#21  
Old 11-16-2012, 01:38 AM
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Three Putt Three Putt is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cgkdisc View Post
No. The PDGA embraced the practice of awarding "cabbage" started by Duane Utech in the Detroit area in the early 90s for the Can-Am series. Surprise, surprise, players liked it and the practice expanded before the PDGA ever developed event guidelines, TD reports, payout tables, etc. Those all came from current practices seen as successful at the time.
Up until the time of PDGA event guidelines, it was "Dude said the tourney he went to in Peoria paid out stacks of discs." It was like a rumor; I could still run my trophy-only events in Hazelwood and it was what it was. After the PDGA accepted event guidelines and used the Can-Am payout for AM's, that was the law of the land and all of a sudden I was "ripping people off." Same event, different expectation. You can blame it on whoever you want to, but once the PDGA said "this is how you run a disc golf tournament" and it used the pro payout scale using merch for AM's it got a lot harder to do anything else.
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  #22  
Old 11-16-2012, 07:34 AM
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throwfromthewoods throwfromthewoods is offline
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I agree with the sentiment that players seem to expect more from tournaments as a sense of entitlement. Unfortunately, if my options as a TD are "higher fees, high payout" or taking a moral stand and just getting some trophies made, I have little incentive to go with the latter. The former option is going to bring the players. Even more so in my non-sanctioned event, where players additionally are losing the benefit of a chance to improve their player ranking.

Ultimately, for me to get a full field, players are going to have to feel like their fees are getting put to good use. $20 for a non-sanctioned tournament with no payout is going to be $20 more than just going out and playing for a day. $50 entry where you can possibly earn more than that back? Well...now you're appealing to the gambler. And every player has a little gambler in them, otherwise they wouldn't be playing a competitive sport.

Again, I don't agree with it. On the "local" level of disc golf, the sport shouldn't be afraid to adopt a more pure stance. The bigger payouts should be reserved for pros. That way, tournaments can gain bigger exposure on the pro level, convince more players to compete at the pro level, and therefore increase the exposure of the sport on a mainstream level. But I don't think disc golf is quite ready to backtrack for that purpose. Hopefully we will, though.
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  #23  
Old 11-16-2012, 08:18 AM
wake911 wake911 is offline
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If i'm paying $40 to enter an AM tourney, i want a shot at getting something back.

If I'm paying $20 to enter an AM tourney, then its all about the competition for me.

But at the same time, i don't just want a pre-chosen stack of discs, then i just have to sell them at cheap prices (i suck at selling discs) and it cuts it even more.

I would play in the same number of tournaments, and the same tournaments if i just was playing for a trophy. I think if it goes trophy only, it should be 1st, 2nd, 3rd. Too many tourney's I've seen only do 1st.

If EVERYONE went to trophy only, lowered entry prices a little bit, i think it'd work. Kind of like the smoking ban in bars. At first people complain, but at the end, they really want their beer at a bar. People like competition.
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  #24  
Old 11-16-2012, 09:31 AM
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iacas iacas is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by throwfromthewoods View Post
Unfortunately, if my options as a TD are "higher fees, high payout" or taking a moral stand and just getting some trophies made, I have little incentive to go with the latter. The former option is going to bring the players.
See, if it was me, and the second option wasn't really available, I'd choose the third option: don't hold the event.

I'm going to host some small events here in Erie once we get a course in the ground somewhere and as I said I plan to stick to my guns. I'll also donate any winnings I might get back to the Club. I'm not sure that Erie has a lot of people familiar with "how disc golf tournaments are typically run" so perhaps I have a small chance of setting it up "right" before people start to assume they should get something for their entry fee.

But seriously, why work harder for less? If you can earn $200 for your club with a small event and $200 for your club with a huge event, there are some good reasons to choose the smaller event.

Quote:
Originally Posted by throwfromthewoods View Post
$20 for a non-sanctioned tournament with no payout is going to be $20 more than just going out and playing for a day.
Yeah, that's the part I don't really get. You're getting some competition. A casual round is different. (And I'm not sure anyone's talking about NO payout at all... just not so high a % of the entry fees).

Quote:
Originally Posted by wake911 View Post
I would play in the same number of tournaments, and the same tournaments if i just was playing for a trophy. I think if it goes trophy only, it should be 1st, 2nd, 3rd. Too many tourney's I've seen only do 1st.
You'd pay $20 or $40 for the option to play for just a trophy? You're talking about just the $20, right?

That's interesting. Maybe tournaments cost more than I'm expecting. I thought $20 to $25 was a typical entry fee for a local little event. For $50, I'd expect a mini and a disc with the tournament logo or something on it, and a 50% payout to the top 3 or 5 players, but nothing more. That's probably still way out of line with how it's done, though, yes?
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  #25  
Old 11-16-2012, 09:57 AM
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throwfromthewoods throwfromthewoods is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post
See, if it was me, and the second option wasn't really available, I'd choose the third option: don't hold the event.

I'm going to host some small events here in Erie once we get a course in the ground somewhere and as I said I plan to stick to my guns. I'll also donate any winnings I might get back to the Club. I'm not sure that Erie has a lot of people familiar with "how disc golf tournaments are typically run" so perhaps I have a small chance of setting it up "right" before people start to assume they should get something for their entry fee.

But seriously, why work harder for less? If you can earn $200 for your club with a small event and $200 for your club with a huge event, there are some good reasons to choose the smaller event.

