State Champions Crowned
Traditions from the past were renewed over the weekend in Escondido, CA as the 2010 California State Flying Disc Championships crowned state champions in disc golf and several other flying disc sports. Over 90 competitors were on hand, striving to take home that championship hardware, or possibly the keys to a new car. Tournament Directors Randy Wylot, Mark Verrochi and Peter Laubert provided the players and spectators alike with a fun and action-packed weekend, full of flying disc games, clanging chains and the fellowship of the Frisbee Family. Sponsored by the San Diego Aces Disc Golf Club and radio station KPRI, the tournament crowned state champions in seven disc golf divisions, as well as in the disc sports of Freestyle, Double Disc Court, Accuracy throwing and an Overall Flying Disc champion. And as an extra added bonus, the event raised over $1,000 that the Aces will put towards developing more disc golf courses in San Diego County.
Paul McBeth will carry the title of California State Disc Golf Champion for the next year, winning the Men’s Open division with a final score of 37 under par. Paul’s first round score of 44 on the short layout of the Kit Carson course was the lowest round on Saturday, and he never looked back. Veterans John Heaton (26-under) and Jeff Nichols (19-under) rounded out the top three. SoCal Disc Golf President Suzette Simons took the Women’s Open state title with a score of 3-over par, besting Emina Weaver and Allison Wylot. Men’s Advanced saw some great golf, as Max Nichols fired a score of 28-under, which would have taken second place in Open (and beaten his dad). It looked like Max would completely lap the field after Saturday’s rounds, but A.J. Risley made it a little interesting Sunday morning, shooting a 46 on the longer Kit Carson layout for the hot round of the day and making up eight strokes on Max to finish at 23-under.
In other divisions, Miker Ramos 29-under was the second-best score of the weekend, good enough to win Advanced Masters over his long-time fellow competitor Dan Shorkey (19-under). Ace Race Champion Dale Chambless (15-under) took the state title in Men’s Intermediate, besting Brian Newmark, “Cover-Boy” Jeff Bozigian and Armando Lopez, who played the entire tournament with a borrowed bag and discs. Amber Ivy had another strong tournament, winning Women’s Intermediate over Liz Silva, and Mike Henry won the Recreational State title over North County locals Brian Dowling and Kevin Christie (time to move up, bagger Mike!).
There was a competition within the competition, as a number of players participated in an Olympic-like “Quadathalon” of sorts, competing for the California State Overall Flying Disc championship in the disc-iplines of disc golf, freestyle, double disc court and accuracy throwing. Veteran Frisbee player Jim Herrick combined strong finishes in all four events to walk away with the state overall title. Cody Kirkland came in second place in the overall competiton after 1st place finishes in disc golf and DDC but no points from freestyle, with Deano Porter close on his heels in third.
In the individual disciplines, the team of Amy and Dave Schiller demonstrated their World Champion mixed pairs form in freestyle, taking first place over the father/son team of Dave and Zach Murphy. Cody and John Kirkland took the state DDC title, besting Jim Herrick and Ron Vingerelli in the finals. And Co-TD Mark Verrochi walked away as the state champion in Accuracy throwing, putting 17 of his 28 throws through the target, two more than Aces President Jeff Nichols.
The final event of the weekend was the hole-in-one throw for $25,000, with three competitiors taking aim at the 284-foot target. Jeff Nichols, Liz Silva and A.J. Risley had all earned the right to the big-money throw by aceing the preliminary 150-foot shot during the weekend. in the end no one made the $25,000 shot, but Jeff won a nice prize for ending up closest to the pin.
All-in-all it was a busy weekend, with disc golf clinics and Kan-Jam games and canine frisbee demonstrations mixed in between the competitive events. A strong showing of vendors, including DGA, Off-Axis Design, SDSF and Kan Jam and food supplied by Tina’s Deli and Dave’s du Jour made for a fun, festival-like atmosphere.