I am back here at the Safeway Open in Napa, site of my professional debut back in 2017. I was extremely fortunate to earn a sponsors exemption into this event, as I was originally slated to be the first or second alternate into the event- so a special thank-you to Bob Miller of Safeway/Albertsons and the tournament staff for the opportunity to compete!
It was also great to return to a golf course where I was playing the PGA Tour event for the third time, in addition to a collegiate event here my senior year at Stanford. Needless to say I was very familiar with the golf course! I kicked off the week by watching Blake Shelton perform live in a private setting off the 10th hole of the golf course… he’s every bit as good live as he is on recording!
I also made some equipment discoveries with Callaway. I had a hard time feeling the clubface on my irons, so I took apart an old set of irons from college and the ones I had been using. We found 2-4g weight plugs in the hosel of my irons, which we promptly removed and made up the difference with lead tape on the back of the iron. The difference in feel was immediate, and I could feel the clubface again! I also finished off my golf ball testing and moved into the lower-spinning golf ball, and “hard-stepped” my Dynamic Gold X100 shafts in my irons- making them firmer- as I was using the same stiffness in my irons as I had in high school. This sounds like a big change, but I was very excited about the feels I was experiencing with the irons.
I made the cut with a few shots to spare, but struggled a bit to start my Saturday round.. I was three over par thru 4 and hit the tee shot on the 5th hole just OB… But managed to fight back hard and shot an even-par 72. I was not happy with how I had moved back, but given my start, was very pleased with how I fought back. I ended up shooting even par with birdies on two of my last three holes on Sunday to finish in a tie for 52nd. A pretty average finish, where I realized I needed to just hit higher quality shots and improve to beat these guys!
It was fun having my family out to watch, and I got to play one of my favorite par5s on the planet, the 16th hole. But I was most excited to get on an airplane and fly back to Vegas for another week spent in my own bed!
Thanks again for following along!