Former college golf teammate of Tiger Woods wins 2014 Speedgolf World Championship at Bandon Dunes


BANDON, Ore. – In a battle against Mother Nature, Eri Crum of Boise, Idaho survived the elements on Sunday and shot a 4-over-par 76 in 46 minutes and 1 second to capture the title at the 2014 Speedgolf World Championships at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort.

Normally a 36-hole event, the first round was played Saturday at the Old Macdonald course, but torrential rains and winds gusting over 50 mph forced tournament officials to declare it a wash, meaning everything was on the line Sunday at the Bandon Dunes course. 

Although he didn’t make any birdies on Sunday, Crum made par on 15 of 18 holes, which is remarkably steady considering his average time per hole was 2 minutes and 30 seconds. 

“I’ve found you need to be more than just a golfer to win an event like this – you have to be an athlete,” said Crum, a four-year member of the Stanford golf team who was in the same class as Tiger Woods. “It’s a big deal to win a world championship, but to win the Speedgolf World Championship at a golf mecca like Bandon Dunes really means a lot.” 

Defending world champion Rob Hogan of Galway, Ireland finished runner-up with a Speedgolf score of 122.57 (83 in 39:57). It was the closest one-two finish in the three-year history of this event. 

Founded in 2002 by high-school buddies Tim Scott, Christopher Smith, and Jim Kosciolek, Speedgolf International conducted its first event in 2003. Smith holds the competitive Speedgolf world record with a 65 in 44 minutes and 6 seconds, a record he achieved at the 2005 Chicago Speedgolf Classic. 

For more info about Speedgolf, visit

Final full-field results: 
(Golf score + Time = Speedgolf score)


1 Eri Crum 76 + 46:01 = 122.01 
2 Rob Hogan 83 + 39:57 = 122.57 
3 Allan Phillips 76 + 47:46 = 123.46
4 Michael McLain 81 + 42:58 = 123.58
5 Mark Stockamp 76 + 48:46 = 124.46 - low amateur
6 Matt Dehlin 79 + 45:52 = 124.52
T-7 Jo Matsui 77 + 49:49 = 126.49
T-7 Jamie Young 76 + 50:49 = 126.49
9 Scott Dawley 78 + 49:12 = 127.12
10 Tim Hval 72 + 55:25 = 127.25
11 Steve Vancil 77 + 51:04 = 128.04
12 Wesley Cupp 79 + 51:24 = 130.24
13 Scott Manley 81 + 50:23 = 131.23
14 Tim Scott 80 + 51:54 = 131.54
15 Jason Hawkins 86 + 46:12 = 132.12
16 Pete Phipps 78 + 54:49 = 132.49
17 Nick Willis 90 + 43:14 = 133.14
18 David Marshall 79 + 55:27 = 134.27
19 Daniel Wendt 82 + 52:41 = 134.41
20 Brad Kearns 83 + 51:46 = 134.46
21 Jeff Simonds 79 + 55:51 = 134.51
22 Michael Chupka 77 + 57:54 = 134.54
23 Scott Gerweck 85 + 50:19 = 135.19
24 Chris Walker 79 + 56:54 = 135.54
25 Christopher Smith 73 + 63:09 = 136.09
26 David Denyer 78 + 58:23 = 136.23
27 Alexander Gylfason 82 + 55:07 = 137.07
28 Tony Dyring 93 + 46:03 = 139.03
29 Shanon Hoyt 86 + 53:32 = 139.32
30 Karl Meltzer 88 + 51:37 = 139.37
31 Mitchell Williamson DNF



