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Saturday, February 24, 2024
Rates for the 2024 Best Venue Awards increase this Sunday at 11:59 p.m. ET

Disc Golf’s Meteoric Rise Boosts Prize Money, Viewership

  • Disc golf has seen skyrocketing popularity in recent years.
  • Top players can make over $1 million in prizes and sponsorships.
Disc Golf Pro Tour

A sport that saw its popularity spike during the pandemic remains as strong as ever.

Disc golf has seen huge growth in the number of courses available and participation, particularly in the U.S.

  • There were 5.28 courses built per day in 2021, according to a report from UDisc. The company counted 13,323 courses worldwide, up 15% from 2020, with 71% built in the last 10 years.
  • UDisc’s app saw 17.2 million rounds of disc golf logged last year, a meteoric rise from 12 million in 2020 and 4 million in 2019.

The Disc Golf Pro Tour Championship, played earlier this month in Charlotte, North Carolina, had a total purse of more than $300,000, split evenly between the men’s and women’s championships. It was one of six purses worth at least $100,000 in 2022, per Disc Golf Pro Tour CEO Jeff Spring.

Spectator Sport

The Pro Tour’s Disc Golf Media Network has seen its streaming network subscriber count rise to around 50,000. While Tour content appears on CBS Sports and ESPN, the option to pocket revenue directly from fans presents difficult choices for the company.

“It’s a conflict, and we usually end up siding with our subscriber network and our partnerships with YouTube media companies,” said Spring, noting that events can total 2.5 million views across three YouTube partners.

However, national media may better appease corporate sponsors, which can be a boon to players, some of whom top $1 million in yearly earnings through endorsements.

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