Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Getting to Know: Andrew Harvie and His Quest for the PGA Tour

American Golfer: When did you start playing golf?
Andrew Harvie: I’ve kind of been playing all my life. My grandparents are big into golf, and both my parents are pretty good athletes, so we’d go hit balls from time to time or play three holes. I didn’t start actually playing consistently until age 12 or 13.

AG: How would you describe your collegiate career?
AH: I would say it was short lived, but a great learning experience. I went to two schools within a year, and while both schools are great, I didn’t really get what I was looking for, so I left to try and pursue pro golf the old fashioned way.

Andrew Harvie
AG: Describe a typical day in your life working toward the PGA Tour.
AH: I don’t have a set routine, but my days loosely follow the same pattern. I’ll get up, eat, then go practice and/or play, depending on the day. I’ll come home, do chores (those seem to never end) and eat again. Afternoon will be dedicated to my website and reading. If I don’t work that day, I’ll go practice again and if I didn’t play in the morning I’ll go play in the afternoon, and then I’ll come home and either hangout with friends or cool down time (which involves either The Office or Fortnite). I like to end the day with a run in the summer as well.

AG: In addition to golf, what else occupies your time?
AH: I do work full time, so between golf and working, I don’t have a ton of spare time. Anything extra is allotted to my website or my personal life.

AG: Do you pattern your game after any past or current professionals?
AH: I wouldn’t say I do, but I do use a lot of professionals as references. For example, Steve Stricker’s chipping technique is something I’ll watch if I’m struggling, or Peter Uhlien’s swing if I’m releasing the club too fast. Kelly Kraft is probably the swing I admire the most, though, and would like to get to something similar within he near future.

AG: How can the industry grow the game of golf?
AH: I think the biggest thing we can do to grow the game is come off as inviting to all. Golf comes off as very exclusive and elitist, and while that’s fine in some capacity, there needs to be more options to play.

Par 3 courses are great, as are shorter courses. We need more quality 9 hole courses too, because they tend to be cheaper and take less time. Some of those places could put an emphasis on fun, too. Bowling alleys have music playing, so why not have a 9 hole course with speakers scattered throughout the course so you have tunes bumping during your round?

Another good idea would be for private clubs and high-end public courses in the area to bring back caddie programs. Caddie programs are great for the community because it gets kids active, and most of them out there now give you access to the course. They learn the game of golf, meet people, and fall in love with it. It is making a comeback with resorts like Sand Valley, Cabot, Bandon, Streamsong etc, and a lot of high end private clubs do have caddies, but wouldn’t it be fun if one or two of the muni’s in your city had a caddie program that was $30 a bag (or something close to that) and you could walk instead of cart?

AG: What’s the most common mistake high-handicap golfers make on the course?
AH: I think the most common mistake high handicappers make is not developing a solid putting stroke. I see a lot of these players hit it ok, and chip it ok, but they never make anything. Putting is the one thing that literally anyone, whether you’re a 6 year old, 22 year old college student, 85 year old great grandma, whatever, anyone can be good at, and so few high handicappers have a sound stroke.

AG: What’s your “dream foursome” (living or dead, golfer or non-golfer)?
AH: Dream foursome for me would be Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Tom Doak. I don’t think you could have a more interesting grouping than that.

AG: What course tops your “bucket list” to play?
AH: I don’t really have one course that tops my list. The typical answer I guess would be Augusta National, Cypress Point or Pine Valley, but I actually have a bigger interest in courses with only a one or a handful of members. Places like Domaine LaForest in Quebec, Porcupine Creek in Palm Springs, James Island in British Columbia, The Institute in California or Morefar on the border of Connecticut and New York. All of those have no more than maybe five members, and those would be fun to check off.

AG: You’re a golf course design aficionado. What's your favorite course you've played and why?
AH: Right now my favorite course I’ve played is Pacific Dunes. The ocean helps, but the architecture is really solid. Tom Doak really used the land well, and it’s the first course I’ve played that I felt like there wasn’t a bad hole here.

AG: Do you have a Plan B if you don't become a Tour pro?
AH: No, I don’t. I could see myself doing a lot of other stuff, though, such as running a golf program, a club pro or trying to blog/write for a living, but as of right now I haven’t put much more than a passing thought into it!

Follow Andrew's quest for the PGA Tour at drewharvie.com.

1 comment:

lummot said...

Good review - will hopefully inspire a few more visits. Surprised to sense an initial reluctance to visit this track from such a well-travelled golfer! Please continue to review more courses like this
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