All posts by David Kynaston

Player Profile – Iain Smith

To kick off our ‘local legend’ series of player profiles we feature a player who left this world too early; but who’s love for the sport, spirit and generosity left lasting memories with those who knew him. 

Iain Smith was a friend to many in Tassie disc golf but also across Australia. He started playing in 2014; developing his game on the steep hills of the world-renowned Poimena Reserve. Within a year of playing seriously he won the MA1 division in the Australian Championships on his home course. He followed this up with a further four-from-four MA1 wins over 2016 and 2017 including twice in the Two Heads Open.   

He was known as a naturally talented player who practiced hard and quickly mastered the technical side of the game.  His form was smooth, and he specialised in controlling mid-ranges and fairway drivers on shots where many others would use faster discs. He also worked hard to develop an excellent putting stroke, somewhat reminiscent of his hero Paul McBeth. 

Of the man himself, one of his disc golf mates said:   

Iain was a really lovely guy who was easy to get along with. He made everyone around him feel welcome and comfortable. On the course he was certainly focused on his game, but he was also really encouraging of those around him and maintained a positive mindset. 

Steven Wright

Iain’s legacy and allegiance to disc golf is celebrated each year in a memorial event in his name held at Poimena. 

Many thanks and credit for input, quotes and images to: Ollie Mundy-Castle, Damien Williams, Steven Wright, Chris Wright, Richard Sampson, Kingsley Flett

Player Profile – Blake Houston

Image by Kingsley Flett

By Dave Kynaston

PDGA #130941
Current Rating: 956
Playing Division: MPO
Predominant throw: Right hand back hand

Sponsors: Not yet, but watch this space.

The future is bright for this remarkable young player.  Blake is 15 years old and has been playing for just two years.  He’s a state level athlete in discus and javelin and when he’s not competing or training (or at school) he’s clocking up countless hours on the disc golf course or local oval.  He is a natural talent for sure, but he’s also worked hard to progress his game and is already firmly amongst the top flight of WA’s MPO division.   

Here’s some numbers:  In 2021 Blake has competed (in MPO) in five tournaments and has taken second places four times, and just last weekend a third place at Pine Lines in the A-tier Perth Open.  He’s thrown two 1,000+ rated rounds in competition and his current rating is 956.  He drives 450 feet without breaking sweat and his form, arm speed and shot shaping are truly impressive. 

If he can get to this level in his first two years, where can he go in the next few?? 

Let’s hear from Blake. @blakeh1306

Q: What are your strengths as a player?
A: Distance Drives and touchy upshots

Q: What is your best or favourite competition result to date?
 A: Probably the Red Tail Open 2021 where I shot a 9 under 1017 rated round on the blue layout at Mundaring and finished second place in MPO.

Q: What are your disc golfing ambitions and plans for the next two or three years?
A: I’d love to keep improving my game and to play the ADG Aussie tour events when possible and play Am Worlds or Junior Worlds when international travel returns. 

Q: Can you share a top form tip or something that substantially helped you improve your play?
A: I believe lots of field work and getting to know how your discs fly on an open oval will add touch and control to your game.  Practicing your putting and driving technique is also key for developing a smooth comfortable routine.

Q: What top pro player do you look up to and why?
A: My favourite pro is Eagle McMahon. We have similar game aspects such as big distance and playing aggressively to gain strokes. I love how he leaves the Jomez Pro commentators speechless from throwing ridiculous shots.  Eagle is definitely my top pick for the world title this year.    

Q: What is your favourite disc in your bag right now and what do you use it for?
A: I love my Discraft Brodie Smith Crystal Zflx Zone. It’s a gummy stable approach disc that sticks and I can shape any shot with this disc. The Zone is probably the most thrown disc in my bag.

Thanks Blake

Image by Kingsley Flett

Player Profile – Paul ‘Noisy’ Noesen

By Dave Kynaston

PDGA #24666
Playing Division: MPO
Current Rating: 947

Noisy only by name, he’s cool, calm and collected when out on the course. Following an impressive MPO win at WA’s inaugural ‘The Mundilorian’, Paul’s diverse and artful shot-making saw him fight back in round two to take second place at the 2021 Perth Open.

Let’s hear from Mr Paul Noesen.

Q: What are your strengths as a player?

A: I feel my strengths are that I have many tools to work with; forehand, backhand, tomahawk, thumber, rollers…..there aren’t many shots I can’t utilise.

Q: What is your best or favourite competition result to date?

A: Gentlemen’s Club Challenge in 2010 playing MA1, I took second place on very little sleep and the top 3 received automatic invites to the National Amateur Disc Golf Championship which was amazing to experience.

Q: What are your disc golfing ambitions and plans for the next two or three years?

A: I want to continue to develop a very consistent and dangerous putt, bring my rating up and attend Masters Worlds in the United States.

Q: Can you share a top form tip or something that substantially helped you improve your play.

A: The biggest thing that has helped me is to worry about what I’m doing and not how others are shooting. Don’t get angry at a mistake, think about what you can focus on or change to help correct it for future throws/events.

Q: What top pro player do you look up to and why?

A ; Calvin Heimberg – He is as cool as it comes, very focused and enjoys playing the game.

Q: What is your favourite disc in your bag right now and what do you use it for?

A: Favourite disc at the moment is the Axiom Tantrum; this disc is a go to for distance backhand and forehand. It’s also very comfortable and easy for me to control.

Thanks Noisy!

Image by Kingsley Flett