Hi everyone, and welcome to the new, shiny BDGA NEWSLETTER.
We have revamped the newsletter which took a break in 2017 and made a small reintroduction in January but now we are back with an Issue every two months. We have some new ideas for the NL some of which you will find below. I also have an expanded Comms Team, and I will introduce the team and also lay out what we have been discussing in the last 3 months in our attempt to make the department far more useful to all disc golfers across the country.
But first I would like to take this opportunity to explain what has been going on and why you have not heard from us for far too long.
About 16 months ago I had a fairly major anxiety attack, which basically left me not wanting to do anything other than curl up under the duvet, watch garbage on TV and not speak to anyone. This was a bit of a problem considering my post is Communications Director! My symptoms were attacked by a variety of medication which, at first, had some horrible side effects, one of which was bouts of agoraphobia: a fear of going outside. Again, not very clever as it put a dampener on my love for disc golf.
It took quite a while for the doctors to adjust the medication to find the right levels to get me stable. Eventually, I felt able to go outside, and, on advice from the doc, I needed to find “safe places” that wouldn’t trigger the anxiety. Fortunately, Lloyd Park in Croydon was one of them, and slowly but surely I started to play a bit. Disc Golfers, by and large, are a magnificent bunch of people and my friends at Croydon are some of the very best… Hippy Dan and his wife, Sue are the very best of the very best… their support has been quite literally a life saver and I will never ever forget what they have done for me. There have been some very notable contributions from the disc golfing community. Tom Lowes and the rest of the board have been outstanding in their support, never once being anything other than positive and helpful and the membership who, in my mind, should have voted me off of the board, but instead, allowed me to continue in the post, unopposed. I can’t tell you how important that was to me. And a final mention goes to two people from overseas who mean an awful lot to me. Jorgen Halling and his partner Lill Irene Larsen have been friends from Norway for a good long while and come over to Croydon for a weekends disc golf. I was in the middle of a pretty bad time but as they had come all this way I dragged my sorry behind out to Lloyd Park to say hello. We met in the cafe and talked for about an hour. I had no intention or wish to play and was about to leave when they said “quick go at the short course?” It was lovely to talk and laugh with them so I decided to go for it. I felt comfortable with them and knew that I could leave at any time without upsetting them. We played the first four holes ok and then to the fifth…. something then changed. The fifth is a short version of hole 15 at Lloyd Park and one of my favourite holes…. and as I lined up the tee shot suddenly a smile came to me, a weight lifted off my shoulders and I realised that the love of this sport was something that would get me through my mental issues. It was an amazing moment and one that will always stay with me… to Jorgen and Lill, my thanks and love go to you.
And that was the beginning of my return to health, it has taken a long while, but now I feel so much better and am now on the hunt for work and now reinvigorated am returning to my duties as your Communications Director.
One of the things that I realised in my absence was that the job of Comms Director was that I needed help if I was to make the job a success. With this in mind, the board suggested that I ask a couple of members to give me a hand. I needed to find someone who had experience with websites, as all I did was break it! I approached Paul Holden who got on board very quickly and will be responsible for the website and also for the forum. Social media is another large minefield that is just too big for one… so I asked Paul Stoddart if he fancied helping me out, his enthusiasm for the project lead me to put him in charge of that arena, I will assist him, and as a team we have been very active and it is this activity will be visible from now on. We are here to assist all of you out there, now that there are three of us we hope to be able to make the Communications Department one that you will be able to truly work with.
Right, that’s me done… let’s get on with the fun stuff… thanks for reading and once again for all the love and support… you truly are the best.
Have fun people.
10 Quick Questions
with Paul Stoddart and Paul Holden, the two new members of the Comms Team:
Quick Questions and Answers:
1 Tell us about where and when you first DISCovered disc golf:
Like I lot of people I was throwing Frisbee’s and Aerobie’s long before I knew about disc golf. and it was this love of things that fly that led me to meet Ross Poole and Paul Cooper at Essex Uni in 2005. Again I like most was hooked after that first round.
2. 2m rule Y/N:
I assume that you mean the height rule, this rule very rarely needs to be applied and as such is no longer a regular rule unless a TD enforces it. I am not a fan of it.
3 Favourite disc and why:
I would have to say the Buzzz by Discraft. My first starter pack of 3 discs was an Aviar, a Buzzz and a Quarter K. A lot of golfers fall into 2 categories Buzzz lovers and Roc lovers. I have owned both but the big difference was the advancement in plastics that hooked me. As a Buzzz thrower, you only needed ever to really carry 2, a regular Buzzz (in your choice of plastics) and maybe a Super-Straight Buzzz for nice turn over shots. However, if you are a Roc thrower you seem to always have to carry at least (nearly always in DX plastic) and at varying ages and conditions. Now times have moved on for sure but my love of Buzzz has remained.
