ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) – Russell Knox is playing in his first Masters next month, and part of him looks as much forward to the Par 3 Contest.
The son of his late coach will be his caddie.
Mike Flemming was the Jacksonville University coach who recruited Knox from Inverness, Scotland, and remained his coach and mentor as he made his way onto the PGA Tour. Flemming died two years ago, and Knox choked back tears thinking about him when he won in Shanghai.
"It was always my coach and mine's dream to get to Augusta," Knox said. "Even on the mini-tours, that was the goal. He would joke, 'Let's get to the Masters before I die.' He obviously didn't make it. So when I did qualify, it only made sense to have him (Neal Flemming) come along for the par 3. My coach's wife will be there as well."
Knox already has shared the experience with his father, who accompanies him – but did not play – when Knox played Augusta National for the first time in early February. Knox couldn't decide who had the better time.
"He said the word, 'Wow!' about 10,000 times," Knox said of his dad. "So that was cool. It's a great place. I can't wait."
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