Richard Drijvers

Hello there Judges!

Another week another rockstar; this issue our loved interview series bring us back into Europe! Can you guess where ? This Judge likes to set out crazy C-C-Combo decks and play MMORPGs.  It is time to have a look at Benelux, so don’t miss this JOTW  special RC edition featuring L3 Richard Drijvers our RC of Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands!

Where are you from? Tilburg, The Netherlands

When did you become a Judge? In the stone age….actually more like the bronze age. I believe I tested on October 18th 2001, but my certification didn’t get processed until somewhere in December 2001.richard drijvers

Why did you become a Judge? I had some bad judge calls against me at my local prerelease and thought I could do better. (One epic one was where the HJ ruled that Fertile Ground doesn’t actually ADD the extra mana of a color that you chose, but only makes the land give 1 mana of a color of your choice…)

What advice would you give to members of your region?

Be yourself and keep having fun in judging.

What advice would you give to a Judge growing up through the program?

you know what's important at a GP-right

Don’t take on too much. It is easy to get swamped. If you chose to take on extra responsibilities, know that there are always others with whom you can share those

responsibilities. Like Andy always says; “If you’re doing it alone, you’re doing it wrong.”

Could you recognize a few outstanding members of your region?

Wow, tough question. There are so many great members in my region.
First and foremost, I’d like to recognize all the past and present L3+ judges in my region for being so involved and taken away with building the community we now call the BeNeLux. (BeNeLux stands for Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg. The three countries my region consists of.)

For individual recognitions;
Gijsbert Hoogendijk for guiding me at my first international events.
Jaap Brouwer for giving me a completely different perspective of what judging is.
Frank Wareman for being my sparring partner in so many discussions.
Roel Jans for taking over my role in Eindhoven when I didn’t have time for it anymore.

What’s the coolest event you ever been to?

Pro Tour Kuala Lumpur 2008 – My first time in Asia and a huge experience for me due to the late night chats at the hotel.SONY DSC

What’s the farthest you have ever traveled for a Magic event?

Kuala Lumpur was my farthest event with more than 10 000 km from home.

Does your family travel with you?

My wife Laura has traveled with me to Worlds Paris 2006 and GP Krakow 2007, but doesn’t share the same interest in Magic as I do.

How do you not lose your mind as a RC?

By dealing with issues separately and delegating them if possible.

What do you feel needs to be improved in the Judge program?

I believe communication needs to be improved in the judge program. We’re still structured like a top-down business model. This can be a good thing, but the top doesn’t really know whether or not the bottom is getting all the information.
Things have improved a lot in the last couple of years. (Like going from the bronze age through the industrial revolution.) Still I believe there are more steps to be made.

What has been your best experience in the Judge Program?

Being recognized for your efforts is always a great experience. I’ve had several of those experiences over the course of my Judge career.

HJ Nationals

What motivates you to continue being a judge?

The people. It’s all about the people.



What has been your favorite magic event that you’ve judged?

I don’t really have a favorite Magic event that I judged. There were some special events though.

In random order:GP prague TL – Judging a tournament for the making of a movie called Kilkenny Cross
– Pro Tour Prague 2006 being the best Pro Tour EVER! (This is the Pro Tour where I got certified for Level 3, followed up by meeting my current wife in a club called Karlovy Lazne)
– Pro Tour Amsterdam 2010 being the second best Pro Tour ever. Mostly because it was my first regional Pro Tour since I became Regional Coordinator and it was also the scene for my bachelor party. (If you count Emeritus as 6, my bachelor party had an average judge level of 3,875 [3.875 for US] per person with 8 people present, including one who wasn’t certified.)

If you could chat with one person, real or fictional, dead or alive, who would it be and why?

Schrödingers cat. Just to ask whether it’s dead or alive.

me showing our bitchWhat hobbies do you have outside of Magic?

Me and my wife breed dogs, Bullterriers to be exact. Take a look at our website!

Other hobbies include playing online RPGs. Currently mostly Diablo III – Battletag = RichardD#2365. (If you add me, please include name and dci nr. ^_^)


What character in Magic (real or fictional) represents you the best, and why?

Johnny, Combo Player; When playing Magic, I often look for the craziest combo’s to complete. For instance, I once had a Tempest block constructed deck with Mortuary, Mogg Fanatic, Recycle and Aluren. It took a while to set up, but it usually worked if I could hold off the opposing team long enough with all the Walls of Blossoms and creature kill spells.

How often do you Travel for Magic?

I travel outside of my region approximately 4-5 times a year.

What are some of your Regional Goals?

– Getting the staffing for larger local events sorted out properly.
– Having more interaction between judges of different cities and countries.
– Developing the Luxembourg community more and more.

What’s one thing in your region which makes playing magic special?

Pretty much every location within my region is within 5 hours driving distance.
So it doesn’t really matter where the tournament is, you can always get there by car.

Tell us an embarrassing story that you’re not afraid of everyone knowing.

I used to party quite hard while being away on events. One time I went out with the score keeper of the GP.
We got drunk and were late for Day 2 by about 2 hours.
Of course this was a big embarrassment for me as an up and coming L2. However, I was only a floor judge and easily replaced.
Replacing a score keeper for a limited GP on Day 2 is not so easy. The TO was quite angry and rightfully so.

How has being a Magic Judge influenced your non-Magic life?

Considering I met my current wife due to traveling for Magic, I guess it has turned my life upside down and kept it going like a roller coaster ride of fun.

What is the worst tournament you have judged?

Like others have mentioned, we should’ve all just gone home when we reached a total of 666 2HG-teams at GP “never happened” Amsterdam.

Who are your role models within the Judge Program? What are the qualities that drew you to them?

Jaap Brouwer – His ability to make everyone feel part of the team. Well…even to make all of us feel like a team. Jaap has a knack for pulling everyone together at exactly the correct time and being able to say the exact right things to keep the energy levels and morale high.

Alejandro Raggio – For being such a stand up guy, with huge insight.

Carlos Ho – For being such a loveable BIRU!

How do you have fun during events?judging fast at gp rotterdam

I try to get together with other judges outside of the tournament as much as possible.
It’s hanging out with them that makes me enjoy events more.
When I’m RC I often organize extra curricular activities such as a dinner out, a tour at a local brewery, going bowling, a boat trip, etc.


What is the proudest moment of your Judge life?start of bachelor party

I always get extra proud when people who I certified for L1 step up and and grow due to the judge program.
The ultimate goal is to see them join the ranks of L3.


What is your favorite “after event” story?                        (PG please.)

I’m sorry, most of my after event stories aren’t rated PG.
Let’s just say that having beers and going dancing with judge friends is one of my favorite “after event” activities.

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