1 Ben Stickney 80 + 56:07 = 136.07
2 Alec MacColl 84 + 54:05 = 138.05
3 Gretchen Johnson 84 + 55:05 = 139.05
4 Brian Noble 79 + 62:00 = 141
5 Mike Nelson 85 + 59:27 = 144.27
6 Brendan Edelson 84 + 62:10 = 146.1
7 Alec Ford 82 + 65:42 = 147.42
8 Phillip Kick 84 + 64:25 = 148.25
9 William Conyers 90 + 59:28 = 149.28
10 Morgan Cho 87 + 63:00 = 150
11 David Harding 93 + 57:19 = 150.19
12 Lauren Cupp 91 + 62:12 = 153.12
13 Dude Spellings 85 + 69:13 = 154.13
14 Boyce Whitesides 97 + 57:36 = 154.36
15 Drew Faust 82 + 75:52 = 157.52
16 Gary Sobczak 97 + 61:06 = 158.06
17 Garlin Smith 91 + 67:52 = 158.52
18 Walter Sherry 92 + 67:58 = 159.58
19 David Noack 88 + 72:53 = 160.53
20 Catherine Marsot 98 + 62:59 = 160.59
21 Nicole Williamson 106 + 59:16 = 165.16
22 Wallace English 95 + 70:21 = 165.21
23 Mike Cooney 95 + 71:05 = 166.05
24 Lawrence Sher 91 + 76:25 = 167.25
25 Daniel Hirselj 106 + 64:12 = 170.12
26 Bill McFadden 102 + 71:04 = 173.04
27 Christopher Hundhausen 105 + 68:48 = 173.48
28 Joseph Zappala 98 + 75:53 = 173.53
29 Ted Stein 103 + 71:50 = 174.5
30 Krista Rowland 110 + 72:35 = 182.35
31 John Hamilton 105 + 77:51 = 182.51



Alexander Lynch 48 + 24:48 = 72.48


Click here for photo hightlights from Speedgolf World Championships 2014

Click here for the last years results (2013)

(from left: Jim Kosciolek, Tim Scott, Rob Hogan, Eri Crum, Christopher Smith and Speedgolf International executive director Scott Dawley)


Eighty-five holes and $20,000 for charity in under seven hours



A rainbow appeared as Tim Scott finished his 85th hole of the day. (photo by Nick Martin)

BANDON, Ore. – The sun had just begun to illuminate the low-lying clouds. Everything was bathed in a silvery glowing haze. The clouds were lifting like a curtain and mid-morning sunlight came pouring down on the glistening turf.

By this time Tim Scott, professional golfer and executive director of Speedgolf International had already played 36 holes and was approaching the halfway point of an epic 85-hole journey. Scott's goal was to play every hole of the five courses at Bandon Dunes in one day. It just so happened, “that day” was December 21 – the shortest day of the year.

The experiential journalist in me decided it would be fun to run alongside Scott for one of his rounds. Shortly after I arrived at Old Macdonald, Scott was coming from Pacific Dunes, having already completed his rounds at Bandon Trails and Pacific Dunes. It was approaching 10:30 as Scott readied to play Old Mac, almost an hour ahead of his estimated pace. Scott had already played 36 holes in less than three hours.

I stood by the bag drop in front of the Old Mac clubhouse stretching my hamstrings and nervously re-checking my camera gear for the umpteenth time. The Oomba video crew was going over notes and strategizing for their live-streaming internet broadcast. We had just enough time for some quick introductions.

The Oomba cameraman and I shared a couple laughs. This was unlike anything either of us had experienced and suddenly, it was happening.

Scott strolled leisurely but intently toward us with one eye focused on the path ahead – that’s right, one eye. I almost couldn’t believe it.

On April 19, 2012 Scott was diagnosed with Ocular Melanoma, a rare form of eye cancer that often goes undetected because there are no symptoms. Scott received radiation treatment in his right eye to kill the tumor, but it left his vision poor. He experiences flutters, flashes and has pronounced double-vision, thus the eye patch. It wasn't until I saw him that I fully understood the impact of what he was trying to do.

Scott was not only drawing attention to speedgolf, he was trying to raise awareness of the silent killer, ocular melanoma.

"I've wanted to do something for quite some time to raise money and awareness,” Scott later told me. “Speedgolf seemed the perfect vehicle for me to do both and Bandon was the perfect place to do it."

