Wysocki looking to pad lead, win third NT event of season

By P.J. Harmer — Rattling Chains staff

Four down, four to go.

With four PDGA National Tour events in the books, it’s still anybody’s game when it comes to claiming the championship. Four tournaments remain and the top five players are quite close to one another.

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There’s one thing to remember, though. Only the top five of of the first seven events for each player, as well as the season-ending Vibram Open will count in the final standings. Therefore, the current rankings could jump around as the season moves along.

Four events remain, including this weekend’s Great Lake’s Open, which runs Friday through Sunday in Milford, Mich.

The tournament will run one round per day at the Toboggan Championship course at Kensington MetroPark.

Ricky Wysocki, who has won two National Tour events this year, is on top of the standings with 363.5 points. Just behind is Nikko Locastro with 362. Dave Feldberg (334) is third, followed by Will Schusterick (318) and Paul McBeth (290). McBeth didn’t play in the last NT event, however.

Wysocki is the top-ranked player in the Disc Golf Rankings, an independent ratings system devised by Vibram’s Steve Dodge and sponsored by Prime Discs, Vibram and Rattling Chains. Wysocki was also recently named the 2012 Male Player of the Year.

A two-time winner this past weekend, Wysocki has been a tough one to battle this year. He has more than five victories, including the two NT wins.

He even won twice this past weekend at a pair of tournaments in Virginia.

As of Tuesday night, there were 92 players signed up for men’s open, so it won’t be easy pickings for Wysocki. More than 20 players rated 1000 and above are signed up to play.

That field includes Locastro, Schusterick, Feldberg and McBeth. The field also includes Cale Leiviska, who moved into the No. 2 spot in the Disc Golf Rankings this week.

It doesn’t get any easier, with players suck as Eric McCabe, Brad Williams, Jeremy Koling, Garrett Guthrie and Philo Brathwaite, among others, in the tournaments.

Needless to say, a victory at this tournament will be well earned.

Women’s tournament

The women’s field features 15 players, including Sarah Hokom and Paige Pierce, who are currently tied atop the NT standings with 364 points apiece. Catrina Ulibarri, recently named the PDGA Female Player of the Year, is third in the standings with 283 points, followed by Brittany Blair (225). Each are entered this weekend.

Des Reading, who placed second at the last National Tour event, is playing this weekend.

The field also includes top European player Ragna Bygde, who is currently on a mini tour of the United States along with fellow Swedish player Jessica Edvardsson.

Weekend at a glance

Though still a few days before the event, the weather looks like it could be a little shaky. The National Weather Service is calling for a chance of showers and thunderstorms throughout the weekend.

There will be tee times throughout the weekend, with the start coming at 7:30 a.m. local time.

On the web:

P.J. Harmer is the founder and executive editor for Rattling Chains. E-mail him at: pj@rattlingchains.com.

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