If you see Dave Carr, the longtime Director of Instruction at Sacramento's Teal Bend Golf Club, actually play golf, you like the guy instantly without knowing why. His swing isn't classic or classy; just effective. He's not flashy; just effective. Not cocky; just damn good. And, oh yeah, he knows he can beat you and thinks he can still beat tour players, because he's beaten demons in his life far bigger than a a guy with a hot putter on the back nine on Sunday.
As a high schooler Carr was a golfing prodigy. Won everything. With ease. Beat everybody, but not everything. Not certain substances. Let's just call them the substances of youth, which eventually derailed the promise of a young man's tour dreams.
But then again some things just take longer. Like a ballgame that goes into extra innings, eventually, Carr beat back the demons, got his life on solid ground and qualified for the Canadian Tour in 2002. By that time though he had a family that depended on him. Although he drew love and strength from that support, love isn't what's green in your wallet. As well as being away from loved ones, when they are your rock, is not easy.
No problem. Dave came home, went back to work at Teal Bend and qualified for the 2004 U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills. He missed the cut. No problem again, he's built a solid teaching resume and body of students at Teal Bend. Besides, there were Northern California PGA events to compete in.
Now, at age 46, he won the NCPGA Player of the Year for 2013 competing against his fellow club pro's. Consistency, or shall we call it "balance," was the hallmark of his game. In 13 events he finished seventh or better in 11 of them. He took third at the Match Play Championship and fourth at the Stroke Play Championship.
So what did that get him? A spot in the upcoming AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am in February.
Also, it got him a spot in last month's Frys.com Open just outside of San Jose where he missed the cut by a stroke but birdied his last two holes coming down the stretch. Summing up his round he said, "I'm glad I was able to finish strong."
Congratulations to Dave Carr, 2013 Northern California PGA, Player of the Year. Carr proves that you can miss the cut and still be a winner!