With the first full week of the 2024 DCI Tour in the books, competitive storylines have unfolded in abundant and intriguing fashion.

Here are some of the key threads to follow as the Summer Tour enters its busiest stretch, mid- and late- July. 

1. Early haymakers from heavy hitters

Drum corps fans got an early look at three of the DCI Tour’s top-scoring corps, as Bluecoats, Boston Crusaders and Carolina Crown went head-to-head July 2 in Mason, Ohio. The same three corps finished among the top four in 2022 and 2023. 

Bluecoats came out ahead of the second-place Boston Crusaders by 0.3 points, with Carolina Crown another 0.5 points back from there. Each of the three won a different overall scoring caption. 

Since the Mason, Ohio event, Bluecoats have been on a scoring tear, continuing to set the top bar for all World Class corps; most recently, Bluecoats posted a season-high tally of 83.400, July 7 in La Crosse, Wisconsin.

The three-time defending World Champion Blue Devils, of course, have been keeping pace on their own West Coast swing, scoring as high as 82.050 July 7 in Sacramento, California

2. Mandarins make history

Stanford last night didn’t feel real ✨🎺🟣 #Mandarins2024 | #VieuxCarré 📸: @josephkhalifaphoto

Posted by Sacramento Mandarins on Sunday, July 7, 2024


“Mandarins make history” has been a commonly-used phrase over the past five competitive seasons, with the corps regularly reaching new milestones. Last year, the corps landed in the top six overall for the first time, and has its sights set on another first in 2023.

After three consecutive days of close competition with Santa Clara Vanguard in the season’s opening weekend, the Sacramento corps defeated Vanguard for the first time ever, leading by 0.7 points July 6 in Clovis, California

Mandarins’ scoring strengths have been found in the general effect and visual captions, while Vanguard has been buoyed by its music scores — especially percussion.

3. Rocky Mountain racing 

You know what day it is…. Happy show day! As we get ready for tonight’s show, here are a few shots from last nights...

Posted by Troopers Drum & Bugle Corps on Saturday, July 6, 2024


It’s been a close race so far between Blue Knights and Troopers, as the two have met up twice since opening up their respective summer tours.

For comparison’s sake, at the end of 2023, the 10th-place Troopers led the 12th-place Blue Knights by 3.1 points. At the two corps’ first meeting, Troopers led the way by 1.85 points, but the Denver corps slimmed that margin to just 0.65 points a day later.

4. Midwest mixup

It’s been a busy start to the season for Colts and Blue Stars, who have each appeared at seven DCI Tour events in the season’s first 12 days. 

Blue Stars opened up the summer with a lead of 1.25 points over Colts, but the Iowa corps slid ahead by 0.3 points at the two corps’ fourth head-to-head meeting. In total, Blue Stars and Colts have met six times, with Blue Stars taking the high score in four of those matchups.

Most recently, though, Colts outscored Blue Stars by exactly one point, July 7 in La Crosse, Wisconsin.

5. Early noise in the PNW

In the corps’ first appearance of the 2024 season, Columbians turned heads, posting a debut score of 64.950. For reference, the last time Columbians appeared at an early-July event, the corps scored 54.700 on July 8, 2022. 

Columbians’ opening score currently stands as the third-highest Open Class score recorded this season, behind only Blue Devils B and Gold.

View the 2024 DCI Tour Schedule

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