Friday, August 3

The Shotmaking Genius of Christy O’Connor Sr.

Christy O'Connor Sr.

Do not try to show up a tour pro—or any golf professional. Ever.

Irish great Christy O’Connor Sr. was playing a game with members at Bundoran Golf Club on Donegal Bay. At the 13th hole, a 235-yard par 3, O’Connor struck an iron and watched his ball land on the faraway green. One of the other players did the same.

The man turned to O’Connor and asked what he hit.

“4-iron,” O’Connor replied.

“I played a 5,” said the man.

Another member of the group informed the prideful player that O’Connor could hit any club in his bag to the distant green. Then, taking the cue, O’Connor proceeded to hit a ball with every club—including his putter—and landed most of them on the putting surface.

O’Connor, a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame, was one of the great players to emerge from Ireland more than a half century before Graeme McDowell, Rory McIlroy and Darren Clarke would win golf’s most-coveted trophies. In a career that spanned four decades, O’Connor won 24 times on the European Tour and played on 10 consecutive Ryder Cup teams.

His nephew could play, too. Christy O’Connor Jr. was the only player to win the Senior British Open on his first try until 52-year-old Fred Couples performed the feat last week at Turnberry.


Ace said...

Christy Junior was his nephew not his son.

The Armchair Golfer said...

Thanks, Ace. I appreciate the correction. I've updated the blog accordingly.