The Players Championship is known as the fifth major among the golf community. The name alone immediately strikes emotions and memories to golfers of all skill level. The Players Championship challenges the world’s best golfers every year, on one of the most famous golf courses in the world. Mention the TPC at Sawgrass to any golf fan and immediately their mind pictures the infamous par 3 number 17. Arguably the most famous par 3, each year thousands attend in person and millions watch on TV as the world’s best are humbled by a shot that typically requires no more than a 9 iron from the tee. PGA professionals are quoted admitting the par 3 number 17 is the easiest shot a touring professional can face 361 days a year. Add the arena type seating surrounding the island green, and even the world’s best fall to the pressure. After successfully or unsuccessfully completing the 17th hole, the intimidation is far from over. The lengthy par 4 number 18 tests the nerves one more time as the players hit one of the most intimidating tee shots they will see all year. Miss right and a play to the green becomes nearly impossible, miss to the left and your ball will be taking a bath in the lake. The pressure of the finishing holes and drama that inevitably unfolds draws the attention of golf fans year after year.
This year, with 3 holes left to play Matt Kuchar held the lead as he entered the par 5 number 16 of TPC Sawgrass. The par 5 plays as a shorter than tour average par 5, and is a good opportunity to grab a shot before heading into the finishing holes. After Kuchar’s pitched his third shot well short of the flag, everyone began running through the possible ending scenarios of youngster Rickie Fowler one group ahead possibly forcing a playoff. The year before, K.J. Choi and David Toms entered a playoff which begins on the dreaded par 3 number 17. As Kuchar lined up the lengthy putt, Rickie Fowler took aim on his birdie opportunity across the pond on 17 to move within 1 shot of Kuchar. The crowd roared as Rickie drained his putt and the lead shortened. Moments later however, Kuchar fought off the nerves and drained his lengthy birdie putt on 16 to maintain his two shot lead. Finishing with a safe shot on the island 17 that led to a par, and a 2-shot 2-putt par on 18; Kuchar claimed his trophy and title as the 2012 Players Champion.
All golf fans are familiar with the available drama and excitement that comes with the TPC Stadium course at Sawgrass. Many are unaware the resort hosts another Pete Dye design masterpiece known as Dye’s Valley. In addition to the top ranked courses, the facilities at TPC are world class lodging and amenities by Marriott. While less than 1% of the world will get the chance to play in The Players Championship, everyone has the opportunity to play the famed TPC Stadium Course home of The Players Championship year after year. You can test your skills on golf’s grand stage and have lifetime memories and stories to tell your golfing partners on how you did on the island hole number 17. Playing the TPC Stadium Course and the island number 17 isn’t your typical story about a shot you hit on vacation last year at a random nice resort golf course. Those stories are heard over and over again, and trust me your friends may entertain the story, but they will quickly move on from remembering. The island hole number 17 however is a hole that every golfer is familiar with, they remember Sean O’Hair losing the tournament hitting it in the water. They remember Freddy Couples putting one in the water, re-teeing and putting it in the hole for the unlikely par.
Right now, you can live the TPC Sawgrass vacation experience for under $350. This price includes a round on Dye’s Valley course upon arrival, one night stay in the Marriott, and a round the following day on the Stadium course. This is an opportunity to not be passed up. During peak season a single round on the Stadium course could cost you in excess of the $350. Grab some friends and take advantage of this incredible offer. Then during your routine foursome, you’ll answer the question that everyone wants to know….”What’d you do on 17?”
For more information and to book your package click here and visit the Tour Academy