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Should we have prize money and payout ratios on the BDGA Tour (assuming that we have at least 3 ratings based divisions)

Poll ended at Thu Dec 08, 2005 11:45 pm

No, not on any Tour events.
1
10%
Leave it to the TD.
6
60%
Yes, make it mandatory for all main Tour events
3
30%
 
Total votes: 10

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Post by bruce » Wed Nov 30, 2005 10:52 am

I do remember you said that, but the original post suggested modifying Tour structure to deal with this...

Again, I can only apologise for trying to stay on topic :wink:

Time to post another poll methinks

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Post by Tim » Wed Nov 30, 2005 1:00 pm

Bruce wrote:I reckon most TDs earn over £10 an hour in their day jobs. I seriously doubt they're making minimum wage on tourneys...
Why would they be making minimum wage, have i got this wrong. All the work I do for tournaments and the course at Essex is for the sport and the players, i do not expect to be paid for it, i do not expect to have my petrol reimbursed or my time that i give up for the sport given back to me.

You need to get away from this mindset Bruce, this sport is young and it will take people's goodwill to make it bigger, if every TD just takes the cash and makes some lame excuse that they had to cover so many costs, why are they doing it... lets see what's 2 + 2? If we carry on down this path, the sport isn't going to get bigger, it will stay small.

There should be no "making" involved in hosting an event at this stage of growth of a very marginal sport in England, if people wish to "make" then there are far more lucrative ways, this is chump change after all.

As Fernando has quite rightly pointed out, at the Essex Special 2004 we did not charge any extra cash for entry fees but still paid out very deep in all divisions and all children and women got extra, yes we had a small amount of sponsorship and some gifts from friends for the event, but not anything substantial, payouts can be achieved and there is a lot of goodwill out there. If you are still worried that players will be disgruntled by the same people winning all the time then let the TD be creative, say after paying out the top 3 of each division, the rest of the payout is random draw, that would not only be fun, it would create a more even spread, nothing is ever set in stone.

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Post by bruce » Wed Nov 30, 2005 2:02 pm

Here's a very amusing and entirely accurate guide to Internet Debating by Dilbert author Scott Adams.

I think you're guilty of at least the first two in that last post Tim. :P

Maybe I'll clarify my opinions here, hopefully in terms that will prevent them being misinterpreted.

I have nothing against merch payout.
I am strongly opposed to cash payouts funded by raised fees, in the BDGA Tour.
I have no issue with them in PDGA events, like the BO, and would like to see more of these events in the UK.

I don't think TDs should be out to make huge profits on events.
I don't see why they shouldn't get a little cash for their efforts, if they so choose.

I know lots of people put a lot of their time and effort into DG without monetary reward, and I applaud them for it. Hell, I have 3 jobs in the BDGA currently. These people will always exist, and will continue to do what they do for their own masochistic reasons.
What I fail to see is why we should tell Farmer John to take a hike just cos he makes a couple of hundred quid on a tourney on his property, which he's been kind enough to let us use.

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Post by Tim » Wed Nov 30, 2005 2:24 pm

Yawn... same ole, same ole

The last paragraph stated my position reasonably well, you do not have to raise fees to offer payout, the payout could be cash for open and merch for am, it makes no difference either way as the normal fees would still work, it just means that Farmer John is not pocketing over £400 for each event they run.

The original question Del asked was
Should we have prize money and payout ratios on the BDGA Tour (assuming that we have at least 3 ratings based divisions)
Firstly prize money would only be given to open players and payout ratios are not determined so there is scope there, now if we have 3 ratings based events as a minimum each year, why would you wish to hinder change and progression for the sport in England?

No one is saying that Farmer John has to host one of those ratings based events, so Farmer John can carry on hosting whatever events he wishes to and the players who attend can carry on lining his pockets, i have no problem whatsoever with this, but i think offering prize money and payout ratios is progression and it gets my vote.

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Post by bruce » Wed Nov 30, 2005 3:39 pm

i think offering prize money and payout ratios is progression
Why though? What does it achieve?

I'm in favour of a 3-tier structure for the BDGA Tour, and in order to give it integrity, I think it should be ratings based and mandated. This would mean that if your rating is over X, you must play in Y division. This would be progression, and should IMO improve competition at all levels. At this time in the BDGA, those ratings boundaries will be at completely different numbers to those in the PDGA.

