Interview with the TD, Tommy Bessner
Tommy Bessner is the Tournament Director of the upcoming European Masters 2014. Tommy has a long history in disc golf that dates all the way back to 1995 and he is a familiar character in the Swedish disc golf scene. Due to a couple years long break he had from the sport a while ago an introductory interview may be in order. Right now Tommy is Innova’s sales representative in Sweden.
1. How did you initially find disc golf?
Tommy: My father and uncle have been playing disc golf since the 80’s and my father sometimes took me with him when I was a kid. They played sporadicly and very easily. In 1995 two friends of mine had heard about a disc golf course that had been built up at Järvafältet, very close to our neighborhood, and we decided to check it out. It was mind blowing to see the course and the guys playing disc golf for real, with all different discs. This was something else than I had seen before. I became hooked on the very first day and I found a sanctuary at Järva DGP and in disc golf.
2. Some time ago you took some time off from disc golf, what made you return to the sport?
Tommy: The main reason was severe back problems. I have been into a lot of sports but no sport has captured my mind and soul like disc golf. I have always thought of coming back to disc golf. Since I found more time for myself and my back has been slightly better, I could not hold back for yet another try for a comeback, but this time I wanted to do it for real.
3. What is your most memorable moment in disc golf?
Tommy: Not so surprisingly I must say that it is the day I became a employee of Innova. The opportunity to work with disc golf full time and have the opportunity to be part of the bright future and growth of disc golf.
4. How often do you get to play disc golf nowadays?
Tommy: Not even close to as much as I want, once or twice a week during the high season but I want to change that. That requires more training for my back and not such a tight schedule as I have now.
5. Do you have any plans to compete during the 2014 season?
Tommy: The thing is that I’m a very competitive person and I want to perform much better than I have but that demands training and practice. After the pre-season I will know how much I can practice and also what competitions to play. I have not yet felt satisfied while competing without practicing, which is what I have done so far.
6. What is your vision for the European Masters?
Tommy: Oh man! A vision is a vision right? I can see the whole City of Stockholm and its citizens being proud to host this big event every other year and people all around wanting to get a ticket to the show. Grandstands around the spectacular holes of Järva and that spectators gather in masses around the course for all the days of the event, pushing forward to get a piece of the action, to see disc golf, the pros, and experience the course. A reoccurring tournament that will breath professionalism all the way, that players and spectators long for.
7. What are your expectations for European Masters 2014?
Tommy: I know that we have one of the greatest permanent courses in the world, which will be better than ever for the European Masters 2014, and the biggest gallery ever will gather in Järva DGP.
8. Any final words for the disc golf community out there?
Tommy: Keep on practising and believe in yourself! Disc golf holds a great future and anyone can play a big role in it.