Blair pulled his father out of the gallery on the 18th and final hole on Sunday, June 15 to wrap up an improbable run at the Pinehurst golf course in North Carolina that began when Blair won a satellite qualifier in Oregon, continued when he barely made the cut for the final rounds at the US Open and finished only after he shot a 71 for his last 18 holes.
Blair's US Open was something that Jimmy experienced himself back in 1981. So for Jimmy to have his son Zac make America’s classic as a young pro--something that Jimmy did--added to the moment. And to have Jimmy caddy the 18th hole on Father’s Day at one of the country’s most picturesque golf courses? Well, you can see from the Vine that the gesture touched his dad--who then strutted onto the hallowed green like the proud papa he was.
Blair finished in 40th place, nine strokes behind the winner, German wunderkind Martin Paymer. But in many ways, this tournament--and the story of the tournament--had to be Blair, a 23-year-old who literally had a snowball’s chance in sunny Oregon of qualifying for and making the final cut at the US Open. And he did both, etching his name in the history books--even if he never competes at another major.
Blair ended the US Open just as he began it--playing steady, solid golf without taking unnecessary risks. A first round 71 was followed by a second-round, peril-filled 74 that barely got him into the final rounds. He shot a little better than that in his third round, going for 73.
So when Blair wrapped up the US Open with a 71, it all seemed like his first PGA Tour event--and he--had come full circle. Blair had arrived on the scene, showing all of his 23 young and wise years as he and his father stood on the 18th. Sure, he had a handful of bogeys--and even a triple bogey--to go with mostly solid golfing.
But he played like he belonged with the best at the venerable Pinehurst No. 2 golf course. And with a score of four on the par-four 18th on Sunday, the days of playing decent on PGA Tour Latinoamericana and not making the cut on the PGA Tour Canada might soon be a figment of even Blair's imagination.