Ryan Brehm thrilled the Innisbrook crowd with an ace, but he much prefers his achievement from the pre-event pro-am. Matt Chivers explains
Most golfers would say a hole-in-one is the highlight of their career. So many of us spend our lives chasing the ace.
But it’s slightly different in the big leagues, and after Ryan Brehm holed out from the tee box in the first round of the Valspar Championship, he revealed it wasn’t even the highlight of his WEEK.
On the ace, he said: “My wife and I talk about it all the time. I’m glad she was there because she’s like, I’ve never seen you have one.”
But the 36-year-old, whose sole PGA Tour title came at last year’s Puerto Rico Open, added that he played in the pro-am at the Copperhead course on Monday and hit an arguably even rarer shot.
“Ironically, in the Monday pro-am, I rinsed one on 13 for my first shot, grabbed a different club, teed it up, and jarred it for a par! So it must be something about this week.”
A par with your second ball on a par-3 is quite something. Brehm made the crucial switch from a 7-iron to a 6-iron and it worked perfectly.
Unsurprisingly, Brehm made a great start to his week at Innisbrook with a round of 5-under-par, including the ace he made on the 17th hole.
He doubted if he’d taken the right club again as he implored his ball to “carry” on its way to the hole, but it dropped in for what Brehm was 99% sure was the fifth hole-in-one he’s ever had.
“It kind of surprised me when I saw it go in the hole, honestly,” he added. “But we got a good reaction. It was a lot of fun.
“I was really just trying to cover the front edge of the green, and we had the wind that was down off of the right.
“I think we had 189 to cover the front edge and it probably flew almost 200 yards. So it was pretty fun to see that thing trickle in.”
After making what we’re going to call one and a half holes-in-one, it only feels right that Brehm continues to victory on Sunday evening in Florida.
A win would not only crown an extraordinary week but represent a much-needed return to form for a player who has missed 14 of his last 17 cuts.
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