The 2011 Asia Open International Disc Golf Event took place on February 19-20 in Taipei, Taiwan at the very challenging Hsintian Riverside Disc Golf Course. The Tournament hosted 64 Professional Players from all over the World from the US, Australia, Finland, Korea, Thailand, China and Japan. The Tournament Director, Kuan Chen, organized this PDGA event for the second time, as he plans on hosting the event every other year at various locations throughout Asia in years to come.
The Asia Open is a 160 - Class event where all players had to use Discs that weighed 160 grams of less. Not to mention that this year's weather for the tournament was less than ideal with very wet, muddy and rainy conditions throughout the weekend. It was not only tough for the competitors due to the weather conditions and adjusting to the lighter weighted discs made it extra challenging.
Avery Jenkins and David Feldberg quickly separated themselves from the rest of the field on Saturday with a -21 and -23 respectively in the continuous rain throughout the day. On Sunday, David Feldberg started to create some separation as he shot a Course-Record 46 (-14) to increase his lead to four strokes over Jenkins going into the Semi-Final 9 and Final 9. Jenkins responded in the Semi-Finals gaining momentum and cutting the lead to only 2 strokes going into the Final 9, with both players possibly shooting some of the highest rated light weight Disc Golf ever in PDGA History.
During the Final 9, there was no change in score through the first four holes until Jenkins birdied the fifth hole to close within one stroke of Feldberg. The whole tournament came down to the stretch on hole #6 where Jenkins threw two perfect shots reaching a long 220-meter (720 ft) par 4. On the same hole, Feldberg's drive found trees on the right side of the fairway off the tee and his heroic second shot sailed OB. Jenkins kept the pressure on by making birdies on the holes #7 & #8 to increase the lead to two strokes. On the Final Hole, they both scored pars and Avery Jenkins claimed his 1st Asia Open Title and his first win of the 2011 Season.
In the Women's Open Field, Valarie Jenkins, #1 in the World competed against Taiwan's #1 Ranked Women, Chia-fan Chen. They keep the scores close on Saturday, but Chia-fan held a 2 stroke advantage for the day. Chia-fan played consistent through the rain and wind, and in the Semi-Final round she increased the lead to four strokes. Chia-fan played amazing golf through out the weekend against Valarie, but nerves got the best of her in the Final 9. Valarie gained three strokes back during the 9 holes but it was not enough to offset her deficit. Chia-fan solidified her 2011 Asia Open Title by smashing a 60-foot putt on the final hole to clinch the Championship.
1st Avery Jenkins - 193
2nd David Feldberg - 195
3rd Manabu Kajiyama - 213
4th Jussi Meresmaa - 219
1st Chia-fan Chen - 220
2nd Valarie Jenkins - 222
3rd Su Mei Yang - 233
Special Thanks to Kuan Chen with EZ Flying Discs, Mark Molnar with Disc Golf Values and Innova Champion Discs for their sponsorship and support of the 2011 Asia Open!!!