AmericaKyle Berkshire, a two-time world long distance champion, finished T43 at the minor pro in Florida.

Berkshire competed for the Minor League Tour, with only 18 holes on the par71 field on January 13. He hit 76 strokes, finished T43 with +5 while championship score -7. That round, Berkshire “break even” in the first half of the field, later breaking the game with three bogeys and double bogeys. He suffered the heaviest damage on the 12th hole, in the three-hole par5 group that can earn negative points from his forte in long range.

“This tournament, I didn’t have control of my power, so many passes or didn’t reach the green. The ability to solve the situation after that was also not good. However, this is a big step in my career because I am an expert in the field. I believe my performance will improve in the coming tournaments and there will come a time when I will be able to play well in both the distance and the traditional field,” Berkshire said on Golf Channel after the test in Florida.

Kyle Berkshire at the coronation at the 2019 world broadcasting championship. Photo: AP

It was the 25-year-old Berkshire’s first professional game. In college, he was a famous player in the American school golf village. But after graduating, Berkshire focused on practicing long distance and then won the World Long Drive Championship (WLDC) 2019. The 2020 competition was canceled because of Covid-19. Later that year, Berkshire passed Golf Digest revealed the plan to play traditional professional golf, choosing the PGA Tour as the destination.

Last October, Berkshire held the WLDC for the second time, with a record of 422 yards, six yards more than the 2019 victory (1 yard = 0.9 meters). At his first coronation, he set a world record for ball speed – approximately 367 km/h. Last month, he raised this index to 375.6 km/h.

Berkshire is close to Bryson DeChambeau, three years younger. For the past two years, the two have often exchanged tips on training far away. DeChambeau broadcast the most recent two PGA Tour seasons. In the 2020-2021 season, he averaged 323.7 yards, 1.6 yards more than last season.

DeChambeau also tried at WLDC 2021 but stopped in the quarterfinals despite passing the 390 yard mark. The golfer is ranked eighth in the world, has won eight titles, including the major US Open, and has earned more than $26 million over five years on the PGA Tour.

Quoc Huy


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