Monday, March 30, 2015

Chitimacha Louisiana Open Rounds 1-4

Alicia and I have been back in the States for a full seven days now, and they have been quite eventful. We arrived at the Houston airport after a ten-hour redeye flight from Santiago, Chile, last Monday at 6:00 in the morning. We both rested fairly well on the flight, so we hopped in a rental car in Houston and made the three-and-a-half hour drive to Lafayette, Louisiana, to begin preparations for the Chitimacha Louisiana Open. We really enjoyed our three weeks in South America, but it is nice to have some of the comforts of being in the USA--namely our own (rental) car, a full grocery store, Chipotle, Jason's Deli, and Pei Wei. We have taken advantage of all of these "comforts" over the past week. 

During the re-acclimation to the USA, I was very focused on having a great tournament. The golf course for the event, Le Triomph Golf Club, suited my game nicely, and some good practice and preparation had me feeling ready heading into Thursday.

I played just 12 holes on Thursday due to a pair of long weather delays, but I played beautifully. I hit all twelve greens in regulation and stood at three under par when play was suspended for the day. Unfortuately, my final shot Thursday settled into the crotch of a tree in the left rough on the 13th hole, so I knew that my friday morning would start with some adversity. Cold and breezy conditions made Friday morning's conclusion to my opening round slightly uncomfortable, but I did not handle those conditions well at all. After recovering nicely on the 13th hole and making a good bogey from the tree, I never hit another good shot. I ended up with four bogeys over my final six holes of the opening round to post a one-over-par 72. I had no time to shake it off as we marched straight to the 10th tee to begin round two. I hit some quality shots over the first three holes of my second round, but couldn't convert any of the birdie putts. Then, on the difficult par-four 13th hole, I drove my ball into a pond right of the fairway, and my heart sank a little bit. My only option for a drop was just 100 yards in front of the tee box, so I was in a tough spot. I sulked for a minute, but, with Alicia's help, I rallied my positivity. I hit two great shots and rolled in a big putt to save bogey. The wind was picking up, and the relatively easy course was playing tough. Still, I knew I needed to get something going. I birdied hole 16 and then holes two and three as well. I just couldn't keep the momentum going. I missed a good opportunity for birdie at the par-5 fifth hole and then misjudged the wind and watched helplessly as my ball plugged in the face of a front bunker on the par-3 sixth hole. I chopped it out and made a bogey, and I walked to the par-5 seventh hole knowing I needed a good finish to play the weekend. I hit two great shots to reach a greenside bunker and blasted that shot out to four feet, but made a poor stroke and missed the birdie putt. I missed from twenty feet on the par-3 eighth hole, and walked to the ninth tee believing that only a hole-out on the long par-four would get me into the weekend. I hit a great drive and tried to make it with a five iron into the green, but the shot settled some twelve feet behind the hole. I didn't believe that the putt meant a lot, but I gave it my very best effort anyway, and I rolled it right in the middle. I spent the entire afternoon certain that I had missed the cut, but somehow the cutline never moved, and I snuck into the weekend. It was a great feeling! A very up-and-down round of 70 (-1) on Saturday did little to improve my standing, but I played beautifully on Sunday. I would never want an early tee time on Sunday, but this week it worked out well for me. I played the first nine holes in fairly calm conditions and took advantage of that. I made four birdies and an eagle on the front nine to turn at 30, and I shot one under on the back nine as the winds picked up. My final-round 64 (-7) moved me all the way up into a tie for 16th place. It was a great way to finish a roller-coaster of a week!

I have more analysis from last week to share, but right now, I'm going to share one more quick story and go before this turns into a novel. As I walked to the ninth tee to play my 36th hole on Friday, I was fairly certain I would miss the cut, but I told myself that I was playing too well to go home empty handed, so I decided that if I birdied that hole, I would sign up for the Monday Qualifier for the PGA Tour's Houston Open. I did make birdie, so I did sign up. Therefore, I'm in Houston right now getting ready for a 2:03 tee time this afternoon in the Monday Qualifier for the Shell Houston Open. I just shot 64 yesterday; time for another one!

