World Am: Day 1 Recap, Part 1
By mustang6560 on 8/27/12
I am delighted to be blogging from the Sheraton Convention Center Hotel in beautiful Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. In case you don't know, I am in Myrtle Beach for the 29th annual World Amateur Handicap Championship - the largest amateur golf tournament in the world. It's my second World Am to participate in and it's off to a fantastic start!

I arrived yesterday afternoon and, thanks to a shortage of mid-size sedans, the folks at Thrifty Car Rental upgraded me to a Ford Mustang Convertible - for free! So, instead of riding around in a lame Mazda compact from U-Save (remember kickntrue's story from last year?), I'll be cruising around the Grand Strand in style this week! I'm not going to lie; I kind of feel like Batman in the all-black muscle car.

The Batmobile!

After I checked into the hotel (see below), I took the BatMobile over the Martin's PGA Tour Superstore to check-in for the World Am. I met Jeff Monday and Scott Tomasello of Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday (the organization that puts together the World Am). They are already talking about partnering with us again next year, so you can expect another World Am Giveaway in the future! As is customary for the World Am, every participant gets a gift bag and generally it's the same from year to year. However, the biggest difference between this year and last year is every player got a $50 gift card to the PGA Tour Superstore. In case you were wondering, I bought a Titleist Players golf glove and four pairs of FootJoy ProDry golf socks.

I met up with oober jfurr last night for dinner and we drove top-down all the way to Murrells Inlet, which is about a 20-minute drive from downtown Myrtle Beach (I'll spare you the details of my meal at Creek Ratz). It's always really cool to meet fellow oobers. Jfurr is essentially a local, as he lives in nearby Columbia. Assuming neither he nor I win our flight and advance to the finals, we're going to play a round of golf together Friday in Columbia at one of his home courses. If anyone lives in Columbia and wants in, we'll be happy to make room!

Now that I caught you up with the first part of my trip, I'll get on to the good stuff – the golf! I played the Hackler Course at Coastal Carolina University earlier today in Conway, South Carolina. I arrived to the course early for one purpose – to make sure I got into the skins game, which I did. The way it works is pretty straightforward: Anyone who wants to play puts up $20 and if you birdie (or eagle) a hole, you get a cut of the money. But, if someone else birdies the same hole you birdie, then the birdies cancel each other. After everyone turns in their scorecard, the number of people with unique birdies split the winnings. I birdied hole four, but there were a couple other people who birdied as well, so no money for me today. I'm not sure how the skins finished today, but the pot was around $1,200.

I spoke to oober GolfSmith7 last night on the phone and he said he was nervous because he's playing in his first tournament. I told him, "Ah, it's not that bad. Your nerves won't be affected all that much."

Well, I guess I forgot how much pressure I felt last year, because the nerves got to my swing on the first several holes. The fact that there is out of bounds on nearly every hole at the Hackler Course didn't help either. I started on hole 15, a relatively long par-3. Through my first seven holes, I was 11-over-par. It's safe to say that is not how I wanted to start. But on hole 4 (my 8th of the day), things started to turn around. As I mentioned above, I birdied the 4th after hitting the fairway for the first time all day. My early struggles were directly related to my driver. I play a fade, however, for the first several holes, my tee shots were all going left. The worst feeling in the world is to stand up on a tee-box and not know which direction your ball is going to go. After my birdie, though, I calmed down and managed to put together a solid finish. Over the remaining 11 holes, I shot 4-over-par (including my triple on hole 8) and finished with an 87. I am really pleased with my 87 for two reasons:
  1. For a moment in time, the oobgolf app was telling me I was on pace to shoot 100.

  2. It keeps my hopes alive of shooting in the 80s for all four rounds.

My view from the Sheraton

Tomorrow I play Caledonia Golf & Fish Club, which is supposed to be the difficult course in my schedule. For now, I am off to the convention center to meet up with a few oobers and enjoy the world’s largest 19th Hole! I'll try to post some pics later tonight from the experience!

[ comments ]
bkuehn1952 says:
Good stuff! Go get them tomorrow. BTW, drinks are on jfurr - he won a $200 skin today. ;)
Kickntrue says:
okay... i admit it. i'm actually jealous...
Torleif Sorenson says:
YOU'RE jealous, Andrew? And just how many times have *you* played this year, buddy? That's four more than I have... :)
bobhooe says:
you need to get 6560 put on the door of that beast somehow so every one knows who they are dealing with
Virtuaframax says:
Great start with the upgraded car and a first round in the 80s... keep the momentum going and the nerves calm... It will all come together... LOL
Good luck and make us proud!
Matt McGee says:
Excellent update. Sounds like a great trip so far.

"The worst feeling in the world is to stand up on a tee-box and not know which direction your ball is going to go."

You mean to say there's another way to feel when you're standing on a tee box?
[ post comment ]
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