Tour Storylines – Dynamic Discs Open

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After the unforgiving Northwood course, the 1st leg of the season ends with a classic stop in Emporia. In no particular order, here are the storylines you should remember or may have missed:

1 – Emporia knows disc golf.

When DDO rolls around, the first thing that comes to mind is the KS winds. But even while they were evident, the course was the main focus.

Being mostly unchanged, Champions Landing was still a ball golf property that punished with OB and celebrated big bombs. The tweaked holes were 7, 16, and 18.

Hole 7’s fake river made no difference for the leaders as they blasted past it. Hole 16’s new drop zone was disappointing and probably won’t make the redesign. And Hole 18 is almost great with the excitement of eagles (see AB’s 450’+ upshot) but still needs tweaking.

A redesign is planned for the course later this summer. So even with the small crowds and occasional severe weather, this Tour stop won’t be dropped anytime soon.

Aside from the golf, this event still knows how to host a party. From the OB Kenobi spotter to the Block Party, there’s always fun to be had.

May the 4th spotter (@eric_mccabe)

Emporia Heimburg (@thediscgolfguy)

2 – The gift of gab.

Not for the first time, Big Jerm and Sarah Hokom joined Ian Anderson in the live booth. Hokom received middling praise, while Big Jerm was celebrated.

His endless stories and insightful analysis made it clear he’s a veteran on the mic. But all things come at a price, and his double duty on JomezPro wasn’t as well received.

It was obviously his second time seeing the shots, and his foreshadowing was distracting. But as he continues to bridge his career, there’s no doubt Big Jerm will be our sport’s voice.

In 3 weeks, he’ll flex his vocal skills again, rejoining the live broadcast for the DGPT+ Portland Open.

3 – Playoffs? Aggregate playoffs??

Before Sunday, it was a grind for both the FPO players and fans. The slimmed-down field struggled with missed putts and low ratings.

While most reasoned it was due to the missing Europeans, the flat play probably had more to do with the course. It wasn’t well-tuned for FPO.

But thanks to it, the finish was made much more exciting. Hailey King was on her way to defending her title and proving her comfort at this event.

But she barely missed both islands, pushing play into more holes. It was time for the debut of aggregate playoffs, and Big Money Missy came alive.

While confusing at first, the 3-hole showdown was a success. Gannon clutched up to birdie 16 & 17 for the first time all weekend while King lost all momentum.

Ultimately, the format forced decision-making and the better player won. This was Gannon’s 1st win at Emporia and 2nd win of the season after USWDGC (Major).

“Thank you to my sponsors for having my back. We got another one.” – Gannon (JomezPro)

4 – Heimborg is back online.

No matter how focused Ricky Wysocki looked on Sunday, he was no match for Calvin Heimburg. With little emotion, Vinny put on a clinical final round.

He had a red-hot start with 7 straight birdies, then continued putting his pizza in the oven. And the fat lady sang after Heimburg fell on the fortunate side of Hole 16’s back wall when Wysocki didn’t.

Since Jonesboro last year, it took 371 days to see him win. Minus big shots, his FH is almost back to normal, and he looks like the final boss again.

How long will it take to get his 2nd of the season? He heads to Vegas for Innova’s homecoming event next weekend, where he’s a 2x champ.

5 – Careers showings, continued streaks, & no hangovers.

This event capped off a grueling stretch before home to some, and to others, it was just another weekend. Here are their storylines:

Emily Weatherman was a blade of grass away from a 3-way playoff with King and Gannon. In her 1st podium finish, the 18-year-old looked like a veteran by sticking landing zones, staying calm, and consistently putting.

Joey “Buckets” Anderson keeps coming back to the leaderboard with his 4th top-15 this season. If he keeps breaking course records, he’ll find a win and continue to be a fan favorite.

Andrew Presnell avoided the Major hangover and finished 5th on a course not suited to him. He’s already back home and plans to hit local B-Tiers before coming back to Portland.

Gavin Rathbun earned his 1st podium since his surgery in 2021. It makes you wonder where he’d be if he never tore his labrum.

Anthony Barela ended his top-10 streak, while Gannon Buhr & Chris Dickerson continued theirs.

Cole Redalen unexpectedly dropped out with 3 holes left while waiting 45 min for the FPO playoff. He claims “the last 3 holes didn’t matter anyway” and that he had “logistical and practical reasons.”

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