I have more to share and a practice report from last week, but I'll leave you with this image! There is absolutely no reason to celebrate anything yet, but I like being on top, and you can bet that I am motivated to do the work required to stay there!
Thank you for keeping up with me! Sorry for the lack of updates this past week. Keep it here for more news moving forward!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Chile Classic Round 2 & Process Goals Update

The joy of a victory is quickly extinguished by the misery of a missed cut. I'm still thrilled with the state of my game and to have emerged from the South American swing of the Tour schedule with a big win, but my week in Chile was cut short by a poor performance on Friday, and that stinks. I definitely still feel great about things, but I am quite disappointed with missing the cut here at the Chile Classic. 

My play in Thursday's opening round was some of the most solid ball-striking I've ever experienced. I felt totally in control. Had I putted well, I feel like I could have shot a very low score on Thursday. I'm not certain what happened on Friday. I came out and was just a little bit off from the beginning. I still hit the ball quite solidly, but didn't have the same control as I had on Thursday. Additionally, I continued to struggle with my putter. After playing bogey free golf on Thursday, I made five bogeys in Friday's round. The last of my bogeys came on the par-4 15th hole, and it knocked me back to two under par for the tournament. It was fairly clear that the cut-line would be four under par, so I knew what I had to do. I did a nice job of staying in the present and playing one shot at a time, and I actually executed quite well on the last three holes. I hit two good shots on the par-4 16th but my approach bounced some 25 feet past the hole and I two-putted for par. On the long par-3 17th, I stuffed my three hybrid in close to a back hole location and made a birdie. Then, on the watery but reachable par-5 18th, I hit a beautiful drive and a high fading three-wood over the water and onto the green. My ball settled roughly 60 feet behind the front hole location. I felt great over the first putt, but misjudged it and left it four feet short. From there I made a nervy stroke and pushed my birdie putt and it rolled over the right lip. It was extremely disappointing. I practice hard so that I'll be good in that situation, and less than a week ago in Brazil, I was dynamite on those "clutch" type of putts, but this week I didn't handle it well. I watched helplessly as the cut wavered between three and four under par all afternoon. With two groups still on the course, it looked as though I was going to sneak into the weekend, but it wasn't to be. The cut moved to four under with the second to last group of the day and stayed there, so I got this weekend off. And that stinks. 

There are still plenty of positives from this week. I really did hit the ball as well as I ever have on Thursday. It was a nice testament to the hard work I've done over the past several months. In fact, from a statistical standpoint, this was one of my better ball-striking weeks. On a fairly long golf course (7,400 yards, par 71), I hit 17 greens in regulation on Thursday and 13 on Friday. That's pretty good stuff. I wasn't hitting it close very often on Friday, but at least I was hitting it solidly. I won't leave here feeling terrible about my game--just motivated to keep getting better. 

Speaking of getting better, I need to say a few things about my Process Goals. First of all, I really like my Process Goals for this year. I think I have a great system, and I believe that it is working. Secondly, last week in Brazil was the final week of the second five-week segment of the year. During that five-week segment, I faced a week of snow and ice, a week of 30+ miles per hour wind everyday, and two weeks with extensive tournament delays. These factors all combined to create a very challenging environment for completing practice drills and workouts. I did not complete all of my Process Goals during the second five-week segment of the year, but I can honestly say that I put full effort into getting my work done every week. The good habits are still there, and that is very important. With the days getting longer and the weather getting warmer, I'm confident that I will get back on track completing all of my Process Goals moving forward. 

I am off to a good start. I decided early this week in Chile that I needed some rest, so I set out to complete a Light Fitness Routine and Light Practice Schedule. I have completed both, and it feels great. I am particularly pleased with getting my putting drills done. I struggled on the greens this week, but my putting has started to feel much better, so I feel great about that moving forward. 

