The 11 Best Sidearm Disc Golf Distance Drivers In 2022

by Christian Riley, PDGA #102541

Three Overstable Discs On Background

One of the most valuable skills a new disc golfer can learn is how to throw a sidearm shot. While a backhand anhyzer may work for some fairway shapes, there's a ton of situations where a sidearm will be your best option.

In this article, I'll quickly explain what to look for in a good sidearm driver and then review the 8 best sidearm drivers that I personally throw.

Quick note: All of these drivers are available in our online disc store. I photograph every disc, and most orders ship out the same day.

What Makes A Good Sidearm Distance Driver?

When choosing a sidearm disc golf driver, the most significant factor to consider is off-axis torque. Off-axis torque occurs when the rotational force you put on the disc does not match the axis of the disc. 

Put simply: the angle of your throw does not match the angle of your disc. This causes the disc to "wobble" out of your hand and act more understable than it should. To counteract this, you need to use an overstable disc. Read more about disc stability here.

Another factor to consider when choosing a sidearm driver is the weight of the disc. Discs closer to max weight will stabilize themselves during the flight and fight out of anhyzers much better than lightweight discs. Sidearm shots typically have more spin than a backhand shot, affecting lightweight discs more than heavier ones.

The Best Sidearm Distance Drivers

Innova Destroyer

Innova Destroyer

Flight Ratings:

  • Speed: 12
  • Glide: 5
  • Turn: -1
  • Fade: 3

Popular Plastics: Halo, Star, Champion, Glow

The most popular distance driver in disc golf, the Destroyer has been the go-to sidearm driver of countless players since its approval in 2007. In Halo and Champion plastic, the Destroyer can withstand a lot of power and will cut through headwinds with ease.

There is a reason the Destroyer is one of the most popular discs of all time; it is a proper long-range driver. When thrown hard on a flat release, it flies straight for a long distance before the lower speed stability kicks in. Whenever I need to count on a shot to fly far and finish strong, the Halo Destroyer is my choice.

If you want a a slightly slower disc that flies like a Destroyer, check out the Mint Discs Apex Goat.

Discraft Force

Discraft Force

Flight Ratings:

  • Speed: 12
  • Glide: 5
  • Turn: 0
  • Fade: 3

Popular Plastics: Z, ESP, Big Z

Discraft's flagship overstable driver, the Force, is the choice of many professional players for power sidearm drives. The Force can be used in stiff wind conditions or for long-distance flex shots and resists turning over. 

The moderate dome of the flight plate will give it a little more glide than other overstable drivers. This allows the Force to fly farther and fade more at the end of its flight.

The best plastic blends for the Force for sidearm throws will be the Z and ESP blends. They are more durable and maintain their flight characteristics longer than other plastic blends. The Big Z Force will break in faster and the Jawbreaker Force has the best grip.

Innova XCaliber

Nate Sexton XCaliber Driver

Flight Ratings:

  • Speed: 12
  • Glide: 5
  • Turn: 0
  • Fade: 4

Popular Plastics: Star, Champion, Echo Star

The signature series disc of one of the best sidearm throwers in the sport's history, Nate Sexton chooses the Star XCaliber whenever he has to throw a full power sidearm. With less high-speed turn and more fade than the Destroyer, the XCaliber can handle more torque and speed without turning over.

The XCaliber is an excellent disc for any kind of sidearm throw. Where the Star XCaliber really shines is on windy days. The XCal can stand up to winds that make other drivers turn into rollers, second only to the Max (we will get to that one later). 

Prodigy D2

Prodigy D2 Distance Driver

Flight Ratings:

  • Speed: 12
  • Glide: 6
  • Turn: -1
  • Fade: 3

Popular Plastics: 400, 750, 750G

When it comes to the best Prodigy drivers, the D2 is at the top of the list. The choice sidearm driver of Kevin Jones, the D2, is highly dependable. With the highest glide rating on this list, the D2 offers long distance with less effort and better flex shots when the low-speed stability kicks in. The slightly more shallow rim of the D2 will feel better for smaller hands than other deeper rim discs.

The D2 400 is one of the most popular plastic options because it is extremely durable and has incredible grip. In the 750G plastic, the D2 is a little stiffer and feels more solid in a firm grip. If you are looking for even more stability in the same rim feel, try the D2 Pro. If you want a little more distance and higher speed, give the retooled D2 Max a throw.

Discmania DD3

Discmania Cloudbreaker3

Flight Ratings:

  • Speed: 12
  • Glide: 5
  • Turn:-1
  • Fade: 3

Popular Plastics: S-Line, C-Line, Swirly S-Line

The first choice driver for the sidearms of Eagle McMahon, the DD3 is a force to be reckoned with. With the perfect combination of glide, turn, and fade, the DD3 can help any player max out their distance. 

