[Dream Team] Masahiro Matsuno, Buzz Bullets, Japan

Credits : Satoru Ishii, Club JR

Matsuno is the leading players of the impressive japan open team that made it to the finals in WUGC this year, he’s been in every national, continental or world championship since 2006!

How did you come to play ultimate?

First, I played in a high school sport club, then, I joined a college team.

And how did you stick to the sport?

I just wanted to throw better and catch everything, so, I tried again and again.
Finally, I found myself I was hooked Ultimate.

What’s your best memory about ultimate?

2010 World Ultimate Club Championships. We finished 3rd in Men’s division and I was awarded as the top scoring & assisting player of the tournament.

Credits : Satoru Ishii, Club JR

What’s your vision about the future of ultimate?

I hope that more people know Ultimate and it become an Olympic sport eventually.

What’s you thoughts about ultimate frisbee cleats?

It would be great to have them just like other sports have their specific shoes.

Credits : Satoru Ishii, Club JR

Matsuno’s timeline

  • Japan College National Championships (2002, 2004, 2005)
  • Japan  National Championships (2006-2016), MVP (2010)
  • World Club Championships (2006), Scoreboard leader (2006)
  • Team Japan: 2004(5th), 2008(3rd), 2012(5th), 2016(2nd)
  • World Games: 2005(4th), 2009(2nd), 2013(5th)

TOKAY’s illustrated story

[Dream Team] Laura Chagneux, YAKA, France

Credits : Quentin Dupre Latour, Focus

Incessant traveler, Laura has been playing in 8 clubs during her 11 years carrier, which led her 3 times to EUCF (won one, with SUN, 2014 Mixed division). She also took part to WUGC this year with the French mixed team.

How did you come to play ultimate?

In middle school, my sports teacher introduced us to ultimate frisbee. I found it very fun so when I came back to school in September,  I started to look for a club, and I found OUF club… And the adventure began.

And how did you stick to the sport?

As I have started relatively young, the players I have met became my friends…and then really good friends. The fun we have at each tournament is unbelievable, thanks to the sport, the spot of the tournament and my friends. By playing more and more, I got addicted to competition. It’s a huge opportunity to play at this level…There are not a lot of sports where players can experience the same. I love playing hard with my friends to reach the top!

What’s your best memory about ultimate?

Credits : Quentin Dupre Latour, Focus

1: Last June, at the WUGC in London when we won against UK, which allow us to be 4th at the world championship. A feeling of pride, love, hope…not easy to describe but a pure moment of love.

2 : One year ago at EUC in Copenhagen, we won the game to be third. 10 minutes after the french open team had won also their game for the 3rd place. We crossed the fields to join them and celebrate… A pure moment of joy ☺

What’s your vision about the future of ultimate?

I sincerely hope that we will manage to get more sponsors to make the high level practices more professional while keeping the tournaments fun. We work really hard to get a high level in parallel of our daily life… which shows some limits. By getting younger players to this sport, we could make ultimate more famous, and be more professional, a virtuous circle…

What’s you thoughts about ultimate frisbee cleats?

I am really happy that a project has been launched to create finally cleats adapted for one sport and available in many countries (not only in North America). As we play many games in a short period of time, I would like my cleats to be light, comfortable (no blue toenail anymore), resistant and quite waterproof (to play two days in a row).

Credits : Quentin Dupre Latour, Focus

Laura’ timeline

  • 2005 – OUF Club  (France)
  • 2010 – Ultimate Montreal University (Canada)
  • 2010 – Canada Ultimate University Championship with Montreal
  • 2011 – Ultimate Lancaster University (UK)
  • 2012 – Monkey Club (France)
  • 2014 – WUCC, Lecco, 28th with BDM
  • 2014 – Ragging Club (France)
  • 2014 – EUCF, Frankfurt, 1st Medal with SUN Club
  • 2015 – EUC, Copenhagen, 3rd medal with France Open
  • 2015 – 2nd France with Western Ladies
  • 2015 – Iznogood Club (France)
  • 2016 – Champion of France with YAKA
  • 2016 – WUGC, London, 4th with France Mixte
  • 2016 – EUCF, Francfort, 9th with YAKA

What’s your best memory about ultimate?