I am going to make one modification to the Practice Goals within my Process Goals. My Goals currently state that during each five-week segment, I must complete three weeks of Full Practice Schedule and one week of Light Practice Schedule (and one week with No Practice Requirements). As an addition option, it is acceptable to do two weeks of Full Practice Schedule and three weeks of Light Practice Schedule during each five-week segment. Without lightening my total amount of practice, this option gives me more flexibility as my tournament volume increases. 

So that is where I am. It absolutely stinks to miss a cut, and I definitely am feeling a little bit of "down-ness" because of this week's result in Chile, but overall, I'm great. My game is still good. I'm excited about my process. I know that it works. And I can't wait to keep getting after it! I don't have to wait long to get back in action. Alicia and I are on a red-eye flight back to the USA tonight and we will be in Lafayette, Louisiana, by mid-day Monday getting ready for the next week's event on the Tour. 

There is more great stuff to come! Thank you for following me and for your support! 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Chile Classic Round 1

It is a new week and a new tournament, and I am determined to follow my plan and continue to work towards my goals. I definitely don't want to forget the great feelings from last week or diminish the joy of that accomplishment, but there is much that I still want to accomplish. I need to stay focused on the present. 

After two and a half light and restful days Monday through Wednesday morning, I have done a good job getting back into work mode for this week, and it showed with a solid start to the tournament Thursday afternoon. I did not putt the ball as well as I would have liked to, but I hit it beautifully in round one and posted a bogey-free 68 (-3) to open the tournament. I hit 17 greens in regulation in the first round, and I honestly had reasonable birdie putts on most of them. My putting practice has felt great this week, so I'm confident that I can get it going with the putter. 

My plan this week is to keep doing what I did last week: have fun, play one shot at a time, and trust myself. I'm off to a good start. Come back for a round-two report Friday evening. Thank you for keeping up with me!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Brasil Championship Sunday and Tournament Wrap-up

knew it. The results lately had not matched the feelings I was having in my game, but I could tell that things were starting to click. This past week in Brazil, it all came together. I drove the ball well, my iron play was fantastic, I controlled my wedges beautifully, and, after missing a three-foot putt on the first hole of the tournament, I putted extremely well. It all resulted in a 22-under-par total and a victory by four shots in the Tour's Brasil Championship! 

The final margin of victory was four shots, but don't let that deceive you. Nothing about the last two days was easy. My second-round 62 gave me the 36-hole lead, but I never led the golf tournament by a comfortable margin until a birdie on the 71st hole pushed my lead to three. The weekend was an absolute blast, but it was stressful the whole time. 

When play was stopped on Saturday, I was on the 13th hole of round three and was tied for the lead at 15 under par. We were back in position at 6:45 a.m. to resume play, and I had an adventurous time finishing my third round. I started the day by birdieing the par-5 13th, but then dropped a shot on 14 after very nearly driving the ball out of bounds. I followed that with one of the best shots of my life when I hit my three hybrid to about ten feet on the long par-3 15th hole. I converted that birdie putt and went on to birdie the next two holes as well. I stood confidently on the 18th tee but missed the fairway wide right with a three wood and ended up finishing my round with a disappointing bogey. Still, it was a third-round 68 (-3), and it sent me to the final round tied for the lead. 

