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Fore left - a recurring nightmare

After the elbow had hampered the campaign post Thurgoona, The Shooter makes the trip for the last couple of events in NSW.

It is looking like Team Shoot will need a couple of good finishes to obtain a playing category for the 2023 season, since the trip home and no events played in Sydney, The Shooter has dropped from 38 on the Order Of Merit to 58, a miserable situation to say the least.

Blackheath first, then Springwood followed by Elanora and Maitland on the way home.

Fuck me it’s cold in the Blue Mountains, what a place.

The day before the event, Shooter finds himself on the chipping green in 5 degrees with a wind chill factor of -1. Fuck it’s beautiful here. Overnight it falls to blizzard level and at 5:30am Shooter makes his way up the hill from the grandiose surroundings of Penrith to the ice box formally known as Blackheath.

At 6:30am as the tour bus pulls in to the carpark it’s as cold as a mother in laws kiss. Fuck, how do people live here ? It’s got me fucked.

Starting on 9, a long par 4 uphill, the headwind is piercing my rugged up frame with speed and accuracy, I can’t feel my hands and I haven’t hit a shot.

The first tee shot heads hard left, quickly. I meekly yell ’’ Fore “ as I think the 10th tee is over there and I thought I was going to kill someone. Fortunately it didn’t have enough speed to inflict injury. My playing partners read Titleist 4 on the ball as it took off.

Out of the long grass, I leave the second 30 yards short of the green, flub that one, it comes back down the hill past me, flub the next, back down the hill past me, pitch the next to 8 feet and 2 putt for triple, beautiful start. Glad I drove the 12 hours.

Lip out for birdie on the next after 2 good shots, leave a 15 foot downhill putt on the next 7 feet short, glad the speed with the putter is showing some consistency early on. Shooter has righted the ship a little over the few holes, the sun came out at one stage, that’s a change in this god forsaken miserable fucking climate. I even asked the locals how they do it, how do you put up with this fucking shit weather. They seem to think it’s good a couple of months a year. I did mention that it was November and we have wind cutting me up like The Bride did to the Crazy 88’s in Kill Bill vol 2

Its now -5 outside, wind into off the left, 194m par 3, creek right, the green reminds me of the 4th at Sanctuary, if the 4th green at Sanctuary was 1/4 the size and had no bunkers.

Shooter sees the flight, high with a slight fade, landing soft and coming to rest on the right side of the flag.

Doesn’t the mind play tricks on the unsuspecting chopper.

Flight takes off beautifully, after gently trying to persuade the ball to fade, Shooter resorts to yelling “fade you miserable fuck”. The ball decided to continue on its left journey, perfectly pin high but now its dead. I have a 20 yard chip down the hill over the shit rough to a short flag with no green to work with. This should work out a treat.

The leading edge hits half way up the ball, the benefit of that is it comes off so low the ball almost embeds in the long grass before the hill. Fuck me, thank christ, I’m not fishing that fucking thing out of the ice covered creek.

Now I have the benefit of being on the other side of the long grass but have another chip straight downhill to no green.

The best effort Shooter could muster was 12 feet right of target, so good. 3 whacks later with the electric eel completes the second triple of the day.

The Shooter is now standing on 16 tee, a couple of triples shining like a beacon on the card, it’s so cold I am shaking like a shitting dog.

Sky toe, followed by a 3 wood uphill 219 over a bunker to 4 feet, fuck off, nice 3 Shooter.

Bogey 17 and par 18 for 37 through the back 9, 8 more to play.

Three jabs on 1 for par, double on 2 from a flub pitch over the bunker and after me telling the hamburger he can’t drop 10 yards to the side of the bunker when he was in it, fucks sake, nearest point mate, not best option. Birdie 3, playing partner tells me the drive went 318 yards. I wedge it to 2 ft and calmly tap it in, I am sure I just saw a unicorn shitting rainbows.

4th tee, a hunter darts out between the tall pine trees and shots the unicorn, rain starts and it’s so cold the rain freezes before it smashes me in the eyes, I have to shake the ice off my jumper before I hit, I grabbed the sand iron out of the bag to play my shot and my hand almost stuck to it, fuck it’s cold. Miserable wretched fucking place.

Par the 5th by holing a 7 footer, bogey 6 with another 3 jiggle from 20 feet, par 7 and have 1 to play, can’t wait to get off here. Snap hook the driver, almost kill a group on the next hole, somehow I have found a gap and hit a perfect 52 degree wedge. Walking out of the trees, Shooter doesn’t hear the applause that a shot like that warranted, fucking people don’t have any idea what they are witnessing. Apparently you don’t get applause when your shot comes up 20 short of the green. What a dick. Pitch that one on and hole the 3 footer for a closing par for a cool 78.

Upon reflection, I have tried to think of one part of the experience that was enjoyable. 1. Ice in my eyes propelled at 50mph on the blizzard like wind, nope

2. Making triple on the first hole, nope

3. Making another triple later on after skulling a wedge, nope

4. A few 3 putts when you can’t feel your hands, nope

5. Playing with 2 am’s that clubbed each other all way round and read each other’s putts, nope.

6. The driveway on the way out, yep.

With a bit of luck it won’t be as cold tomorrow, it’s only halfway up the hill. I might be able to feel my hands before the game and hit a few shots and a few putts to warm up.

No warm up because it’s too cold can’t produce results, no wonder I have a shit sandwich for dinner tonight.

Freezing Shooter out


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