The National Amateur Disc Golf Tour (NADGT), formerly the Next Generation Tour, will keep many of the features that have made the series a favorite for competitive amateurs since 2016, and the growth of the organization has led to a larger staff, a newly-formed Board of Directors, and an expanded target audience that includes amateur players of all ability levels.
In a year that has seen enormous disruption not only to the sport of disc golf, but to the everyday lives of individuals across the world, NADGT will provide full refunds for all summer events canceled due to COVID-19, so there is no risk for players who sign up early. The NADGT believes that players will be hungry for competition once things return to normal and is expecting a surge in attendance.
But before players hit the course, tour organizers have come up with a way to satiate their need for competition from home. The NADGT was in the process of beta testing a National Putting Championships for the coming winter, and with the current landscape accelerated its testing. In May the tour will unveil its work, centered on a contest called Circle-1-Hundred that allows players to complete the competition without having to travel.
“The NADGT wants to support competition, but also wants to support staying at home and reducing the spread of COVID-19 while enjoying disc golf,” NADGT Competition Director Kyle Maute said. “You can start with only $10 at your local level and go all the way to the National Championships, which, in true NADGT style, will pay big cash to the finalists as well as many great prizes.”
The finals will also be live-streamed with professional commentary. It will feature the same eligibility as the NADGT tour, and the local qualifying will start in May with the National Championships wrapping up in the fall.
When play kicks back up on the course the tour will also have a slightly new look, with the addition of MA2 and MA50 divisions, improved players packs valued at $75, and updated eligibility guidelines that allow anyone classified as professionals to participate — so long as they meet the PDGA’s ratings guidelines for Pros playing Am and they have not won more than $3,000 in lifetime cash or more than $1,000 during the current season. Also new this year: Every NADGT-exclusive event will be a B-tier or higher, providing players a great chance to earn PDGA points towards an invitation to Am Worlds.
“It is finally time that there is a national tour for all amateurs in our sport that is organized and provides fun for all levels while giving aspiring players a platform to take that next step,” Maute said. “Going on tour is no longer limited to professionals; if you have discs and a passion for playing you can take your own mini-tour and qualify for the finals or just make memories. NADGT continues to be the highest-paying and most well-covered amateur event in the world, and the only one to provide a national championship for players in the intermediate and recreational divisions.”
The 2020 makeover also includes new policies designed to benefit tournament directors. NADGT will complete and process TD reports, set up Disc Golf Scene pages, pay sanctioning fees and player fees, and assume other financial risks, making this is a great opportunity for new and experienced TDs alike to organize an event with no out-of-pocket expenses. TDs will also be given the opportunity to earn cash and merchandise rewards based on player turnout.
Players can earn an invitation to the national championships by qualifying at a local event or by accumulating enough points through multiple events. Qualifiers will receive an invitation within 48 hours, and the standard 30-day window to accept invites is currently being waived due to uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 so participants will have the ability to make plans well in advance.
The 2020 NADGT National Championships will return to the world-renowned Roy G. Guerrero course in Austin, Texas, Oct. 29 through Nov. 1, and will take on a format modeled after PDGA Majors with one round per day and published tee times. Players will compete for cash (ADV divisions) and prizes (all other divisions) while enjoying outstanding perks like player packs valued at over $400; catered lunch and dinner; media coverage provided by JomezPro; and a flymart and players party hosted at the Live Oak Brewing Company beer garden, which features its own 9-hole disc golf course.
“Whether you’ve got your sights set on winning a big national prize, or just want to embark on your own little adventure, NADGT is a great way for amateur disc golfers to get a taste of the tour life,” Maute said.
Find the nearest NADGT event for your region at NADGT.com.