Backers’ club map

Discover below the map of all the clubs of people that backed our project on Kickstarter!

The list will be completed gradually as we receive backers’ infos.

Key :

  • TOKAY Team & Dream Team members
  • Pro League Clubs
  • Clubs

There might be a few mistakes in this map, if you find one, please let us know!

The map is still uncomplete and we are editing the info as we receive it!

[Dream Team] Justin Foord, Clapham & Toronto Rush, UK

Credits : Quentin Dupré Latour, Focus

Playing since 2006 with Clapham Ultimate and GOAT in Canada. More recently joined Toronto RUSH to play in the AUDL. 9 times National champion and 5 time European champion with  Clapham Ultimate and GB. Very excited to be a part of the Tokay project!

How did you come to play ultimate?

I started in my 4th week at Uni. There was a big group of us from our university halls that decided to go to the Uni team training. 3 years later, we were still all playing.

And how did you stick to the sport?

University doesn’t really provide the best environment for a fit & healthy lifestyle so training for Ultimate a couple of times a week was a perfect way to stay mildly fit. I had watched a DVD from Pushpass of Elite Level Ultimate and was desperate to join a club that could eventually lead to me being a part of one of those teams.

What’s your best memory about ultimate?

  • Semi-Final victory over Sweden in Universe point at WUGC 2012 in Japan.
  • Paganello Semi-Final & Final in 2009.
  • Winning Gold at EUC 2015 with GB.

What’s your vision about the future of ultimate?

I think the best way to grow the sport is for non-ultimate players to be able to understand the fundamental rules by watching a game. It’s also important that spectators are entertained throughout the majority of a game slot, not 1 minute on, 3 minutes off.

I like what the AUDL is doing to speed up gameplay and increase viewability. I believe the sport will struggle to grow in the current format of travels, picks, in-out of bounds being an extended discussion between players. Approximately 30minutes gameplay in a 90-minute game will not attract spectators or interest needed to grow the sport.

Finally, Ultimate is like no other sport in the way that at the beginning of a point, 90% of the field is ‘in-play’ so the whole field should be in view to a digital viewer. (Camera’s should be in the back (middle) of endzones).

What’s you thoughts about ultimate frisbee cleats?

Ultimate is such a unique sport in terms of movements so it makes sense to have cleats specifically designed for Ultimate. For 6/7 years i’ve just looked at what wide-receivers wear in American football as that seems the most similar to a cutter role in Ultimate. If Tokay can create something similar or better that also offers comfort over three of four games a day then i think these boots will become really popular amongst ultimate players.

Photos Courtesy of Ed Kung

Justin’s timeline

  • 2006 – Started with Brookes Ultimate Frisbee
  • 2007 – First International Tournament – Paganello (45th)
  • 2008 – Joined Clapham Ultimate. EUCF (5th), UK Nationals (1st).
  • 2009 –  Paganello – UTI (1st), X-EUCF – CU (3rd), UK Nationals – CU (1st).
  • 2010 – EUCF – CU (4th), UK Nationals – CU (1st).
  • 2011 – Joined GB. EUC’15 – GB (2nd). EUCF15 – CU (2nd), UK Nationals – CU (1st).
  • 2012 – Joined GOAT – US Nationals. WUGC’16 (2nd). EUCF’12 – CU  (1st), UK Nationals – CU (1st).
  • 2013 – GB World Games, Cali – Colombia (6th). EUCF’13 -CU (1st), Paganello – UTI (1st), UK Nationals – CU (1st).
  • 2014 – Clapham Ultimate Co-Captain. GOAT – US Nationals Semi-finalists. WUCC’14 – CU (5th) EUCF’14 – CU (1st), Paganello – UTI (1st), UK Nationals – CU (1st).
  • 2015 – Clapham Ultimate Captain, GB Captain. EUC’15 – GB (1st), EUCF’15 – CU (1st), UK Nationals – CU (1st).
  • 2016 – Clapham Ultimate Captain, GB Captain. Played AUDL with Toronto Rush – Championship Weekend V. WUGC’16 – GB (5th), EUCF16 – CU (1st), UK Nationals – CU (1st). Elite Select Challenge – GOAT (1st).

