Gregg Barsby Joins Team Champion

Gregg Barsby is one of disc golf’s most beloved characters. Hailing from Grass Valley, California, Gregg is known for his wit, charisma, and engaging demeanor on and off the course. Gregg is equally as strong on the course. He has amassed more than 100k in tournament winnings, notched 50+ tour wins, including the Masters Cup National Tour event in 2009.

Gregg has had several sponsors over his career that dates back to 1999. Looking to settle down for the long haul, Gregg recently made the decision to join Innova’s Team Champion. We caught up with him to talk a little more about his decision and life in general.

Welcome to the team, Gregg! We are thrilled to have you officially in the Innova family. How does it feel?

Gregg: It feels great. I am definitely excited by all of the conversations we’ve had and for the opportunity in general.

Choosing a sponsor is a big decision that requires more thought than some might think. Was there anything that helped make the decision easier for you?

Gregg: As I reflected on all the years I’ve been close with Innova team members and employees I got more and more comfortable about making the move. I feel like I have maintained really good rapport with you guys. Plus I want stability and to make bigger things happen. I am confident that this will be a good fit for me.

Have you heard yet from the Iron Leaf himself?

Gregg: Haha! Climo and I spoke at DeLa because he had gotten a heads up about this move. He was pretty excited. Word traveled in Santa Cruz and the responses from other Innova guys helped affirm my decision as well. It was cool to see so many positive comments and how supportive everyone was.

What discs are in your bag at the moment?

Gregg: Staples at the moment are the Champion Eagle and Champion Firebird. I am also leaning on both the Champion and Star Boss for long distance duty. I am liking the Roadrunner for distance rollers. I am getting ready to do an official in the bag soon so people will be able to get the full scoop in that.

What about a putter? That might be the toughest disc to switch up because of the mental part of it.

Gregg: I am still not exactly sure. I am working with a few.

If you had to tee it up right now, what would you use?

Gregg: Definitely the KC Aviar. I would probably have a Nova handy for windy situations.

Glad to see you working the Nova. That still seems to be a fairly underappreciated model.

Gregg: I have seen the Nova do amazing things. I am trying to find my identity with it and get it fully worked into the bag.

Photo courtesy of Corduroy Photography

Are you trying any other models that are new to you?

Gregg: Not yet, but I am looking forward to testing the Mako3.

Any old school discs?

Gregg: I am stoked to have a Stingray back in my bag. I have thrown those for a long time.

DX Stingray?

Gregg: Yes. It’s all DX on the Stingrays for me.

So it sounds like the transition might not be as difficult for you. Is that a fair statement?

Gregg: I think so. I have been throwing Innova almost exclusively for 2 years so I’d say it’s fair. The putter is the main thing I need to dial in.

So when did you start playing disc golf, and what was your first course?

Gregg: I started in 1993 when I was 6. My first course was Condon Park in Grass Valley, CA.

How many courses have you played since then?

Gregg: Over 400. I don’t know the exact count but it’s up there.

Do you hold any course records?

Gregg: I still have just over 10 course records I think. All around the country. My favorite one is at BlueGill in the Grand Rapids area. That was one of McBeth’s training courses before Worlds. He spent a couple of weeks there so I was stoked to get that record. It was one of the best rounds of my life. I also have a 1084-rated round logged at Milo West in Oregon. That was another memorable round but I don’t know if it is a record.

We noticed a Barsby for President post on Facebook. That’s actually not a bad idea. If we made you president of Innova, what would you do on your first day in office?

Gregg: I would bring all team members together and make sure our core values are on the same page. I would make sure we were in position to be as successful as we could be. I would also make sure our actions are truly helping the core retailers. And on the course I want to continue Innova’s winning tradition for many years to come.

You have a busy tournament schedule coming up. What are some events you are excited about?

Gregg: All of them. Beaver State, King of the Lake, Maple Hill, European and Scandinavian Open, Pro Words, Ledgestone, Hall of Fame Classic, and the USDGC.

Throughout your travels you have built up a substantial fan base. Tell us a little bit about that.

Gregg: Ahh, the Barsby Empire. It is cool to see how much love there is out there. People who accept and support me just the way I am.

Photo courtesy of Corduroy Photography

Is that Barsby Empire, Inc.?

Gregg: Just Barsby Empire…. for now.

So if you could only play one more round, where and with who would you play?

Gregg: Pickard Park, right outside Des Moines. I would play with the Champ (Ken Climo), Mike Williams, and
Tom Johnson who is actually a really good golfer on the PGA Tour. Tom is pretty good disc golfer as well.

Is music still an important part of your life?

Gregg: Yes, music is huge for me. Drumming is a big part of my life. I am actually setting up a kit today in Sacramento and plan to do a video shoot with a friend of mine. Long term I still plan to pursue music during the times when my disc golf schedule isn’t so packed.

What kind of music do you like?

Gregg: I listen to everything. But mostly hip hop. And extreme forms of metal. I just picked up a bunch of new CDs, actually.

What?! CDs… you do know they have music on the Internet now, right?

Gregg: I am old school. Nothing online for me. I like to support the bands by purchasing CDs. That’s just my preference. I spend a lot of time in the car so I always get my music fix.

So no headphones on the course?

Gregg: No, because I can’t find a DiscMan with a good enough skip protector. I can’t be scratching up all my stuff up.

You must have a ton of CDs.

Gregg: One of my greatest organizational strengths is with my CD collection. Keeping them all straight is a top priority.

That’s awesome, Gregg. Thank you for your time. We wish you the best of luck throughout the year.

Gregg: Thank you!