The tournament committee decided to re-group us for the final round, so after finishing my third round at 8:20, I had just more than two hours to think about things before my round-four tee time. I did a good job not thinking too much during that time, and I had a great warm up before heading to the tee to begin the final round. I actually was feeling very good on the tee, but my opening tee shot told a different story. I was simply hitting a little three hybrid up the fairway of the short first hole, but I pulled it badly into a bamboo forest and nearly out of bounds. I actually executed my next three shots really well, but my par putt lipped out, and my final round began with a lousy bogey. I told my trusty caddie (Alicia) that I was determined to stay relaxed, have fun, and play one shot at a time. After a par on number two, I made a nice putt for birdie on the par-5 third, and that got me rolling. I birdied holes three through six. I pulled a five iron into a bunker on the par-3 seventh and dropped a shot, but I made a great putt for birdie on the par-3 ninth to make the turn at three under par for the day. At that time, I didn't know how I stood in the tournament, but I knew that I had to keep my foot on the gas. I made frustratingly routine pars on holes ten and 11 and then a good par on the 12th hole after hitting the wrong club into a back bunker. On the par-5 13th hole, I drove it in the fairway, laid up to a perfect yardage, and then hit a sand wedge from 95 yards to one foot for a tap-in birdie. It was a great feeling to play that hole so well. Unfortunately, I made two of my poorest swings of the tournament on the next two holes. A pulled drive on the 14th and a pushed three-hybrid on the 15th both led to bogeys and an increased stress level. I mustered all the composure I had on the 16th tee and striped a three wood down the fairway to a nice wedge yardage on the short par four. From 111 yards, I hit a gap wedge to about eight feel below the hole. For the first time since early in the round, I snuck a peak at the scoreboard as I approached the green. I was tied for the lead at 19 under par. I told myself to stay committed to the one-shot-at-a-time approach, and I (somewhat) calmly rolled in the birdie putt. On the par-5 17th, I over-cut my tee shot just into a right fairway bunker. From their, the decision to lay up was an easy one, and I hit a great iron shot out of the bunker. I left myself 87 yards to a back hole location. I decided to play a little bit conservatively and take long out of play. I hit a lob wedge right at the hole but left it some 15 feel short. Before it was my turn to putt, I again checked the scoreboard. My nearest competitor had bogied the 18th hole.  I knew better than to let myself relax at all. I went through my routine thoroughly, and I hit a great putt. I made it, and I walked to the 18th tee with a three shot lead. I told Alicia at least three more times that I wanted to continue playing one shot at a time on the final hole. I striped a tee shot, and with water looming short and right on the approach shot, I played a perfect nine iron off a slope to the left of the hole and gave myself a six foot putt for birdie. I rolled it right in the middle for a final-round 66 (-5) and a four-shot margin of victory. 

It was thrilling! It was fun! It was stressful! But I handled it all with composure, and my game held up incredibly well through all of it. I am very pleased with the work that I have put into my golf game throughout my career, but I feel particularly proud of the commitment I made this offseason, and it is very rewarding to see that paying off already. I still feel like I have a long way to go, but this is one heck of a giant step in the right direction!

So, what does this victory mean? It takes care of one of my Outcome Goals for the year (Win a Tour event), and, because the Brasil Championship is the largest purse of the year on this tour, it darn near wraps up my number one Outcome Goal for this year (Earn my PGA Tour Card for the 2015-2016 season). More importantly, it means that my hard work is working and my game is good. It also means that I am one third of the way to the last of my three Outcome Goals for year (Win Three events on the Tour to earn a mid-year promotion to the PGA Tour). One thing I definitely learned this weekend is that winning is not easy, but I also learned that I am good enough to do it. This win means a lot of things to me, and I am definitely going to soak it in and enjoy it, but I am already motivated to keep getting better so I can do it again and again and again! 

What a thrill this is! Thank you for believing in me and sticking with me through some struggles over that past year and a half. Golf will always have ups and downs, but I am definitely trending in the right direction right now. Keep it here to enjoy the ride with me!

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Brasil Championship Saturday

I don't have time to write much of a post because I have to get up very very early to go finish the third round. Saturday was a great day, though. After birdieing four of my first five holes in the second round on Friday, I played the final 13 holes of round two on Saturday morning. I played some of the best golf I have ever played and ended up carding a bogey-free, nine-under-par round of 62. I also played the first 13 holes of round three in the afternoon. I hit some squirrelly shots early in the round, but have really settled down nicely and have been striking the ball beautifully since the fifth hole. I don't have a lot to show for it, but I just birdied the par-3 12th hole to get to one under par for the round before play was suspended for the day. We are scheduled to re-start at 6:45 a.m., so I need to get to bed! I'm really excited about the way I'm playing and to be in contention. I am going to keep having fun and playing one shot at a time tomorrow! Come back for a report sometime soon. Thank you for keeping up with me!