Capable of minor hyzer flips and a straight flight, the DD3 will still fade and finish strong.

The C-Line plastic tends to be slightly more overstable and will fight the wind better than other plastics. S-Line plastic is slightly less stable and offers exceptional grip. This makes it fly a little further but is more affected by the wind.

Check out the Eagle McMahon Signature Cloud Breaker DD3.

Discraft Nuke

ESP Nuke

Flight Ratings:

  • Speed: 13
  • Glide: 5
  • Turn: -1
  • Fade: 3

Popular Plastics: ESP, Z, Big Z

There is a reason the world-renowned power thrower Ezra Aderhold says the Nuke is his favorite disc; the thing absolutely bombs. With a wide rim, perfect glide, and plenty of stability, the Nuke can handle any amount of power when thrown.

Best when thrown hard, the Nuke will resist turning over, even into a headwind. It will fade hard and find the ground fast as it slows down. We carry the ESP Nuke and Big Z Nuke in our shop.

Discraft Zeus

Discraft ESP Zeus

Flight Ratings:

  • Speed: 12
  • Glide: 5
  • Turn: -1
  • Fade: 3

Popular Plastics: ESP, Z, Big Z

Chosen as the first driver in Paul McBeth's line of discs with Discraft, the Zeus quickly became one of the most popular distance drivers in the sport. Since its release in late 2018, the ESP Zeus has been a staple sidearm disc for pros and intermediate players alike.

The Zeus will handle sidearms best in the ESP and Z plastics but is available in a range of plastics. When thrown hard on a slight hyzer angle, you can count on the Zeus to flip up to flat, have some minor drift, and a reliable straight finish.

Innova Max

Innova Max

Flight Ratings:

  • Speed: 11
  • Glide: 3
  • Turn: 0
  • Fade: 5

Popular Plastics: Metal Flake, Champion, Star

The Max walks the line between a distance and utility driver, which is why it is lower on this list. However, the Max is still a fantastic option for a distance sidearm disc. Thrown with anhyzer, the Max will fly fast and far before fighting out and finishing with a strong fade. Also, when faced with strong winds, no disc on this list will fight it better.

This disc is extremely overstable, especially the Metal Flake Max and Champion Max.. The Max performs predictably throw after throw for pinpoint accuracy if you have the power needed. This disc can handle off-axis torque and is the least affected by the wind out of all the drivers on this list.

Honorable Mentions

These discs are good, don't get me wrong. Every one of these will make a great sidearm driver. However, they just barely missed the cut for the list, but we will give them a shout-out anyway.

Prodigy X3

12 | 5 | -1 | 2

Prodigy X3

While still an excellent sidearm option, the X3 lacks that extra little bit of finish the D2 offers, as well as a little less glide, which cuts back on distance. If you want something a little shorter and a touch straighter than the D2, the X3 may be right up your alley. Check out the Prodigy X3 in 400 plastic (my favorite).

Kastaplast GrymX

12/5/0/3

Kastaplast K1 Grymx

The Kastaplast K1 GrymX is a moderately overstable distance driver, slightly more overstable and turn-resistant than their popular Grym driver. In the K1 glow plastic, the Grym X has a comfortable grip in the hand with a soft feel. This disc seems to go further than expected when you throw it, so it is definitely an option for max sidearm distance.

Thought Space Athletics Animus

11/5/0/2

Thought Space Ethos Animus

The Animus is a moderately overstable distance driver from Thought Space Athletics. In the Ethos plastic blend especially, the Animus can handle a good amount of power and is an excellent choice for sidearm throws that require long-distance accuracy.

Currently Thought Space offers the Aura Animus, Ethos Animus, and Ethereal Animus.

Discmania PD2

12/4/0/4

Pd2

Though it is currently out of production following Discmania's separation from Innova Discs, the PD2 is among the best sidearm drivers of all time. It is only bumped down to an honorable mention because it is not being produced at the present time. However, if you can get your hands on one, you will agree this overstable driver can handle any power you can give it.

Conclusion

So, if you are looking into adding distance to your sidearms, choosing any of the discs on this list will be a good option. However, when you stack all of them against each other, one sticks out as the most versatile on the list. My pick for the best sidearm disc golf driver is the Innova Destroyer.

Intermediate players will find this driver an overstable workhorse that will always hold a hyzer line. The Destroyer is one of the best discs for advanced players because of its high-speed turn to flex longer flight down the fairway. Simply put, players of all skill levels can find a use for a Destroyer in the bag.

You can shop overstable distance drivers here!

More Disc Reviews:

Discraft Zeus vs Nuke vs Destroyer

Th 13 Best Discs For Tomahawk Throws