The first disc golf tournament of the season went off without a hitch this past weekend, with a great turnout of players from as far away as the United States and Alberta, and of course from across the East Kootenay.
Organized by local Ben Loggains, this was a Professional Disc Golf Association (PDGA) C-tier event, with two rounds at the Wycliffe course on Saturday, April 27 and two rounds at the College of the Rockies course on Sunday, April 28.
“The tournament went really well this weekend,” said Loggains. “We had a total of 48 players come out. The weather was mostly cooperative aside from a few minutes of hail on Saturday.”
The winners in mens pro open division came down to the final throw both days with Cranbrook local Casey Hanemayer taking the win on the first playoff hole over Montana’s Chris Faulkner. Banff’s Matt Riordan secured the win Sunday with a par on the final hole to win by 1 throw.
“Came down to the wire at the end, it was lots of fun,” said Casey Hanemayer. “Had to play Chris Faulkner for the playoff and took it down on the first playoff hole so it was fun. It’s always fun to come play Wycliffe, it’s an unreal course and it was really, really good to just get that first win under the belt.
This is Hanemayer’s first tournament on Canadian soil of the year, as he went down to Phoenix for the Memorial Championship in February. Hanemayer has played at many, many different disc golf courses, including going to play in a tournament in Thailand last year, but states that the Wycliffe course is in his top-five favourites.
“For anybody who likes disc golf and can play and has a big arm, you definitely want to come play Wycliffe for sure,” Hanemayer said, adding that overall, he couldn’t have asked for a better first tournament of the season.
“Other highlight’s included some solid play from Junior competitors placing in divisions against adults,” Loggains said. “13-year old-Kailash Sanjivi of Nelson won the Men’s Advanced div on Sunday while Cranbrook Adrian Reedyk took 2nd in Men’s intermediate at just 11 years old. It’s exciting to see the growth of the sport in Cranbrook both in drawing folks from far away and with so many locals joining the PDGA.”
The tournament was a further testament to the ever-increasing prominence of the sport of disc golf in East Kootenay and abroad. Hanemayer, whose father helped build the Cranbrook Disc Golf Course and has been playing the sport since he was 12, said he thinks the sport is coming along really well in B.C.
“We’re trying to get B.C. disc golf memberships for the whole province right now,” he said, also mentioning the club’s winter indoor putting league and the league nights every Tuesday at the Cranbrook Course.
“Everything that we’re trying to do is coming to fruition and the community is behind us 100 per cent,” he added. “It’s really, really cool to see.”
Hanemayer is currently working on getting his rating to over 1000 to solidify his sponsorship with Innova, and in the meantime, he is selling a fundraiser disc to help raise some money to get him to the Team Disc Golf World Championships that take place in August in Estonia.
Local players can keep their eyes peeled for the upcoming Sam Steele Days tournament and then watch out for another PDGA-sanctioned tournament in the fall, this one a B-tier event. For full results click here and here
READ MORE:Sam Steele disc golf tournament