Trevor Zeck Wins the 2003 Gems-Newton Cup
|Radium Resort, BC. Ė Walking up the 18th fairway Sunday,
Trevor Zeck started getting teary-eyed. He had a 3 shot lead on Dave
Lockhart and now this. Not now. There was unfinished business.
"He was getting a bit emotional and I just said, ĎItís OK,í" said his playing partner Rich Fontaine.
composure, Zeck three-putted from 50 feet but it was still enough to win the 4th
GNC at the 5200-yard, par-69 Radium Resort Country Club. Zeck fended off
runner-up Lockhart by three strokes, firing a 12 over 81 for a final
championship score of 306.
couldnít focus on the second putt [on No. 18]. I just wanted the
[championship] to be over," said Zeck. "Itís a wonderful feeling.
People are cheering for you. Itís a dream come true."
knocked in the four-footer for the last shot of the day, he embraced Fontaine.
After 1 top-10 finishes at the GNC, the sinewy 26 year old can finally
call himself a champion.
"I can get
used to it, thatís for sure," said Zeck. "There are a lot of great
players out there who havenít won the GNC, and itís an injustice to
"I guess Iím happy and sad. Obviously today was disappointing, but it
proved to myself that my golf game is good enough to handle the pressure and
handle the situation."
As he entered
the parking lot before his round, Zeck looked like a cool customer. He had
awakened at 7 a.m., yet realized he had an awful lot of time to kill. The nerves
had been with him like an unwanted uncle. Kirby Keks, who finished 425, walked
by on the putting green and said, "Good luck today, Z-Man." It was
like turning the key in an ignition. Zeck realized at that point he needed to
get off to a good start to expunge the anxiety.
And that he
the opening hole, Zeck was presented with his first test on No. 4, a par-4.
Caught in the right rough just outside of a greenside bunker, his 40-foot chip
nicked the front-left flagstick and scooted 20 feet to the back apron.
learned to putt cross-handed at age 7, had a gorgeous par-save by nailing the
putt to three quick fist pumps.
Lockhart had a
chance to slice off a stroke on the 480-yard par-5 6th with a birdie.
But Zeck wouldnít bend. Again caught in deep rough, he pitched out to 12 feet
of the hole. On the ensuing putt, a putt that had about two feet of break, the
ball crawled over a ridge, tilted and appeared to stop short. Until it fell in.
kept me at armís length all day," said Lockhart, who was little-known by
the young GNC field until this week.
"The early part of my day was the key part of the round. The second hole
was huge in getting up and down."
from players trailing Zeck failed to materialize, and Zeck was the only one in
didnít look at the leaderboard until the fifth or sixth hole," said Zeck.
On the back
nine, it was a case of cat-and-mouse between Lockhart and Zeck.. Zeck bogeyed
the 10th hole, but Lockhart couldnít take advantage. When Zeck
bogeyed the 12th, Lockhart again couldnít capitalize, remaining
four strokes back.
In a lighter
moment, a topless woman from the gallery bolted across the green on the 11th
hole just as Zeck was lining up a putt. She wanted to give him a flower, but he
wanted none of it.
375-yard, par-4 13th, which featured an elevated green and downwind to boot,
Lockhart knocked in an eight-footer. Zeck would bogey. It would be the closest
Lockhart would come to catching Zeck.
Asked at what
point during the round he was resigned to being the runner-up, Lockhart said on
No. 14, after he bogeyed the hole.
On the 17th
hole -- a 125-yard par 3 that had a slight elevated green Ė that Zeck became
unglued. "I was a mess at that point," he said.
pitching wedge, Zeck flew the green. The ball rested 45 feet away from the hole
in deep rough before he chipped within 10 feet of the hole. He sank his putt for
By the time
Zeck reached the 18th tee box, he was in a dream sequence. Thinking
wood of some sort on the 360-yarder, he placed a three-iron in his hands. It was
on his 150-yard approach that he would be overcome with emotion.
"I knew I
could pretty much do what I wanted," he said.
And he did.