Ever watched a major tournament and wondered, “How would my game stack up on that course?” Well, that is exactly what happened when the guys from the Chasing Scratch Podcast met PGA Championship Director Ryan Ogle.
Some quick background on the podcast: the show is centered on two friends (Mike and Eli) who are both months away from turning 40 years old. They have wives, kids, jobs and lots of other adult responsibilities. After years of failed, frustrating golf trips they decided to retire from all adult recreational activities (basketball leagues, softball leagues, etc) and see if, with the proper investment of time and resources, they could move their 11 handicaps to scratch.
So how does Ryan Ogle and the PGA Championship tie into this? Ryan has been a fan of the show since its inception, and as it headed into its 4th season he reached out to see if Mike and Eli would be interested in playing the Ocean Course on Kiawah Island, host of the 2021 PGA Championship.
A few Zoom conversations later, and the three of them came up with a format. They would play a best ball game, attempting to break 80 from the championship tees. This might not sound that difficult on the surface, but the Ocean Course is known for being arguably the hardest course in the country and one of the most challenging in the world. It boasts 25-30 mph oceanside winds (which can play close to an 8- club difference) and nearly 7900 yards from the championship tees.
Mike, Eli and Ryan documented the entire experience, as well as their follow-up visit with their PGA Professional (Larry Ward) to see what swing and strategy flaws the Ocean Course had exposed in their games.
The Miracle on Sand