[Dream Team] Michelle “Mish” Phillips, Bauhaus, Australia

Mish Phillips has played with Bauhaus Ultimate for the entire ten years of both her playing career and the club’s existence, and captained or coached the team for the last six. She represented Australia five times and her club four times at international level since 2008.

How did you come to play ultimate?

A friend of mine, Hui Ying Ang, asked if I would come and play a tournament with the University mixed team because they were short on girls. I had never even thrown a disc before, and had no understanding of how intense a tournament schedule is, but had a great time.

And how did you stick to the sport?

I was also playing soccer at a high level at the time, but I disliked that other players would elbow you and be aggressive while the referee wasn’t watching. I am not afraid of playing at a highly competitive and physical level, but I believe you can do this without losing the respect for your opponents. It is the Spirit of the Game and the amazing global community that makes Ultimate frisbee such a worthwhile sport to play. This is why I have stuck to the sport.

I stopped playing soccer. 😉

What’s your best memory about ultimate?

My best memory is probably both the greatest and the most embarrassing thing I’ve done onfield, in the same moment!

It is 2010, and the Australian women’s U23s team is playing in the final of the first WU23 championships against Team Japan. The score is 15-15, game to 16, and there have been multiple turns already in the point. My sister catches the disc, yells at me to run, and throws a huge throw towards the endzone. I am exhausted and as I start to run, I trip over my own feet and fall over. The only thing in my head is “my sister is going to be so mad at me!” so I get up, keep running to the endzone, and in a mad panic leap of desperation catch the disc over some other players.

We won the game, but I sure copped a lot of teasing from the team about tripping over first!

What’s your vision about the future of ultimate?

There are expectations in the sporting world about how sport is played, and there’s a fair amount of pressure on us to fit in with these expectations. Yet ‘an expectation’ has nothing to do with what’s best, or what’s fulfilling, or what’s right. It’s just what people are used to.

My vision for the sport is that we take the fact that we play a self-refereed sport, we take the fact that women and men can share the field equally at the highest levels, and we leverage the hell out of it. These are the exact reasons why our sport is marketable.

I strongly believe that our Spirit of the Game is intrinsically linked to the accountability and responsibility that comes from self-refereeing, and that we should be stubborn about our refusal to move away from this.

I strongly believe that we have the potential to be the most gender equitable sport in the world, and that we should be stubborn in our insistence to move towards this.

What’s you thoughts about ultimate frisbee cleats?

I want my cleats as light and fast as possible! I worked in an athletic shoes store for many years, so I had excellent access to try some of the best brands. However, I’ve always had a problem that the lightest cleats don’t provide enough cushioning for my feet. I run a lot, so the ball of my foot was always getting sore. My solution was to always have a thick pair of gel innersoles inside my cleats to relieve this pressure. I would absolutely love to find a pair of cleats that can be light while also providing me with enough cushioning.

Mish’s timeline

  • 2007 – Australian nationals silver medal, Kaimana klassik
  • 2008 – WUGC in Vancouver, women’s team
  • 2009 – World Games reserve, Kaimana Klassik
  • 2010 – WU23 in Lecco, women’s team, vice captain, gold medal. WUCC in Prague with Kaboom mixed division. Australian nationals gold medal.
  • 2011 – I guess I had a rest this year 😉
  • 2012 – WUGC in Sakai, women’s team
  • 2013 – World Games in Cali, Japanese nationals with HUCK silver medal
  • 2014 – WUCC with STBAU women’s division, Kaimana Klassik 1st place, Australian nationals gold medal.
  • 2015 – Dream Cup, US Open mixed division
  • 2016 – WUGC in London, women’s team, captain. Dream Cup 1st place.

[Dream Team] Mario O’Brien, Seattle Sockeye & Cascades, USA

Mario O’Brien is the Producer and Creative Director of RISE UP, Ultimate’s only professional instructional video series. He currently plays pro/elite ultimate for Seattle Sockeye and the Seattle Cascades.

How did you come to play ultimate?

I first saw it at summer camp and at that point thought of it as a ‘game’ not a ‘sport’. I went to my first ultimate practice at the end of my sophomore year at the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire.