This though, is where my objection to cash comes in. If we're mandating which division you must play in, we cannot force people to pay extra for the privilege. That's why the only way to be mandated Pro is the PDGA is if you accept cash, not if your rating goes over X. This causes 'sandbagging' by players who don't want to stump up the extra fees and play for cash.

I guess if there fees are flat (Int, Adv and Pro have same fees), then there's no harm in it, but I'm dubious that this will be the case. I certainly haven't seen any example of it happening anywhere else.

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Post by madfrolfer » Wed Nov 30, 2005 11:28 pm

I guess if there fees are flat (Int, Adv and Pro have same fees), then there's no harm in it, but I'm dubious that this will be the case. I certainly haven't seen any example of it happening anywhere else.
This is exactly what I have been trying to say can be the case. This is what we did at the Essex Special. The entry fee was the same, we didn't try to inflate the Open Purse. We could have paid out cash, but that is frowned upon. So we paid out in Merchandise instead.

I don't see what the harm in giving Del "X" amount in cash would have been, when we still gave him that same amount in discs.

We paid out almost £340 in prizes over the Open (Men and Women) and Am (Men and Women) field, plus juniors. That whole amount was generated from entry fees minus the cost of the trophies, tourney tax, green fees to the uni, and various other expenses that we had concerning the tournament. So we know it can be done.

The only reason you see inflated entry fees for Open players elsewhere, is because there is a large Open field who is there to play for the cash. So they are willing to pay more for the chance of winning more. This is not the case here, so entry fees shouldn't have to be raised.
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Post by Tim » Thu Dec 01, 2005 8:49 am

Fernando, it seems Bruce is either not reading our posts correctly or is frightened to admit that we have already achieved this and that it is very easy to do, shall i spell this out again for him :twisted:

To offer prize money to open players in line with a yet to be agreed pay out ratio, there will be no need to raise entry fee's. As has been said a few times now, we achieved this rather well at the 2004 Essex Special and if i remember correctly Bruce, you won a nice ace pot that weekend as well and were a witness to the prize giving, being a recipient of prizes yourself. :D

This leads to the question, why can't this happen at all BDGA tour events? I'll let you answer that simple question. :wink:

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Post by bruce » Thu Dec 01, 2005 11:50 am

Maybe I've misenterpreted the way this works, but £340 worth of merch does not equate to £340?

I thought the point was already agreed that merchandise is a money earner? Unlike cash, so to give out the same value in cash, you'd have to inflate fees?

Sorry, but you didn't 'already do this' in 04, you didn't give out cash! I said I'd never been to an event that gave out cash that didn't raise fees. This is true!

But nevertheless, if you can do it without inflating fees, I already said I see no harm in it.

BUT

Still no one has answered my main point: What do payouts achieve? Why are they progression?

What is more likely to make the public/media see us as a more serious sport:
a) A bunch of guys in a field, and a handful of them take home <£100
b) Properly maintained courses with facilities, course signage etc

Who saw the sports program with Del, Dazza and DJ Spoony playing QP? Practically the first thing Spoony did was mock the 'clubhouse'.

I'd rather put my efforts into developing b) than a).

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Post by Tim » Thu Dec 01, 2005 12:58 pm

Bruce wrote:What is more likely to make the public/media see us as a more serious sport:
a) A bunch of guys in a field, and a handful of them take home <£100
b) Properly maintained courses with facilities, course signage etc

Who saw the sports program with Del, Dazza and DJ Spoony playing QP? Practically the first thing Spoony did was mock the 'clubhouse'.

I'd rather put my efforts into developing b) than a).
Why are they mutually exclusive, surely we should be working towards both ends, those blinkers need to be removed.

At present we are just a bunch of guys in a field and no one is really taking home anything, sorry some TD's are...

Each venue should aim to fulfill both criterias, surely, or does this cause problems for TD's, in my humble view i don't see it does, yes, granted it makes a little more work, but nothing major and we should reward those players that play well, this is a competitive sport after all and the tour is a competition is it not, so why not with our sport which has a national tour.

