Carmel Magazine

Spring-Summer 2019

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Page 149 of 267

Grand Slam, Jones' signature achievement. Big Jack arrived on the Monterey Peninsula a week early and prepared like a man driven by ghosts, which he was. The USGA presented Pebble Beach with skinny fairways and gnarly rough, which suited Nicklaus; with his upright swing and his brute strength he could slash through the long grass like no one else. He held at least a piece of the lead each of the first three rounds. On Sunday, Nicklaus methodically built his lead, arriving on the 10th tee four shots clear of the field. But even this great champion could feel the weight of history. He promptly sliced his tee shot onto Carmel Beach and made double bogey. On the twelfth hole, Nicklaus rattled in an 8-footer to save bogey. The tournament was still hanging in the balance when he came to the par-3 17th hole, which was playing into a fierce breeze. "He stood there for a moment, trying to stare down the wind, Bobby Jones, the Open, the Slam and none other than Bruce Crampton, who was still lurking," Jenkins would write. "And then he hit a shot that made him look like a fighter who didn't want to win on points; he wanted a knockout. He hit the damnedest one-iron in his- tory and nearly made a hole-in-one as the ball screamed into the gale, cleared the ghastly bunker fronting the green, crashed down right at the flagstick and simply sat there, two inches from the cup—and two championships away from what could be one of the most astounding accomplishments in the annals of game playing." The following month, Nicklaus made a spirit- Nicklaus, considered the best player of his time, was the third-oldest winner of the Masters. "It was love at first sight," he says. Ever since, Nicklaus has called Pebble Beach his favorite golf course in the world. 148 C A R M E L M A G A Z I N E • S P R I N G / S U M M E R 2 0 1 9 Photo: PA Images /Alamy Stock Photo

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