A Letter To You, Golf.

Dear Golf,

Here we are, 18 years on. I cast my mind back to our first day, albeit a fuzzy memory, but a day I remember looking at you quizzically, unbeknown to where you might take me. I remember questioning you on that day, but despite all that questioning, a single look at my dad gave me all the answers I needed to know about how swinging a club and trying to hit a little white ball would inevitably produce so much joy.

You see, I’d never have known a game could impact my life so much, taking me to the highest of highs but also the lowest of lows in a matter of minutes. Like many others, you’ve left me scratching my head for days, months and even years trying to figure you out. That answer has slowly dawned on me that it’s unlikely I’ll ever master you or figure you out and I guess that’s what keeps us coming back, the hope that maybe one day you might give in and let your guard down… See, you’re not like other sports really, you give me all the responsibility (something that is also an invaluable life lesson, but we’ll get to that later). There are no excuses, I’m not having to be reactive to anything like returning a serve, dribbling past a player or running faster than the person next to me, you just sit there, quietly, waiting patiently for me. Your outcomes are endless and that’s daunting yet also really exciting! With each shot, each swing, there is always an element of hope, that this time it’s going to be even better than the last one. You do share some similarities with other sports, in that every day is a new day, full of optimism and possibilities to see how good I can be, how far can I push the envelope of this great game, will today be my lowest ever score? Will today be my highest ever score? Will I meet a new best friend? Or will I end up playing with an absolute nutter, we just never know, I guess the one thing we can be consistent with is our attitude on how we approach that day.

You’ve allowed me to travel to some incredible parts of the world, places I never even knew existed on that overcast day 18 years ago with my dad, as I kneeled there trying to balance my ball on a tee between those two blue shaped cones. As I fast forward to now, where I’ve been able to meet people from all around the world who share the same desires and passions about golf as I do, they have their own experiences, ones they all want to share, the good, the bad and especially the ugly. Dreams to walk along the different grasses of exclusive clubs, that are so well manicured it feels wrong to even walk on let alone take a divot. Or some are happy just to keep playing the same course each day, one they get to call their home and one they’ve grown to love. Evidently, all the grasses look familiar after a while and despite chasing you around the world to play on a different course with different views, you as a game, stay consistent. Our goal as golfers is to be as good as we can be and reach a level of contentment, to smoke that drive straight down the middle of the fairway, caress that towering iron shot that never leaves the flagstick and to roll that putt right into the heart of the cup. That’s pure happiness, at least to me. But if it were that easy, people would bore of you quickly, they’d reach contentment too quickly and too easily and you wouldn’t be the continuous challenge that you are. They would find something else to stimulate them, something else that drives them mad and consumes their mind because as you know, it doesn’t matter who they are or how talented they may be, you always have the last word.

As I mentioned earlier, there are so many lessons you’ve taught me in our 18-year friendship, one that I’m lucky to have. These aren’t just lessons of how to play and improve my game, but lessons you’ve taught me that that I’ve tried to implement into my life. To be patient, to calculate risk, or when to let it all go and play the hail mary. To treat others with respect and as equals, because no matter their background they’re stood right next to you with exactly the same opportunity playing the same game. You’ve taught me how to deal with uncomfortable situations and how to harness them, turning them into comfortable ones. To be comfortable on my own for hours and hours at a time, trying to perfect you, testing that practice by increasing the pressure and allowing me to thrive on it. Working with others as a team. To keep pushing my limits and understand that I will have to deal with failing over and over again, but persistence will make me who I am and get me to where I want to be. But I’d say the most important lesson you’ve taught me over the years is that everything has a purpose, no matter how small, from a 6-inch putt to a 300-yard drive, it all has an impact and that echos in life too. So to do the little things, do them well and often, see them grow, becoming bigger and bigger and watch the story unfold.

