Last weekend was the AT&T Byron Nelson, and for the second time in a couple weeks I got to see professional golfers up close and personal.
First was the Volunteers of America LPGA Texas Classic held at The Old American Golf Club in The Colony, Texas. The course was beautiful with all the rain that delayed the tournament. The wind ended up keeping scores pretty manageable for the shortened tourney.
The most wonderful aspect was meeting Maddie Sheils, a fellow Husker Alum. She even took a moment to introduce herself during one of the waits, which left both my girlfriend and me pretty awestruck. I might be biased (given her school history and meeting her), but I’d keep an eye out for her in the future. She looks like a dedicated player with a heart of gold. Not to mention she also has a blog to check out: http://www.madeleinesheils.com/
Walking the Byron was a far different experience than expected. We’ve gone to the tournament in years past when it was at Las Colinas. I was a little disappointed from a spectator perspective, since you had to go to the viewing centers to get a good look at holes. The double green was right next to two tee boxes, which became a cacophony of marshals holding their hands up. You’d stop for a tee shot. Then a putt. Then a tee shot. Then a putt… It took a while to get around.
Most of the holes were pretty straight forward. As a spectator it isn’t interesting to see pros navigating fairway undulations and green slopes. Especially with the visually spectacular holes at Las Colinas for comparison. And as hilly as the course is, it’s equally as flat. Most of the time I couldn’t see where players were playing to. As much as I’d like to have a major nearby, I just don’t think Trinity Forest will host one unless they get some real spectator redesign. It felt crowded on a lazy Saturday morning, so I can’t imagine a Major Sunday.
That being said, it looks like a great challenge to play. Despite my whiny review, I hope they would still let me on someday.
Getting to the range has been a struggle. I didn’t hit any balls last week and realized I was doing a real disservice to myself and to anyone reading. So I carved out some time last night and ended up swinging until I got a bloody nose (probably unrelated).
My swing speed is still slowly increasing, adding an additional 2 two miles per hour since my last measurement. Those 300+ yard drives are becoming less of an accident. The week before the Byron I managed to crush one 356, credit to the speed slot on the downhill par 5. Dumped a fat 8-iron into the water on the next one, but such is golf.
With the three-day weekend coming up and some spare time for training, I’m really digging in. Currently reading Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth. From that I found out I’m not very gritty. It was a good wake-up call for my efforts and a real call to action.
I’m a big fan of the saying that goes, “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.”
Sometimes it’s a book, sometimes it’s a life experience, and sometimes it’s an actual teacher. You just have to be ready to listen and learn.