The 2015 PDGA Tour got off to an earlier start this year with the inaugural Aussie Open in Mundaring, Australia. This brand new, biennial PDGA Major drew a solid field for this time of year that featured some of the world’s highest ranked players. Among them were 3-time World Champion, Paul McBeth, and 3-time women’s World Champion, Valarie Jenkins.
Both Paul and Val were eager to begin the season and appeared to be in excellent form. Paul was joined atop the leaderboard by Simon Lizotte and the pair blistered the course in rounds two and three. First setting the course record in Round two and then breaking the course record again in Round 3. Their back to back rounds of 53 and 52 were rated 1075 and 1084 by the PDGA ratings system.
Paul closed with a final round of 59 and was the only player to shoot all four rounds in the 50s. That consistency enabled him to pull out in front and ultimately capture a six throw margin of victory. Simon held on to second place over Ricky Wysocki. Valarie played consistently as well. She was the only female player to shoot all four rounds in the 60s. She and teammate Jennifer Allen took home the top two spots in Open Women.
The last few weeks here in the states saw most of the country bundled up and fearing polar vortex, but Florida residents and visitors were soaking up the rays at Sun King’s Throw Down the Mountain tournament in Brooksville. Gregg Hosfeld may have been the hottest of all, picking up the win in Men’s Grandmasters. Ken Climo finished second in Men’s Open, as did Hannah Leatherman in Open Women.
Jay and Des Reading wasted no time getting wins in 2015. Their season opener was in Texas at the First Offense at Shawshank. Jay Yeti-stomped the field to win by 6 strokes in Men’s Open, while Des Reading did a little stomping of her own to win Open Women by 8.
The tournament season for the rest of the country will really kick into high gear in just a few weeks. Many of the top pros will be in Las Vegas February 20-22 for the Gentlemen’s Club Challenge presented by Innova Champion. The GCC is considered THE warm-up event for the start of the PDGA National Tour, which begins the very next weekend at The Memorial in Arizona.