It’s a qualifier for the World Long Drive championship. Since only the top 8 are exempt and I finished 11th…
The top 3 advance. Most of the time you have to go to a local qualifier and days or even weeks later, go to a different place for the regional qualifier.
This is the whole deal in one weekend. The locals are Friday and Saturday and the Regionals Sunday.
I skipped Friday and saw names like 2 time runner up, Vince Ciurluini, multiple Champion Pat Dempsey and newly turned 45 Jeff Gavin who nearly won the open division just 2 years ago.
I did a pretty good job this morning. With wind slightly in my face, I hit all 6 balls in the fairway between 355-362. Top 3 seniors advance to Sunday.
For a while, I would have been second in the open division. The guy I hit with on the tee, Mitch McDowell hit 377.
Then the wind switched to down and the yardages went up about 20-25 yards. I sweat it out for second (there was a 371), so I advanced.
As a frame of reference, Mitch hit again after the wind changed and hit longest ball of the day at 403, so I have no trouble believing I would have been over 380 in those conditions.
It would be nice to get qualifying over with and not have to deal with the time and expense. A lot of the young guys saw me hit and were egging me on to hit in the open division because of how well I was hitting. It was genuine and nice to get that kind of respect.
I could have made it though the local, but I am in the infant stages of training for the world finals and I would have no chance in the open tomorrow…and it would have been a waste of money to pay the $150 entry.
Heck, it’s going to be a battle just to make the top 3 in the senior. I am not peaking yet and even though i beat 2 of the three names I mentioned last fall, they are killing it.
Gavin is a freak. He hit the longest drive yesterday, including the open division guys.
PS-I am having to drive all the way into Utah to find a movie theatre with Jack the Giant Killer.