The Spring Break gang – Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler and Smylie Kauffman – reunited earlier this month in Nashville in what turned out to be a way more relaxed gathering with their important others in contrast to the raucous SB2K16 in the Bahamas that went viral on social media.
That’s not to say enjoyable wasn’t had. For Thomas, it was a welcomed a part of a two-week break following a taxing stretch of golf that included his emotional triumph in the Players Championship and the annual grind of the Masters.
The break which ends with this week’s begin in the Valspar Championship additionally supplied extra aid for Thomas in a 12 months that has included turmoil and sorrow and has examined him mentally, bodily and emotionally like by no means earlier than.
In competition at the Sentry Tournament of Championship, Thomas muttered a homophobic slur after lacking a brief putt and regardless of proudly owning up to his mistake and sincerely apologizing profusely, one in every of his sponsors dropped him and one other publicly reprimanded him.
A couple of weeks later he was in competition once more in the Waste Management Phoenix Open when he discovered earlier than the closing spherical his grandfather, Paul, had died. Two weeks later, his good good friend, Tiger Woods, was critically injured in a single-car accident that shook Thomas.
It actually wasn’t the 12 months the world No. 2, who received the 2017 PGA and FedEx Cup and has 14 PGA Tour titles on the resume at age 27, anticipated, particularly after he and his father, Mike, teamed up to win the PNC Championship in December.
But in a Zoom assembly with the media on Wednesday, Thomas seemed rested and recharged and a protracted methods from the days he was out of types.
“I always try to take time off after Augusta, definitely one week off,” Thomas stated. (*2*)
Thomas is aware of he received’t have the option to loosen up this week on the Copperhead Course at Innisbrook Golf Resort in Palm Harbor, Florida. Not with the terror-filled stretch often known as The Snake Pit, a 1,135-yard punch in the face on holes 16-18.
Thomas, nonetheless, welcomes the problem. He performed right here in 2015-17, tying for 10th and 18th and lacking one minimize. His schedule has stored him away however he’s glad to match the Valspar on this 12 months.
“I love this tournament,” he stated. “I love this golf course. The golf course is right in front of you. It’s not anything that’s tricked up. It’s not anything that’s hidden. It’s all right there. You see the narrow fairway out there and you’ve got to hit it, and if you don’t, you get out of position, you’re really just trying to somehow make a par, and the greens are small and severe.
“It’s one of those places you can shoot over par so quickly, but if you have control of your ball and you hit it in the fairway to where you can put the ball where you want on the greens, you shoot a couple under each day, you’re going to be doing pretty good. It’s a great test. I like golf courses like that, but at the same time, you can’t just kind of slap it around.”
Check the yardage book: Innisbrook’s Copperhead for the Valspar Championship