(Editor’s Note: Throughout the Bridgestone Invitational, pro golfer Rickie Fowler is teaming up with the Beacon Journal’s Bob Dyer to write a daily column. This is the fourth installment in their series.)
During Saturday’s round, I may have hit the longest drive of my career.
I crushed one on No. 16. The shot-tracker pegged it at 415 yards.
I finally hit it in the right spot. The fairway has a little bit of slope, and if you put it down the right side, it will keep going.
Keegan Bradley hit one down there 442 yards on Friday, and Bubba Watson did the same on Saturday.
When I’m trying to hit it long, I make sure I have good balance and good rhythm throughout the first part of the swing to set up the building of power and the ability to release it properly.
I never swing 100 percent on a golf course, especially in competition. At home, messing around, maybe on a driving range, I might reach back and really take a lash at one. But the most you’ll see from me is 90 percent.
Saturday’s round of 69 was certainly better than Friday’s.
On Friday night, after I shot an 80, one of my “fans” sent me this tweet:
“Nice round today pig. Maybe u should revert back to your old way before [winning the] wells fargo [tournament] & not act like such a prick to ppl.”
I re-tweeted that one and let my fans take care of it.
It’s funny some of the stuff people say on Twitter — you know, when they’re behind their phone or behind their computer.
Some people seem to just sit on the Internet waiting to take jabs. I’m not sure where a lot of it comes from. But it doesn’t really bother me. In fact, I laugh about it, and it’s funny to see the reactions of my true fans and the way they respond to what other people say.
Just before I went to bed, I tweeted, “honored to have so many loyal fans who greatly outnumber the haters.”
I don’t respond to tweets very often. I gets hundreds of hate mail versus the thousands upon thousands of true fans who are motivating and always there for me.
As for being a rotten guy, well, I’m not sure rotten guys shoot 80 and then sign autographs for 30 minutes.
But like I said, I’m working on it.
As Bob Dyer noted, people can go on the Internet and find out all about me in about two seconds. My personal information is floating around for all the world to see.
That just comes with the territory. My ultimate goal is to be the best player in the world and win majors and be in contention countless weeks through the year, and that’s kind of the way it has to be. There’s really no way of getting around it.
I don’t think there’s any reason to try to hide from it. It is who I am, and I embrace it and have fun with it.
I’m spending a lot of time with Bubba and his wife, Angie. I’m known as Uncle Rickie over there. We’ll see if their new baby, Caleb, keeps smiling when I come around.
I’m at least keeping Mom and Dad happy. I brought them dinner the last couple of nights. They’re still getting used to parenthood.
It’s fun being around. Obviously, Bubba and I are real close and we spend a lot of time together on and off the course.
It will be fun to watch Caleb grow up. Hopefully I can be a part of Bubba and Angie’s life, as well as Caleb’s.
I’m also hoping Bubba and I can get together in the offseason with Hunter Mahan and Ben Crane for another music video like Golf Boys.
It’s not easy to get four PGA Tour players together. Two of them have families, Hunter is married and I’ve got a girlfriend. And we live in different parts of the country. But we’re going to try.
Obviously it’s great for charity, and I feel like it’s great for our image. Our fans love it. We’re showing them we like to have fun off the golf course, be goofy, and that we’re just normal people.
Hopefully I can be a positive role model to other kids and make them aware that you should be yourself.
You don’t want to try to be anyone you’re not.
Messages for Rickie Bobby can be left at 330-996-3580 or firstname.lastname@example.org.