WHO IS THAT MASKED MAN RUNNING AROUND ON THE DISC COURSE
WHO IS THAT MASKED MAN?
A couple of years ago dgcoursereview.com asked their readers the question “who is Dutch Napier?” It was in response to Dutch’s great play at the Alabama Disc Golf Championship. He finished 4th in a very strong field. He, of course, decks himself out in Batman garb and tattoo. There were many answers offered as to who he is, especially since he was -9 in the biggest tourney of the year”. StuMagoo said, “Looks like he’s been playing well this year. My guess is he just had a hot round (including an ace) and will fall off the lead card second round.” But he didn’t! Another guy pointed out there was a Mcfly video out there some place that showed Napier dressed as Batman. Someone else said, “Kudos to him for the cool name.” but, the one comment that was the most meaningful to me was “Have any of you seen Dutch and Batman in the same place at the same time? Just saying…”
So, let’s examine the on going life of Dutch Napier to determine just who this man really is. Dutch was born in Owensboro, KY and still lives there. He was always a good sportsman who spent a lot of time around a park there and kind of took notice of the kids. He was 17 when he saw some of them jumping into the local lake and pulling out plastic pieces. He inquired of the kids, “What are you doing? Should you be doing that?” They answered, “Oh. It’s alright Dutch. These are discs that people use in a game and we can sell them back to the people who lost them. They pay us. Dutch, jumped in the lake and found a disc himself. He took that disk and traded it to a guy who gave him two other discs in exchange. Dutch had discovered a good thing! And the world was about to find Batman on the disc course.
Mr. Napier went from merchandising discs to throwing them. In 2007, he played his first tournaments and got his beginning rating. PDGA published that first rating on June 26, 2007. It was 944! Since that time, Dutch #31473, has to date won 34 major tournaments for a total of $36,000.00. He has made his living teaching others to play better and has become a friend to thousands of people from around the world. The sport he loves has become richer by his efforts.
Dutch actually became known as Batman at a Vibram Tournament when he scored an ace. He always used a baseball bat to help himself warm up. He had a batman tattoo. It was inevitable! Dutch is batman! This year after the current Vibram Tourney, he posted on facebook how proud he was to be there. He stated how proud he was to have placed 44th in such a great tournament filled with the best players in the world. But, let me tell you, he is a wonderful asset to the pro tour and he is definitely one of the finest players on that tour. His humility is evident to all but so is his talent.
Finally, I would like to tell you of an even more important part of Dutch’s life than disc golf. He absolutely adores his wife and family. As one of his friends explained, “Dutch has married up”. And, that’s a fact. Nikki, his wife, is his pride and joy. She takes care of the house and their five children while Dutch makes a living travelling around the country playing professional disc golf, teaching etc. Dutch is aware of that too, and never forgets how fortunate he is. He loves his wife dearly and is proud as a peacock of his chidren. He has five: Caitlyn age 15, Zacary age 15, Bryton age 12, Tianna age 5 and Dutch Jr. age 3.
One of the proudest moments in my life came this past weekend when Dutch gave me one of his batman hats. Immediately, people began to ask me where I got the hat. I was told, he only gives the hats to his best friends. I don’t know if that’s true or not, but I do hope it is. He certainly is one of my best friends. I will wear that hat with pride, cause Dutch is batman to me! e loves his wife dearly