Yep, Graham DeLaet is having another good weekend, and David Hearn, is well, not playing having missed the cut. But Jon Mills is leading at the Nationwide Tour stop in Florida this week…
It is the tale of two Canadian golfers – one on the cusp of finding his way back to the PGA Tour, while the other breathes a sigh of relief safe in the notion he’ll be back for a sophomore season.
This week Weyburn, Sask.’s Graham DeLaet is having fun in Vegas, aware that a tie for sixth at the Frys.com tournament last weekend assured him of a spot on the tour next year regardless of how he plays this week. Brantford’s David Hearn, on the other hand, saw his opportunity to play his way into the Top 25 players on the Nationwide Tour that receive PGA Tour cards slip away with a wayward tee shot during his final nine holes. Hearn now sits 26th, $2,853 away from a return to golf’s grandest stage. He opened his first round this week with a 2-under 68 at one of the final two Nationwide Tour events of the year.
For DeLaet, he’s now nearing the finish of a rookie year that proved he can play with the best on the PGA Tour. He narrowly missed a playoff earlier this year at an event in Houston, but still came into the PGA Tour’s “Fall Finish” uncomfortably near the 125th spot on the money list that separates those who retain full status on the tour from those that don’t.
“As the weeks went on it built knowing that I had to make money,” DeLaet says from this week’s tournament in Vegas. Adding to the difficulty was an old hockey injury to his back flared up, leaving DeLaet unable to swing hard with his driver or long irons, and forced to play courses he’d never seen without the benefit of a practice round.
“My caddy walked the course, but I hadn’t seen the courses,” he says in reference to the last three events.
“I didn’t even walk them because it hurt to do even that.”