I’ve had the pleasure of walking the Municipal Golf Course’s temporary disc golf course three times this year, although I have not yet had the chance to get out there without the purpose of caddying! Municipal, located just outside of Emporia, KS, uses only half of the ball golf course, and plays a total distance of 8,608 ft for the long tees and 7,987 ft for the short tees. Course par is 65.
Throughout the week, this course will be used for the PDGA Amateur World Championships. The A and B pools of Advanced Men played it today, with a hot round of 55. Tomorrow the C pool of Advanced Men and Advanced Grandmasters will play the course. The Advanced Men will play it once more on Thursday or Friday.
Because I have not personally played this course and because I’m trying to spend as much time out experiencing Worlds while I’m here, I’m going to let the pictures speak for themselves (they are worth a thousand words, right?). For an overall course map and hole-by-hole distance and OB information, head over to the Dynamic Discs website: http://www.dynamicdiscs.com/2013amworlds/courses/. Dynamic Discs has been very supportive of my efforts to keep you all updated on the Amateur and Junior World Championships by allowing me to use bits and pieces of their course map here on Dogleg. Thanks for being so great!
And now, to the course!
As we’ve all heard by now, a big change for the world of disc golf will be announced on New Year’s Day. Many of the most well known pros have dropped major sponsors and have dropped hints of a revolution happening at the start of 2013. Players including two-time U.S. Champion Will Schusterick, 2011 World Champion Paige Pierce, 2006 Amateur World Champion Paul Ulibarri, and 2011 Junior World Champion Ricky Wysocki have all made announcements via social media this month. The online disc golf community has been asking for more than a week: what’s the hype about?
The answer? No one seems to know. The signs from the pros seem to point in different directions, which has caused a handful of theories to emerge.
The most conspiracy-like idea is that a new super company is about to emerge. Most references call it Prodigy Disc Golf. A person or group with a large base of financial support supposedly backs the new company. The sponsored players would have a larger salary than they get with currently existing sponsors, like Dynamic Discs. Prodigy is assumed to be a disc manufacturer, because the majority of the pros have dropped Innova, Discraft, and/or Dynamic Discs (who recently released a line of discs manufactured through Latitude 64). That’s why 2010 World Champion Eric McCabe announced yesterday that he would no longer be sponsored by Discraft, so he could join Team Dynamic Discs. This would also explain why some of the pros have picked up new retailor sponsors—like Will Schusterick and Paige Pierce joining the Journey Post team, based out of Branson, Mo.
Another line of theories all point in the direction of existing corporations breaking into the disc golf market. As can be expected, Nike has been mentioned by many because of its large financial base and role as a sponsor in most major sports in the United States. Keen’s name has also been thrown in the hat; they already sponsor a few players, like Avery Jenkins, and have produced footwear with Vibram, who has also manufactured discs.
Regardless of whether a new company is forming, or an existing company is growing, the guys at Furthering the Disc are definitely stirring the social media . Will Schusterick, who dropped Innova and Discmania on December 16, is a key player in their social media movement to revitalize disc golf. Both Will and FTD have been promoting the hashtag #discopalypse13 on Twitter.
Until Tuesday, when the pros are set to make their big announcement, all we can do is try to put the pieces together and hope that they add up to something that will advance the sport we all love. Share your thoughts on what’s going on by commenting, or tweeting @DoglegDiscGolf. Do you think that everyone is moving in the same direction? Is a new company forming, or is disc golf just getting more commercialized? Is this ordeal going to help the sport grow in 2013? What do you want to see the pros doing next year?