And how did you stick to the sport?

I was 4-sport high school athlete and I missed being a part of a team and being active. My first 2 years of college I was a bit lost. I loved that Ultimate was fun, and the people were great, and I was pretty good at it. I liked being athletically competitive and working hard towards team and personal goals, and I liked road trips with friends. In hindsight, ultimate met a lot of my needs as a person, and still does.

What’s your best memory about ultimate?

One of my favorite memories was my first Labor Day tournament in Santa Cruz (RIP) in 2008. My friend and captain Matt Melius and I sat up on the hill overlooking finals and the amazing view of the beach. We talked about how much we cared about the team and wanted to be better, we argued, we cried, and we came together. This conversation was a catalyst to me becoming a captain the next year, which led to my eventual ultimate addiction, which brings me to now.

What’s your vision about the future of ultimate?

I want ultimate to lead with a) gender equity and b) spirit of the game out front. I do believe ultimate is unique in the sports landscape because of this context. I’m not sold on ‘fast growth for the sake of growth’ or ‘making it to the olympics’.

I also think we have no idea where/how ultimate will change or look 5 years from now. 5 years ago there was no ultimate media, no pro leagues, no streamed games.

I think leadership development for all is the key to a strong community, and that’s why RISE UP’s mission is rooted there.

What’s you thoughts about ultimate frisbee cleats?

I’m optimistic, in that I want Tokay to succeed! But I’m also curious to see if it can create the quality I expect as an elite athlete in the sport. I was a little kid who wanted to be Michael Jordan when I grew up, and have worn Nike athletic shoes for my entire athletic career. Nike Vapor Carbons are my cleat of choice, have been saving a couple pairs for big games for the past few years. Whatever DBs in US football are wearing has been my first choice because a) the athletic movements are most similar and b) I’m an ex-basketball player and the mid-high cut feels better than low-cut soccer cleats.

Mario’s (shortest) timeline

Ultimate Playing History

USAU Club Medals

  • 2nd Place :: Sockeye 2015
  • 2nd Place :: Sockeye 2013

Professional Ultimate

  • 2nd Place – 2016 AUDL Championships – Seattle Cascades
  • 2nd Place – 2015 AUDL Western Division – Seattle Cascades
  • 2nd Place – 2014 MLU Western Division – Seattle Rainmakers
  • 2nd Place – 2013 MLU Western Division – Seattle Rainmakers

International Medals

  • 3rd Place 2016 TEP Colombia – Team Colombia Open
  • 3rd Place 2016 TEP Colombia – Sockeye
  • 1st Place 2015 WFDF Beach Championships – Team USA Open
  • 2nd Place – 2014 WUCC Lecco – Sockeye
  • 3rd Place – 2014 TEP Colombia – Sockeye (*Spirit Award Winner)
  • 1st Place – 2013 Windmill Windup – Chinaya Rada
  • 1st Place – 2012 Paganello -Scandal
  • 1st Place – 2011 Pan-American Ultimate Championships – Sockeye

Teams

  • Team USA Beach Open :: 2017, 2015
  • Seattle Sockeye :: 2013 – 2016
  • Team Colombia :: 2016
  • Seattle Cascades :: 2015-2016
  • Seattle Rainmakers :: 2013 :: 2014
  • Portland Rhino :: 2008-2012
  • Portland Shotgun Rainbow :: 2007
  • UWEC Eau Zone :: 2003-2005

Ultimate Coaching and Leadership History

Team Coach

  • Player Development Consultant – Seattle Sockeye :: 2015-2016
  • Team Development Consultant – Team Colombia (WUGC) :: 2016
  • Team Manager – Team USA Beach :: 2015
  • Varsity Coach – University Prep HS :: 2015-2016
  • Head Coach – Seattle Rainmakers :: 2014
  • JV Coach – University Prep US :: 2014
  • Head Coach – Lewis and Clark Bacchus :: 2012-2013
  • Captain – Portland Rhino :: 2009-2012

Clinics, Camps, and Workshops

Analyst and Commentator

NexGen Network

  • NexGen Tour :: 2013
  • College Easterns :: 2013
  • WUGC :: 2012
  • College Easterns :: 2012
  • USAU Club Nationals :: 2011
  • Stanford Invite

Ultivillage

  • Junior Worlds 2012
  • USAU Club Nationals 2011

[Dream Team] Manuela & Valeria Cardenas, Revolution, Colombia

Credits : Jolie J Lang, Ultiphotos

Playing both world finals (WUGC 2016) and junior semi-finals (WJUC 2016) the same year is not common! But that’s part of the accomplishments of Cardenas twin sisters this year despite their young age.