I think back fondly on the many different days we’ve had. Days with friends and family, the warm sun on my back, music playing in the background and enjoying a friendly match that slowly grows into a highly competitive one. The days where the wind is blowing, it’s freezing cold and torrential rain, but you still tempt us out onto the links, knowing we’ll play because today might just be the day. Days where I’ve been the most nervous I’ve ever been, playing championships that I/we as a team ended up being triumphant in, having to give speeches and dealing with success but on the flip side also learning to deal with failure. More recently, days where every shot has made a difference in how much cash I take home, falling short on just one shot and losing a lot of money or making the 25-foot birdie putt on the last to win that extra bit making the drive home so much more worth it.

I know over the years our friendship has been rocky, I’ve sworn at you, a lot, and I’ve told you I’m never coming back to play again, but as you know, these are all empty promises. We always keep coming back. Even if it’s a prolonged absence, we’ll be back. I’ve recommended you to friends and family and they’ve all come to love the same rollercoaster experiences that I have. Which is truly great to see. I try to think of a life if I hadn’t been introduced to you back then and I really struggle. I struggle to think of what I would have done to fill that void. What would have occupied so much of my time, on and away from the course? To be honest, I’m not sure I want to know that answer and I’m really glad I don’t have to find out. Because without you, I wouldn’t have met the people I have, seen the wonderful places I’ve seen and had the life experiences that have moulded me into who I am today. To be a part of one of the largest families in the world who all share the same love for the game is pretty damn cool.

So thank you, thank you for opening so many doors and creating opportunities for me. I’m looking forward to hopefully many, many, more years of friendship with you, experiencing more ups and the downs, sunrises and sunsets, triumphs and failures, new friendships and rekindling old ones. Because as only you know, no matter how good or bad it gets, you always leave us with just a little glimmer of hope for the next day.

Until next time,

🏌🏼

Bermuda.

I had one of those pop-up memories show up on Facebook a day or two ago, curiously I clicked it to see what travesties I’d posted over the past years since I’d joined Facebook. Sure enough, it didn’t disappoint, but sitting at the top of the list was a post I’d written this time last year, the post of 35,000 feet. It blew my mind how quickly a year had passed and what an interesting year it had been. This time last year I was bubbling with excitement as I was sitting at 35,000 feet making my way back across the pond to San Francisco to get in some warm weather practice and catch up with old friends. A full-time professional and optimistic about the year ahead, having a full year under my belt I was ready to start making grounds on my professional career, 2018 was going to be my year, grab it by the kahunas and change my life for the better and to be honest, that’s exactly what I did, just not necessarily on the course.

It’s fascinating how much can change in a year, it goes so quickly doesn’t it? Some people find a new career, some find their soul mate and get married, some experience loss and hardship and some welcome new life into the world. Those 12 months can seem like a lifetime away when we look forward and yet looking back, it feels like yesterday and it happened in the blink of an eye. So, once again, I’m lying here bubbling with excitement, travelling across the pond at 35,000 feet, blogging away, drinking champagne and eating caviar (WheelsUp really have been great), I guess a lot has changed in the last 12 months… I’ve travelled a bit, getting to experience new and familiar parts of the world, I moved to a new house, started a new full-time job in financial services and found a much improved 24 total fairways with the driver this year, I’m pretty fired up.

Jokes aside, this will be my last event of the year and ending it with a pretty special week at a fantastic venue. I was very fortunate to be invited by some kind members at St. Georges Hill earlier in the year to be their pro for the annual Goodwill Pro-am in Bermuda. I’m excited about the week ahead (don’t know why I wouldn’t be), but I’m sure it will be highly entertaining and enjoyable with the very best company. Naturally, I would have hoped that my season wouldn’t be ending here, more so gearing up for the new season ahead but I guess that’s the way the cookie crumbles sometimes, at least for this year that is. It’s been a quiet period of golf since qualifying school, I haven’t really had much to blog about as working a full-time job doesn’t allow for the flexibility that we would all like, but as I take a moment to look back and reflect on 2018, it’s been another year of growth in the roundabout way the game and life gives us.

The time away from the links has given me an opportunity to explore new ventures alongside my golf, miss the game more and more and think about strategic plans for reviving my game to get back to a standard of which I know I’m capable of. Diving into books, podcasts, audiobooks and battling it out on the course, it’s been fun to keep expanding my knowledge and the slow grind of getting my game back into shape, some days and weeks are better than others, but it’s nice to see signs of improvement. I heard a great quote from Web.com player Maverick McNealy on the No Laying Up podcast a few weeks back that resonated with me, a little bit of an itch on the brain, it’s ironic since most of this blog has been reflecting on the last twelve months but I have found it useful and thought you might also.

