We caught up with Drew to see how he felt about being the only player to have attended every Pro Tour event. Per Drew, “It’s a pretty special thing to be able to say I’ve had the opportunity to see the tour grow at each event and see how every single event has improved along the way. It’s for sure been a fun ride, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I’m actually amazed to hear I’m the only one to do this.”
Given how hectic the travel schedule can be for players, we were not as surprised to find out only one player had attended every Pro Tour event. However, Drew had made it clear from the beginning that he wanted to support the Tour. So we asked him what it was about the Disc Golf Pro Tour in particular that made him want to commit and attend every event early on? Drew pointed to the vision of the tour in his reply, “The structure [of the Disc Golf Pro Tour] and vision is probably what’s kept me follow the pro tour since the beginning. The tour allows the players to be fairly involved in new ideas or concepts and that is a huge plus that it gives us some voting power for new stuff that may be implemented.”
In 2016, Drew had his best finish (payday wise) at the first stop on tour, The Vibram Open. Drew took 5th place there which netted him $1300. He would finish the season 12th in Tour Points and play his way into the Tour Championship. Drew’s 2016 season was most notable for what became known as the “Drew Gibson Rule” after he purposefully laid up on the last hole to ensure a better spot in the semi-finals round of the Tour Championship. In 2016, the semi-finals round was seeded based on the scores of the players advancing from the quarterfinals. Drew laid up to avoid playing on the same card as Paul McBeth in the semi-finals round. In all subsequent years, the semi-finals round has been sorted based on Tour Points standings.
In 2017, Drew finished sixth in Pro Tour Standings. He amassed his most significant year of winnings, bringing home $7,296 across the DGPT season. Drew’s best finish* came at the Tour Championship where he competed in the semi-finals round and brought back $1,000 for his efforts.
This year Drew his best performance of his Pro Tour career at the San Francisco Open were he took home 4th place honors. Drew finished ninth in the Pro Tour Standings this season leaving him just outside of the semi-finals round.
We asked Drew for an assessment of his performance across the three seasons, and he had this to say, “Those years didn’t really shape my choices to play the next year, the tour is something I’d love to support and play in as much as possible moving forward no matter my finals finish. In 2016 the “Gibson Rule” was implemented because of my play during the first round, but that format for me and the complex of New World just seems to give me issues for some odd reason. I’ve yet to make it past the first round since the finals moved to Florida.”
Even with his struggles in Florida Drew keeps coming back for more. We asked him why it was important to him, and he replied, “Consistency, knowing at each event you arrive to that the added amount for players will be there is a huge plus. It makes arranging travel and accommodations much easier when you have a basic idea of if X amount of players who up and you get X place you’ll get X amount.”
With the streak in place at 26, we had to know how long Drew thought he could keep it up. His response may surprise you, “Sadly the streak will end this year I’d be willing to bet. I’ve had some other opportunities come up for me to excel in other spaces of business that’ll take up some of my time which will slightly shrink my travel abilities and limit me being able to play taking Wednesday-Friday off some weeks. I will still be active on the road, but I think I will be more picky with the events I play than just playing every weekend for months.”
Naturally, we had to know what would be so important that it would take Drew away from touring. Thankfully he was candid with his response, “I’m working on a mobile App for disc golf, if we are able to nail everything down how we would like it would be it will be able to give you real-time analytics of your throw and a comparison to either your last throw or a Top level Pro of your choice!! This will be a good learning tool for people who are looking to improve their form during fieldwork or practice rounds and also a good teaching tool for pros giving clinics or private lessons. It actually doesn’t stop there I’m going to be an infrastructure consulting salesman as well, finding solutions for company’s to work more efficiently and be more structured!! I’m excited for the new doors that have opened for me. It won’t take me away from the sport as a whole, but I do think it’ll drop my event per year number down a few! Thank you guys for giving me this opportunity!”
You can check out an example of the app in action in the post below from Drew’s Instagram.
Before we wrapped up the interview we wanted to close with a positive thought, so we asked Drew to entertain us with his favorite memory from the Pro Tour so far, he was candid with his response, “I think the overall experience the tour provides I’d have to say. Traveling to new places with fans opening their arms to us and the event directors working their butts off to provide great events is something that needs to be brought up. The competition on the course is unmatched with how many fantastic players there are right now, but just having a platform to showcase our skills and have people be able to watch us and root for their favorites is what I really have enjoyed.”
We are thankful for players like Drew Gibson who have believed in the Tour since day one. While we are sad to hear his streak may be ending soon, we are excited about the opportunities he has with his new business endeavors, and we look forward to his future success!
*Best finish is determined based on position and cash. Drew earned more at Ledgestone ($1100) but finished lower on the leaderboard than he did in the Disc Golf Pro Tour Championship semi-finals.