Interview – Nathan Queen

Nathan Queen is an Innova-sponsored disc golfer from Kernersville, North Carolina. He is currently rocking along on the DGPT and PDGA National Tour on his way across the USA and beyond while often doing commentary for next-day rounds on Gatekeeper Media.

Please tell us about your very first round of disc golf. Was it love at first rip or did the sport take some time to settle in?

My first round was around 2002 or 2003 at Carolina Bible Camp in Mocksville NC, a 9 hole pole hole course that was played backwards as well to have a full 18. At that time I was playing baseball and just getting started with motocross so disc golf didn’t take as a favorite right away. 2013 I made a move to New Bern NC and thats when disc golf got hold of me.

Your new tour series Wraith from Innova features easily the coolest stamp I have ever seen on a disc. Can we get the full story of the illustration?

First off, thanks! Im super happy with how they turned out. There wasn’t much to it, I said I wanted to have me with the metal horns up and to have Sadie on there as well. From there the Innova artists created the masterpiece you see.

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When you choose to listen to music during a round, what sort of stuff makes the playlist for a Nathan Queen practice round?

I will usually shuffle play the music on my phone, mainly metal along the lines of Killswitch Engage, In Flames, Parkway Drive mixed with some things like Sum 41 and Alien Ant Farm.

It’s been noted several times that you are quite the metalhead, as a fellow brother of metal, I have to ask, which other players on tour share your love for the heavy stuff?

I’m sure there are more but the first 3 that come to mind are Greg Barsby, Trevor Harbolt and Brian Earhart.

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Ph: David Weaver

The situation: you are standing at hole #1 of the most difficult course you have ever played for a single-disc challenge. What disc are you pulling from the bag for battle?

Being a wooded player, I’ll take most difficult and its a tough wooded course. I’d pick a Star TL3 to carve up lines left and right!

Many of your peers list you as one of the best woods golfers in the world, can we get the Nathan Queen Top 5 tips for playing on tightly wooded courses?

  • Disc down.     
  • Slow down/smooth motions.     
  • Don’t aim at trees, aim inside/outside of trees.     
  • Vizualize the flight you want before release.     
  • Be confident in your decision throughout your entire throw.

James Conrad is known throughout the disc golf universe for his luxurious long hair but do you feel guys like you and Chris Clemons should be getting more props for your locks?

I’ll give that to James and Chris on the hair, theirs is a bit fluffier than mine.

Your significant other; Rebecca Cox, is one of the brightest stars in the FPO division, how competitive do your practice rounds get when you guys are on the course together?

Not at all really, neither of us keep score during practice rounds so we’re just out there throwing good shots!

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Those watching pro coverage have likely heard your voice in the play by play of many a pro tour round on Gatekeeper Pro. I once read a comment that called you “the smoothest top shelf whiskey in disc golf commentary”. How does one take a compliment like that?

I hadn’t read that one haha. People get excited about a good smooth whiskey and usually look for some more. Pretty cool comparison to me!

If there is a silver lining in the nightmarish run of COVID-19, it’s that disc golf has grown a lot in popularity and has also helped a lot of people take care of their mental health. With how hard the pandemic hit the 2020 tour season, was it hard to maintain the “happy place” on the course?

Luckily the the disc golf community is a great one and I was able to meet new friends and continue to play for the first big shutdown. Once tournaments started back up it really felt better the be out there competing again, so happiness wasn’t a big issue for me during those rounds.

2021 on the other hand has seen the PDGA and DGPT come out swinging in a big way. Is it 100% excitement to have crowds back and a full tour schedule or is there a small % of caution still preventing total enjoyment of the new season?

100% excitement to have a full touring season again! I get to play in at least 4 new states this year and its always awesome to have some crowds back around to watch.

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The support between competitors even at the highest level of disc golf is undeniably positive most of the time. Does that atmosphere make playing at that level a little less pressure-filled?

I don’t think so, there are more good cards than bad for sure but the pressure on me comes from myself, not the ones around me.

What advice could you give to newer players looking to become a complete / well rounded / versatile player like yourself?

When first getting started use slower, straighter discs like mako3s and leopards. These will help you learn to control a straighter flight which will transfer into better hyzers and anhyzers.

We would like to thank Nathan sincerely for his time and wish him nothing but the best results and better memories on tour in the future. To support Nathan, those interested can check out his signature tour series Innova Wraith at your nearest Innova dealer and follow him all on Instagram HERE!

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