4 Worst / silliest superstition on the course:
I’m not really aware of any. I always use a nice soft plastic mini from Vibram as my marker because I don’t notice it in my pocket on drives but that’s about it. Some people have funny habits like Rich Hatton’s rendition of the Gangnam Style Dance.
5 Who would you play with on your dream BDGA card:
Tricky one but I would have to say Ivan purely for his humour and whisky, Sam Stevens as it is impossible to have a bad round with him on the card and he has a knack for making me play better and third would be Ross Poole because just when think you have seen it all he has a way to play a shot that questions physics and makes you want to be a better golfer and it is nearly always with a putter.
6 Favourite course in the UK and abroad:
Starting abroad I would have to say De Laveaga. This place has the overall package and is just a Mecca for disc golfers. In the UK I would have to say Whitcombe Farm. The reason for this is because not only is it a beautiful part of the country it is also always evolving. Over the years of playing there I don’t think I have played the same exact course more than twice even if it is just one or two holes whenever I go there I get a little buzz of excitement as which holes this time….
7. An irrational thing in disc golf that you just can’t let go:
Initially, I thought that this was not a great question and I struggled with it but I have come up with 2 answers. First is ‘roll aways’, I swear it is like there is ghost pushing the disc along and if there is something to get behind or fall off of then 9/10 times it will. Second is Mother Nature. How many times have you hit an iron leaf or skinniest of twigs and seen your disc fly off at a right angle after gathering speed at which point you curse her, but equally how often do we hear “got some tree love there”. At the end of the day, there is no luck good or bad.
8. The one hole that eats you up time:
My nemesis hole for a long time was 12 at QP. Going back to what I was saying earlier about roll aways, I have had some big scores on this hole over the years. Currently, it is 14 at Mendips, there is something about that gap in the trees that I just can’t seem to find.
9. Celebrity round:
First off it would have to be Steady Ed for obvious reasons. Second would be Tiger Woods for 2 reasons, firstly I think there is so much he could teach me about the mental side of golf and secondly because I think I could beat him and to be able to say that I beat Tiger Woods on the golf course would be a real confidence booster. Third would be Will Ferrell because I play disc golf for the enjoyment as much as anything else and he would make it a round to remember for sure.
10. One piece of advice to new players:
Driving for show, putting for dough 🙂
1. Tell us about where and when you first encountered disc golf.
1994 British Open Ultimate Tournament – this weird guy called Derek sold me some discs that it I didn’t throw for 5 years and couldn’t throw for another 5 🙂
2. 2 meter rule Y/N
No. I hate random penalties and in almost all cases the 2m rule is random.
3. Favourite Disc and why?
Tough one. I think it would have to be my Soft Challenger. It’s a putter that, if you really need to, you can drive. It will shape and it really rewards a positive throw, something that I need to have reminded to me as much as possible.
4. Worst/silliest superstition on the course.
I don’t think I have one.
with Paul Stoddart and Paul Holden, the two new members of the Comms Team:
Derek Robins, Ivan Bromage, Rich Wood – brilliance, banter and beating Croydon 😉
6. Favourite course… uk and abroad
UK – Whitcombe, it’s just naturally perfect for Disc Golf, RoW – Codorus State Sark, Pennsylvania, although I’ve not had a chance to play many yet.
7. Irrational thing in disc golf that you just can’t let go?
That I can improve without practice.
8. The one hole that eats you up every time?
River Ride – Black 8 at QP. It should be so easy, it nearly always ends in the dogwood.
9. Celebrity round… dead or alive.
Choose 3 players Steady Ed Hendrick, Richard Feynman, Frank Turner
10. 1 piece of advice to new players
Don’t watch my technique!
Bluebell Woods Eurotour
Last weekend saw the Bluebell Woods Eurotour event at Dunbar, where 4 of one of the longest running British Disc Golf Families all played the same tournament. I set them all the same questions, to see just how it all happens. A massive thanks to all 4 and especially Simon, who suffered my nagging to get the answers! Rich.
I am Trant (62), father of Noah, brother of Guy and uncle to Simon
Noah Son of Trant, Nephew of Guy and Simons cousin
I am Guy Luard and the most senior member of the family (65 in May)Simons father Trants brother Noahs uncle.
I’m Simon, son of Guy, nephew of Trant, Noah’s cousin.
1: When and How did you all get into disc golf?
1. After some years playing Frisbee with Guy and with friends on a regular basis, I emerged from a concert at Essex University one night and saw some people throwing a frisbee with great artistry and competence, so I went and introduced myself. One of them was Charlie Mead, who invited me to come and play disc golf at Tiger Hill, Suffolk. This was in the early 80s. T.L.I can’t quite remember i was probably about 8 when my father took me to our local course to play for the first time.
