Nice to see this thread alive and kickin. Y’all seem to be playing some damn fine golf. Can’t say the same for myself. Played probably 7 or 8 times this year. Shot 100 a couple weeks ago. It was a fucking disaster. Worst round I’ve had in probably 20 years.
I need to get serious. New clubs, lessons, etc. Just don’t have the time. In other news I was taking a long walk with the family this morning and 3 year old daughter had to piss. We were literally right by the number 1 tee box at East lake. She dropped her shorts and pissed right outside the fence. Dudes on the tees and caddies just laughed. I was really proud of her. I played East Lake for the second time about a year ago and shot an 89. Was probably the best round I’ve had in a hot minute.
I am rambling now, I can’t believe I said I liked Bubba Watson when I started this thread. He is the god damn worst.
Enjoy pebble beach, Ali. Sounds like a fantastic time.
i spent 4 days in monterey last week for the 2020 ncga net amateur championship.
i drove down on saturday so that i could stay over and not have a long drive down - itʼs about four and a half hours drive from tahoe - on sunday morning.
the course is, frankly, breathtaking - visually very beautiful with challenging holes everywhere and extremely fast, hard-to-read greens. here is a panoramic view looking out over the 16th and 9th holes from the clubhouse:
on sunday early afternoon, i had scheduled a practice round at the course as i had never played there before and did not want the first day of the tournament to be my first round ever.
i got hooked up with 3 locals playing their regular sunday match and they were excited to learn that i was playing the tournament the next couple of days. one of them - peter - told me “
stick with me and iʼll tell you everything you need to know”.
i am so, so glad i played the practice round as itʼs a long, tough golf course with extremely fast greens and i learned a huge amount on sunday - from peter and the others - that helped me on monday and tuesday.
here is the view standing on the 1st tee - a 489 yard par 5 to start:
on the front 9, there are a lot of trees - almost every hole is a pretty tight corridor of trees so thereʼs not a lot of room for hooks and slices off the tee. thankfully, i did not embarrass myself in front of my practice partners on sunday and hit a great drive right down the middle which is always a good way to start a round.
on monday and tuesday, i also hit great drives and itʼs amazing the amount of inspiration a great 1st tee shot gives me.
hereʼs the view from the 3rd tee:
another tight shot with not much room for error. sadly, on both monday and tuesday, i put my tee shot out of bounds right and limped off the hole with a double-bogey both days.
the front and back nines are visually different on the course - with the back nine being a little more open generally. but still the tee shots are pretty tight - hereʼs the view from 14 tee:
on my practice round sunday, i shot a poor 97 but that round was more about learning than scoring. my handicap is 15.3 and, because poppy hills is a relatively hard course, my course handicap when playing from the tournament tees is a full 18 shots (that means i get a shot - or a ‘popʼ as we call it - on every hole) when playing normally. but, because this was a tournament, we were not getting our full handicap so i got, from memory, 16 shots.
monday was a fun day. the weather was absolutely beautiful and i teed off (on the 10th hole - our group started on the back nine) at 9:09am. the other 3 guys in the group were fun to play with and nobody was taking the round too seriously - which can definitely happen at events like this.
i made use of all i learned on sunday and shot 89 - an 8 shot improvement over my practice round - which i was pretty happy with:
i had a 7 on #1 because i bladed a chip right across the green (probably the bad golf shot i hate above all other bad golf shots). i was also mad at myself for the aforementioned out of bounds on #3 which lead to a double bogey both days. but, not bad considering the course, the conditions and my lack of experience. i finished monday in 8th place in my flight (the tournament was organized into 3 flights based on handicap ranges).
on tuesday i teed off on the front nine with a new group - we were the 2nd last group to start because we were the players in places 5th-8th in the tourney. it was another fun group (one guy in my tuesday group remarked that his monday group had been “a bunch of stiffs who didnʼt want to talk to anybody".
i had a great start on tuesday, parring the first two holes. then came #3 and you know what happened… i canʼt remember what happened on #7 but it canʼt have been good - i donʼt often card a triple bogey these days:
i had hoped to improve on mondayʼs score on tuesday but i just could not get anything good going and couldnʼt get a break anywhere and ground my way to a 91. that dropped me to 10th place in my flight and 10th place was where i finished:
as ever, it felt like one better putt here, one closer approach there and a couple of luckier bounces and i would have been easily knocking on the door of the top 5, maybe even better.
i really hope i get a chance to play a qualifier or two next year because i think i am definitely at level where i can compete to win one of these. it was a magical 3 days of golf for sure!