the UEFA European Soccer Championships for 2016, is second to only the World Cup in terms of international soccer competition and falls perfectly two years before and after every World Cup. No offense to South America, but there’s no greater continental collection of international soccer talent than in the Euros. The qualifying playoff is so important because of the elite nature of qualifying for the tournament. Seeing one of these games is worth a trip to enjoy a unique European country while witnessing some of the most passionate fans in the world.
A Great College Football Game: Any November Saturday
This may not be a specific event in theory, but the significance of college football in November is unquestioned. The college football season goes down to its final regular season month and every single game matters because of the way the College Football Playoff is set up. Undefeated teams in major conferences tend to always make the playoff and even a one-loss team has an outside shot. November features games match-ups like: TCU vs. Oklahoma State, LSU vs. Alabama, Baylor vs. Oklahoma State, Michigan State vs. Ohio State, and Baylor vs. TCU. All of these match-ups feature a battle between two teams who are currently undefeated as of this writing except for LSU vs. Alabama. That game gets the mention because Alabama is the highest ranked one-loss teams and one-loss SEC teams have historically been considered for the national championship situation more so than one-loss teams from other conference. College football games make for great road trips and attending any of these crucial games will make those trips even better.
Ford Ecoboost 400: November 22nd
The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season is a long one, running from mid-February to November 22nd when everything comes to a head in the Ford Ecoboost 400. Homestead-Miami Speedway has hosted the final race of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season since 2002, but that final race has had even more importance recently with her new season-long scoring system. Each of the four drivers who survive the Chase for the Sprint Cup and advance to the championship round at Homestead has a chance to win. The driver with the best finish in the Ford Ecoboost 400 takes home the championship trophy. The Miami weather is still warm in November, so fit in some beach time with your NASCAR racing and make it an enjoyable weekend in Florida.
The streets of New York City come alive on the first Sunday in November when it hosts the Marathon. The New York City Marathon allows over 50,000 runners to cruise 26.2 miles of the greatest city in the world. Given that it's one of the most prestigious marathons, arguably the most prestigious, over 2 million people like to watch the festivities as well. The event provides the perfect excuse for folks to travel to New York or for locals to see something take place on the streets that doesn't normally occur. Many a party is centered around the event, either in people's apartments or in bars and restaurants on the route. It’s the largest marathon in the United States because New York does everything in style. Come on down to watch the streets come to life.