Trant introduced me to disc golf in the 70 its, I think,….. Charlie Mead the catalyst
I’m guessing around 1992 but I’m not sure where.. maybe Mull, maybe Colchester. My dad introduced me to it, maybe cos every other sport had led to tantrums/broken squash rackets etc. Disc Golf was a bit more zen.. eventually.
2: what is your first disc golf memory?
2. 1982 waswhen when I first played at Tiger Hill. I was provided with a Frisbee Midnight Flyer from The DGA and introduced to the delightful course, which comprised undulating wood and heath land and used taped trees as targets. I got to know it well as it was only a 10 minute drive from where I lived at the time.T.L.
Playing with mini discs into a plastic basket. I must have been about 3 years old
First D G memory ….playing at Tiger Hill with Charlie Mead and being amazed by his skill.
I remember throwing an orange Hawk on Mull, quite nicely, though not in the right direction.
3: how important has playing as a family been to you all?
3. I have always been delighted to play disc golf at every possible opportunity. Noah learnt to play when he was younger and I personally have continued to play disc golf for much of my life and particularly since Noah has started to enjoy the game. I can’t recall that the 4 of us have ever taken part in a competition together until 2018 at Bluebell Woods. T.L. I always look forward to playing Disc Golf with my english relatives whenever i meet them anywhere where there’s a course nearby (Which is usually Mull or Burnlaw)
Playing as a Family ……really important especially with Simon….. we have driven to and back from lots of tournaments together and I think the only reason he got GCSE English is because I made him listen to “Of Mice and Men “ when he was meant to be at school.
I’ve loved it. Growing up and travelling to tournaments around the country with my dad was amazing as a teenager. Nowadays I get to play with all my cousins and see them at tournaments which makes these weekends extra spacial. Boxing Day always involves a round wherever we are.
4: Who did the teaching? Who got competitive and who did everyone want to beat?
4. Teaching shared by Guy and Trant initially, but over the years the roles have become reversed. Noah definitely wants to win, I am deeply happy simply to be playing disc golf, but I dream of beating Simon in a playoff after a tight 72 holes. T.L.My father showed me the basics. Everything else i learnt from local players here in Berne, occasionally Simon gave me a few pro tips too (when i got the chance to play with him). I should probably also mention Youtube. There isn’t that much rivalry between us as we’re all different ages and playing at different skill levels. Plus, we don’t get to play together that much anyway, the Bluebell Woods Open this year being the first ever tournament we all competed in.
Simon is the only one who has done any teaching…Trant and I have only sights on beating each other.I can see Simon and Noah competing on another level in the future.
Guy and Trant both did the teaching back in the day though it was more “handy tips” than slow-mo vids and form analysis. I remember Trant advising to never give it more than 90% power which really confused me aged 15. Who got competitive? Me. Who did everyone want to beat? Me.
5: what is your funniest disc golf tale?
5. At my first Tiger Hill Competition, there was a young Danish man who, if my memory serves, played the whole weekend naked. T.L.
Once, when i was about 7 years old, I was playing throw and catch with my father in Mull, when he accidentally threw the disc into the field beside us. Obviously i was the one who had to go and get it. I was a bit scared of the highland cow bull standing about 30 feet away from where the frisbee had landed, but my father told me i had nothing to worry about, so i climbed over the fence and went to retrieve it. But just as i wanted to pick it up, i saw the bull racing towards me. Smart as I was, I did the only logical thing to do in that situation which involved frantically sprinting away from it, probably screaming, hoping to outrun this monster 30 times my weight. But as we’re talking about Scotland here, it didn’t take long for my feet to find a rabbit hole, which somewhat interfered with my getaway plan. So there i was, flat on the ground, hands over my head, ready for the end. After five seconds i was surprised to find the end hadn’t come after all and the bull had gone back to grazing. After making my way back to our cottage through a field of nettles i wasn’t too happy to find my father laughing at me, which at the time seemed a bit inappropriate.
Has to involve my Nephew “Patrick Villers Stuart”……. aged about 11 he was caddy for Simon in a final.Not sure why he had an air horn in his pocket or why it went off as Simon was about to drive.
Not family related but my funniest was in Bristol, Ashton Court (the top bit) at the top 16 matchplay probably around 2000. I was playing with Spencer Worth, walking between holes and I glanced to my left to see a massive bull charging at us. We both legged it down the hill, frisbees falling out our bags. Spence swerved off into the woods and the bull kept going after me. I think I then swerved into the woods as well and the Bull f’d off. We sat there for a bit laughing. Meanwhile the bull had circled back round, got about 20 of his mates and came back for round 2. We were on the next tee and suddenly saw the whole herd coming at us through the trees. I climbed up a tree but Spence was wearing his football boots and couldn’t get much purchase and kept slipping. I was trying to help him but I was also laughing really hard and crying a bit. He was too, kind of, but the closer they got the more he was slipping and I think he was actually getting concerned. I was laughing so hard I thought I might fall out the tree. He eventually scrambled up just as the first bulls came charging past us and they all just kept running. Scary but funny.
