The sixth annual Smithers Disc Golf Tournament was held at Ranger Park two weeks ago, drawing about 30 competitors despite some issues with planning.
Usually the tournament is done in conjunction with the Catch and Release Ultimate Frisbee tournament, but that was called off at the eleventh hour this year.
“At the last minute, the ultimate tournament was cancelled, so some momentum was lost there. But because we have such a tight-knit group of disc golf players, it was easy to pass the word on among the group,” said organizer Glen Ingram.
Despite being unable to promote the competition to newer players, this year’s turnout was comparable to last year’s, said Ingram, although “we know there are more players out there.”
Another change this year was the fact the top spot was up for grabs. The champion from the past three years, Jamie Cramer, was unable to attend. That didn’t stop his legacy from carrying on, however.
“In his stead, his 11 year old son won the junior category,” said Ingram.
In the junior category, Eli Cramer was the top performer. Ben Anderson won the putting contest. In the Amateur divisions, Nikki Skuce won the women’s and Facundo Gastiazoro won the men’s. Ingram and Taylor Fox battled for the top spot in the Open category, with Fox coming out as this year’s big winner.
Ingram pointed out that the sport of disc golf is growing, and he hopes to add a spring tournament in the coming year. He also mentioned that the Town of Smithers has committed money to upgrading the course.
“As avid players we’re really looking forward to seeing upgrades to the baskets, the tees and the signage, and that will only help increase the numbers of players and the utilization of that particular park,” he said.
The Smithers course is known as one of the better courses in the province, said Ingram.
“It’s known for being one of the tougher courses in British Columbia, in that it’s technical, but there’s still some great opportunities for some nice long drives as well,” he said. “Eventually we’d like to see this course become part of the world circuit.”