“If you keep thinking back to where you were, you’ll never get to where you need to be”

– Maverick McNealy

I’m sure this has been said many times before by others around the world in various versions, but I’ve probably subconsciously done this quite a lot over the past few years, comparing my game and results to how it used to be 10 years ago and as you all know that hasn’t proved to be so successful recently. That being said, I’m excited to be competing again this week, I’ve missed the competitive side of things, it truly is a brilliant game we play, allowing us to travel to some true wonders of the world and meet people from all warps of life, sharing the same passion for the game of golf. A game that can give us the most euphoric feeling at times and bring us to our knees in the darkest of others, yet somehow we show up again the next day.

So, here’s to 2019, optimistically looking up and forwards. Battling through the daily grinds and hustles, holding ourselves accountable to daily goals and getting back on track. Because by focussing on smashing each day at a time, it’s amazing what we can change and achieve in a year…

Until next time,

🏌🏼

College, Welcome To The Jungle.

It’s been a reflective time for me (shock) and in the next couple of weeks, freshmen from all across the world prepare themselves for what may appear to be a daunting experience entering college, but they have in my personal opinion, the greatest four years of their entire lives ahead of them. See here’s the thing with college (university for my U.K friends), it grants you the opportunity to meet some of the most inspirational people in the world, travel to places that you could only wish of, and have a really bloody good time, no screw that, an absolutely amazing time! You may not think or know it at first, but you will eventually. Those people you meet, the experiences you have with them is what makes the memories, good and bad, one thing for sure is everything seems a blur at the time, just another day at ‘the office’ but my goodness does it go quick. Cherish it, like your monthly salary, it goes in a heartbeat, trust me, please.

I was incredibly lucky, I had 4 years at a school where we effectively had a silver spoon in our mouths. I joined a program that has the best rotation of golf courses in the nation. (U.S that is). I challenge any school to tell me different. Olympic Club, Lake Merced, San Francisco Club, Meadow Club, Spyglass Hill, Cypress Point, Sonoma Country Club, Presidio Golf Club etc. Yeah, I rest my case. Forgive me, this isn’t to sound arrogant, this is just pure matter of fact, the University of San Francisco offers some of, if not the best rotations of golf clubs in the whole of the United States. Do I miss it? Damn bloody right I do. There isn’t a day goes by where I wish I couldn’t hit rewind, go all the way back to my freshman year and the first day of school (which by the way was about two weeks late into the semester, but best not dive into that). Internally, I was absolutely terrified, I’d flown out from England on my own, leaving at the time my family and long-term girlfriend behind. I was confident with my golf, I mean hell, I was an England International, nobody was going to tell me different, I was going to walk into the locker room swagger on thinking I was the next big thing. Academically, well, LOL. It certainly took me a while to grasp the U.S Schooling system but we got there in the end (I got out of study hall baby!!!) but on the course, my ego quickly dissipated as I met my family and over the next 12 months they put my ego in place, coaches included, not that I didn’t like to keep them on their toes, however. But each year, we continued to build our family, even after graduation, you still remain a part of the family. Weird concept to those that have never experienced it, but to those that have, as frustrating as some of those days may have been with fellow teammates, we’d take it all back to have those college experiences again. The family, the team house comradery, the beer boots and those memories, god it just makes me smile thinking about it. I loved travelling as a team, you knew each event was going to be fun, receiving a bunch of swag at each event, the early morning airport calls, some guys still wobbly from the night before, some still fast asleep as we’re sitting in the taxi, just makes me chuckle now thinking of it, maybe not so at the time.

