The Season of Vinny

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Calvin Wins Player of the Year

Calvin Heimburg is your 2023 Ken Climo Player of the Year, well-earned after a sensational season of unrivaled consistency. 

Vinny spent more time as the number one player in the world in the MPO division than any other player. At DGPT Elite, Silver, and PDGA Major events this season, Heimburg was in contention nearly every weekend. He had 3 wins, 14 podium finishes, and 22 top tens. He only finished outside the top 10 once all year and he never missed cash. 

Calvin had some truly spectacular highlights in 2023, including going -7 through five difficult holes in one of the greatest stretches in DGPT history. He led every throwing stat tracked for players touring in the States. And he did it all with the same stoic, cool Vinny demeanor that he’s become beloved for. 


The Wins

Calvin let everyone know this was his year at the first event of the season. Vinny won the 2023 Las Vegas Challenge with deadly precision off the tee and a super solid weekend of C2 putting. 

Photo by DGPT

At the Innova Open at Texas States, Calvin won with one of the largest margins of victory of the season, 6 strokes over 2nd place. He was in command from the first round through the last, winning wire-to-wire against perhaps the strongest field of any Silver event of the year.

Photo by DGPT

His third win of the season came at the 2023 Jonesboro Open. With back-to-back hot rounds to open the tournament, Calvin was determined to defend this title. His three Tour victories make Calvin the 2nd winningest player of the year behind Gannon Buhr. 


The Highlights

Consistency won Calvin Player of the Year, but it was his elite shot-making at crucial moments that made his season so fun to watch. In the final round of the 2023 Ledgestone Open, Calvin aced the 425-foot, Hole 10 trying to chase down Cole Redalen. While Calvin wasn’t able to win that event, to hit the ace in the final round when you’re in 2nd place and need the strokes is the definition of clutch. 

During the Innova Open at Texas States, Calvin had his highest-rated tournament of the year, averaging 1073. On his way to victory, Vinny had many noteworthy shots, including one of the big highlights of the year – the basketball putt for birdie on Hole 14 of the second round. From complete jail in the woods behind the basket, Vinny pulled out what would normally be a trick shot to shut down his cardmates’ chances to gain a stroke. 

Finally, Vinny had one of the all-time best stretches of play in DGPT history at the 2023 DGLO. In the final round, he hit two eagles, both with 250+ foot throw-ins, to go -7 in five holes. Those shots showed up in the number four spot of the Sportscenter Top Moments for that week. 

 
 
 
 
 
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The Stats

Out of touring players in the United States, Heimburg led the Disc Golf Pro Tour for the 2023 season in every throwing statistic that they track. Vinny was 80% in Fairway Hits, 15% in Parked percentage, 50% in C1 Hits in Regulation, and 72% in C2 Hits in Regulation. He took Birdie or Eagle on over half the holes he played this year. He led the field in Precise Power Index (a measure of accuracy at long distances) by a wide margin. 

 
 
 
 
 
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Calvin earned $107,025 in tournament winnings in 2023, making him one of just five players in either division to win more than $100,000 in a single season. 

What really made Calvin’s season so special was his level of consistency. His average round rating this year of 1051.5 was the best in the field and up over ten points from his rating last year. He averaged an unbelievable 3.8 for the year at DGPT Silver, Elite, and PDGA Major events. He only finished outside the top ten once. Calvin accomplished all that playing against the deepest field disc golf has ever known. 

Player of the Year is decided by a split vote between Media (PDGA, Jomez, DGPT, etc.) and 2023 tour card holders. Stats and strong finishes are just factors the voters use to decide the winner; ultimately, to win this award is to be recognized as the best by your peers.

 
 
 
 
 
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He’s Not Going Anywhere

With the increasing level of competition at the top of the sport, Calvin’s season will be hard for anyone to repeat. To average better than 4th place means not slipping up or losing focus for more than a rare moment for the entire year. He was the only player able to prove that level of performance in 2023. But as great a season as it was, we know Calvin still has unfulfilled goals – close finishes he wants another chance at and of course, the elusive first Major title. He’ll be back for the DGPT Opener in February with those goals top of mind. 2023 was the Season of Vinny, but don’t think his reign is over just because the season is.