Disc Golf Tournament Profiles: 2023 WACO (Waco Annual Charity Open)

Jacob Arvidson avatar
Jacob ArvidsonContributor
Mar 13 • 7 min read

The 2023 WACO disc golf tournament took place from Friday, March 10 to Sunday, March 12. The tournament was a Disc Golf Pro Tour Elite Event, and its name is an acronym for Waco Annual Charity Open.

The event was played at Brazos Park East, the BEast layout.

A woman running up to throw a disc with a river and sheer rock wall in the background
Paul McBeth playing at WACO in 2021. Photo: DGPT

Click or tap a section below to learn more about the 2023 WACO disc golf tournament:

How to Watch the 2023 WACO Disc Golf Tournament: Live

The first round of the 2023 WACO disc golf tournament was broadcast live for free on the Disc Golf Pro Tour YouTube Channel and is still available to view there. To watch archived live coverage of rounds two and three of the 2023 WACO disc golf tournament, you need a paid subscription to the Disc Golf Network.

Unlike in previous years, final rounds of DGPT tournaments are not being streamed live for free on YouTube in 2023.

When Did 2023 WACO Disc Golf Tournament Live Coverage Start?

  • Friday & Saturday, March 10 & 11, 2023
    FPO: 9 a.m. Central, 10 a.m. Eastern
    MPO: 2:30 p.m. Central, 3:30 p.m. Eastern
  • Sunday, March 12, 2023
    FPO: 10 a.m. Central, 11 a.m. Eastern
    MPO: 3:30 p.m. Central, 4:30 p.m. Eastern

How to Watch the 2023 WACO Disc Golf Tournament: Free, Condensed, Post-Produced

  • JomezPro has free, condensed coverage of both MPO and FPO lead cards for the 2023 WACO disc golf tournament on its YouTube channel.
  • Gatekeeper Media has free, condensed coverage of MPO chase cards for the 2023 WACO disc golf tournament on its YouTube channel.
  • Ace Run Pro has free, condensed coverage of FPO chase cards for the 2023 WACO disc golf tournament on its YouTube channel.

Scores & Stats for the 2023 WACO Disc Golf Tournament

You can find shot-by-shot scores and in-depth stats for every round of the 2023 WACO disc golf tournament on UDisc Live for MPO and FPO.

2023 WACO Disc Golf Tournament Win Probabilities

Prior to the start of the 2023 WACO disc golf tournament, these are the players UDisc Live's pro disc golf Win Probability model gave at least a 2% chance to win in MPO and FPO:

Win Probability Before Event Player: MPO Actual 2023 Finish
  Win Probability Before Event Player: FPO Actual 2023 Finish
18% Paul McBeth T13 59% Kristin Tattar 1
10% Gannon Buhr T24 10% Catrina Allen 10
9% Matthew Orum T7 8% Paige Pierce T16
9% Calvin Heimburg T3 5% Missy Gannon T16
8% Chris Dickerson T22 4% Ohn Scoggins 3
8% Eagle McMahon T35 3% Henna Blomroos T14
4% Kyle Klein 1 3% Eveliina Salonen T40
2% Joel Freeman T10 3% Valerie Mandujano 13
2% Isaac Robinson T45 2% Holyn Handley T21
2% James Conrad 6
2% Nikko Locastro T16

On mobile, swipe left/right to see all columns.

These percentages were created prior to the start of the event and changed dramatically as the event played out. To see how, check out Win Probability on UDisc Live.

Note that Win Probability doesn't always match up with Disc Golf World Ranking because Win Probability takes into account how players have historically performed on holes of specific distances and difficulty and compares that information just to holes they'll face at a single event. That means the probabilities above related to how players' historical performances suggested they'd do just at the 2023 WACO whereas World Ranking is a broader assessment of past performance.

Who Won the Last WACO Disc Golf Tournament in 2023?

Kyle Klein (MPO, 31-under par) and Kristin Tattar (FPO, 14-under par) won the 2023 WACO disc golf tournament.

