As you may know, I’m spending the rest of the week at Pebble Beach Golf Resort, writing about my experiences playing golf (Spyglass Hill, Spanish Bay and Pebble Beach) and the other activities happening at the Lexus Champions for Charity tournament. The trip is courtesy of Lexus, which has brought in myself and Shane Bacon as their bloggers to cover the event (hooray for new media!). Check out more info on the charity event that has raised more than $135 million. For more pictures and updates, follow me on Twitter and join the WUP Facebook page.
For some reason, when there’s been a Lexus parked at a tee box of a par 3, I’ve had success in my flag-hunting pursuits. Apparently I really, really want to win a car that I’m not eligible to win because I’m not technically a competitor in the tournament. So I just enjoy the idea of holing out only to feel like I’ve been deprived of capturing an $80,000 prize. Totally sick, I know! Actually, I just want that damn bow. I mean, if I can’t have the car, the red bow is the second best thing.
On Thursday, I knocked it to 30 inches on No. 12 at Spyglass, the win-a-Lexus-with-an-ace hole. Our caddie Josh has started this running joke that I’m going to hole out (from the fairway or whatever) at some point this week. I think he’s giving me a little too much credit, but I guess I’ve gotten close a few times (I owe my friend that helped me with my swing last week!). But if I am successful, Josh says he’ll steal the bow for me.
Naturally, when No. 16, the ace-to-win hole, came around at Spanish Bay on Friday, I claimed I was going to make it this time. I’m not sure whether I actually believed that since I wasn’t hitting it great and it was a long-ish par 3 with a back pin on a ridge. Oh, the greens at Spanish Bay are known to be goofy (and they are — the crazy, dramatic undulations don’t necessarily appear to be great designs, but what do I know? I’m not a golf architect). Basically, the pin was tough to get to because the landing area wasn’t very big on the back ridge.
The 16th was about 155 yards, which means you have to hit your 175 club. The air is so thick in Pebble that you hit it two clubs shorter. No joke. I’m pretty sure it’s not just me. Anyway, I’d been hitting good “misses” all day and getting away with my crappy ballstriking, but I’m determined to make an ace so I can win the pretty bow. I hit a nice, high 3-hybrid with a little draw, and whaddayaknow — it was headed straight at the pin. The shot landed two feet to the right and then stopped about seven feet past the hole.
Honestly, it’s just become funny in a you-have-to-be-there kinda way. I made the downhill slider for birdie, my second on a par 3 at Spanish Bay. I got lucky on the third hole and sank a 40-footer. I’m three-under on par 3s this week, which is hilarious because that’s not normal. I don’t even think it was back in my competitive days. Meanwhile, my play on the par 5s? Well, that’s just been pathetic. I made a double-bogey on the first hole from 100 yards out. That always feels awesome.
After we made the turn, Shane joked, “Okay, there are three par-5s on the back nine, let’s try to play them a little better on this side.” I think I’m seven-over on them! And I even birdied the 14th at Spanish Bay. That was an pathetically exciting moment.
My thoughts on the golf course? Um, I loved Spyglass — that course is so pure. You just can’t compare Spyglass to Spanish Bay because if I’m being completely honest, it’s not a fair assessment. Spanish Bay was alright. It wasn’t my favorite course ever. Like I said, the greens were goofy and the course was really soggy. There were some fun holes — the first three or four on the front, and a few on the back, such as No. 14, 16 and 18. The 17th runs right along the ocean (so do a few others), so it’s a beautiful view. See, here’s me and fellow blogger/writer Bacon:
So cute, I know! (For the record, we’re just buddies. Ladies, if you’d like an intro, I’ll hook it up.) Shane and I both struggled with our swings today, but somehow I pulled a 78 out of my behind. Honestly, it felt like 88. Not sure how I scored better today than yesterday. Well, clearly Spyglass is harder. But more important, I beat Bacon by four shots!
/high-five-ing myself the air
What’s up next? We saved the best for last — Pebble Beach on Saturday! Peter Jacobsen, a long-time supporter of Lexus Champions for Charity, is playing in front of us and we plan on hitting into him and the USGA’s Barry Hyde. I’m told we’ll probably be hanging out with them quite a bit on the course since there’s likely to be a lot of waits (per usual in a 6-hour+ round). I can’t wait to play Pebble. I feel like I know the course already since I walked it so many times during the US Open in June.
The win-a-car hole is the notorious No. 17. I plan on taking home that bow!