Overall, I had a blast at AM Worlds in Emporia. The courses are great and Dynamic Discs ran an incredible event. The player’s pack was worth more than double the price of registration, and the player’s party and flymart in downtown Emporia was awesome. Over the course of the week, I began to see the strengths and weaknesses in my game compared to other players from around the country/world. It’s obvious that I need to work on a forehand shot, even if only for rare occasions. There are just simply times when throwing a turnover backhand just isn’t as safe as throwing a forehand hyzer, especially when it’s windy. Further, clearly putting is a huge issue. I probably missed an average of 5-6 putts in the circle each round; and although I can’t expect to make them all, even making half of those would take my rounds from bad to good or good to great.
It was, though, apparent to me that I throw further than 95% of AM Players. There were holes where most players had throw 2 drives, yet I was able to crush one drive and then layup with a putter. Additionally, there were certain holes where I could take a completely different route than most players, sometimes giving me an advantage. A perfect example is Hole 1 a Municipal, which was a par 4. There as 250 feet of open fairway, then a bunch of gigantic trees and bushes to get through, before another 200 feet to the basket. Most people throw a Teebird or something straight through the tight gap, since there was OB left and right of the trees. Since I had a big arm, I was able to just throw a huge flex hyzer over the trees and have an easier upshot than anyone else.
I didn’t enter the long drive competition (Corey Obermeyer won with 570 feet), but I feel like I could have either placed well or possibly won it. I know that the drive I threw on Friday on Hole 10 at Muni was somewhere between 570-610 feet. The hole is listed as 676 feet and I had 70-80 foot look at the basket after my drive.
So I know what I need to work on going forward into next year, and if I can improve those aspects of my game, I can be a very dangerous player. I’m not sure if I’ll play AM Worlds next year, even though it’s just 6 hours away in Minneapolis. I likely won’t be ready to cash right away in Open, but I don’t really see the point in playing Amateur tournaments for much longer. I think there’s a lot to be gained from playing with Open players in a tournament, so we’ll see how things go!
By the way, I don't have round ratings yet for the event. Since our division (216 people) was split into 3 different pools, the ratings are all screwed up since not everyone played the same courses on the same days. They should have the final ratings fixed by the next update.