'I have seven exemptions in the U.S., but it will be very hard to do,' said Flanagan about his effort to secure his PGA Tour card for the 2005 season. 'Tiger Woods did it and one or two others.'
Flanagan, the son of a coal mine electrician and a grocery store clerk, wasnt much of a golfer until one of the most inspirational moments in golf history became his most influential.
I watched the 1997 Masters ' its what got me started playing, he said about Tiger Woods' historic victory. That was the first golf tournament I ever watched on TV.
Flanagan beat Casey Wittenberg in 37 holes last fall at Oakmont Country Club. The U.S. Amateur champion is given exemption into the Masters, the U.S. Open and the British Open the following year after winning the title.
Ernie (Els) asked me when I was turning pro. Its good to hear from guys like that, top 20 players in the world, Flanagan said.
He told me what he thought was probably the best thing for me to do. I just said to him, I just want to see if I can go out here and compete with these guys, and Ernie said that Im right there at the moment.
For someone like that to say that at this time is pretty amazing.