Friday, March 13, 2015

Brasil Championship Friday

Friday was interesting at the Brasil Championship. The threat of rain and storms existed all day, but I arrived at the course more than three hours before my 12:30 tee time, and the weather was beautiful for a morning practice session. I practiced well and then had an early lunch before beginning my normal pre-round warm-up routine. I was feeling great, but thirty minutes before my tee time, thunder rumbled and play was suspended. After an hour inside, we were sent back out and I began warming up again only to be called back in twenty minutes later. After another hour inside, we went back out and I had my third warm up of the day. I should have been thoroughly prepared, but my opening two shots of the day suggested otherwise. I missed the fairway at the short opening hole well right and then left my approach shot short of the green in a bunker. I hit a great bunker shot and tapped in for par, and as I walked to the second tee, I reminded myself how great my game has been feeling and committed to playing one shot at a time. I proceeded to hit some great shots and birdie my next four holes. I hit two more really nice shots on the par-four sixth hole, but play was once again suspended for dangerous weather as I approached the green. We weren't able to get back out on the course, so I will begin my Saturday morning on the back fringe of the sixth hole with a 20-foot chip for birdie. I definitely have some great momentum going, but more importantly, I am just feeling good about my game. I'm going to keep playing one shot at a time and keep having fun. If things go well, I will play 30.5 holes tomorrow, and I am looking forward to every one of them! Keep it here for a good Saturday report, and thank you for following me!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Brasil Championship Round 1

Obviously, I'm coming off a disappointing performance last weekend in Colombia. I did a great job of putting that behind me, and three nice days of preparation had me feeling ready for this week's tournament in Brazil. Still, on my first hole of the tournament on Thursday morning, I had to shake off some demons. After playing my final 46 holes in Colombia in 22 over par, I missed a short putt on my opening hole and began the Brasil Championship with a bogey. Momentarily, I panicked, but during the walk to the 11th tee (my second hole), I remembered how great my game has been feeling and once again resolved to play one shot at a time. The results were beautiful. I trusted myself and executed very well the rest of the day. Of course I hit a poor shot here and there, but for the most part, I was very good. After the bogey on my first hole, I made six birdies and no bogeys for an opening-roud 66 (-5). It felt good and was a testament to the fact that my mind and my game are at least very close to nice tournament form. 

After my round, I had another great practice session, and I am really feeling good about things. I tee it up at 12:30 in Friday's round, and I am confident that I will execute well. I'm going to play one shot at a time and trust myself on all of them! Come back for a report in the evening. Thank you for following me and for your support!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Feeling Great in Brazil

I am ready to have some fun at the HSBC Brasil Championship this week. I love the golf course, and it suits my game well. My practice has felt great, and I am excited to go out and play. Each week, I write a simple message to myself on two new gloves before the tournament starts. Tonight on one glove I wrote, "Hit Greens*Make Putts*Have Fun". On the other, I simply wrote one word: "WIN". I am ready to do all of those things here in Brazil. In order to make them happen, I need to trust myself over each shot and play one shot at a time. I'm going to do that.

This is going to be a great week. Keep it here for reports from the tournament. Thank you for following me!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Karibana Championship Wrap-up

Well, sometimes you just stink. I stunk this weekend. I posted 85, 77 in the final two rounds of the Karibana Championship and finished alone in 74th place. 74 people made the cut. Through 26 holes of the golf tournament, I had made just two bogeys and was three under par. Over the closing 46 holes, I made just one birdie and finished the event at 19 over par. Like I said, I stunk this weekend!

Now, those of you who read my blog regularly know that I'm not going to leave it at that. I won't try to find the silver lining of this weekend's performance, but I am going to talk about some positive things from my week in Cartagena, Colombia. First of all, I don't want to forget my first round. Playing in some of the most challenging conditions I have ever faced (winds of 25-35 miles per hour with even stronger gusts), I put together a very solid two-birdie, one-bogey round of 71 to open the tournament. On Friday, I stayed tough in conditions that worsened even beyond those of Thursday's round to post a good enough score to advance to the weekend. And (I lied; I am going to find the silver lining), I actually struck the ball solidly even over my weekend rounds. I'm definitely not saying that I played well or that I will remember this week as an overall positive experience, but there definitely are good things from Karibana Championship that I will carry with me as I move forward. 