My point is I guess, that whether you’re starting college or currently going through it is to enjoy every single second of it. Time flies. Plain and simple. Graduation on your first day of school may seem a long long way away, but it quickly approaches you like a random drug test (if you’re an athlete that is). But even after graduation, hopefully, you’ve taken enough snaps along the way to look back and reminisce, it sure goes in a heartbeat. I was lucky. I gained a lot of friends along the way, I also learned a lot of life lessons, some nice, some not so nice. It’s part of the spectrum and venturing through the jungle, ultimately having to find our way. But to be honest, the hardest part of college for me was having to return home, back to your home country with an expired visa desperately trying to figure out how to get back. I had a degree, I’d spent 5 years combined with school and work in the U.S on cloud 9, thinking that I had all my ducks in a line, life was sweet and that I was set, not so much. Best of luck on that journey when you get to it. All I will say is, plan ahead, well ahead, because senior year is too late and returning home isn’t as good as your memories or photo albums will recall, college and America it’s an experience of a lifetime, and as Billy Maddison will quote “Stay here, as long as you can, for the love of God, you’ve got to cherish it, cherish it!” If you haven’t seen Billy Maddison, well, erm, you’re missing out big time, go watch it!

But as I sit here, rambling to you, wine inclusive as to whether or not you are going to or whether or not you should consider going to to the U.S for College (University), I’d say unless you were dropped on your head at birth, you’d be ridiculous not to try it or at least consider. Sure it’s expensive, scholarship or not, although I highly, highly, recommend working your butt off for one, in the grand scheme of things, you’re creating vast global opportunities for you to change your life for the better. I do speak in a bias of USF because obviously, I went there. Sure, I wish we had a ‘football’ team, that would have enhanced things slightly but that’s what makes USF, USF. We are small but a mighty school and a school to be reconned with, and as sure as are eggs are eggs, living in the best city in the USA, people whether athletes or not, are going to ask you what it’s like to attend a school that sits in the heart of the San Francisco.

Want to know the answer?

It’s a double fist pump of absolutely f**king awesomeness! Cherish it.

Until next time

🏌🏼

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Playing The Odds.

The hero play. We all try it at some point, depending on your respected career you’ll try it more frequently than others. Sometimes it comes off and we look like Zeus, aaand sometimes, well, not so much and we end up with egg on our face. But it’s a risk we’re willing to take if we want to achieve something greater than what we realised we were capable of. Now, yes, there are certainly times when we need to take our chips off the table and play it safe, it’s knowing when to push and when to fold which is key in many successful people, their judgements are more often than not right, but that comes through time and experience.

I realise my last few blogs have been somewhat on the negative side and more open than usual, and I certainly don’t want negativity to be a common trend of this website/blog. So, here I bring you some more uplifting news! Over the past couple of weeks, I have thankfully started to rekindle some love for the game, seeing a glint of light at the end of this long tunnel, feeling a bit of consistency returning to my game since coming out to the U.S for Open Qualifying. Now, unfortunately, I didn’t get through qualifying this year, but I played a lot of exciting golf. I got off to a hot start being 3 under through 5, which was unfamiliar territory in light of my recent form but it was fun to be on that side of the coin again. I did incur a couple of ‘hero play’ moments which looking back were unrealistic and unnecessary, ultimately I feel it cost me my place in final qualifying, but, we live and learn.

So what’s the secret to my new found progress on consistency and rekindled enjoyment? Well, it’s nothing revolutionary like clubs or funky gadgets, it’s just going back to basics and having some sunshine in the sky. I realised I was trying to reinvent the wheel at times, which is difficult when we’re trying to be a step ahead of the competition, a lot of the time we feel in the game that unless we’re changing something we’re not advancing, and this runs so true in players throughout the game, ultimately I feel like they usually go back to their roots whether it be with equipment or technical stuff. I guess the age old saying “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” runs true. So thankfully I feel like I’m starting to have clearer goals and most importantly looking forward to hitting the links again.

On a final note, I have been blown away over the last few weeks by the tremendous amounts of support I have received, especially after my last post. I can’t explain enough how humbling it is that so many people keep in touch and want me to have success in this game. To have so many virtual and physical helping hands from all over the world picking up my spirits and showing support to keep pushing through is incredible, truly, thank you so much!

Until next time

🏌🏼

Pro. The Next Chapter.

