The Valspar Championship Becoming A Pinnacle PGA Tournament
Picture yourself as a professional golfer on the PGA Tour. It’s a quiet, cool, Saturday morning, and you’re about to tee off. Your name and hometown are called before your first stroke.
You drive the ball just before the sandtrap on the first hole. Is this Augusta National? Nope. Is it Bay Hill? Geographically, you are getting warmer.
It’s Copperhead Course at Innisbrook in Palm Harbor, Florida. Home to the Valspar Championship. You’ve made the cut, and about to embark on an epic journey.
Sadly none of the individuals who work for Eagle Vision play on the PGA Tour, but a few of us were able to attend the Valspar Championship this year. Here is a recap of the tournament from the perspective of three sub-par golf (not in the good sub-par way of golf) enthusiasts.
The Valspar Championship is shaping up to become one of the pinnacle golf tournaments of the PGA Tour. It is great practice in time for the first major of the year.
Whether you’re a professional golfer or a spectator, this course will challenge you. The elevation changes a lot, the water is plentiful, and let’s not forget about the dreaded Snake Pit.
Eagle Vision’s story begins with a ride to the Valspar Championship around 8:30 in the morning. Fortunately, Bobby’s girlfriend was kind enough to give us a ride to the event. She’s a saint for putting up with all of our talk about our love for Tiger.
After unloading our pockets of all the dangerous gum and external battery packs for security, we are waved with those magic metal detecting wands, and then we scan our tickets.
We started our day on the third hole waiting for Matt Kuchar and Adam Scott to pass through. We snagged a couple of photos, even though we’re not supposed to do that.
Adam Scott putting for par
After that, we decided to take our company photo. Now I may look super short, but that’s just the hill we were standing on.
Eagle Vision Company Photo
At this point, Bobby, Sean, and myself were getting a little thirsty. What better way to quench that golf thirst than grabbing an ice cold beer?
We were smart to purchase our Hooters Owl’s Nest tickets months in advance. Apparently they sold out for Saturday and Sunday, and they were re-selling for as much as $400. Thanks Tiger!
With these tickets we have access to the Hooters tent, which has unlimited Budweiser beer products, a view of the 12th green, and the 13th tee. It also comes with limited covered seating for those trying to eat their six free wings.
After a couple team chugs and a little wandering, Kuch and Adam Scott approached the 12th green. We sat down with our wings, beer, and watched the towering 6’ 4” pro sink his par putt.
We’re on the move again. This time with purpose.
Tiger is practicing, and we all decide to check that out. But first, if there is one photo we need to get before we leave, it’s the infamous “Snake Pit” photo.
Sean’s About to be Eaten
We’re off to the putting green to see the person who, and I’m quoting a random old guy, “had to order another 90 sh*thouses when he said he was playing.” Yes, we are talking about Tiger.
Rocking his stunning pink polo with a grey pullover, he lines up for some practice putts.
After about 12 minutes of watching him and Keegan Bradley putt, it was time for a refill. The time is currently 12:40 in the afternoon.
We start to wander, only to find the Chick-Fil-A tent. Who can say no to free Chick-Fil-A?
We wait in line for free customized cows, and a chance at winning big with our putting skills.
Look at that backswing…
Just for the record, there are six holes to hit on this practice putting surface. Bobby and Sean did not hit a single one of them with two shots. I was the only one to sink the putt, and on the first try mind you.
But back to the Valspar Championship. We head back to the Owl’s Nest for a refill, and at this point the sound of the Hooters tent has grown tremendously.
Early on in the day, the volume was at a nice whisper. Now that the Hooters girls have fed a surplus of beer into these patrons, it’s starting to get a little rowdy.
To paint a visual (Valspar pun intended), it’s roughly similar to the patrons when Happy Gilmore joined the tour, minus the beer bongs. They may be a little better dressed, but they are just as rowdy.
After an hour in the tent, we grab two road beers, and start to head out… only to find out you can only leave with one beer…
We fixed that quick.
We were off to hole eight to watch Tiger. He’s about three holes away, but since it’s him, you have to camp out for a while just to see him.
As he approaches, everyone pulls out their phones to snap a picture of the wild Tiger, including yours truly.
Spoiler: He got a par
After watching him on the eighth green, we walked back to the Owl’s Nest for more refreshments, and to wait for Tiger’s arrival.
He came and left, along with huge crowds. This is around the time they started cutting off the beer. This was our queue to leave the Owl’s Nest and continue to follow Tiger.
We catch up with him on the 17th tee. His backswing is still majestic.
Painting the picture…
Overall, this was a great experience. We got to see how poorly Bobby and Sean putt for free food, how fast our friend Chris can chug a beer, and a sloppy drunk guy in overalls falling asleep while standing up.
On a serious note, minus all the craziness from the fans, the Valspar Championship is shaping up to be a continuing stop for some of the biggest names in golf. If they can get past the Snake Pit without getting bit, they can put up some serious points for the FedEx Cup.
For more comical, informational blog posts, keep an eye on our blog. And while we love to talk about everything golf, remember we provide free golf course flyovers from around the country so you can preview courses before you play them.