Fresh off a highly successful US mini-tour in 2021, Kristin Tattar is ready for a full US tour.
February 23, 2022 by Bogi Bjarnason, Jesse Weisz and Steve Andrews in Interview with comments
This is the the fourth of our Q&A interviews in our European Re-Open series that highlights European disc golfers as international travel reopens in 2022.
There is a storm brewing in the Baltic. Legends abound of a three headed beast laying waste to fairways all across the leagues of the Old World.
In the shadow of Konopiste Castle, the Battle of Benesov is fought. Yet, the word “battle” is as much a misnomer as the word “fought” is an overstatement. The reality is just another instance of BTS (Blomroos, Tattar, Salonen) nonchalantly crushing the entire European field as if Open were a division ripe for sandbagging. The standard-bearer of the group is Kristin Tattar, ready to circle the wagons around the FPO podium. She is the only European player of this generation to win a Major on US soil (2019 US Women’s Championship), and her mini tour in the States in 2021 saw her come away with two Elite Series wins in four tries.
Ultiworld Disc Golf: Are there any lessons that you learned from past US tours that will help prepare you for this year? How is it different than playing in Europe?
Kristin Tattar: Touring in the US has become easier every year – we already know what to expect, where to eat, where to book accommodation, and we’ve made a lot of friends who are willing to help us. So it has definitely gone easier over the years.
The major difference between playing in the US and Europe is that the US is so far away and usually we are away from home for a longer period of time. In Europe, we almost always go home after a tournament.
Which event are you most excited about?
Probably DDO and the World Championships because I’ve never been to Emporia before, but I’ve heard so many great things about that city and the courses. Looking forward to playing there and experiencing the atmosphere.
Who are you touring with? How will you get around and what will your accommodation be like?
Like always, I travel with my boyfriend, Silver, but this season we are taking our teammate Keiti Tätte with us. I’m sure it will be a lot more fun and exciting. We’re planning on renting a car and staying in Airbnbs.
How are you funding this tour?
Thanks to my new contract with L64, I don’t have to worry as much as in the past. I’m able to cover the costs of touring without working extra.
What would you need to accomplish on this tour for you to consider it a success?
It is very hard to define what success is without knowing all the circumstances that may come up this year. So we can discuss this after the season ends. All in all, playing disc golf at a high level and having my dream job is a success itself – I’m just trying to give my best and enjoy the process. If I do that, I’m sure good results will come with it.
What has been the most difficult aspect of preparing for this tour?
The fact that I was totally burnt out when last season ended. So I’ve been working really hard to get back on track, charge my batteries, and be prepared so this wouldn’t happen again.
Of the three tours this year (DGPT, European Pro Tour, PDGA Euro Tour) which are you most focused on?
Outside of disc golf, are there places or sights in the US you plan on visiting?
We haven’t made any plans at the moment – I guess it comes as we go.
Were there a lot of hard choices that had to be made regarding picking and choosing between the DGPT, Majors, EPT, PDGA Euro Tour, Estonian Nationals, and other sponsor and personal commitments this season?
As I mentioned before, my main focus this season will be on DGPT and major tournaments. I start off at LVC and compete five weekends straight in the US, then fly home for two weeks and come back for another three weeks. This will end the first big stretch in the US. After that I will be in Europe and compete here until the summer. Second half of the year will be packed with US tournaments again.
Doing the schedule was not that hard since I already knew where my focus would be. But I think for a lot of players who haven’t made a clear decision between all the different tours have some tough decisions to make where to compete.
Do you think that touring experience and it’s recency gives you a leg up on your European rivals Henna Blomroos and Eveliina Salonen in the coming DGPT season? Similarly, do you think your dominant performance during that run gives you a mental edge over the US FPO field coming into the tour?
Of course every competition and lesson you have from it is valuable, but I don’t think that success in the past gives anyone an advantage — you still have to work hard and can’t get too comfortable.
The publishing of your contract extension details represent an important milestone in the growth of women’s disc golf. Can you talk a bit about what your newfound financial independence means to you as a player and a person and how it will affect your decisions and professional performance in the future?
My new contract shows me that I’m a value to L64 and my efforts are greatly appreciated. I’m forever grateful to be given the opportunity to continue doing what I love. This new contract will give me more freedom to choose between competitions and make it to more big events without worrying about funding. Also I can commit to my training a lot more.
Hear more from Kristin Tattar in the Upshot Interview Series.