The best week of the life of Michael Block
ROCHESTER | He has performed with Rory McIlroy, Justin Rose, Taylor Pendrith and Hayden Buckley. While navigating the Oak Hill course, he chatted with Jim Nantz on CBS during prime time in the United States. He had a spectacular hole-in-one in the final round. In his fairy tale, he scored three rounds of 70 (H) and finished 15th in the PGA Championship of America. Without a doubt, Michael Block said he had the best week of his life.
Unknown when he arrived in Rochester last Monday, the 46-year-old quickly became a darling of the tournament curtain-raiser crowd. The only New York spectators literally adopted it and made it an unforgettable moment.
Not only by his game, but rather by his authenticity and his love of the game. Every minute of his adventure, the golf gods have spoiled him. Fans chanted his name treating him like a real rockstar.
Block would never have believed that he would have a bit of a chat with Nantz. Although confident in his abilities, he never thought he would live such an experience in Oak Hill after four career appearances at the PGA Championship which ended on Friday evening. One had to observe his many significant reactions throughout his exploits. He was shot straight to the heart.
The proof: after his final putt on the 72nd hole, good for a 71 (+1) card, he hugged McIlroy and returned to the the green. He pointed at the spectators in a full pivot and he beat his heart to the chants, shouts and warm applause. The stage was worth its weight in gold for the great story of this 105th edition of the championship.
Block is not among the world's golf elite. He is the pro of the Arroyo Trabuco club, located south of Anaheim in California. All week long, he teaches the basics of his sport to clients. It's his life. It is not that of running tournaments all over the United States. But it is able to compete with the best.
In the final round of the PGA Championship of America, Michael Block played with none other than Rory McIlroy, the 2012 and 2014 champion and world star in the world of golf.
In the third round of the PGA Championship of America, Michael Block was accompanied by Justin Rose, one of his favorite golfers. He said that it took him a few holes before chasing his shyness in the face of the Englishman who was impressed by his game.
His biggest check< /p>
His last putt putting a gigantic exclamation mark on his dream week earned him nearly $300,000. This is his biggest career check. And by far!
“I pocketed $75,000 at the National Club Professional Championship in 2014. Previously, it was a check for $4,500 at the California Open”, s is remembered the man who cashed a total of $38,000 at the 24 PGA Tour events in which he participated in his career.
Down to earth< /p>
In Oak Hill, he could have let himself be disturbed by his sudden popularity and swell his head. He did not fall into this trap. Why?
“You don't know my wife, he replied jokingly to the Journal's question. She can keep anyone down to earth. She is an Argentine with Italian roots. She has a big character and a lot of personality. She tells me things no one wants to hear. So she keeps me with both feet on the ground.”
On a beast as fearsome as the East course of Oak Hill, “Blocky” also felt comfortable. Without applying undue pressure, he took his foot. He told his story with pride and philosophy.
“I am natural. It's part of the personality of a club pro. You have to manage 600 different personalities. You have a lawyer telling you how to grow grass and an accountant telling you that his burger patty isn't cooked properly, he joked.
“We have to deal with that. So you can then manage anything, ”added the one who has been applying Mrs. Block’s advice for a long time. Either that of remaining natural and true to itself.
Throughout his adventure, Block savored the moment. He wanted to have fun. Saturday night, after his grueling round in the pouring rain and a slog of interviews, he ate at a pub near the course. Both inside and outside the ropes, he remained the same.
“I just want to have fun. Everyone has been with me. I had a good time. I am a member of the PGA of America who loves his sport more than anything.
“I am completely blown away by this experience at the championship, chained the one who rewrote the book of pro records from club to championship. I'm also surprised by my game. I succeeded and it gives me confidence for the future.”
Every moment counts
A top 15 finish gives him access to next year's PGA Championship in Valhalla, Kentucky.
No matter when it's time for retirement, Block will remember of this week in Oak Hill as one of the most beautiful of his career.
“I learned to savor every experience, because life passes so quickly. It will probably be the most of my life.”
The one where the world of golf will have discovered a sincere and authentic man. And the one where the lover of his sport will have evolved alongside the greatest in the profession, surpassing 139 of them at the finish line.