Bonville GM feels the aura of US Masters at famed Augusta
AS AN excited spectator as the 79th US Masters got under way in Augusta, Georgia, this week, Bonville Golf Resort general manager Brad Daymond said he marvelled at the aura around the event.
"Augusta is in amazingly good condition and playing very long," Brad said.
"The average golfer may not realise the pros will play a course that will measure over 1000 metres longer than even Bonville does, off the Tiger Tees.
"These guys are good."
He said the weather is very warm with temperatures up to 30 degrees but the fairways are soft, which means the players don't gain much distance on their drives as these aren't running very far.
"Mind you, the height these players hit their drives these days means that they all carry it so much further than yesteryear.
"Tiger Woods commented that today's young pros are getting it out to an average of 320-plus yards and that he himself has to flush his drives to keep up these days.
"The greens are unbelievably fast.
"During practise, Jordan Spieth, arguably the best putter in the world, said that every putt he hit went eight feet past the hole - even his four foot putts."
Brad said his imagination had been captured by so many great stories surrounding this year's staging.
Can Rory McIlroy win his third major in a row?
Will our own Jason Day get it done after coming so close twice already on a course that seems so suited to his game?
Is Adam Scott about to win his second Masters, after ditching the short putter and bringing back his trusty broomstick?
Or will young American and 2014 Australian Open winner, Jordan Spieth, improve one position on last year's second place?
"Jordan is so well spoken and of all the US hopes, is definitely the favourite," Brad added.
"The talented Jimmy Walker is also in the mix and let's not forget that unique left-hander Bubba Watson, whose long-hitting cut drives that land from such a prodigious height are so suited to the course.
"Personally, I am pulling for Jason and the other Aussies - Adam Scott, John Senden and Geoff Ogilvie."
Brad admits he's fallen in love with the Deep South city of Augusta.
"The Masters puts Augusta on the map and drives the economy.
"Excitement is palpable among a large band of Aussies who've made the trek to golfing nirvana."