It’s been an incredible 2014 Discmania Deep in the Game Tour as it’s been the most extensive Disc Golf Tour that I’ve ever been a part of in my 15 years of touring and traveling throughout the world. It was a continuous adventure the entire time as it was reliving the Disc Golf Tour that I knew so well but this time it was all about providing the guidance for the young 22-year old German Phenom, Simon Lizotte, as it was his first time traveling as a Professional Touring Disc Golfer. We as players not only played and competed in tournaments all over the world, but we got the amazing opportunity to teach the very sport that we love to hundreds of players throughout the globe on the Discmania Deep in the Game World Tour.
The Deep in the Game Tour allowed us to host 58 instructional clinics and workshops throughout the US and Europe this year. It’s something that we as players do that is very unique, not that we just teach like other professionals, but we teach Disc Golf on such a enormous scale on a weekly basis in over 100 cities, 44 US states and in 8 countries. It was the first Disc Golf Instructional Tour of its kind of this size and magnitude with over 900 participants in attendance.
I personally feel that I’ve never traveled throughout the US as much as I’ve traveled this year visiting 44 states in less than five months, it was unreal to drive through that many in one season. The Discmania “Maniac” Motorhome visited 20 US states on the Spring Tour and 24 states on the Fall Tour with the only four states that we missed this year in the Continental US are North Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska and Michigan. We have plans to visit those states during our 2015 Deep in the Game US Tour.
The Disc Golf Tour is definitely something very demanding with all of the non-stop traveling, but it was very fulfilling as well. There was a lot of driving in a very short amount of time but it made it all worth it with all of the adventures as we met lots of new players and made several good friends along the way! Teaching the sport of Disc Golf is something that I’ve personally been doing for over a decade but it was great to see Simon become such a good instructor along the way.
The tour itself was based on clinics and including several of the biggest tournaments along the way. Simon was incredibly consistent each and every weekend as he constantly put himself in position to win going into the closing holes many times. I’ve been impressed by his demeanor on the course as he always offered a very calm emotion and professional attitude. When I look back at his performances he took two huge second place finishes in back to back weeks on some miraculous shots on the final holes by his competitors, very unlikely shots that were tough to witness. But he’s learning the very important lesson of “learning how to win” which usually is the very last thing to acquire as a professional player. It’s never over until it’s actually over!
The Deep in the Game Tour Clinics made a huge impact in the local disc golf communities that we visited bringing some more education and excitement to the sport. It was amazing to meet many of the participants that traveled hours to attend the closest clinic to them or in their state, it showed real dedication on their part as they really want to take part in the events and improve as players. And that’s really what it was all about, learning and progressing as a player through proper teaching and the great opportunity for the chance to get one-on-one instruction from both of us. Our main goal was to give the clinic participants more than they expected to receive as for as instruction and providing the extra time to helping each individual player that attended our instructional clinics.
We really hope that everyone had an enjoyable time and at least received some solid information to take away from the event to apply to their games. But it all comes down to this, if the players want to really improve their game, then they really need to take what they’ve learned and commit to practicing this proper technique instead of going back to their same throwing habits. Dedicated time to practice and constant repetition of correct form will go along way into producing some really great Disc Golfers in years to come. Special Thanks to all the local Deep in the Game Clinic Coordinators that helped in the overall organizing of the events and all of the friends that opened up their homes to us making our travels that much easier, this tour would have not been possible without you!
All in all, it was a very successful Deep in the Game World Tour and Disc Golf Tour in general as we most importantly spread the love for this sport from Coast to Coast and around the globe to some incredible destinations throughout the world. It’s truly an incredible opportunity that we have been given, it’s the dream job that we were fortunate enough to live to the fullest and most importantly have a great time doing it!
I think that the biggest highlight of the entire tour cumulated when Simon set out to prove to the world that he’s the furthest thrower on the planet. He was very confident in his abilities as a thrower, I got to witness his tremendous skills time and time again throughout the season. I had faith that he would do it but it was all up to actually doing it when the time was right. He started the distance contest weekend by setting a new mini distance world record at 161 m / 528 ft throw and then setting a new golf disc distance world record at 263.20 m / 863.5 ft. I was incredibly excited to hear about Simon breaking and setting these New World Records, it was something that he worked so hard to do and it wanted it more than anything!
The 2014 was an unforgettable season but we couldn’t have done it without the ones that support us most, thanks to the entire Discmania Team and Crew that helped to organize, market and promote these events throughout the states, it’s only just the beginning of the Discmania Deep in the Game Disc Golf Teaching and Instructional Concepts. And last but certainly not least, incredible thanks to Simon Lizotte for taking the chance and being trusting enough to travel the US for the first time with me, he truly learned what it’s really like to live life on the road as a Professional Touring Disc Golfer.
He’s an amazing instructor, a phenomenal world-class player and overall an extraordinary individual that will leave a lost lasting impression on the sport of Disc Golf. It meant a lot to me to be able to mentor him throughout this season as I watched him evolve, grow and progress each and every week as a player and as a person. He will only continue to improve in the coming years and I’m very proud of his tremendous accomplishments as I look forward to traveling with him again in the future. You can follow Simon’s blog here. If you already haven’t seen Simon’s Max Distance Clinic by the leading disc golf media The SpinTV, it’s time to do it now!
I only hope that I’ve shown him the right way on his path to greatness as we will remain life long friends until the end, truly an honor! These are exciting times for Discmania, Deep in the Game and the entire sport of Disc Golf…it will be interesting to see where this great sport will take us next! In the very near future Discmania is supporting to organize the first PDGA Major on the southern hemisphere – The 2015 Aussie Open. Be sure to check the Aussie Open tournament website too.
2014 Deep in the Game Tour by the Numbers:
- 44 – US States Visited
- 8 – Countries Visited
- 3 – “New” Countries Visited
- 9 – International Airports Visited
- 4 – “New” International Airports Visited
- 58 – Deep in the Game Instructional Clinics
- 982 – Player Clinic Participants
- 236 – Days on DITG World Tour
- 72 – “New” Disc Golf Courses Played
- 2,800 – iPhone Photos Taken
- 600+ – Hours behind the Wheel
- 29,700 – Ground Miles Traveled
- 21,400 – Air Miles Traveled
- 51,000+ – Total Miles Traveled