Covering golf, at every level and on every tour, in 2020 was unlike anything our writers have experienced. Through the end of the year, our staff is looking back on what will forever stand out from the season of COVID – a season during which every aspect of the game we love was impacted by a global pandemic. Read the whole series here.
At this time last year, I couldn’t have been happier.
I spent 2019 traveling the country week after week, talking to incredible people and telling their stories along the way with a little golf mixed in here and there.
Coming in to 2020, I had a similar busy travel schedule on the books, but my sights were set on Bandon Dunes, host of the U.S. Amateur. I had it all planned out: cover the tournament for a week, then take some much-needed time off and play every course the resort has to offer. Sounds like the perfect business-meets-pleasure trip, right?
The first event on my schedule this year was in Las Vegas in late February. After that, I didn’t travel to cover tournament golf again all year. When the pandemic hit and furloughs began, it really rattled me. I hated not working. I even missed transcribing interviews. At my core I was truly just happy to still have a job while millions lost theirs, but keeping that perspective in the moment was tough.
As the spring turned to summer and golf tournaments slowly returned, two things were becoming clear: The U.S. Amateur was still going to be played, but I wouldn’t be making the trip out west to cover it. The silver lining? That opened my schedule to drive up the road to the U.S. Women’s Amateur the week prior, held at Woodmont Country Club in Rockville, Maryland.
— Adam Woodard (@AdamWoodard) August 5, 2020
That week – as Rose Zhang defeated defending champion Gabriela Ruffels in extra holes in the final match – made me fall in love with the game of golf all over again. I forgot how much I loved to watch the best athletes compete in person (from a safe six-foot distance, of course). Almost every interaction was positive. From the players and their coaches and families to the volunteers and USGA staff on-site who made it possible, everyone involved was just happy to be there and not at home.
More importantly, it was a much-needed reminder of how lucky I am to have a job where my sole objective is to provide entertaining content for people who love the game of golf just as much as I do.
Oh yeah, I also learned how to (somewhat) control my driver in 2020. So that’s fun.
original article link https://golfweek.usatoday.com/2020/12/26/2020-covid-year-usga-womens-amateur-travel/