Second Stage of Q School is upon us. Covid has run riot with the Order of Merits and the rankings for the '22 year, whilst The Shooter has a category, there is a chance that with a good finish we can jump up one category for the coming year, Fuck yes, thank you.
First stop was Newcastle overnight then into Yarrawonga where Disco was waiting. We have planned to play the Murray course at Yarrawonga Mulwala and then Black Bull before heading down to Melbourne to get in some practice before the tournament.
They are coming out alright with a simple 1 over around the Murray to take the cash and then a casual 35 points at Black Bull to make up the numbers. No damage done here and found some good short game form around the chipping green.
Off to Melbourne with plenty of confidence.
Short game practice for a few hours on the first day followed by 9 holes, don't want to over do it. Tuesday was a practice round with the Bald English Grip Maker and whilst the putter went cold and we didn't get the money there was a few promising things happen. More practice on Wednesday short stuff and putting as well as hitting a couple of buckets, fine tuning is all we need.
07:40 tee time, Melbourne has turned it on and by that I mean it is colder than charity and windy as the Arctic. Perfect day.
Hit a driver down the right, bending down to pick up the tee and saw the bounce, fuck me that wasn't good. "boys, I will just hit a provisional" was the call. Flushed that to make me feel better and off down the hill we go.
Once I got to it, almost 3 seconds elapsed before I saw it dead as a maggot up against a tree, after trying every way possible to hit it, the decision was made to take an unplayable drop. Measure off 2 clublengths and luckily, I get to drop it in long shit grass with no shot, fuck, was the first thought.
8 iron to chop it out and try and make 5 with a good putt.
The grass had a different idea, ball rockets off the face, almost a hosel, hits a tree, comes to rest 5 feet away, at least now its in worse rough, that's encouraging.
The 8 iron goes back in the bag, Disco doesn't know what to say, gap wedge now, more loft, get it out, again the grass has a different plan, at least I moved it 40 yards up. Fuck this rough is thick. Sand Iron now, the 8 iron was handed back to Disco, the gap was put in the bag with a little more force. The sand iron was successful in moving the ball 50 yards up the fairway. You fucking beauty. Walking up to it I was questioning some of my life choices and if 2 of my fingers had dropped off from frostbite, fucking Melbourne.
Thank Christ, I now have a 4 iron left, uphill, into wind, out of a sand filled divot to a 8 metre false front and a bunker with a 40 ft front lip, easiest shot of the day so far. That finishes in the aforementioned trap, out and a lip out from 4 feet.
On the second tee Disco has the book (I noticed he has it turned the right way up too) and before he says anything I say, total and then front number Disco to which he replies 168 flag on 18, wind hurting off the left.
I have taught him well from my long hard days on the bag, he didn't even mention the 9 until the third hole.
After a quad you just need to forget and focus, high fading 5 iron to 8 feet solves all the problems, a lip out doesn't help but its a good bounceback. The grinding continues and the lip outs keep mounting, The Shooter turns +3 after the quad and feels ok.
That's until the 4 whack for double on 11 and the frustration double on 14 and the don't give a fuck double on 15.
Its been a big day for The Shooter, walking while others rode in carts, Disco on the bag complaining how heavy it was to push, early thoughts of losing fingers, 9's and doubles.
Get to the last, after hitting our second shots, a 3 iron from 179 up hill into cold wind to 15 feet for fucks sake, the official comes out and gives us a serve for taking too long. Maybe he doesn't understand, genius shotmaking takes time and cant be rushed. I told him that in no uncertain terms, I think he was driving away at the time.
Shooter makes the 15 footer for birdie to get some glimmer of delight from the day.
Got to get out of here and get something to eat.
Now because we have shot a cricket score yesterday, the tee time we have day 2 is very early. That means dinner and early to bed, which turned out not to be the case. Disco kept us up with his tales from all his golfing adventures. by the time the head hit the pillow it was a little late.
First tee was a little rough, could have done with a black panadol and another 4 hours sleep. A heel cut into the fairway was a great start. The third shot this time was into 4 feet and we are looking good, until it didn't catch a lip. Fuck that, still 4 better than yesterday.
Disco has a pep in his step, he isn't on the bag of a quad guy today, he was even joking around with the other players just being one of the "guys" he loves that shit.
Until he gives me a bad yardage on 2 and the chip is so fast it looks like going down the north face of the Eiger, that stops 20 feet past the flag.
That's the North Face of the Eiger for reference. In hindsight 20 feet past was pretty good.
Not much joy for the remaining front 9 and ended up having more shots than yesterday with a 9 for fucks sake. It wasn't supposed to be like that.
Shooter decided to grind it out and finished the second round up beat even though the 10th hole sucked a bag of dicks for the second day in a row.
Although there will be no category jump, the experience was good and its good to get back to competitive golf.
After Melbourne, its back to Yarrawonga for the weekend where Shooter belted Disco and Canon for a couple of days around Cobram and Black Bull before the plan was hatched for them to take on Shooter in an ambrose vs stroke play event over the front 9 at Black Bull.
Do they know what they are getting themselves in for, I doubt it. I am sure they will have a slightly alternate version on their podcast The Chillidippers, available where you get all your podcasts.
I will have to set the record straight another day.
Early Start, long drive home.
Roadwarrior Shooter out.