That's interesting. Maybe tournaments cost more than I'm expecting. I thought $20 to $25 was a typical entry fee for a local little event. For $50, I'd expect a mini and a disc with the tournament logo or something on it, and a 50% payout to the top 3 or 5 players, but nothing more. That's probably still way out of line with how it's done, though, yes?
To your first points, I put on the events because I want to. I go into it accepting the work that needs to be done. I personally don't get any financial gain, it's just about putting on an event that people want to go to and have a good time at. It's possible that your slice of the world has a better market to experiment with lower fees and trophy-only events. If so, man I envy you.

Part of what you must understand about my situation is our area is sandwiched between Rochester, NY which is practically the birthplace of competitive disc golf; and the New England area of disc golf, which consists of the Capital region, Massachusetts (and therefore Vibram, etc.). Pros and Ams alike tend to "expect" more from tournaments. Is it a flawed view? Perhaps. But it's the reality here none-the-less.

Syracuse itself is not a very large disc golf area. We have a few quality courses, and a dedicated player population. But for us to succeed in filling our player fields (especially at the pro level), we have to rely on pulling in players from Rochester, Albany, and the Utica/Cortland area to the south. So we have to cater our payouts/fees/etc. to convince those players to make the drive out here. So they're not just factoring in the cost of entry fee. It's also dedicating drive time, gas, food, all the goodies that cost extra for them to come play.
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  #26  
Old 11-16-2012, 10:49 AM
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Three Putt Three Putt is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by throwfromthewoods View Post
Syracuse itself is not a very large disc golf area. We have a few quality courses, and a dedicated player population. But for us to succeed in filling our player fields (especially at the pro level), we have to rely on pulling in players from Rochester, Albany, and the Utica/Cortland area to the south. So we have to cater our payouts/fees/etc. to convince those players to make the drive out here. So they're not just factoring in the cost of entry fee. It's also dedicating drive time, gas, food, all the goodies that cost extra for them to come play.
This to me is the artificial fix. We just had a C tier here with 100 players. Around 20 of those guys were local. We spent a lot of time and effort and raised a lot of cash to add to the purse so that 80 guys from out of town could come in and win all the cash we raised and take it back to wherever they came from.

This is my #1 problem with the system: A HUGE % of the resources we have to put into this game are thrown into a big gambling pot to keep this "tour" going. We raised $1,600ish dollars for the purse. That money is not going to help the 9-hole course with no tee signs and DisCatcher Sports rusting away that we have. We used it essentially to throw a big party. Now it is gone and we still have a 9-hole course with no tee signs and DisCatcher Sports rusting away on it. The priorities to me are out of whack.

So we can walk around now and act like disc golf is a big deal here now that we had 100 players at an event, but we bribed 80 guys from out of town to show up to get that number. Our turnout was still 20, which is about the same number we had last time for a small local event with a small payout. It's all smoke an mirrors.
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  #27  
Old 11-16-2012, 12:16 PM
Jeterdawg Jeterdawg is offline
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As an Amateur player (advanced) who's played for 10+ years and the last 9 or so in events, I understand both sides of the argument of amateur payout vs. trophy only. My skill level (945-ish rating) leaves me in a tough place - I can't expect to compete at the pro level (not much time to practice) as most of my rounds are within 2-3 shots of my rating. Sometimes I "cash" and sometimes I don't. I prefer pick-your-own-payout so that I can try out new discs, and maybe grab a few for friends. If it's not pick-your-own or if there is nothing there I'm looking for, I'll sell them and use those funds for the next event. I've often donated my payout back to the event when I needed to leave quickly and it was only $10-20 of winnings.

As an amateur, I don't "expect" to make money when I play well enough, it's more of a bonus. I can't honestly say whether I would play in more or less events if they were trophy-only. But I'm okay with the merchandise payout system for a few reasons:
1. Ball golf events do this - however most of the prizes are donated by the manufacturers/retailers/other sponsors, and there is generally not a deep payout scale
2. Considering that the margin between wholesale and retail covers event expenses and pro cash sponsorship, it does have positive aspects. I would even be fine if TD's took a reasonable cut for their effort.
3. It's an avenue for promoting new products (discs, bags, etc.). Yeah, this is more of a win for the manufacturers, but generally events seem to have the best selection of newest gear rather than traditional brick-and-mortar retailers.

I personally don't think that the system is out of control. No one is making a living off of winning Amateur prize payouts. Most events that I play have a top Amateur prize of around $100, and it's usually less than a third of the top Pro prize. I'd say a bigger problem is that there just aren't enough people that play pro. I don't think the Amateur payout system is solely to blame for this; I think it's more a lack of Pro sponsorship. Since the Pro entry fees are generally $20 or more higher, it's understandable that someone who has VERY little chance at competing in that division would rather play in a lower division. I can even see where only offering trophy-only Amateur divisions that further separate the entry fees between Amateur and Pro would even make it tougher to draw more Pro players.

There are a couple of options that I think can be done that wouldn't adversely affect the Amateur player field:
1. Higher player pack value coming out of the entry fee. Usually it's $15 for the events I play. Make it $20 or even $25.
2. Pay a deeper % of the division (although personally I think 50% is a fair % if you're going to have any payout).
3. Withhold more of the entry fees from the payout purse, and use it for course improvements, pro sponsorship, compensating the TD's, charity, etc.

I also think that disclosing how the entry fees will be used should be provided upfront. I know this isn't always possible as it is generally based on how many players attend the event, but I think it's okay to show how the finances work - the fees/expenses that are fixed (i.e. PDGA fee, parks fees, etc.) vs. fees that are variable (value of player's packs, amount allocated to pro sponsorship, and payout purse funding, charitable contributions). This might affect how some people choose the events they'd like to attend.
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