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John Zinkus a.k.a. Dazinkster
I'll give anyone $10 if they can tell me what a "metallurgist" is without googling it (yea right!). Well, this week's GoW will be one in the near future and he hopes to parlay that into the golf industry one day. Hey dazinkster, if you ever need a product review, you know where to look. Enjoy!
How old are you and what's your occupation?
24, currently in the write up year of my PhD in Metallurgy. I work with casting in particular and have some ideas for golf club manufacturing...but still waiting for that job offer from TaylorMade, etc ;)
When did you start playing golf and what's your handicap?
While I dabbled a little bit as a teenager, playing maybe 10 rounds maximum, I properly started playing 18 months ago in April 2010. This was all due to a mate asking me if I’d like to go to Vegas with him for a holiday and play a bit of golf while we were out there. I agreed, and after a few rounds I was hooked. My current handicap is 9.8, and still coming down. Aiming to be playing off single figures before the end of this season.
How often do you play?
Over the summer I look to get out at least 4 times a week, either on the course or just practicing. In the winter it's more tricky due to the light, probably 1 round per week, 1 trip to the range and a few sessions in the practice net when it’s time to work on the swing.
Tell me about a great shot you've made.
Hmmm, one that sticks in my mind was during my first ever round representing my club in a match. It was a 17-24 handicap match so I didn’t consider myself a very good player at the time (I was playing off 19).
Anyway, the hole was a medium length par 3. I’d pushed/sliced my tee shot and left myself 30 yards from the flag with trees between myself and the green (any other miss off the tee would have been fine...but not right). The format of the match was better-ball, so figured I’d better go for the par, which required getting the ball up and over the trees (at least 50 feet I reckon). I took out my 56 degree wedge, opened up the face and swang as hard as I could. The ball went up quickly, skimmed a few leaves, dropped over the other side, hit the flag, dropped in the hole...and bounced out to an inch. I was gutted it didn’t stay in, but I obviously made the putt to halve the hole.
What is your best golf memory?
I’m not too sure I have a singular best memory, having been playing for less than 2 years. But I have fond memories of my first eagle, a pitch in from 40-50 yards; my first “big” money competition win, the sum total of £275 for a blistering 9 hole round (see best round below); and the trip to Vegas with one of my best mates playing golf out there, not due to the golf...but due to the company. Definitely goes to prove that the thing that makes this sport great (or any sport IMO) is the people you meet and friendships you develop/solidify along the way.
What is your "home" course?
That would be Harborne Golf Club, lovely parkland course that’s been around for well over 100 years.
What ball do you play?
The Bridgestone B330-Tour series. Primarily the “S” version at the moment. When I joined Harborne I found I needed a really soft ball to hold the greens in summer, so distance balls didn’t work. I tried out the RXS version and haven’t looked back, really like the whole range!
Drivers: TaylorMade R9 SuperTri
Fairway Woods: Krank Golf Rage
Hybrids: Nike Victory Red
Irons: KZG Forged Evolution
Wedges: Eidolon V-Sole
Putters: Nike Method 001
Luke Donald, because he English for a start! But also because of his style of play, he doesn’t try to overpower a course, he accepts that he can’t hit it 330+ off the tee and uses his iron play/putting to score. As I only hit it 260-270 at the moment, he’s a good role model for me to base my game on.
Favorite course you've played?
While I agree with a previous GoW that every course is fun and has its charms. I gotta say that Wolf Creek Golf Course in Nevada was my favourite, purely because it was so different to what you can ever get over here. The views were simply stunning and whilst we were only allowed to play off the middle tees the golf was still challenging. I definitely want to go back again at some point with my own clubs and maybe try out the championship tees.
Dream course you've yet to play?
The classic has to be St. Andrews, it would be a crime not to make the pilgrimage to the home of golf at some point. I’m also yet to play a round on any links course, something I’m looking to change in the next 12 months.
Best round ever- and what course?
Best 18 hole round score: 76 (+5) at Ansty Golf Centre, a municipal course in Leicestershire.
Best round: I shot level par gross for 9 holes playing off 15 for 26 stableford points in the final of my club’s club night summer tournament last year. Every club night throughout the summer we have a 9-hole stableford comp, if you win then you qualify for the final at the end of the season. In the final off the back tees I was very nervous, topped my opening drive about 30 yards down the wrong fairway and started double bogey, bogey. Then I calmed down and played the remaining 7 holes in -3 to claim a nice £275 first prize.
What is one aspect of your golf game you would like to improve on in the next year?
Putting, putting, and putting! Nuff said really. I’m not converting anywhere near enough chances I get for birdie/par!
Tell me a story.
This has to be the time my friend crashed our golf buggy down a mini-ravine at Wolf Creek. You have to bear in mind that very few courses in this country have buggys available, and my friend wasn’t a very experienced driver anyway. During the early part of the round I realized that the buggy’s brakes locked up pretty easily, being an experienced driver I just accelerated out of the skid.
However, on a particularly steep slope between the 7th green and 8th tee my friend was driving and the wheels locked up when he braked, his instinctive reaction was to brake harder which only increased the skid. The buggy veered towards the edge of the path and a very steep ravine, at this point I bailed out and rolled down the path a bit. My mate stayed in the buggy as it went over the edge and crashed to the bottom of the ravine (about 40ft), he was thrown out halfway down and cut his shin on a rock. After calling the marshalls out and getting a new buggy, we completed our round. Then took my mate to hospital where he received 12 stitches in his shin to heal the wound. Needless to say, he didn’t drive a buggy again for the whole holiday!
Interested in being next weeks featured golfer? email us here
[ comments ]
Congratulations on GoW, I too am a metallurgist and get the same blank stares when I tell people what I do. Good to see I'm not the only one!
haha oh man, glad you are ok. thats crazy you guys crahed the golf cart. I grew up in Pittsburgh, PA and the course I played out there was very hilly. One day I was driving down the 8th fairway and the ground was wet and we just started spinning in circles, but luckily there wasn't a drop off or anything at the bottom of the hill
Congratulations on the GoW! A knighthood can't be far behind.
Matt F says:
Congratulations on GOW...from this convict! BTW, I know what a metallurgist is. Good luck with your possible industry job!
That is a big drop, 40 ft!? Did the golf cart explode? Good Story! Welcome to the GOW club
Cheers guys. Here's a link to the buggy crash pic, still not too sure how it stayed upright:
I generally just tell people "Engineering" as opposed to "Metallurgist" for the reasons mentioned in the above comments
Appears as though the link is too long to post. I've changed my pic to the crashed buggy.
PS. If any OOB'ers are over in the UK feel free to give me a message to try and organise a round
Worked in a foundry for 43 years-- metallurgist are required--lol
Torleif Sorenson says:
Congrats on GoW, John -- and I promise that we won't turn a "tin ear" toward this honor. :-P
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