Inside Comments: Steve Turcotte

Chambers Bay might be a tough walk for one round, but how about a 54-hole walk?

When Jim Moore is on the radio at 710 ESPN Seattle, he always seems to back up his talk. Makes an on-air bet with a fellow co-host, he will pay up when he loses. Makes a stupid comment and can’t back it up, will take the heat.

But one day, while hosting his weekly golf show on 710 ESPN with co-host Shon Crewe, he might have gone too far. While interviewing Dean Davison, who was putting on a First Tee fundraiser at Chambers Bay, Moore agreed to play in the 54-hole Solstice event.

Fifty-four holes? In one day? At Chambers Bay? I have played with Moore at Chambers Bay and both of us barely survived 18 holes walking. I thought he was nuts. Moore thought he was nuts.

But there he was on a Sunday in July at Chambers Bay at 5:30 a.m. – yes that’s 5:30 in the a.m. – getting ready to hit his first shot before the sun was even up. Moore, along with 100 other golfers, were ready to walk 54 holes to raise money for the First Tee of Seattle.

As Moore walked toward the 17th green at Chambers Bay before the sun even had shone itself, he wondered what the hell was he thinking.

“I thought it sounded like a cool idea – a way to get into shape,” said Moore. “I had no idea what I was getting into.”

Moore played Davison and long-time friend Jack Carlson. They shared plenty of stories along the way, but Moore was also able to create a couple of new stories during his play.

On the 14th hole during his first 18-hole round, Moore decided to let his push cart have a mind of its own. The 14th is a downhill dogleg par-4 where Moore thought the cart would roll itself to his tee shot. He thought wrong. The cart picked up speed, veered left and with Moore running after it, you can picture what happened next. The cart crashed into a bunker, sending sand all over the clubs and his beef jerky. When he got home, the cart wouldn’t collapse like it is supposed to so he now has to take a hammer to it to make it work.

With nine holes left in the day, Moore’s three kids Steven, Michael and Brooke showed up to walk with their dad. With three holes left, Moore hit a tee shot to 8-feet on the 15th hole and wanted to show his kids what a golfer their dad was by making birdie. Moore called over to caddy Dave Hall for a read on the putt. Dave gave him a read two cups to the left. Moore thought it was the other way but he went with the caddy. Bad move. The putt wasn’t even close. Sorry kids. On the next tee box Moore gave the caddy a bad time but then the caddy came clean and said he read the green book upside down.

When Moore reached in and pulled the ball out of his final hole 8:30 p.m. and he had survived, despite the 83-degree weather. The final numbers were somewhat impressive too: He shot rounds of 85-90-90, including a 41 on his final nine. He played in 15 hours, took 265 strokes, walked 53,497 steps and put in over 22 miles on knees that won’t let him run anymore – only walk.

Would he do it again? For sure. He gets to play the game he loves and help raise money for a great cause. You can also hear Moore and Crewe on their weekly Saturday morning golf show at 9:00 on 710 ESPN Seattle every week.

Steve Turcotte is editor of Inside Golf Newspaper. He can be reached at sdturcotte@comcast.net.