WINTER GARDEN, Fla. – Earning a PGA Tour card was highest on the priority list for every participant at Orange County National this week. But earning a full Nationwide Tour card still feels like a worthy accomplishment for some, even if they don’t reach the glitz and glam of the big circuit.
Australian Adam Blyth is a prime example. His final-round effort of even-par 72 was good enough to land at 2 under for the week and in a tie for 74th, good enough to earn full Nationwide Tour privileges next season – on the last qualifying number.
No bright lights of the PGA Tour next year for the Brisbane native, but having the opportunity to play in the States in 2011 on the Nationwide Tour is still cause for celebration.
“I’m just really, really, really happy right now,” Blyth said with a big grin and well-deserved beer in hand. “Obviously going into the week, you’re trying to get into the top 25. But America is where I want to be and getting my full Nationwide card was really the big goal for me.”
Considering the tough final-round weather conditions, on top of the mental rigors each player has had to endure, Blyth conceded to the highly-advertised difficulty of Q-School.
“This is just such a long, mental, grinding week, that you really see what you have inside,” he said. “I’m proud of myself for hanging in there. I didn’t have it with my long game these last two days but my short game really kept me in it.
“I was actually 3 over today after six holes, but I hung in there and I holed some massive putts on the back nine coming in. Almost don't know how I feel right now. It’s just great to be finished.”
Sentiments of many, to be sure.