The 36-year-old American Brian Harman’s feet are still flat on the earth despite his six-shot victory in Sunday’s British Open golf tournament at Royal Liverpool.
Harman, who is only 1.7 meters tall and weighs 70 kilograms, towered over the other players in the pouring rain after adapting to the conditions superbly.
It was only his third career win, but his path was paved with gold for the rest of his career.
He teed off with a lead of five shots in the final round and scored 70 shots in the final round. He finished on 271 strokes (-13), which was six strokes better than Jon Rahm (Spain), Jason Day (Australia), Sepp Straka (Austria) and Joo-Hyung Kim (Korea) who all finished second on 277 strokes (-7).
Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland and Emiliano Grillo of Argentina were tied for sixth at 278 (-6).
Harman, who earned US$3 million (about R53 million) in prize money with his victory, says he will now spend a few days at his family home next to a lake in New York before returning to his farm in Georgia.
Harman, who farms and likes to hunt, recently acquired a tractor. According to him, he will only be cutting grass for the next few days.
He hasn’t used the tractor yet and hasn’t told his wife what it cost, but now it doesn’t matter anymore.
He told the Golf Channel how a few spectators at Royal Liverpool bowled him over and tried to knock him down.
There was one supporter in particular who walked him through and made it clear that he did not have the necessary ammunition to win the tournament.
But the words of American football coach Kirby Smart made him stop.
“I had to be the hunter, not the hunted,” Harman said.
Harman, who only twice in 72 holes ended up in one of the hordes of sand pits, Harman’s excellent putting also made the cut for him.
South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen (284, par) finished in joint 23rd position and earned almost R2.17 million with his performance.
Christiaan Bezuidenhout (287, +3) was in joint 49th position and swelled his bank account by almost R825 000.
Then the young amateur from George, Christo Lamprecht, was the only player who did not earn any prize money, but he was honored with the prestigious silver medal as the best amateur.
He tied with Thriston Lawrence at 295 hits.