And I have already moved forward, figuratively and literally. Alicia and I took a red-eye flight Sunday evening from Cartagena to Sao Paulo, Brazil. I slept well on the plane and arrived ready to get work. Alicia was less well-rested, but carried on like a trooper anyway. I had a great practice session and played nine holes at the tournament course in Brazil, and everything felt great. My game is in good shape, and I am very excited about this week! 

I would be remiss not to mention my Process Goals here in a tournament-week wrap-up. I had a fantastic week of work in Cartagena, but the same winds that ravaged the tournament play made practice drills very challenging as well. I put in a full effort all the way through Saturday, but many of my practice goals remained unfinished at the end of the week. I did, however, stay on track with my fitness routine, and I am feeling great about that. It is a new week here in Brazil, and I plan to complete my Full Practice Schedule and a Light Fitness Routine. I still plan to acheive all of my Outcome Goals, and I know that my Process Goals are the path to doing that.

I'm going to have some good practice here in Sao Paulo over the next two days, and I'll come back with a pre-tournament report on Wednesday. Thank you for following and believing in me; don't give up!

pictures from our hotel room in Sao Paulo

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Karibana Championship Saturday

It's not a good practice to complain or worry about things that are not under my control, but I am frustrated with this week in Cartagena. I played 13 holes of my third round, and all 13 of them were in winds blowing in excess of 25 miles per hour. Saturday featured a nearly three-hour wind delay, though when we resumed play at 5:00 PM, the winds had not calmed at all. I am currently nine over par through 13 holes of the third round, so that certainly contributes to my displeasure. The wind, the delays, and my high score all have me frustrated, but in reality, I'm still hitting the ball very solidly. I feel like my game is in good shape, and I am excited about that. The officials are hoping to complete 72 holes, which is a lofty expectation with even higher winds predicted for Sunday, but I am excited to keep competing. If I get to play 23 holes on Sunday, I'm going to play them all one shot at a time with a positive attitude. My game is good, and good scores are coming! Thank you for following and believing in me. Keep it here for a final-day report and tournament summary soon!

Friday, March 6, 2015

Karibana Championship Round 2

The wind is something else here in Cartagena. After playing some of my best golf in a long time in brutal conditions on Thursday afternoon, I was greeted by a fairly calm start for my 8:10 tee time Friday morning. Apparently I didn't know what to do. That's not true, but despite hitting the ball well, I found myself one over par through six holes. By 9:45 the wind was starting to pick up, and it looked as though I was back in my comfort zone. I birdied the par-4 seventh hole into the wind and then hit two great shots en route to an eagle on the down-wind par-5 eighth hole. My momentum was short lived. I misjudged the severity of the wind on the par-4 ninth and watched as what I thought was a beautiful wedge shot bounded off the back left portion on the green. I made a bogey there and headed to the back nine where the wind comes off the ocean ferociously. I continued to strike the ball well, but I was definitely a little bit rattled. I missed several greens by mere inches, and I struggled to chip or putt well in the wind. I battled hard but made three bogeys and no birdies on the back nine to post a second-round 74. It was disappointing not to handle the tough conditions as well in round two as I had on Thursday, but honestly, I still executed fairly well in most facets of the game. 

My play has me at one over par through 36 holes. Play was suspended midway through the afternoon wave's round due to "high winds." Everyone in my wave is grumbling because it is hard to believe that we were forced to play our entire first round and much of our second round in unexplainably difficult conditions. I definitely feel like I got the very short end of the tee time draw this week, but that is not something I can control. Barring an unthinkable turn of events tomorrow morning, I will make the cut and get to play the weekend, so I will go out there and take care of business. I want to continue to get better at playing one shot at a time, and with conditions that promise to be brutal again this weekend, I will get a good opportunity to practice that. I have always been a good tough-conditions player, so I'm excited to have a good weekend. 