Other people might say it was funnier when Neil Pickett tackled me in football on Hayling Island and I flew 10ft into the air and landed in a cowpat.
I also liked it when Gremlin was so hammered doing the players meeting on Mull that he had to hold onto a tree.
6: how was The Bluebell Woods Open for you all?
6. Bluebell Woods was well-organised and very good fun. Theplayers pack was full of treasures and the company truly international. The contrast between the dense fog of Friday and the summery feel to Sunday was a bonus as were the remarkable trees that abound on the course.T.L.Really well organised, fun groups, good players package and most importantly an amazing course. I really enjoyed it and i hope to go back to play the course next autumn.
Bluebell woods was wonderful and the first time we have all played together.
So good! Lovely people in all my groups and the course, organisation, food, weather was all 1000+ rated. Great that Trant won his division (comfortably), I thought Noah played unbelievably well and.. Guy was there too.
7: what’s your favourite course and why?7. My favourite course would have to be the Mull course, as it is close to all the Luard hearts and spectacularly beautiful on a good day, but it can be brutal when the wind blows. So I would include Beaminster in joint first place, as it includes a wide range of memorable holes in amongst the glorious steeply wooded hills and fields of Dorset. T.L.
Probably Bluebell Woods. It’s so versatile, every hole is a unique challenge, change in setting (open fields, woods, mixtures of both, and even a lake which provides this extra mental challenge). Also all my highest rated rounds were played there.
Favourite course is Beaminster.The first time Simon and I played together it was at Beaminster in about 1992 ……Frost breaker I think, we arrived at a pub in the village just in time for last orders on a Friday night….. and the next morning met the ten or so players (including Derik Ivan and Sue)The whole event was totally magical foggy and mysterious.
I think Dunbar is the best course in the UK technically but my joint favourites to play are Whitcombe Farm and Mull. Easy to forget bad shots at those places.
8: when you’re all round the dining table, what’s the one disc golf argument that always comes up?
8. Noah and I talk disc golf at the dining table, usually in the context these days of whether my disc golf will ever improve. T.L.
We don’t really have any arguments about disc golf when all of the Luards are at a table, but me and my father quite frequently argue about wether he’s ever going to improve or not.
I don’t think we have one but no-one really agrees with me that XD,s are the best disc ever invented.
There really isn’t one. With me it’s often been “2nd place is still good” or “Do you think you’ll ever win?”. With Noah now there’s lots of chat about who’s the best pro and what’s going on on youtube and with Paddy and Oran it’s generally “you layed up? What’s wrong with you?”
9:What advice would you give families starting to play together?
9. Advice for families starting?. Introduce flying discs of any size at an early age, but wait until children are at least 8 before playing with a real golf disc.T.L.Have fun, pick understable discs, watch the pros on Youtube and maybe take an experienced disc golfer with you when you go and play.
as a parent Uncle Aunt etc be prepared to be beaten very very soon …… enjoy it
100% just enjoy it… rivalry is great but it’s never about that. Have a look at where you are (chances are you’re somewhere absolutely beautiful) and who you’re with and enjoy the whole thing.
10: and finally… you are playing doubles, all on one big card, choose your CELEBRITY FANTASY PLAYING PARTNERS… DEAD OR ALIVE.10. My celebrity playing partner would be Leonardo da Vinci, as by all accounts he didn`t get out much, so the fresh air would do him good and his observations on the mechanics of discs and disc flight would be fascinating. If I couldn’t have him,i’d settle for Odd Job. T.L.
Either my fifth and sixth grade biology teacher, or one of the Marx brothers.
I would like to have Leonard Cohen as my partner ……we would be useless …..But I think he would be fascinated and maybe he would sing to me and my drives would go that bit further and putts a bit straighter.
EASTER NICE SNAP
EASTER NICE SNAP Competition winner. Ed Greens springtime snap takes the prize.
We the Comm’s Team are pleased to announce that the winner of the Easter Holiday Nice Snap is Edward Green with his daffodils pic. I (Paul S) thought this captured not only a bit of rare sunshine from the weekend which showed dedication but also a nice level of fun and artistic merit.
The Easter Nice Snaps was sponsored by Dye Factory Designs:
Dye Factory Designs offer custom discs for all occasions whether it’s a one-off commission disc, discs for your local club, company logo discs or even birthday / special occasion discs…. I can offer a complete design service to produce discs with exactly what you want on them so just ask! I also keep stock bottom stamp innova molds and have access to discmania latitude 64 and all other brands or you can even send me a certain disc you want to make that bit more special.
Dye factory designs can be found and contacted through Facebook Instagram or email:
Thanks for all the support please like share and follow my work and watch this space!