Eight former and defending disc golf world champions representing 34 titles are set to storm for the 27th Annual “Steady Ed” Memorial Masters Cup which kicks off Friday morning and runs through Sunday. About 150 players are playing for a total prize pool of more than $20,000 at one of the worlds most well known and feared courses
Current defending open division champion Nate Doss of Capitola and 2011 masters division victor John Baldwin of Scotts Valley are definitely two of the players to keep an eye on. Doss cruised to a seven stroke open division victory over the largest professional disc golf field in history in when the Worlds descended on the Monterey Bay in 2011.
Baldwin who plays in the over-40 Masters Division, said Tuesday that there is more riding on the tournament at his home course as defending world champion.
“There's probably more pressure,” said Baldwin. “I won the amateur Masters [Cup] in 2003, but I have never won as a pro.”
The Masters Cup is also a very different beast than last year's Worlds, which showcased courses in Santa Cruz, Watsonville and Monterey. This weekend is all about Delaveaga where a perfect throw can dink the tiniest root and plunge into ravines surrounded by acacias, poison oak and the occasional appliance discarded by past generations of Santa Cruzans. On the 81 hole, three day journey anything can change on a single hole.
Sibling disc golf duo Valarie Jenkins (three championship titles) and Avery Jenkins (2009 Worlds champ) of Capitola will also be gunning for this title which honors Ed Headrick, who invented the frisbee and the disc golf basket while working for Wham-O.
Other headliners looking to snag their piece of the prize pool include twelve time world champion Ken Climo, 2010 world champion Eric McCabe, and 2008 champ Dave Feldberg.
The always grinning Greg “Barsby” of Grass Valley—2009 Masters Cup winner—and McCabe were out on the course on Tuesday getting their “Dela” legs back where the terrain and “bad juju” can make even the best”huckers” a bit wobbly.
Tournament director TJ Goodwin welcomes all to come out to see the action Friday through Sunday.
“Just do it,” he said. “My message to spectators is to just show up.”
Goodwin and volunteers led by Dave Thomas—who swore on Facebook he was done mowing but can't help benefiting the cause—were seen moving baskets, mowing grass and weed whacking poison oak earlier this week preparing for the disc golf universe to once again descend on Santa Cruz.
According to discgolf.com, the Steady Ed tournament is named for "Steady” Ed Headrick was the founder of the sport of Disc Golf and the tournaments namesake. Ed believed that one should "leave things better than you find them” and also that “whoever has the most fun, wins”.