The 27-hole Whistler Disc Golf Course in Lost Lake Park will be alive with the sound of ringing chains this weekend as the course hosts the B.C. Provincial Disc Golf Championships on Saturday and Sunday. Roughly 100 players from around the province are expected to play in the event.
To get ready, the Whistler Disc Golf Club held a few volunteer days to prepare the course, and made a few course changes for the players to make some holes longer or more difficult. The amended course is 20 holes with a total yardage of 4,793 feet for the pro players and 3,969 for the amateur divisions.
"We've done a lot of work on the tee pads and just general course trimming and trying to extend some of the holes," said tournament director Craig McConnell. "We've not got a 505-foot hole, but trying to make the course longer has been challenging — we can only do so much to switch things up because the fairways are pretty much set. But we've overlapped a few holes and doubled them up, and put a few temporary baskets on others so we can change the pin placement."
None of the tonal poles on the course will be in use, as the professional sanctioning body requires baskets. "It has to be baskets," said McConnell. "There can be too much confusion with tonals, while with baskets it's either in or out."
McConnell says roughly a dozen local players will be in the field this weekend.
Players will play two rounds on Saturday and one round on Sunday, with the lowest gross score — fewest number of throws — winning the different categories. The first tee-off on Saturday is 9:30 a.m. and the afternoon tee-off is 1:15 p.m. The Sunday round gets underway at 10 a.m.
All holes are Par 3. Some of the new, longer holes could be Par 4 but McConnell said some top players have been up from the city and are reaching the basket in three shots so they kept it simple.
"Everyone likes the course," he said. "It's going to be tough, and I figure that even par will be a good score."
A look at the registered players shows huckers from as far away as Fernie and Rossland, and one player making the trip from Ontario.
Most categories will be competing for prizes although there is a cash prize in the pro category based on the number of entries. Entry fees are $25 for the junior division, going up to $60 for the pros. As well, players need to spend $15 for insurance from the Professional Disc Golf Association and the B.C. Disc Sports Society.
For more, www.whistlerdiscgolf.com.
Fox Run Sunday
The legend of Terry Fox runs on in Canada and around the world on Sept. 16, with the Four Seasons Resort Whistler once again playing host to the local event. Over 350 participants turned out last year, raising roughly $15,000 for the Terry Fox Foundation and cancer research and programming.
There are over 9,000 runs held every year in honour of Terry Fox, who passed away at the age of 22 when the cancer that cost him his right leg returned part way through his Marathon of Hope. He was attempting to run across Canada, finishing a marathon every single day, and followed through for 143 straight days and a distance of 5,373 kilometres before he was forced to stop. Within the year, friends and supporters — including Four Seasons founder Isadore Sharp — had organized the first Terry Fox Run to keep his dream alive. He initially hoped to raise $1 million for cancer research, raising that to $24 million — $1 for every man, woman and child in Canada at the time. Since then, almost $600 million has been raised in his name.
The Whistler event gets underway with registration at 10 a.m., with the run starting at 11 a.m. There are two distances, 4.2km and 7.2km, and the course is suitable for bikes, wheelchairs/strollers and rollerblades. Dogs on leashes are also welcome.
Participation is by donation, and runners can purchase tickets to win draw prizes including stays at Four Seasons resorts, and prizes donated by other local businesses.
The Squamish Terry Fox Run takes place at Brennan Park Rec Centre, with registration at 9 a.m. the run start between 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. There are 1km, 2km, 5km and 10km routes available, and the route is suitable for bikes, wheelchairs and strollers.
Pemberton's Terry Fox Run is at the Pemberton Airport with registration at 9:30 a.m. and a run start from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. There are 5km and 10km courses, suitable for bikes, wheelchairs and strollers.
Phat Weekends begin Saturday
Given the record turnout to this season of Phat Wednesday races, the Whistler Mountain Bike Park is keeping the timer running through the end of the season with two Phat Weekend events.
With fewer hours of daylight, organizers moved the event to the weekends and extended them over two days, Sept. 15 and 16 and Sept. 29 and 30.
The first day is for registration and training, followed by seeding laps. The second day is for more training including a warm up on a closed course, followed by the actual race. The schedule is online at www.whistlerbike.com/events/phat_weekends/.
To take part you need to be a WORCA member or pay $25 for a single event WORCA membership, and pay $30 for the weekend. If you don't have a lift ticket, special racer passes are available for $16 per day with proof of registration.
While the entry fee is a little higher than the traditional toonie, each weekend has a prize purse of $1,500 on top of the usual draw prizes from major sponsors. The awards are 4 p.m. on Sunday at the GLC.
The Phat Weekends are not the only event remaining on the bike park calendar. Back for a second year is the Chasse Au Tresor on Oct. 6, a scavenger hunt in the bike park that will test overall bike park knowledge. For more, visit www.whistlerbike.com/events/chasse/.
Busy September for events
While September is no longer any official "Month of Pain" there's still some pain to be had. The list of events got underway last weekend with the Meet Your Maker relay and ultra run, and continues this weekend with the RBC GranFondo Whistler road race/ride and the Four Kings mountain bike race. Other events include:
Sept. 15 — West Side Wheel Up. A must-do bike race that tackles a selection of trails on Whistler's West Side, including Lower Sproatt, Danimal North, Whip Me Snip Me, Rainbow Trail, Bob's ReBob, Get Over It and all of A River Runs Through It. The fastest riders finish in about an hour, and most riders in under two hours. Registration is $25 and includes post-race food and refreshments and a raffle ticket for draw prizes including a season's pass to Whistler Blackcomb. Registration is at Whistler Brewing after 11 a.m. and the race starts at noon. All proceeds go towards the B.C. Para-Alpine Ski Team.
Sept. 16 — The 32nd annual Terry Fox Run. 4.2km and 7.2km courses are available. See above for details.
Sept. 22 — Whistler Spirit Run presented by Rio Tinto Alcan. The little race that could returns to Whistler Olympic Park on Sept. 22 with a classic cross-country race event open to schools, clubs and individuals. The courses range from the 1km Family Fun Run to the 6km/8km men's and women's cross-country events. As well there is a 4x2km relay to finish the day. For more, visit www.whistlerspiritrun.com.
Sept. 22 — Squamish Super Spartan. This is an obstacle course style race based in Squamish with a 12km course and a more than a dozen challenges from start to finish. For more, visit www.spartanrace.com.
Sept. 30 — The 27th annual Rubble Creek Classic. This classic trail run starts at the Cheakamus Lake parking lot and finishes on the other side of Black Tusk at Garibaldi Park, weighing in at just over 24km. The run up Helm Creek is steep and technical in sections, but the views across the Cinder Flats and around Black Tusk are the best of any trail run in the region. It finishes with a long descent down the Rubble Creek Trail. For more, visit en.escaperoute.ca/events/rubblecreek.aspx.
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