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100+ Teams Gearing Up for Am World Doubles in Mt. Vernon, Texas

The welcoming sign in front of the Selah Inn, a magnificent bed-and-breakfast housed on the same grounds as the Selah Ranch disc golf courses.

What’s more fun than playing disc golf on some of the world’s best courses? The answer is simple. Playing them with a partner for a chance to go home with a PDGA Major title! Disc golf doubles is a one of the most fun and rewarding ways to play but doing so successfully requires strategy, planning, and teamwork. That’s exactly what we look forward to seeing at the upcoming 27th running of the Amatuer World Doubles Championships, the third PDGA Major Disc Golf Event of 2017! Presented by Innova Champion Discs and Houck Design, and hosted on four of the highest rated disc golf courses on the planet, the nearly 120 teams gathered in Mt. Vernon, Texas this weekend are as much in for a treat as they are a challenge.

This year the event will see six different divisions competing for the title of Amateur World Doubles Champions: Advanced, Advanced Women, Advanced Masters, Advanced Grandmasters, Advanced Senior Grandmasters, and Intermediate. Additionally, an experimental mixed division of male/female teams has been allowed in as well. Intermediate earns the role of the largest division at 44 teams with Advanced close behind at 32 teams. The state of Texas dominates the registration, comprising of nearly 75% of all registered competitors.


There are a lot of great courses in the world, but the Amateurs competing this weekend have the opportunity to play one of the best. From the moment the courses at Selah Ranch was installed, they’ve been known by many as two of the top disc golf courses around. Designer John Houck #1688 created this tournament 25 years ago and now it takes place on four of his courses. Selah Ranch features two different championship courses: Selah Lakeside and Selah Ranch Creekside. The other courses being used, Trey Deuce and Texas Twist, were built on the grounds of Trey Texas Ranch just a few miles away, and they certainly will not disappoint either.


The infamous and beautiful island hole of Selah Ranch - Lakeside.

Doubles Formats

The 2017 Amateur World Doubles Championships plays multiple formats of doubles: Best Shot, Best Disc, and Alternate Shot, and Worst Shot. During some of the rounds, a combination of those formats will be played, e.g. Holes 1-6; Best Shot, Holes 7-12; Best Disc, Holes13-18; Alternating Shot.

If you’ve ever played a round of Worst Shot, you know the pain of having a great throw and then watching in horror as your teammate’s disc ricochets deep into the woods, over an out-of-bounds line, and/or into the water. But, have you actually played Worst Shot?

The term Worst Shot is very commonly misused. Often time when people refer to Worst Shot they are actually playing Tough Shot. They both play by the same rules except with one very critical difference; in true Worst Shot format, BOTH teammates have to hole out. This holds true no matter what the situation may be. So don’t get too excited when your teammate tees off and gets a hole-in-one. In true Worst Shot format, it’s not getting marked on the scorecard as a 1 unless you follow it up with an ace of your own!

The rules below have been approved by the PDGA Rules Committee for doubles. More information can be found on the PDGA Doubles Rules and Formats page.

Best Shot

Best Shot is by far the most popular doubles format. Both players throw from each lie (starting with the tee shot), then the team chooses which of the resulting lies to continue play from until the hole is completed.

  • A team may take a reasonable amount of time to pick which lie they want before the 30-second play clock starts.
  • A lie that is picked up without being marked is gone forever; the team must throw from the other lie. If the second lie is picked up, it must be replaced in accordance with PDGA rules. All lies must be marked according to PDGA rules.
  • If the first player throws from the wrong lie, the second player may still throw from the correct lie.
  • In the case of injury or disqualification, one partner may play alone, throwing one shot at each lie (essentially playing singles).

Worst Shot

Worst Shot is the most brutal of the doubles formats and can test the patience of even the best teams. In Worst Shot, both players throw from each lie (starting with the tee shot), then the competing teams in the group choose which of the subsequent lies will be used, with the aim of making the hole as difficult as possible. The hole is completed once both team members have holed out from the same lie.

  • The 30-second play clock begins once the opposing teams have selected the lie.
  • A lie that is picked up without being marked must be replaced in accordance with PDGA rules. All lies must be marked according to PDGA rules.
  • Any warning or penalty incurred by a player may be chosen to apply to the team, at the opposing teams' discretion.
  • A team found to be giving an opposing team a better lie will be disqualified for unsportsmanlike behavior.

Tough Shot is the same as Worst Shot, with one major score-lowering distinction; once a player on the team has holed out, the team has completed the hole.

Alternate Shot

In Alternate Shot, only one sequence of throws is made on each hole. The team selects a player to throw the tee shot at the beginning of the round. The other player then throws from the subsequent lie, and play alternates in that fashion until the round is completed. Alternate Shot is closer to a singles format, where one partner can't bail the other out. If you miss a short putt, chances are good that you'll be driving the next hole.

  • If the wrong player on a team throws, another team must call it immediately, like a foot fault. The team receives a warning, and the correct player throws. Subsequent violations incur a one-throw penalty.
  • For any violation that requires a rethrow (stance violation, provisional throw), the same player throws.

Best Disc (Best Score)

In Best Disc (also known as Best Score), each player plays the hole as they would while playing singles; there are no shared lies. The team score is the best score on the hole by one of its players.

  • The player who is away will always throw first, with this exception: If both players are lying the same number of throws, the team may choose which player throws first.
  • A player must pick up once it is impossible for him to better the team's score.
  • In the case of injury or disqualification, one partner may play alone.

The tournament begins Friday morning, bright and early. Each team will play two rounds a day on Friday and Saturday, meaning all competitors will get to play all four championship courses at least once. After the rounds on Saturday, the top teams from each division will play a final nine holes on Sunday. Stay tuned for more information as we get closer to the opening round of the 2017 PDGA Amateur World Doubles Championships presented bv Innova Champion Discs and HouckDesign!



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