After traveling through the Midwest, the PDGA National Tour has one more stop before the finale at the Vibram Open. This weekend the top disc golf pros will converge on Estacada, Oregon for the Beaver State Fling.
The tournament started in 2002 as a C-tier, grew to an A-tier in 2004, and was a stop on the PDGA National Tour in 2005. Since then, the tournament has continued to grow with more support and more competitors.
With the tight race for Player of the Year continuing, we talked with Tournament Director Jeff Hagerty to get a preview of this year’s tournament.
All Things Disc Golf: After some trips around the Midwest, the PDGA National Tour heads West to Oregon. What is the disc golf scene in Oregon like?
Jeff Hagerty: I think we have a pretty strong scene up here in Oregon. We have new courses going in every year, and the tournament schedule is becoming so packed with events you could literally play an event every weekend.
All Things Disc Golf: The Beaver State Fling has been a popular tournament on the Tour for a while. What makes it stand out?
Jeff Hagerty: I think it stands out for several reasons. Two big reasons are the two 18 hole courses we have at Milo McIver State Park. We are very fortunate to have such a great complex available for the event. Another HUGE factor in our ongoing success has been our core staff and our army of dedicated volunteers. There is simply no possible way to put on an event of this scale without a strong support structure, and our crew is among the very best.
All Things Disc Golf: It seems as if a local pro is always near the top of the leaderboard. For example, Tim Skellenger finished second last year. Is it nice seeing the locals performing well at the BSF?
Jeff Hagerty: Yes, it is always great to see our local guys doing well. Seeing Tim Skellenger finish so well last year was awesome, and seeing it happen on Father’s Day with his dad caddying for him was icing on the cake. We couldn’t have asked for a better outcome to our event.
All Things Disc Golf: Let’s talk about the courses. For those who have never been there, what will disc golfers encounter?
Jeff Hagerty: First off, while both courses are big and long, they also require a lot of precision as well. They’ll test every aspect of a player’s game for sure.
All Things Disc Golf: This year’s PDGA National Tour has seen great competition all year long. What will it take to not only win this year’s Beaver State Fling, but also finish towards the top of the leaderboard?
Jeff Hagerty: With the average rating of the MPO field being right around 1000, this is one of the highest average rated events in history. Consistent, solid play throughout the entire weekend is what it will take to win this one. We have spent a lot of time preparing our courses, it’s up the player now.
All Things Disc Golf: There is also the amateur side to the tournament. What is the AM side like?
Jeff Hagerty: Yes, in addition to the 160 pro players, we have another 144 amateur players as well. The amateur side of this event fills up so quickly, we have actually been using a lottery system to make registration fair for everyone.
All Things Disc Golf: What is in this year’s players pack?
Jeff Hagerty: We don’t tell the players ahead of time either. 😉 But it will be good.
All Things Disc Golf: Who makes it possible to put on such a great tournament?
Jeff Hagerty: Our main event sponsors are Keen Footwear, Next Adventure, Innova Disc Golf, Stumptown Disc Golf (our local club), and Oregon State Parks.
Thanks to Hagerty for providing some insight on this year’s Beaver State Fling. Check back later this weekend for a full recap of all the action from Oregon.