All Past Winners of the WACO Disc Golf Tournament*

  • 2023: Kyle Klein (MPO), Kristin Tattar (FPO)
  • 2022: Paul McBeth (MPO), Valerie Mandujano (FPO)
  • 2021: Nikko Locastro (MPO), Kona Panis (FPO)
  • 2020: Colten Montgomery (MPO), Eveliina Salonen (FPO)
  • 2019: Paul McBeth (MPO), Catrina Allen (FPO)
  • 2018: Jeremy Koling (MPO), Paige Pierce (FPO)
  • 2017: Jeremy Koling (MPO), Paige Pierce (FPO)

*All winners at WACO since it became a DGPT event

WACO Disc Golf Tournament History

WACO has been an annual disc golf tournament since 1996 and has had quite a few changes in leadership over the course of its existence (though the nifty way Waco Annual Charity Open shortens to WACO was there from the start).

A large scoreboard in the background and a man working on changing the scores on mobile golf scoreboards in the foreground
An image from 2017, the first year WACO was part of the DGPT. Photo: DGPT

According to current tournament director (TD) Ryan Draper, WACO was founded by Troy Taylor and Brian McGee, who wanted to create an event with the goal of raising money for local charities. Taylor and McGee eventually passed the tournament on to Joey Harrell (WACO's current assistant TD), and he not only continued the event's charitable tradition but also made it a popular stop for touring pros.

"We were one of the first tournaments to attract all of the biggest players at the same place at the same time besides Worlds and USDGC," said Draper. "Joey was the guy that brought it to an elite event back in the day."

After running things for several years, though, tournament leadership changed again when Harrell took a step back and allowed Channon Quillen to take over as TD.

It was Quillen, inspired by his own son, who began partnering with the Baylor Autism Resource Center. Since then, WACO has continued to raise money for this local charity.

"Channon was always a good friend of mine and I wanted to keep the charity the same," said Draper.

Our line of succession ends with Draper, who took over the event in 2016. By that time, the tournament had been everything from a Super Tour event, to a National Tour stop, to an A-Tier, to a B-tier. But it hadn't been a truly big event since the early 2000s under Harrell.

Draper wanted to get WACO back in the national spotlight, so he connected with Steve Dodge, who was getting ready to launch the first DGPT in 2016.

"Steve Dodge flew down to Waco to check out the course, the town, and the local scene," said Draper. "He fell in love instantly and it was really easy from that point. Steve really liked Waco and saw we were serious about putting it on the big stage."

The course Dodge fell in love with was The BEast at Brazos Park East, a course that actually hadn't existed when WACO started. Early iterations of the tournament used William Cameron Park, which is almost directly across the river from The BEast.

A disc golf tee sign next to a sidewalk that trails down a fairway lined with thick brush
A hole at William Cameron Disc Golf Course, which hosted pros competing at WACO up until 2017. Photo uploaded to UDisc Courses by texas2putts

Even after Harrell designed the original BEast layout in 2003, the tournament continued to use both courses as part of the professional event.

It wasn't until 2017 when the event joined the DGPT that they decided to only use The BEast, citing advice from tour players that they preferred to focus on one course rather than multiple. The highly rated William Cameron Park is still used for the amateur side of WACO.

Since WACO has been part of the DGPT, The BEast has produced some of the Pro Tour's most exciting rounds and finishes. These include MPO going to playoffs in both 2017 and 2018, FPO being decided by one of the wildest lead change scenarios over two holes you'll ever see in 2018, a surprise chase-card win from Colten Montgomery in 2020, and an epic hole 17 throw-in from Nikko Locastro to retain the lead in 2021. In 2023, Kristin Tattar only defeated Ella Hansen with her last putt of the tournament, and Kyle Klein got a win from the chase card.

And, of course, WACO also produced one of Paul McBeth's two, historic 18-under par rounds.

More Disc Golf Stories

UDisc Live will have shot-by-shot scores and stats for every major professional disc golf tour in the U.S. and Europe in 2023. Check out our full schedule to see when and where the world's best disc golfers will be competing throughout the year.

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