The long awaited first round of the 2015 Maple Hill Open is officially in the books and as expected, it was truly a great day of disc golf. Maple Hill Gold is the kind of place where unexpected names can reach the top of the leaderboard but that wasn’t the case today. Two very familiar names will sit atop the lead card tomorrow, current PDGA Professional Disc Golf World Champions Paul McBeth #27523 and Catrina Allen #44184.
Paul McBeth #27523 and Paige Pierce #29190 top the PDGA Year-end 2014 World Rankings. McBeth has completed the most dominant year ever since World Rankings were started in 2005 (Ken Climo #4297 likely has had as dominant of a year before World Rankings started). McBeth averaged just slightly under first place in the tournament and ratings elements used to calculate World Rankings. Nathan Doss #11794 ranked second, averaging around fourth place for the year. RIchard Wysocki #38008 ranked sixth may have had the second best season if you eliminate his finish at the 2014 USDGC.
One way to ensure a victory at any disc golf tournament; start the final round in or close to the lead and then throw the lowest score of the week in your entire division. It’s a strategy that you can’t really argue with, right? Paul McBeth #27523 and Catrina Allen #44184 did just that today as they took home extremely impressive victories at the 2014 European Masters, the sixth of ten PDGA Major Events that take place throughout the year.
Who cares? Don’t answer that. It’s not really a question. It’s a concept that Tournament Director and head of Vibram Disc Golf, Steve Dodge #22042, came up with for the Maple Hill Open. It’s even written on a sign as you drive past all the other signs advertising the event leading up to the Maple Hill entrance. The point of “who cares?” is that disc golf events should be bigger and more important than they are today.
The long awaited start of the 32nd Kansas City Wide Open came to fruition this morning at Wyandotte County Park on the Kansas side of Kansas City. Thanks to a ton of prep work by the tournament staff, the course was primed and ready to go for championship caliber disc golf. The air horns sounded off right on time for the shotgun start, and the 84 players were lucky enough to tee off and play all day in nearly perfect weather conditions.
When the last putt of a multi-day disc golf event hits the chains, take a look around at the staff and the volunteers. They look pretty happy, right? If you’ve ever ran or helped put on a tournament, you probably know the feeling. The weight being lifted off your shoulders. The joy of knowing that soon you’ll be back home with your family and friends, sleeping comfortably and stress-free. It’s weird to think that after months and months of prep work, all you want once the event finally begins, is for it to end.
In the ball golf and disc golf world, Saturday is often referred to as “moving day”. In any Friday-Saturday-Sunday event, the way you play on Saturday often plays the biggest role in determining, to at least some degree, where you will end up overall at the end of the day on Sunday. Whether you play well and move up the ranks, or play terribly and move down, it will likely impact the way you carry yourself for the final round(s) both mentally and physically.
When we arrived at Old Settlers' Park this morning for the second round of the 2014 Texas State Championships, we knew we'd be in for an interesting morning to say the least. Typically when we get to the park in the morning to set up the tents, PA system, and feather banners, the only people around are the tournament staff and the grandmasters warming up on the course. What we saw instead as we winded around the park heading towards tournament central was an absurd amount of pedestrians walking the paths that meander through the fairways of the course.