Brendon Todd does not sweeten it. He had the yips, he knows, and (almost) ruined his career.
The 34-year-old became the comeback story of the weekend when he made seven birdies in a row in the first nine and ended up shooting 62 on Sunday, winning the Bermuda Championship by four.
It was an exceptional day for Todd. Until Sunday, his only other victory at the PGA Tour was at the Byron Nelson in 2014, but the following year he shot him and ended up obsessing him for several seasons and almost derailed his career completely. He talked about that, and the screams, during his winner's press conference on Sunday night.
"I think it was the third hole of Saturday's round in the (2015) BMW," said Todd. "I was not very happy with how I hit him a few weeks before, so my teacher, Scott Hamilton, and I changed my swing and closed the face of the stick, and started hitting it really well." I got to the BMW there in Conway Farms, I think I shot 68-63, 11 less and I was in the last group with Jason Day and maybe Alex Noren. I really can't remember who the third one was. It was obviously a great moment for me. I had gotten used to it. I was playing very well, I spent a couple of years. Just for one reason or another, I hit this iron four, it was the fourth hole, I hit 50 yards to the right, like past the bushes, in another set of thrusts and I made a 7. It just shook me a little.
"And then the shot continued to reappear throughout the fall schedule," Todd continued. “I mean, I lost golf balls, I was hitting dangers and hitting well. Much of that was mental, in part it was the fact that I changed my swing and basically fought that scary yip feeling everything & # 39; 16. And even if I had a tournament where I didn't hit him, I was so afraid of hitting him that I hit him on the left and splintered and set my way to 72 and missed a thousand cuts. "
From 2016 to 2018, Todd lost 39 of 44 cuts. He said it didn't matter which teacher he worked with because he was not giving himself the free time he thinks he needed, free time to calm his mind.
"For some reason, I just couldn't understand what it was," he said.
At the end of the 2018 season, a season in which he lost the cut in his six starts at the PGA Tour, Todd began working with Bradley Hughes. He took six weeks off and worked on exercises in his basement. It was around that time that Caddy Ward Jarvis approached him. Jarvis told Todd that he was a stutterer and that he suffers the same mental crises as him. He recommended a book by Rick Ankiel, a former MLB pitcher and gardener.
Ankiel was a young and talented pitcher with a fast ball and a deadly deadly ball that came with the St. Louis Cardinals, but in the 2000 National League Division Series he threw five wild pitches in the third inning of Game 1 against the Braves from Atlanta. At his next start in the National League Championship Series against the New York Mets, he struggled again with his control and was unable to leave the first inning. Ankiel was sent to the minor leagues the following season and then had to reinvent himself as a gardener, which turned into a second race.