The much anticipated Disc Golf World Tour is less than a month away, and the world’s top players will get things started March 10 at the La Mirada Open in California. We caught up with some familiar names to get you ready for the action.
First up is four-time defending World Champion and the No. 1 player in the world, California’s own Paul McBeth:
You take a lot of pride in how you prepare. How has the off-season been?
This off-season has been longer and more dedicated to physical fitness than any previous off-season. The two main reasons are because I’ve had to rehab some injuries I sustained in 2015, and this winter I have had a personal trainer, which I’ve never had one before. So far, my off-season has been about being patient. I’ve had to take a month off from throwing a disc. I’ve also had to work out in ways I have never tried or experienced before. Body movements and training so focused on balance and other aspects are all new to me and difficult, but I’m always game for a challenge. It has been a lot about patience and failures but also a lot of personal battles and wins in the process.
Has your mindset been any different with the addition of the Disc Golf World Tour to the schedule?
No, the DGWT hasn’t affected my approach going into any of the events. I will still need to play well, and if I’m capable of performing to my potential, then I shouldn’t have any worry if it’s my smallest event or largest.
Following one of the best seasons of all-time, what’re your expectations for 2016?
Every year I go into the offseason with the same mindset: “I want to be the most improved player.” That can mean learning new shots, improving on certain shots, physically being in better shape, ect. Every year I want to get better. That’s my goal for 2016—become a better player.
Part of that historic season was getting your first USDGC title, a big item on the list. What’s next?
Defend every title I currently have and to play events I’ve never played before.
You’re 19 wins away from your 100th career victory, so it could be this year. Is that something you’ve thought about?
Nineteen wins away from the magical 100. My favorite part is knowing that over half of those wins are A tiers and higher. I honestly haven’t put much thought into it, but this question has kind of raised my eyebrow to it, so maybe come that time it will mean more.
How do you see the DGWT impacting disc golf?
I believe it will raise the awareness of disc golf throughout the world more than these other tours we have going on. DGWT will be in four different countries over five events, which is exciting as a player, and spectators will see players and courses they’ve never seen before.
Is there a particular tour stop you are looking forward to most?
I’m really excited to play in the Czech Republic because I’ve only heard great things, and it’s a country I’ve never been to. I was really looking forward to Estonia as well, but things fell through, and you know, “The Beast” (in Finland) isn’t a bad second choice at all.
First up is La Mirada, close to your hometown. What do you like about the course?
La Mirada isn’t too far from home, maybe a 30-minute drive, but I don’t play there too often because I have my home course so close. I enjoy the rolling hills at La Mirada, and the course is supposed to be changed a bit from what I’m hearing, so besides knowing the park itself, the course layout will be an unknown for me. I really don’t mind that either. It makes it fair for everyone coming to town to get the same amount of practice.
Thanks to Paul for taking the time to catch up with us during his busy offseason. Keep checking the website for more exclusive interviews and all the latest news surrounding the Disc Golf World Tour.