“I could tell it was a good line right away. It felt like a very clean release. Then, it was kind-of one of those moments when time stops and I got to experience the satisfying feeling of it going perfectly inside the basket.”
Those were Nikko Locastro’s thoughts after releasing his Champion Boss as it sailed some 440 feet and eventually smashed inside the basket for an unheard-of Albatross on the par 5, 888-foot Hole 13 during this year’s USDGC.
To commemorate that incredible shot, which has been viewed countless times, we’re releasing a special batch of Champion Bosses featuring that amazing moment.
The design by artist Parker Asay is based on photos and video footage of that shot during Round 3 of this year’s USDGC.
More about the disc
Known for its dependable stability, the Champion Boss is a fast driver that can handle full power throws and moderate headwinds.
Flight Numbers: 13 / 5 / 0 / 3
This Batch of Nikko Bosses contains the same magic Nikko unleashed that fateful October day. Look for them to have moderate dome to noticeable dome, with several pink colored Bosses being particularly poppy.
It wasn’t all Albatrosses for Nikko that day
Prior to that hole, Nikko wasn’t having such a stellar day. His lines were just a bit off and he couldn’t catch a break so that by Hole 13 he had already carded two bogeys and two double bogeys and was eight strokes off the lead. “I was at a low point before that hole. The course had my number that day,” said Locastro.
That’s a big reason why when that shot went in on 888’ he was so excited. “I felt like I had finally caught a break,” said Locastro.
The Victory Lap
Just as entertaining as watching the disc’s flight was watching Nikko’s euphoric celebration as he galloped to collect his disc from the basket. Since it was such a long shot on a long hole his joyful march to the basket lasted several seconds including my favorite part when he did a heel click off a tree.
Albatross to the rescue
“Then it just felt like it was an energy shift,” said Locastro. After that amazing two, Nikko was able to right the ship, making birdie on the next two holes and par on the rest.
“That shot kept me in it and still gave me hope to win,” said Nikko, who cut his deficit to five strokes after the round then rallied during the final round and nearly caught James Conrad at the finish.
Nikko & the Boss
Not only did Nikko use the Champ Boss for the Albatross shot, but he used it for Hole 13’s long, open tee shot as well. Nikko estimated that each shot was roughly 440 feet. When asked what shots he generally likes the Boss for, Nikko replied succinctly, “Albatross shots”. But in general, says he uses the Boss for its length and overstable characteristics.
Could it have gone OB?
Nikko said he had planned to skip the disc off the parking lot leading to Hole 13’s island green, which it did perfectly. However, the shot was coming in so hot it looked like if it didn’t hit chains it may have landed OB.
Did he worry about it skipping too far and landing OB? Nikko said no. To him, the chances of it staying in bounds were just as good as it going OB. It’s hard to say what could’ve happened, he said. But he was extremely happy that all the hard work and effort he had put into his game “paid off for one magical moment in time.”
It’s bound to happen eventually
One thing he believes, is that if you throw enough shots eventually one is going to catch inside the basket, and Nikko, who’s been playing more than half his life, feels his odds are better than most.
“I feel that I’ve thrown more shots than any 31-year-old person,” said Locastro.
Nikko loves Winthrop
Winthrop has always been a special place for Locastro, who won the USDGC in 2009. But he also remembers the first time he stepped foot on the course (around 2007-2008) when he aced the former Hole 1 during a practice round in front of USDGC legends Dave Feldberg, Barry Schultz, and 5-time US Champ Ken Climo.
Looking back at his Albatross, he said the most special thing about it was that Climo, who was in the booth commentating on the coverage, witnessed it.
“It was a little more magical because the greatest of all time was commentating during my throw,” said Locastro.
Watch for Nikko in 2020
Since earning his 2009 US Title, Locastro has placed second three times at the USDGC. He’s hungry for another title, so watch out for him next year.