If we had been allowed to offer cash and not been frowned upon at the 2004 Essex Special, the open players would have received the same value as the merchandise in cash. Lets have a look at what is generated from an event.

40 players at £15 each = £600, lets take away the £40 BDGA tax and we still have £560 to play with, at Essex we pay your green fees for you as we don't agree that a national tour event should take green fee's out of players entrance fee's, then there is some minor costs that come out of it, silly things like paint/printing/laminating and then there are trophies and that depends on how nice you want them to look and be, but worst case scenario there will still be £400 cash to play with for prizes. This is based on players sorting there own food out, at Essex this is easier and doesn't cause any problems for the Uni, just remember health and safety, if you provide food and someone becomes ill from it, there can be nasty consequences.

None of this is rocket science, well i never thought it was, perhaps it is for some or they like wearing blinkers. There never will be any changes without consensus so we could discuss this and go round in circles for as long as you like.

Anyone else want to put their tuppence worth in to the pot?

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Post by bruce » Thu Dec 01, 2005 1:28 pm

Tim Tom wrote:
Bruce wrote:What is more likely to make the public/media see us as a more serious sport:
a) A bunch of guys in a field, and a handful of them take home <£100
b) Properly maintained courses with facilities, course signage etc

Who saw the sports program with Del, Dazza and DJ Spoony playing QP? Practically the first thing Spoony did was mock the 'clubhouse'.

I'd rather put my efforts into developing b) than a).
Why are they mutually exclusive, surely we should be working towards both ends, those blinkers need to be removed.
As I've already stated, if it has no impact on fees, then I have no issues with paying out cash.

I see what b) will do towards improving DG in the UK. I don't see what a) will do. As far as I can tell, it's just a 'feeling' that playing for cash is better than for prizes?
When I play, I am trying to do the best I can. I wouldn't try any harder if there was cash on offer...

Yea, I'd be interested in hearing the opinions of others too.

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Post by Village » Thu Dec 01, 2005 2:47 pm

All right you lot, stop hogging the toys, my turn now...

Before I start, I point out that it will seem from this message that I'm on Bruces side, however, I don't believe that there are "sides" as such, just differing points of view. It just happens that I happen to share Mr webbers POV.......

First off:
we should reward those players that play well
Playing well doesn't have to mean finishing in the top third! I feel that I've played well if I don't get beaten by Wee Ben or I do better than I did the year before at the same event. It's fairly plain for all to see that I'm not in the DG game for the money!
I don't understand this argument in England whatsoever
(quote randomly selected for its content not its message)
As the TD for the British open, Tim, you should know better than to refer to the subject of this discussion as the "English" game. I'm sure that there is steam issuing from beneath many a kilt of the Scottish members of this forum, and haggis and neaps are being flung at VDUs across the Highlands and Islands at you persistant use of "England" rather than "Britain" (no racial slur intended to the bagpipe eating, haggis playing Sweaties)

I have no chance of getting cash prizes in the near future.
I have no objection to Farmer John (or Giles) making some dollar if it means I can use his land to play some mediocre DG.
I think you are all beautiful people. (even Bruce)
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Post by Del » Fri Dec 02, 2005 12:13 am

Having kicked this off - I guess it's about time I entered the debate.

Tim says...
All the work I do for tournaments and the course at Essex is for the sport and the players, i do not expect to be paid for it, i do not expect to have my petrol reimbursed or my time that i give up for the sport given back to me.
Very commendable!
You need to get away from this mindset Bruce, this sport is young and it will take people's goodwill to make it bigger, if every TD just takes the cash and makes some lame excuse that they had to cover so many costs, why are they doing it... lets see what's 2 + 2? If we carry on down this path, the sport isn't going to get bigger, it will stay small.
We do rely on goodwill in many ways, but that goodwill should not be abused, TD's should be reimbursed their costs, it's only fair.

I think you should explain or justify what you have observed to be "lame"

With volunteer effort the sport will grow slowly because we will lack enough people with enough time and motivation to really make things happen. The sport will not really take off until it becomes commercially worthwhile for people to promote it for a living. We will have an awkward phase in between where volunteerism and professionalism overlap.
There should be no "making" involved in hosting an event at this stage of growth of a very marginal sport in England, if people wish to "make" then there are far more lucrative ways, this is chump change after all.
Which begs the question "why should players "make" from a tournament?" The TD has probably foregone a days holiday from work and put in many more hours besides. Seems to me that (s)he is more deserving of making money than a player who rolls up at the tournament has a great weekend of entertainment for £15 and provides no useful service to anybody else.