How did you come to play ultimate?

We started playing ultimate at the age of 8 through the INDER program, a project that brings sports like ultimate to public schools in Medellin, Colombia, as a vehicle for social change. We were immediately fascinated by ultimate because of the fact that it was a non-contact sport and there were so many different ways that the disc could be thrown.

And how did you stick to the sport?

We began to train intensively and often stayed after class to throw on our free time. After seeing our passion for the sport, our coach encouraged us to try out for the competitive INDER team with which we could travel to various tournaments around the region.

At the age of 9, we started training with Revolution Ultimate Club. In 2010, at 11 years of age and with only three years of experience, we helped Revolution to a Colombian women’s national title.

What’s your best memory about ultimate?

Credits : Quentin Dupre Latour, Focus

We have a lot of very nice memories in ultimate, we reached great goals together, but I think our best memory is when we won the semi finals against Japan at WUGC, it was an incredible dream that we will never forget.

What’s your vision about the future of ultimate?

We think that ultimate we keep growing, and probably be at the olympic games, which would help for the recognition of our sport.

Something that brings us a lot of hope is the talent of the next generations we saw at WUJC. Here in our country we work a lot with the youth because it is the future of our sport.

We want to be part of an examplary sport, recognised worldwide without loosing the spirit of the game.

What’s you thoughts about ultimate frisbee cleats?

The first thing we look in cleats is the studs pattern, we think it is the most important part. We also appreciate comfort, we generally need 2 weeks before feeling really good in new shoes (so we don’t have blisters).

We are very happy to be part of a project of doing new cleats specially for our sport.

Credits : JFDA

Cardenas’ timeline

  • 2007 – took part to the INDER program
  • 2008 – Revolution ultimate, Medellin, Colombia
  • 2010 – Revolution – women’s national 1st
  • 2011 – Revolution – women’s national 1st
  • 2012 – WJUC, Dublin, Ireland 1 st / women’s national 1st
  • 2013 – U.S. Open, 5th – Revolution / women’s national 1st
  • 2014 – WJUC / WUGC in Lecco, Italy / women’s national 1st
  • 2015 –  national champions with Revolution /  Pan-American Championship
  • 2016 – WUGC, Women 2nd / WJUC, women 3rd / women’s national 1st

[Dream Team] Maxime Garros, Tchac, France

Playing since 1998, Maxime has experienced ultimate in the UK, Canada, and of course France, where he coached his club twice to victory in the French championship and to a 3rd place at EUCF this year. He’d tell you : “Whatever it takes, do it strong with passion!“

How did you come to play ultimate?

It all began when my sister started playing. She brought a disc back home, and taught me how to throw. I loved that, and next year I joined the local club with her.

And how did you stick to the sport?

I love throwing Frisbees.

But then I think that the community helped me a lot to stick to the sport. It allowed me to know new people, to make friends when was traveling…

I was lucky also to start at a time when a lot of things were to be built in ultimate and I could follow the evolution of a sport from something still quite amateur to the very professional events I could take part to this year (WUGC, EUCF).

What’s your best memory about ultimate?

Without doubt my best memory is the games were we ended up 3rd of Canadian championship with Mephisto (2013), which allowed us to play the clubs world championship in Lecco. As a team we had prepared for two years for it, and at that time I had my reached my best technical and physical level.

But unfortunately, this memory is also linked to my worst one… We did pretty bad next year at Worlds (22nd).

What’s your vision about the future of ultimate?

In Europe I think we should really change our vision of game advisors, they help accelerating the game and reminding the rules. After all they do not affect the spirit of the game. For me it’s two different things that have to grow together: the better we will be able to rule games, the the better we will be able to communicate strong around the spirit of the game and the overall Ultimate values.

