By the time of writing this article we're less than 24hrs away from the kick-off of the tournament action of the historic first ever PDGA Major on the Southern Hemisphere. We are naturally talking about the 2015 Aussie Open, a high class event situated at Mundaring DiscGolfPark near Perth, Western Australia. What makes this event extra special for Discmania is that we are proud to be the presenting sponsor of this fine event. It's definitely an occasion of firsts, as this is also the first PDGA Major in which we act as the main sponsor. If you want to get a sense on what to expect from this event, look no further than these two earlier articles about the 2015 Aussie Open:
(includes an interview with the Event Organiser Chris Finn)
First Major win for Lizotte, Beastliness by McBeth or something else?
Like expected for a PDGA Major and despite the exceptionally early slot on the PDGA Tour schedule, the top 5 male players on tour are on site to compete for the victory at the first Major event of the year. Paul McBeth, Ricky Wysocki, Nathan Doss, David Feldberg, Simon Lizotte - these names are familiar to everyone who follows professional Disc Golf. A 30,000 AUD total prize purse will be awarded to the best finishers in 5 different divisions. The very long and challenging Mundaring DiscGolfPark course is expected benefit those who can throw far and accurate, which should work in favour of Team Discmania's Simon Lizotte. Simon is known for his huge arm and to prove it, he broke David Wiggins Jr's previous distance world record in November with his astounding 263,2m/863,5ft monster toss.
The Aussie Open warm-up tournament held last Sunday also seems to speak in favour of Lizotte, who won the one round tournament with his -5 round over 2nd place finisher fellow German Martin Doerken (-2) and the tied 3rd place finishers Paul McBeth & David Feldberg (-1).
While the set up seems to suit Lizotte, it's way too early to speak about winners. 4 long rounds on the challenging 3010-meter Par 65 course take a lot of endurance, especially as the weather forecast for the tournament days promise highs of over 33°C/90°F for all tournament days. Thunderstorms are also a possibility in this hot Australian summer weather. "Making the transition from the heart of winter with -10°C/15°F in Finland to the scorching heat of the Australian summer is not an easy one", says Discmania CEO Jussi Meresmaa, who arrived to Perth on Sunday. Jussi is present to offer Discmania's support to the tournament organization, but also as a competitor tackling the course he has helped the DiscGolfPark Australia course designers Chris Finn and Chris Himing to design for this event. "Hydration and staying in shade are critical for everyone's performance in this event. I will be carrying a big umbrella on every round to be able to escape the sun when necessary." Jussi concludes.
No matter who will win this fine event, we're sure it's going to be a battle for the history books. The Aussie Open being the first Major of the year, the winner will also get a decent amount of bragging rights for the upcoming season to go with his 6,000 AUD prize cheque.
How to follow the Aussie Open
The Aussie Open Staff has done a great job putting together several channels through which fans a home can follow this fine event. Below you can find links on how to follow:
The twitter account PDGAlive will also be following the tournament action from the 2015 Aussie Open. For social media posts from and about the event, make sure to use and follow the official tournament hashtag #AussieOpenDiscGolf.
#TeamJussi vs #TeamSimon contest on facebook
Just like during the 2014 United States Disc Golf Championship, we are running a #TeamJussi vs #TeamSimon contest on our facebook page. All you have to do to enter is to go to facebook and comment either #TeamJussi or #TeamSimon on the contest picture by midnight Perth time (GMT+8) on Friday, January the 30th. One lucky commenter who has guessed the higher placement on the scoreboard between Jussi & Simon will receive a special collectable Discmania disc.
While there is no live feed available from the Aussie Open, the SpinTV will be in-site at the event to capture the tournament action. Play-to-Play videos from the event can be expected to pop up online starting on the week after the event. While you wait for those videos, be sure to check out the videos already published by The SpinTV:
We have gathered below some early impressions preceding the start of Aussie Open from social media:
Viimeisen väylän greeni clubitalosta kuvattuna #aussieopendiscgolf #discgolf Kuva, jonka Lords Of Disc golf (@lordsofdiscgolf) julkaisi
This car was here waiting for Jen and I for the @aussieopendiscgolf I do feel awkward driving a car with a picture of myself on it but that was really easy to get over when I found out I have to drive on the left side of the road from the right side of the car!! Thank you so much @downunderdiscevolution and @toyota_official @toyoya_aus Kuva, jonka Paul McBeth (@paul_mcbeth) julkaisi
PS. A limited number of Aussie Open fundraiser discs are still available at Discmania Store USA, InnovaStore & The Frisbee Shop ;) Support the growth of Disc Golf by picking up a couple sweet fundraiser discs!