Thursday, July 31, 2008

What's Going On

I've played four tournaments since coming home. 2 Golfer's Warehouse Tour events, the NH and Greater Bangor Open. I've finished 6th, 9th, 14th and 8th respectively. I've been somewhat disappointed with my results although I've played the majority of my rounds between 68 and 71. For the first time I can remember, I went two consecutive competitive rounds where I did not make a score over par. I believe that new found consistency is due to smarter choices in the heat of battle as a result of playing Korean style golf. On the courses in Korea, if you cannot play holes as chess matches, setting yourself up for you next shot, you cannot score successfully. I've continued to use that strategy on courses around New England and although all the facets of my game have yet to align, I've managed to remain competitive.

After only playing in 2 of the 3 events on the Golfer's Warehouse Tour, I find myself in a position to compete for top spot on the money list in their final 2 tournaments. The top 2 positions are given a Q-School bonus covering the entry fee expense ($4500-5k). I leave for Colorado tomorrow for a training camp with my sports psychologist, then come home for the first of those 2 final events. When all goes according to plan, I will go back to Korea August 20 for two more Korean Tour events before returning to qualifying for the PGA Tour and achieving my lifelong dream.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Northeastern Mini-Touring

I've spent over two weeks back home now and it has been amazing. I enjoy sleeping in my own bed more than ever and during the first week back, my bed was about the only place I hung out. I was recovering from more than a 12 hour time change and a 24 hour flight; I was rebuilding energy lost from 9 months of globe trotting. It honestly took that entire first week before I began to feel normal.

After that recovery period, I played two Golfer's Warehouse Tour events on minimal preparation and finished 9th and 6th, raking in two checks for a total of about $2700. It was unfortunate not to have my "go low" game ready for those tournaments, but I took pride in knowing I can remain highly competitive in a scrambling mode. It was a relief to be able to scramble again after 8 tournaments in Asia on courses with twice as many out of bounds areas than holes. There is no scrambling when you're out of bounds.

In the Providence Open last week, I opened with 72 (E), a score that would have amounted to minimally, 4 strokes less than had I played that round on a Korean course due to wayward tee shots. I played a bogey free round in 68 (-4) stokes on day 2, and came off the course feeling that there were many improvements to be made in preparation for the coming stretch of events. It re-energized my motivation and commitment to shooting low scores.

Beginning tomorrow, I will compete in three straight State Open events: NH Open, Greater Bangor Open and RI Open. I've made a few leaps this week toward improving my ball striking and chipping and am very confident I will contend for wins in the coming events. Heading into these tournaments, I have a renewed energy for tournament golf and a new appreciation for the comforts of home. Both of which should aid making a few extra birdies.