Then I think that we should enlarge the base of leisure players, by communicating, and proposing more possibilities to play for fun, like city leagues or dedicated places.

What’s you thoughts about ultimate frisbee cleats?

I think it is very important for our sport to have cleats that are dedicated to Ultimate in terms of communication and community.

American football is the most significant sport close to Ultimate where cleats are made for cutting moves (especially Wide Receiver cuts), those spikes are quite good but miss some particularities of our sport.

I wish future cleats to be light and resistant as long as comfortable and having a good stability on the field. We are made to be “360° sprinters” enjoying the fastest way to reach a disc in the air or on the ground, with a strong spirit behind!

Maxime’s timeline

  • 1998 – Friselis Club Versailles (France)
  • 2001 – EUCC, Prague, 4th with France Junior
  • 2004 – Ultimate Birmingham University (Uk)
  • 2007 – President of Friselis Club Versailles
  • 2008 – WUGC Vancouver, 11th with France Mixed
  • 2010 – WUCC, Prague, volunteer
  • 2011 – Montreal Mephisto (Canada)
  • 2013 – US Open Raleigh, Spirit of the Game player
  • 2013 – Canada Ultimate Championship, 3rd medal with Montreal Mephisto
  • 2014 – WUCC, Lecco, 22th with Montreal Mephisto
  • 2014 – Pornichet Tchac Coach & France Open Captain
  • 2015 – Champion of France with Pornichet Tchac
  • 2015 – EUC, Copenhagen, 3rd medal with France Open
  • 2016 – Champion of France  with Pornichet Tchac
  • 2016 – WUGC, London, 9th (exaequo) with France Open
  • 2016 – EUCF, Francfort, 3rd medal with Pornichet Tchac

What’s your best memory about ultimate?

[Dream team] Discover TOKAY’s testers

To make sure we’ll produce the best cleats for you, we decided to build a team of high level players who will test the shoes for you! They will receive early prototypes of the shoes to test them and send us their feedbacks, so we can improve the models.

Discover here who they are:

Valeria & Manuela CARDENAS, Revolution, Colombia

Playing both world finals (WUGC 2016) and junior semi-finals (WJUC 2016) the same year is not common! But that’s part of the accomplishments of Cardenas twin sisters this year despite their young age.

Read their interview here.

Laura CHAGNEUX, YAKA, France

Incessant traveler, Laura has been playing in 8 clubs during her 11 years carrier, which led her 3 times to EUCF (won one, with SUN, 2014 Mixed division). She also took part to WUGC this year with the French mixed team.

Read her interview here.

Maxime GARROS, Tchac, France

Playing since 1998, Maxime has experienced ultimate in the UK, Canada, and of course France, where he coached his club twice to victory in the French championship and to a 3rd place at EUCF this year. He’d tell you : “Whatever it takes, do it strong with passion!“

Read his interview here.

Mario O’Brien, Seattle  Sockeye, USA

Mario O’Brien is the Producer and Creative Director of RISE UP, Ultimate’s only professional instructional video series. He currently plays pro/elite ultimate for Seattle Sockeye and the Seattle Cascades.

Read his interview here.

Justin Foord, Clapham, UK

Playing since 2006 with Clapham Ultimate and GOAT in Canada. More recently joined Toronto RUSH to play in the AUDL. 9 times National champion and 5 time European champion with  Clapham Ultimate and GB. Very excited to be a part of the Tokay project!

Read his interview here.

Michelle Phillips, Bauhaus, Australia

Mish Phillips has played with Bauhaus Ultimate for the entire ten years of both her playing career and the club’s existence, and captained or coached the team for the last six. She represented 5 times Australia and two time her club at international level since 2008.

Read her interview here.

Rena Kawabata, Traffic, Canada

Rena has been playing ultimate since 2004. She currently plays on Vancouver Traffic and finished 6th at this year’s USAU Club Championships. She has also represented Canada twice on the international stage.

Read her interview here.

Masahiro Matsuno, Buzz Bullets, Japan

Matsuno is the leading players of the impressive japan open team that made it to the finals in WUGC this year, he’s been in every national, continental or world championship since 2006!

Read his interview here.