Keep it here for more reports from windy Cartagena. Thank you for following!   

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Karibana Championship Round 1

I played great in the first round. The wind absolutely howled in the afternoon after being relatively calm in the morning. Scores reflected that. In the morning wave of tee times, 40 of 72 golfers broke par and many went fairly low. In the afternoon wave of tee times, six of 72 golfers broke par. I teed off at 1:00 and played beautifully. I bogeyed my second hole of the day but otherwise made very few mistakes and posted a two-birdie, one-bogey round of 71. I hit the ball very solidy, chipped well, and putted nicely in the blustery conditions. I'll give you one small example of how strongly the wind was blowing. My two birdies both came from eight-iron approach shots. On the par-5 second hole (my 11th), I hit an eight iron from 113 yards. Three holes later at the par-3 fifth hole, I hit the same eight iron from 179 yards. Those were my two birdies. I am very pleased with all aspects of my game, and I am ready to go play again! I start at 8:00 a.m. Friday morning, and I am going to follow the same plan: have fun and play one shot at a time. Come back for a great report in the evening. Thank you for following me!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Ready in Cartagena, Colombia

I am ready to go! I have had a great week of preparation and am excited to get this week's Tour event started. 

Cartagena is a coastal town, and the back nine of the golf course is literally ocean-front property. I think it must be the windy season because the wind has howled at 25-35 miles per hour every day. That kind of wind always makes golf shots difficult, but I feel great about the three days of work that I have had in the conditions. I am hitting the ball very solidly, and though I have struggled to get my putting drills done, I have rolled the ball beautifully in my practice rounds. I tee it up at 1:00 on Thursday, and I am ready to play well. I am going to have fun and play one shot at a time. Keep it here for reports after each round! Thank you for following!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Great (Though Not Traditionally Productive) Week!

It was cold in my beautiful East Tennessee home this week. After a narrow miss in the Monday Qualifier for the PGA Tour's Honda Classic, I wanted to get home to regroup and repack for a four-week stretch of Tour events, so I flew home Monday night. I woke up to three pretty inches of snow Tuesday morning. That was nothing compared to the beauty of the additional six and a half inches that fell overnight on Wednesday! I decided (or was forced, more accurately) to call this my week off from practice requirements. I did complete a Light Fitness Routine, though, and I am feeling rested and ready to go. Despite not having my usual goal-oriented practice, I had a productive day indoors on Wednesday in Knoxville before having two great days of work in Jacksonville and Orlando on Friday and Saturday. I am starting to understand my golf swing, and the changes that I have made are starting to click. I am excited to be some place warm where I can continue to work on my game, and, as my performance last Monday showed, I am ready to compete as well!

After a smooth day of travel on Sunday, Alicia and I are in Cartagena, Colombia, where we will begin preparations tomorrow for the Tour's Karibana Championship. It is really pretty here. Here are some before and after pictures:

Obviously it is very nice here, and we arrived with just enough daylight left on Sunday to have a little fun! I want to continue having that much fun, and I know that I will. I do have a lot of work to get done this week as I plan to complete a Full Fitness Routine and Full Practice Schedule, but doing that work is very enjoyable for me when I approach it with the right attitude. I will make sure I'm efficient with my practice this week, too, bucause I feel like that waterslide is good for my golf game!

I am excited to have a great week. I have shaken off a little bit of the mental rust that plagued me in the first two Tour events of the year, and I am ready to play Peter Malnati golf. In fact, I am ready to play an improved version of Peter Malnati golf because I am better physically than I have ever been. I will have a great week here in Cartagena. Stay tuned for pre-tournament updates and, of course, great tournament reports Thursday through Sunday. 

Thank you for following and believing in me!

New Blog Site

Hi everyone! Thank you for continuing to try to keep up with me. As you might have noticed, I've not been updating this blog at all late...