After winning a once in a lifetime trip, Austin won the Coastline Classic while playing on the 7th green of Pebble Beach. Overflowing with emotion, he celebrated with professional golfer Will Wilcox as they finished their round of golf together. Austin went home with the Big Check, a Cup for a King, and an experience he will never forget.
Q Give us a play-by-play of your experience? Did you travel from far? What was your favorite part of your experience?
A The morning of the 4th couldn't come fast enough! I won one of the last qualifiers, which was only a couple weeks before the trip. I’m glad I didn't have to wait any longer because the anticipation was killing me. We live directly on the East coast and had to travel completely across the country to the West coast.
Once we arrived we were scheduled to go outside on the deck at Spanish Bay. That’s were we got to meet Will Wilcox, Brian, and the other contestants and DraftKings group! I knew who Will was but I honestly was not expecting him there and I was extremely tired from the traveling so when he introduced himself I didn't even recognized him. It wasn't until we got back to the room my Dad said, “You know that was Will Wilcox, right”. The next morning we took a shuttle to the Golf academy at Pebble Beach. I really didn't know what to expect, but when we pulled up I knew it was going to be awesome.
They had a catered breakfast on the driving range and had stations set up everywhere for us. After eating I loosened up and got on the range. Laird came by and was watching me swing and asked me to come inside and try the robot. I took a normal swing where he recorded me and then a swing on the robot where he recorded me. After playing both swings side by side it was very apparent what was wrong. Laird show me some drills to fix the problem and I went back to the range. It was unbelievable what he did to my swing in 20 minutes.
That night we had dinner and together and they presented us with a “goody” bag. It was full to the brim with awesome Srixon stuff. I couldn't have been more impressed! That is until we played Spanish bay the next day. That course was unbelievable. At the time it was the nicest golf course I had ever played. I honestly didn't know how Spanish bay golf course could be topped but I knew to keep an open mind for the next day! That night I was sitting in second in the contest, so that allowed me to be able to play the back nine with Will at pebble beach. Pebble Beach did not disappoint!!! It was honestly something that I can’t explain. This was a once in a lifetime experience for myself and as I was sitting on #6 green looking around I just felt peace. It was indescribable.
So on the green on #7 is where I found out that I had one the contest. I couldn't have handpicked a better place to find out the news of winning. So we played the back nine with Will. I guess we all think about celebrities as different people. Well that couldn't be any more untrue about Will. He is just a down to earth and stellar guy. Felt like I was playing with my one of my buddies at the local course. When we got finished with 18 everyone at the clubhouse for a while and then we went on back to Spanish bay for an early flight the next day. So, that was my trip and experience in a nutshell, but I really want to emphasize how amazing and unbelievable this trip was!
Q Who did you bring with you on your experience?
A My Dad
Q Tell us about your winning contest "sweat". What qualifier did you enter (e.g. $3 PGA Qualifier)? Who was in your winning lineup?
A I entered the $27 PGA qualifier. It was the week Stenson and Mickelson were battling it on the course and I had both of them! That is what pushed me over the edge. At the end of cut day, Bubba Watson had to hit a birdie putt on 18 to make the cut and he pulled it off with about a 10’ putt. That one definitely had me on the edge of my seat.
Q Where were you when you won? How did you celebrate? Fist pump like Tiger? Riverdance like Chad Ochocinco? “Ride the Bull” like Happy Gilmore?
AI was actually on a project in Florida when I found out. Needless to say I didn't get much work done on Sunday! When the final putt was made, I started fist pumping and jumping up and down and hollering. That is until everyone starting staring and I had to bring it down a notch and call my Dad. Im pretty sure he shed a tear!
Q Describe Pebble Beach in one word. One sentence?
A One word – Unmatched
One sentence – I’m 6 years old on Christmas Eve and Santa Clause is personally delivering my presents to me at Disney world.
Q Favorite sports team? How long have you been a fan of this team? Favorite team moment?
A I am a die-hard Carolina Gamecocks fan and have been since a kid. My favorite team moment was beating Alabama in 2010 when they were ranked #1.
Q Favorite Golfer?
A I have always been a fan of Phil Mickelson.
Q Favorite Athlete?
A Marcus Lattimore. Marcus was an amazing running back for USC before he got injured his junior year. He is now better known for his work off the field in the community.
Q Favorite sports movie?
A The Replacements.
Q What is your favorite sports memory?
A Gamecocks Back to Back national baseball championships 2010 and 2011.
Q Favorite fantasy sport on DraftKings?
A Golf is definitely my favorite sport to play on DraftKings!
Q What else is on your sports bucket list?
A I would love to attend the masters one day.
Q What do you love most about DraftKings?
A I know this is very cliché but I love everything about DraftKings. I have zero things to say negative about DraftKings.