So on Sunday I entered the Golf Channel AmTour event in Monterey at Old Del Monte Golf Club, the oldest operating club west of the Mississippi. It’s been around since 1897, is part of the Pebble Beach company – so you know they take care of it – and a number of golfing greats and yours truly have walked it’s green fairways.
The Tour put us into a combined Sarazen/Sr. Sarazen flight due to not enough Sarazen players to make up it’s own flight – C’mon Youngsters.. What’s up with that?? – and since we didn’t tee off until noon, A little late and near the back of the pack of the Sarazen flight, it allowed me a leisurely morning to stop and have breakfast and hit a bucket of balls at Monterey Pines. My playing partners for this tourney were Nilo Mia, who I played with at the Stonetree event, which he won, and is currently 2nd in the Sr Sarazen flight, which I was leading heading into the Summer Series, and Douglas Ward, also from San Jose, who I had not played with previously. We had a good day, the weather was warm for the central coast, but not overly hot, and the wind was down when we started, but came up in the middle of our round.
I played pretty consistently, managing my game to shoot a 5 over 41 on the front 9 and a 6 over 42 on the back for an 83 total, not carding anything over bogey. I shot 90 here at this tourney last year, and I knew it was going to be a good day, when on the first hole I hit my chip shot to tap in distance. In fact the only wild shot occurred off the tee on hole 15, and I caught a break and found that the ball ended up in a burrowing animal hole, allowing me a free drop. I put the next shot onto the green through the trees and then proceeded to 3 putt for a 5. Didn’t really deserve par after that tee shot. On the 16th green, after another missed putt for par, Doug commented that I hadn’t made any doubles or others during this round. I told him to shush as the golf gods might be listening. As it turned out, i made 2 more bogeys coming in on 17 & 18 that were inside 10 feet. I really need to work on those, but these greens are small, fast, and have lots of contours, so only 3 putting twice was a minor victory.
It felt really good to come into the bar, and be told that the leading Sarazen score, to that point, was an 86 shot by Gregory Lee. I celebrated with an Arnold Palmer, bought for me by Nilo. A really good way to end a weekend. I didn’t even care that i had to sit in a traffic jam on highway 156 from Castroville to North 101 on the drive home, I was just enjoying the ride and the sounds of Sirius/XM’s Classic Vinyl.
The Am Tour’s partnership with Srixon/Cleveland Golf has a promotion whereby if you win your flight using Srixon balls, you get a free box of your choice. I played the same TriSpeed Tour ball all day, and so i’ll be getting a box of Z-Star XV3′ s soon. Look for my pic to be added to this page: http://www.gcamtour.com/winwithsrixon/
Full results from the AmTour site are here, and the round data from ClubSG is here. With this win, the $130 dollar addition to my 4 digit winnings, and 175 points that came along with it, I’ve sewn up the Sarazen flight for 2014 and punched my ticket to the Nationals in Scottsdale, Az at Greyhawk & Talking Stick. Now to convince my boss to get the time off… any suggestions???