Canstar Community News - ONLINE EDITION
Blind golf events provide trip of a lifetime
The little white ball didn’t always co-operate, but Victor Goetz came back from the Canadian and world blind golf championships with a smile on his face.
Goetz, the provincial champion, was in Nova Scotia in mid-July for both events, which were held back-to-back.
He finished 25th in the national event, played at the Mountain Golf Club in Halifax, and followed that up with a 33rd-place finish in the world championship at Truro Golf Club.
The Canadian event was open to competitors from across the world, many of whom decided, like Goetz, to play in both events. Fifteen countries were represented in the events, giving Goetz a chance to play alongside golfers from the Netherlands, England and Ireland.
"I know I could have played better," said the North Kildonan resident. "But even pros come to tournaments and don’t make the cut. (Phil) Mickelson didn’t make the cut at the British Open.
"Some days you shoot lousy but have a great score, and some days you hit it perfect and have a lousy score."
Goetz’s regular coach, Juergen Werner, was unable to make the trip to the Maritimes, so Goetz’s wife, Pam, was called into duty. In blind golf, the coach acts as the player’s eyes, describing the shot at hand and helping the player with their alignment. Pam had coached Goetz in the past, and the golfer said it wasn’t much of an adjustment.
What was an adjustment was playing a pair of tricky golf courses with enough water and sand to pass for a beach.
"I was in eight or nine bunkers one day," Goetz said with a laugh.
He described the experience as "unbelievable" and said he treated it as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. The Manitoba Blind Sports Association helped with travel costs, and, Goetz added, does a lot to enable visually impaired people to participate in golf.
The next world championships will be held in Australia in two years, and he isn’t expecting to make the trip.
"If it’s ever in Canada again, it’s possible I would go there," he said.
Late last week Goetz was preparing for another competition closer to home. The Western Canadian championships were played in Warren, Man., from Aug. 6 to 8.
(1 of 5 articles for this week)05/22/2013 1:00 AM 0
Must Have Menus
Ads by Google