The Best Round of my Life
The problem with the best round of my life is that it only lasted for four holes.
For most of my life I have prided myself on helping people build their businesses and careers, most especially teaching them better ways to market their business, sell more products and keep themselves and their staff motivated. But it wasn’t always like that and I must confess to destroying a promising golfing career. This, of course, was never my intention but where there are winners there must be losers and the best round of my life certainly changed the fortunes of Tony Whitehouse.
The greatest four holes of my life was a life-changing event for one of the pros at my club. It was about 10.30 in the morning when, after hitting my 500 balls, I walked into the pro shop and asked if either of the assistants fancied a game. They worked for a great guy who actually encouraged them to play golf as long as the shop was manned by one of them. Tony, a burly lad of 17, had not been playing more than a year but was already scratch. Anyway, he jumped off his chair and announced that he was ready to take 50 pence from me (a buck).
On the first hole, a relatively short par four of 335 yards, Tony drove the green and three putted for par. I hit a driver and wedge to about 10 feet and made birdie. One up. On the second, Tony once again unleashed a massive drive onto the green. Once again his eagle putt was a little bold and he three putted. I holed my bunker shot for birdie. Two up. At the third, a difficult uphill par four, Tony unleashed another huge drive, hit wedge to the back of the green and three putted again. I made an unspectacular par. Three up.
The fourth hole was perhaps the finest hole on the course. The tee was set back some 80 yards into the woods and you drove over a pond. At about 220 yards, another pond guarded the left-hand side of the fairway while a large group of mature pine trees protected the right. The gap between the pond and the pine trees was no more than 25 yards wide and the fairway sloped towards the water. The smart play was a two iron which, if you didn’t hit it perfectly, would leave you short of the pond on the left or the trees on the right.
Tony, still mad from three-putting three in a row, reached the tee first and was already in motion when I arrived. He had hit the finest drive I had ever seen on the hole, threading it between the opening some 280 yards right down the middle. I hit my standard two iron but came off it and pushed it right. It came to rest a few feet short of the pine trees. When I reached the ball, I could see there was a clear path through the trees. Clear, that is if I could hit it through a six-foot gap and keep it straight.
Tony sarcastically asked if I was going to hole my fairway shot. I replied that that was exactly what I had in mind. I then hit a perfect four iron. It raced through the trees, faded slightly as it landed on the green, bounced once before gently rolling another six feet into the cup for an eagle. Tony looked at me in disbelief as I jumped up and down.
He then turned and, without saying anything, marched purposely towards his ball some 100 yards down the fairway. I hurried after him. But when he reached it, he didn’t stop but instead stooped down and picked it up. I yelled, “Hey Tony, we’ve got a match.”
He stopped dead for a second, turned around and said *#%@ you, just *#%@ you!”
With that he walked the short distance between the fourth green and the pro shop and handed in his notice. The next day he joined the Marines but, I gather, didn’t last long there either. Thus, the best round of my life ended on the fourth hole. He never paid me either.
Andrew Wood is an author and CEO of Legendary Marketing, a Tampa/Orlando-based ad agency. He is the world’s leading expert on golf, resort, destination and real estate marketing although his successes go far beyond these core industries. Author of over 40 books including; Confessions of a Golf Pro, Desperately Seeking Members, The Golf Marketing Bible, The Hotel and Resort Marketing Bible and Legendary Advice. Andrew has spoken to thousands of audiences worldwide and was the top ranked speaker at 97.7% of the events where he spoke on sales, marketing, entrepreneurship or leadership. A pioneer in Internet marketing his creative talent, out of the box ideas and copywriting skills are at the core of his expertise. Regarded as one of the top marketing minds in the world for his ability to craft a winning strategy, generate leads and increase income!