The PGA Tour Qualifying Tournament seperates the champions from the mere mortals. It launches the careers of future legends and serves crushing blows to past stars looking for one more chance. Every fall, more than a thousand veterans and talented hopefuls sweat through three phases of hell in the Q school, as the tournament is universally known, vying for the 30 slots available on the PGA Tour. It is a test all but a handful of the most brilliant players have to endure, and it's not just another tournament in which a player can try again next week if he misses the cut. At Q school, a bad round or the wrong mind-set means you're out for the year.
Q School occurs below the media radar, yet it is the most tense moment of any golfer's life. Former Masters champion Larry Mize is just one of the players who ended up at Q School in 2005, playing against both older hopefuls and up-and-comers the same age as his children - all looking for that one-in-a-million chance during that veteran Donnie Hammond calls "a really big four-day funeral." Mize's story, and those of dozens of his lucky and unlucky fellow competitors, makes for riveting listening in a setting where a year, a career,or a life can hang on a single shot.
John Freinstein tells the stories of the players who competed for the coverted PGA Tour positions in the 2005 Q School and the powerful lessons they learned about the game and themselves along the way. With arresting accounts from established winners, rising stars, the defeated, and the endlessly hopeful, America's favourite sports writer unearths the inside story behind the PGA's brutal all-or-nothing compeition.
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