Na wins a match … and offers away a automotive

FORT WORTH, Texas – The worst automotive that veteran caddie Kenny Harms ever owned was a inexperienced 1973 Chevy Camaro. He paid $200 for it and shortly nicknamed it the Putty Field as a result of that’s the fabric he saved utilizing to repair the rust.

On Sunday, Harms grew to become the proprietor of one other automotive inbuilt 1973. This one’s significantly extra precious … and positively extra vital, because it comes courtesy of his man Kevin Na, who romped to a four-shot victory on the Charles Schwab Problem.

Among the many perks for successful at Colonial are a plaid jacket, the Texas-sized Leonard trophy, a everlasting spot on the Wall of Champions and a hefty examine. This yr, one other perk was added – a 1973 blue Dodge Challenger to commemorate the yr the Charles Schwab firm was based.

It’s a singular prize, one which Na remembers listening to about months in the past. Harms was equally conscious of it too, and through a latest promotional piece on the automotive for the Caddie Community, he had a message for Na: “You wouldn’t actually look so nice on this however I’ll. I ought to I get the automotive for those who win.”

Then on Tuesday through the observe spherical, they noticed the Challenger sitting simply off the 10th fairway.

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“Kevin, that’s my automotive, proper?” Harms stated.

“Yeah, if I win, I’ll give it to you,” replied Na.

“BOOM!” Harms stated as he retold the story on the 18th inexperienced at Colonial, the trophy presentation having simply accomplished. “Fairly good for a caddie.”

Mentioned Na: “I don’t know the way my caddie satisfied me to offer him the automotive, however he’s an excellent salesman I assume. He offered me into it. However I’m very happy to offer it to him. He deserves it.”

“I received one thing cooler proper right here.”

Na then patted the Leonard Trophy, which stands 42 inches tall and weighs 55 kilos, making it one of many greatest trophies on TOUR. It’s one he’s lengthy coveted – and one he lengthy imagined successful, even perhaps anticipating to in some unspecified time in the future.

Colonial is without doubt one of the few programs on the PGA TOUR that Na thinks matches his shot-maker’s recreation. It’s not overly lengthy, it rewards precision, and several other of the holes play to his strengths. “I feel numerous my attracts work out right here,” stated Na, who moved to 27th within the FedExCup standings.

He additionally referred to as it a second-shot-in golf course, noting {that a} majority of well-struck tee photographs find yourself in the identical spot within the fairway. “It’s about how good you may hit it with the irons and the way nicely you may putt,” stated Na, whose career-low 61 got here right here final yr, and who shot a 62 on Friday to leap into competition. “I’m a reasonably good participant fairway in.”

He was greater than good on Sunday, hitting 14 of 18 greens and making a number of key putts. Beginning the day with a two-stroke lead, Na birdied three of his first six holes – together with a 33-foot putt on the fourth — then bounced again from his first bogey with one other birdie from 20 toes on the par-Three eighth.

Na, identified for strolling in putts, form of side-walked this one, then pumped his first. Just a few steps later, he smiled for the primary time in his spherical. Nobody would catch him on this present day. He ultimately completed at 13 below, and his 4-under 66 was exceeded by just one participant Sunday, Russell Knox’s 65.

“A well-deserved win this week,” stated Tony Finau, his closest pursuer at 9 below.

Rather less than a yr in the past, Na received at The Greenbrier. It was his second TOUR win however his first in 158 begins. Na stated the drought lasted so lengthy – regardless of a number of shut calls – that he questioned if he would ever win once more.

He’s not questioning any extra. Though he appears like there are simply seven or eight programs he can legitimately contend it – which will clarify why he had only one top-10 this season coming into this week — Na is now changing these alternatives.

“I really feel like this week was the subsequent probability at a win, subsequent time I legitimately might contend – and I received,” Na stated. “I felt a lot extra comfy. Had a lot extra confidence. I feel me successful Greenbrier final yr has clearly taken numerous stress off.”

“There may be at all times stress, but it surely’s taken numerous the load off, weight off my shoulders. I feel it helped me at this time.”

Harms – who has been on Na’s bag for the reason that finish of the 2008 season when he jumped off Hale Irwin’s bag – has seen the distinction.

“Ever since his win at Greenbrier, that was the primary time I truly noticed a calmness to him that each one the greats have in golf,” Harms stated. “I can inform when he’s nervous. I by no means actually noticed any nervousness from him at this time.”

Till this week, 2019 had not gone all that easily. A finger damage compelled him to withdraw from the Sentry Event of Champions and sidelined him for a month. A neck damage at Valspar additionally slowed him down. Then there are programs that merely don’t serve him nicely, like final week at Bethpage Black when he didn’t make the lower.

However Colonial will at all times be a particular place for him. Simply earlier than beginning his spherical Sunday, he seemed on the Wall of Champions subsequent to the No. 1 teebox and famous the engraved identify of final yr’s winner, Justin Rose. Then he seemed on the empty spot just under it.

“In my head, I engraved my identify in it,” Na stated.

He received’t have to visualise any longer. Subsequent time he arrives at Colonial, his identify will probably be there, alongside all the opposite winners, together with four-time champ Ben Hogan.

The ’73 Dodge Challenger, although, is not going to be in his storage. Harms stated he has ample room in his personal storage, proper subsequent to his 911 Porsche Carrera.

However don’t really feel too unhealthy for Na. Requested if he owned a automotive that would race the Challenger, he cracked a smile.

“I received a Lamborghini at residence.”

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