After careful consideration, Australian Disc Golf and the 2020 ADGC organising committee have decided to cancel the 2020 Aussie Champs and reschedule the event to be hosted at Inverleigh in 2021. Discussions about the event have taken place over the past few months, soon after the government enforced restrictions were set in place. We attempted to plan for different scenarios, but there were too many factors working against us which led to the decision.
The tournament venue of Inverleigh Disc Golf Course is located on an operating golf course and is overseen by many stakeholders including the Inverleigh Golf Club, Golden Plains Shire and Golf Victoria. Throughout the recent restrictions Golf Victoria enforced a total shutdown of all Victorian golf courses. Local restaurants, cafes and accommodations also suffered from the same closures.
Access to the event for interstate and international visitors was a major concern for us. It goes without saying that quarantine requirements and border restrictions do not fare well for any sporting event, especially one whereby half the field may be required to travel interstate. Booking of accommodation and flights has been majorly disrupted and is an important part of any travelling disc golfer’s planning to ensure it fits their budget.
As with all tournaments, sponsorship funds, fundraising and registration fees generated are invested into the event to cover the myriad of expenses including merchandise, players packs, prizes, trophies etc. Reimbursing such funds already allocated in the event budget due to a last minute cancellation of the event would have a disastrous financial impact on the host club of Geelong. Not only the club, but travelling parties could also be impacted by a financial loss due to cancelled flights and accommodation.
The reality is that whilst we are still living in global pandemic, the uncertainty brought upon us that the cancellation of such a large scale event could occur – due to the resumption of federal, State and sporting association restrictions – was far too great for our committee. Despite a recent easing of restrictions, we are still not afforded the opportunity to provide our sponsors, the local community, key stakeholders and most importantly our players with security and a 100% guarantee that the event would take place.
To scale back the event to something that would cater for the current restrictions in place would not be the ADGC we have come to know over the past years – an event which has become one of the pinnacles of our sport. The Aussie Champs has not been hosted in Victoria for 8 years and we could not possibly compromise on the tournaments’ standards when we may not get another chance to bring the event back to the state for another 7 years.
We were extremely excited to be hosting the event this year and were looking forward to treating everyone to an amazing disc golf experience. We have been working hard in the background since being notified of our successful application to host the event. Course work, grant funding applications, media planning, website building etc. We also locked in a major sponsor whose support is going to be groundbreaking! Live music, camping, games.. You name it.
We are extremely disappointed to make this call, but we feel in our gut it was the right one. Our organising committee are disc golfers too and share the same passion and love for the sport as anyone else, so we hope the Australian disc golf community, sponsors and anyone planning to attend the event this year can appreciate the difficult decision.
We look forward to coming back bigger and better than ever in 2021. Stay tuned!
Yours in flight,
Patty Robinson & Andrew Ferguson