It would be interesting to know which if any of these supposedly money grabbing TD's have made a penny profit from their investment. I don't know off-hand how much Quarry Park has cost me in total, but if I set against it all the income I have ever derived, I will still be more than £10k down (and that doesn't include the cost of the land itself) Nor does it include minimum wages for the 539+ hours of maintenance work recorded in 2004, or other hours of admin and organisation. I can tell you that when you have given up 40% of your salary to devote time to a course, disc sales and BDGA admin, it does boost the morale to get some income coming back in. (if only I could add violins and a picture of fingers worn to the bone :-)

Hayling used to have very low fees and made no profit. They upped their fees to pay for baskets and said that they would lower them once the baskets were paid for. I take them at their word.

Toby installed baskets at the request of players, and raised fees to cover it. He probably clears more cash per event than most, but I doubt that he has recouped the cost of baskets and tee pads.

I personally am grateful to such TD's for giving us somewhere to play. Without the farmer Giles factor the BDGA Tour would take place primarily at Essex (now I see the plot!! ;-)

####

Now that I've got that off my chest, back to the topic of whether to have prize money. I think it will come at some point. A move to 3 ratings based divisions would give a top division with less variance in ability, and hence more people feeling that they had a chance to win. I think we need to make that change anyway. If we could develop regional events/tours then the national tour could be repositioned as more prestigious and more marketable to sponsors. In the meantime I would leave it to the TD's discretion as to whether they pay prize money.

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Post by madfrolfer » Fri Dec 02, 2005 1:12 am

I don't know off-hand how much Quarry Park has cost me in total, but if I set against it all the income I have ever derived, I will still be more than £10k down....
The way I see it is that the money was invested in the business side of QP. That money is spent to have the course in good condition for the people who pay membership fees, or show up to pay and play a round. So the money or time invested for the BDGA Tournaments held is minimal.

Whitcombe doesn't charge green fees any time other than at tournaments, because the course is not kept up. So the costs of getting it ready for a tournament are justified a bit more.

I hope you understand that in speaking of these matters, I try to keep an objective view. I look at it as if just some guy owned the land or course (not a person who is a friend). I feel that as the BDGA starts to grow, you will start to get more and more members who don't know Toby or Del, and who will wonder why they have to pay these entry fees and where the money goes.

This is how I could see a payout structure working here:

Entry Fee - £10 standard all BDGA Tour events (£2 - Tourney Tax, £3 - to TD, £5 for prizes and trophies) [this is an example £10 is not a set amount]

All other things offered could be available (lunch, camping, rooms, evening BBQ, snacks, discs, etc.) at an additional cost, which still leaves plenty of opportunity for profit.

Given that those prizes do not have to be dispersed among the top third of each division, this is where the BDGA and TD's can get creative with how the prize money gets back to the players. I do think that yearly (rather than traveling) trophies are in order, and can be afforded even the way things are done now.

Well I will stop rambling. You should see a trend by now. I can keep on topic for almost one whole paragraph, if at all!
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Post by Del » Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:49 am

Fernando writes..
The way I see it is that the money was invested in the business side of QP. That money is spent to have the course in good condition for the people who pay membership fees, or show up to pay and play a round. So the money or time invested for the BDGA Tournaments held is minimal.
I don't understand this "let the other guy pay" attitude. It makes you sound very selfish, which I know you are not. Tournament players pay no more than a regular pay-to-play visitor at QP and they get a lot more back - lunch, trophies, prizes, additional toilet and shelter facilities. I also make an extra special effort on the course for the QPO, petrol and mowing fees alone would be an additional £130. Why should tournament players get a free ride?
Entry Fee - £10 standard all BDGA Tour events (£2 - Tourney Tax, £3 - to TD, £5 for prizes and trophies) [this is an example £10 is not a set amount]
Well £3 might cover some TD costs, but it would take 35 to 40 players just to cover the cost of one hired toilet. Where is the incentive to invest in improving the tournament facilities? Every year I buy stuff primarily for that purpose, eg this year £370 to buy a tent.