Hello everyone,

It is with great joy and excitement to announce today that I have made the decision to take my golf career to the next step. I have without a doubt, thoroughly enjoyed my time as an amateur golfer, having had my own individual successes, the opportunity to play collegiate golf in America at USF, and also having the honor of being able to represent my country around the world at both a boy’s and men’s level. I do however feel there comes a time where you must take a leap in order to stay motivated and to keep moving forward, and for me, that time is now. To the people and organizations who have helped me get to this point, I can’t thank you enough for your help and support, it means a great deal to me and I hope you will continue to support me as I journey my way into professional golf.

As I embark on my professional career, I am fortunate enough to have already joined with some amazing companies who I’m proud to have as part of the team. These people help me to become the best I can be on and off the golf course, and I look forward to working with them on the rocky journey to the top. You can read more about them and check out their websites on either the Sponsors Page or by clicking the links below.

Titleist
Footjoy
TRX

As always, I will keep my website as up to date as possible, giving you the latest news and  results.

If you are an individual, brand or company who is interested in sponsoring and joining the team, or know of anyone who may be interested, please reach out by heading to my contact page and I will be in touch as soon as possible.

As always, if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask! Thank you again to everyone for the continued love and support, it’s going to be a hell of a journey! 

Cheers,

Seb 🙂

TRX, welcome to the team.

It is with great pleasure to welcome a new partner to the team, TRX Training.

An incredible company with their products used in near enough every gym around the world. If the name doesn’t sound familiar, I’m sure you’ve seen the formidable yellow and black straps hanging in the gym somewhere. 

Since graduating from college, I needed to find a workout that would continue to help improve my fitness and my golf. I’ve used the TRX straps on and off during different workouts over the years, but never have I used them for a full workout before. The results yielded over the past months have been fantastic and I have never felt fitter, stronger and healthier than before. It has shown huge positives in my golf game along with increases in my flexibility, mobility and strength. If you have not yet tried TRX, I highly recommend trying it out. The premise behind TRX is you moving around your own body weight, it’s a workout for everyone, no matter your age, and without the need to throw heavy weights around a gym. It’s low impact and can be done literally anywhere you can anchor your strap, even from the comfort of your own home!

I’m very excited for what’s in store for the future and to keep improving each day on my fitness with TRX. Stayed tuned for videos and pictures of me doing my TRX workout routine!

For more information, you can check out their website by clicking here on how you can get involved in becoming fitter, stronger and healthier everyday with TRX.

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go as a team.”

Cheers 😊

 

101 – Reborn

Hello!

Some things require a fresh start, a chance to evaluate and press reset, and I felt that it was now time after 6 years, to move on from just a blog and create a proper website.

As my first post, I firstly wanted to say thank you! You’re here, which means a lot to me and I look forward to sharing my journey with you all, giving you an inside look into the up and down experiences I’m sure I’ll have along my professional career, hopefully to the top! I personally feel websites and blogs can give you, the reader, a little more detail and insight into the reasoning behind things, as results and images don’t always give the full story. So hopefully, you will enjoy these light readings and I can create a better picture for you.

My goal is to try and keep the posts short and sweet, hopefully being somewhat informational to you, maybe a little inspiring, and sharing the nuggets of information I hear along the way, but all in all, my goal is to provide you with great content. If there is something you wish to see more of, or less of, please feel free to comment and reach out, I’m always looking to improve and provide you all with a better experience.

As a quick recap on my golf, it’s been a very successful few weeks. I competed in back to back tournaments, putting myself in contention to win tournaments again, which was an incredible feeling. My game feels in great shape, which motivates me even more for the summer ahead and while I have worked for the past 12 months, it’s been a great learning experience on how to best structure my practices to be more effective with quality over quantity. I feel 2017 is going to be a great year for me and has already showed a lot of promise.

I return back to the U.K for the foreseeable future next month (May) and it’s both an exciting and strange feeling. I have created so many incredible memories and a whole new life out here in the U.S, that makes it even harder to leave after meeting so many amazing people. I am excited to start my career as a golfer and my hope, is to return some day soon to the U.S to play my golf out here.

Thanks again for your continued support! You can see my previous results by clicking here.

Cheers,

Seb 👍🏼