By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
NEWTOWN SQUARE, Pa. -- Patrick Cantlay’s summer vacation -- if you can call being on the road for five straight weeks a vacation -- will come to an end of sorts after this week’s AT&T National, where he is in the field on a sponsor exemption.
Along the way he’s had some pretty memorable experiences: Receiving the Jack Nicklaus Award as the nation’s top collegiate player, finishing as the low amateur in the U.S. Open, shooting a course-record 60 at the Travelers Championship.
Those experiences have continued here at Aronimink, where earlier in the week the 19-year-old soon-to-be UCLA sophomore was asked for his autograph.
“First time I ever signed an autograph where someone brought my picture up that I signed on my own picture,” Cantlay said Wednesday. “That was a little shocking.
“Other than that, I'm just learning the golf course just like every other week and trying to get real comfortable out there and have a good week.”
This week, it will be just Cantlay and his caddie on the road with his parents having gone home and his coach from UCLA doing the same after Wednesday. It’s the longest Cantlay has gone without being home.
But after the AT&T he’ll finally get a break -- sort of. Cantlay will play the Southern California Amateur, July 8-10, then will take a couple of weeks off before teeing it up at the Western Amateur and then the U.S. Amateur and eventually the Walker Cup.
So what’s been the most memorable experience of it all?
”The back nine I played at the U.S. Open Friday was really special for me, and then obviously the 60 I shot last week,” said Cantlay, whose scorecard from that record-setting round in Hartford is on its way to the World Golf Hall of Fame. “I'll remember those two moments forever.”