#####

This forum has been useful in allowing a few people to debate and get things off their chest. We should now be better informed of facts, arguments and options. However I think we need to reach out beyond the Geek Clique and communicate with a wider audience of BDGA members and even non-members. Perhaps a couple of rival manifestos should appear in In Flight and also be sent to the mailing list. Action Bruce?

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Post by Tim » Fri Dec 02, 2005 3:34 pm

Village wrote:
I don't understand this argument in England whatsoever
(quote randomly selected for its content not its message)
As the TD for the British open, Tim, you should know better than to refer to the subject of this discussion as the "English" game. I'm sure that there is steam issuing from beneath many a kilt of the Scottish members of this forum, and haggis and neaps are being flung at VDUs across the Highlands and Islands at you persistant use of "England" rather than "Britain" (no racial slur intended to the bagpipe eating, haggis playing Sweaties)
Village that is totally lame and off subject and as i'm sure our friends north or west of the border, understand what i meant, whether i use the term Britian, England, United Kingdom, Gran Bretagne (sic), Engeland should be beside the point.

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Post by madfrolfer » Fri Dec 02, 2005 5:03 pm

Point taken guys.

So the BDGA Tour is the place to go for nice friendly golf.

If you are in search of more serious competition, and the chance to play for more than bragging rights among your friends then you have the EuroTour or Nordic Tour events to go to (or I guess the PDGA EuroTour this year).

Would that be a correct statement?

There is nothing wrong with it if it is, it is just that it has taken me awhile to realize it. Though it was probably my fault for taking it upon myself to insist that stuff was missing from the events, when in fact I was not at that "type" of event.


And lastly just so this is clear for you Bruce...
Maybe I've misenterpreted the way this works, but £340 worth of merch does not equate to £340?

I thought the point was already agreed that merchandise is a money earner? Unlike cash, so to give out the same value in cash, you'd have to inflate fees?
We had £340 in CASH left over to give out. £160 was out of Am entry fees, so it was converted to prizes. £180 was out of Open Players entry fees. So, since we weren't allowed to pay out cash, we gave out £180 worth of prizes to Open players.

So my point was that we could have easily had a cash payout without inflating the entry fees(we had £180 ready to go). I was not telling you that you had been to an event that paid cash without higher Open entry fees, I was saying we could have been your first. There's nothing like popping that cherry! :D
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Post by Tim » Fri Dec 02, 2005 7:48 pm

Del wrote:
I think you should explain or justify what you have observed to be "lame"
Okay, granted two words I have used in past posts haven't been the best of choices, namely lame and making.

Lame should be read as "unknown" or "unspecified", but we can all do the math, or so i thought, perhaps i'm the only one who does the math!

Making should be read as "taking just a little bit extra" cause you can't really make that much out of the sport, especially this side of the pond. Disc golf is also not that lucrative in the States either and most disc shop owners also work another job, the real winners are the disc manufacturers who bring out new disc after new disc, or start introducing new plastics. But if we look a bit deeper into the history of DG, it has been stifled in the past by business, by patents, by people being greedy, although this is improving it is still a threat to making DG more mainstream and enjoyed by more people.
Del wrote: With volunteer effort the sport will grow slowly because we will lack enough people with enough time and motivation to really make things happen. The sport will not really take off until it becomes commercially worthwhile for people to promote it for a living. We will have an awkward phase in between where volunteerism and professionalism overlap.
Bunkem, the commercial aspect makes not one iota of difference in making DG more accepted. Business does not have it's finger in one pie, business likes lots of pies and the more exposure that the sport gets and the more standardised/professional the tour becomes will help allow the commercial aspect to look a bit more deeply. But if any TD wanted to get sponsorship, it's easy, just offer the sponsor what they want, a return and returns come in many different guises.

