Saturday, March 10, 2018

Match Play Fever: Catching

In early January a truly neat idea came across the inboxes of the Dynamic Discs family. Buried in the year end letter put out by Jeremy Rusco was notification of a new amateur prestige event: The United States Amateur Match Play Championship. A format that has emerged multiple times through the years in the form of various state team championship events, the Players Cup, and recently in the Pro Tour Championship. The format catches the eye because of the way it changes the dynamic (no pun intended) for the individual with the occasional single-hole explosion. It opens up the front of the (especially amateur) field to a slightly different group of players.

The details were scarce at the time, but the format intrigued as it always has. In a message a few weeks later Dixon Jowers engaged Team Dynamic Discs members to run a qualifying event, an endeavor that sounded small, fun, and easy.

Fast forward to the end of the month, and information begins to come out. Specifically: the prizes.
Oh... what prizes they are.

The grand champion receives 18 brand spanking new Veteran baskets and tee signs; a $2000 voucher for merch from the Dynamic Discs web store; $500 voucher every year for 20 years from the Dynamic Discs web store. I've done absolutely no research whatsoever - but the total value of this prize appears to be one of the heaviest payouts to an Amateur champion in recent history, off simply years of following along.

The best part of the opportunity to compete: the trip to finals is funded for the qualifiers, at least to the first $500 spent. An entirely new group of players will be open to the belief that they can be a US Amateur Champion - it opens all of those players to a greater travel range than they would normally consider for a major event.

There are also prizes for the finishers at the top of the lower level brackets. Along with multiple coveted burst discs as part of a $45 player pack for all entrants. The entire package feels like an astounding and exciting new opportunity for players.

If the format was enticing, the potential prize package served as a clarion call to anybody in the disc golf community that felt in any way held back by inconsistency, with the very best players drooling over the possibilities already. Within my local community this match play fever has resulted in the need for a qualifying event. Here in the Toledo, Ohio area we will be running a single round of stroke play at one of the layouts to be used during tournament play (the semi-final layout). Our local club will be using the qualifying round as a fundraising event, to help build club coffers toward an eventual purchase of replacement baskets for one of our local courses.

The US Amateur Match Play event, through the depth of its prize package, has managed to elevate itself from a small and fun event, to something that can help drive club fundraising in the community. Match play fever is catching. It is proving to be a benefit to our community. Look into how it can be a benefit to yours at:

See you on the links!

Chris Wojciechowski
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