Why an awkward transition between volunteerism and professionalism, i thought they went hand in hand, that there was a symbiotic relationship between the two...
Del wrote:Which begs the question "why should players "make" from a tournament?" The TD has probably foregone a days holiday from work and put in many more hours besides. Seems to me that (s)he is more deserving of making money than a player who rolls up at the tournament has a great weekend of entertainment for £15 and provides no useful service to anybody else.
So players provide no useful service then, i'm shocked that i have read that and alarmed that that view could even be the case, shame on you. The Players, with a capital P, are the most fundamentally important aspect of the sport, and that is why i take the view that they should be appreciated and rewarded or shamed if they ditch a few too many in the water.
Del wrote: I personally am grateful to such TD's for giving us somewhere to play. Without the farmer Giles factor the BDGA Tour would take place primarily at Essex (now I see the plot!! ;-)
And i am also grateful that Britain has such beautiful and challenging courses, but that doesn't get away from the fact that TD's can still work with a pay out ratio, cover costs and earn a little for their efforts. There is no plot and although the course at Essex is unique in that it is free to play anytime, there are only specific times of the year that a top notch event can be hosted there and that entails lots of work.
Del wrote: Now that I've got that off my chest, back to the topic of whether to have prize money. I think it will come at some point. A move to 3 ratings based divisions would give a top division with less variance in ability, and hence more people feeling that they had a chance to win. I think we need to make that change anyway. If we could develop regional events/tours then the national tour could be repositioned as more prestigious and more marketable to sponsors. In the meantime I would leave it to the TD's discretion as to whether they pay prize money.

Del


I agree 3 ratings based divisions is a good idea, guidance for TD's is also a step in the right direction, i believe we had some for this year, but nothing as yet for next year, but i suppose with so much up in the air at present, it's not surprising.

I disagree about attracting sponsors though, ok we may not get the corporations yet, but it is possible to attract sponsors, it just takes time and forethought.

So to summarise a view

--3 ratings based divisions
--Guidance for TD's
--An agreed pay out ratio
--An agreed % take for TD's
--Optional to give cash to open division, merch can be fine, although giving cash is so much easier for the TD

But with all these ideas, consensus is necessary, as is transparency, accountability and clear communication, could this be achieved, i suppose we will have to let time tell.

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Post by dscglfr40 » Tue Dec 06, 2005 12:37 pm

Well, I find it interesting that as stated before people would seemingly resent the same golfers taking home the cash but not the TD's. Also I've travelled to a few events with golfers from the BDGA and all seemed more than willing to take the cash when offered in those PDGA events. So why is the standard lower here?!
Also I'm definitely for disc golf moving forward here but I don't see that in the near future. First we don't have that many members and yet we put a newsletter out that seems to take up the second biggest chunk of dues.
Now there's a lot of courses I haven't been to in England but we also organize events at some temporary sites. Maybe we should, as suggested earlier in this topic, put some money aside to fund the purchase of baskets to help get more permanent sites in place.
Also why do we put Whitcombe as the first event each year and cap the field due to lack of light? From what I hear everyone loves playing there and it seems like we could make that event a showcase event to expand the field and make more money for the club and future courses.
I'm for more payouts and if Del, Fernando, Jester or whomever takes my money over and over it's all the incentive I need to step up my game and try to get it back.

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Cash is King!!!

Post by Boba Satt » Tue Dec 06, 2005 3:02 pm

First off Hello from the US!

I m not sure where to start but, i will say that you should pay open players with cash! The division is open to all that care to try so, the arguement of the same people cashing may or not be true! I know since I always play for cash and do not always cash but, i know going in that is what I am playing for. Now, in order for there to be bigger and better payouts it will require everyone working together. I would ask TimH or Fernando{these guys did a great job at the open} on how they did such a fine job.
Fernando brought up a great point with discs won, even better one you bought with your own money. Give them away and good things will happen.
You do not need to use the PDGA table but they have various ones to use so, you may want to look at them. In time more players will step up and play for cash and or Bragging rights! I did not care how much the purse was at the open. I JUST WANTED TO WIN!

TD's in the game to make money??? YUK that sux! Thats is disc golfs dirty seceret and why the game is stuck where it is. Find ones like TIM and learn from there efforts. Im sure everyone left there happy. I know I did and i did not even win anything. If you have money they will come and bare in mind bagging will go on forever unless you give them just a trophy.
Just my 2 cents from the states but, my dg resume includes attending over 150 events and running over 20 events including supertours with huge cash payouts. By the way I made nothing cause i do it for the love of the game! Peace Out boba the bounty hunter
Bring It!

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