As we walked to the first tee I introduced myself to him and his wife, Lori, who was running alongside in support. "I love having my wife run along with me when I play speedgolf," Scott said. Lori also ran with him at the 2013 Speedgolf World Championship last October at Bandon Dunes.

After a brief interview with Oomba, Scott turned and aimed down the first fairway. He piped it down the middle and we were suddenly off and running – literally.

The first three holes went by fast. Then, on his second shot from the fairway on No. 4, a long par-4, Scott snapped the shaft on his driver. Lori looked concerned as she picked up the two halves. The next longest club in his bag was a six-iron but there wasn't time to think about how he would finish the round. As a few spectators and I stood there stunned, Scott was already running toward his next shot.

Jeff Simonds, director of golf at Bandon Dunes was following us in a cart and he immediately radioed the golf shop. Scott kept on playing and 12 minutes after his driver died, a fresh one was delivered to him by a Bandon Dunes staffer who emerged in a golf cart from behind a gorse bush.

In what seemed like a matter of moments, we were running up to No. 14 green with the big tree by No. 3 (nicknamed "Snag") in the background – a stark silhouette against a white sky. Soon thereafter, Scott was ringing the bell on his way to No. 17 tee, and almost as quickly as his round at Old Mac began, it was already ending. Scott and Lori kissed on the 18th green, 54 holes of golf behind them. Only 18 holes at Bandon Dunes, plus the 13 par 3s at Bandon Preserve remained.

While Scott made his way through his round at Bandon Dunes, I took a much needed break. Playing 54 holes while running is warrior-like. Apparently, following 18 holes while running, taking photos and jotting notes takes its toll on mere mortals.

Fast-forward to Scott’s final round: Bandon Preserve.

Scott made Bandon Preserve look more like a cool down, as he made short work of the par-3 course. After his last putt, seeing him walk off the green felt unreal, like witnessing some form of magic. Scott and Lori had run more than twenty miles, raised more than $20,000 and played 85 holes of golf in less than seven hours.

As he walked off that final green there were congratulatory hugs and handshakes. Almost on cue, a rainbow appeared out of nowhere. Scott picked up his young son and gave him a hug. Jess, Tim Scott's dad was there taking photos like any proud dad would. There were media interviews and more handshakes. Nobody wanted to leave the green, it seemed. We were just milling around soaking in every moment, trying to wrap our minds around what just took place.

“How are you feeling?” I asked Scott.

"Fantastic,” he exclaimed. “I'm very grateful that I was allowed to do this at Bandon and appreciative of all the support from Bandon Dunes, Oomba for covering the event and greatly helping in the raising-awareness end, all those who donated to the cause, and my family for being there to support my efforts."  

Click here to learn more about Ocular Melanoma and to donate to the cause.

Click here to learn more about Speedgolf International.

Hogan captures title at 2013 Speedgolf World Championship at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort


Hogan BANDON, Ore. – Under rainless skies and calm winds, Rob Hogan of Ireland bested a field of 25 professional speed golfers to capture the title at the 2013 Speedgolf World Championship at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort.

The 36-hole championship began Saturday at the resort’s Old Macdonald course, where Hogan jumped out to the midway lead with a 77 in 39 minutes and 31 seconds (39:31). He continued his momentum Sunday at the resort’s Bandon Dunes course with a 79 in 41:29. Hogan had the fastest time both days.

The scoring format of Speedgolf is total strokes, plus total minutes and seconds it takes the player to complete his or her round. Hogan’s final Speedgolf score was 236.55.

“This is absolutely massive for me,” Hogan said. “It’s something I’ve dreamed of the past year, something I’ve worked really hard for. I got into a couple dodgy situations today, but I’m really proud because I stayed calm and got through it without too much damage.”

Eri Crum, Boise, Idaho finished runner-up (no pun intended) after shooting an 80 in 45:03 and a 73 in 44:31. Third place went to Matt Dehlin, Portland, Ore., who shot 78 in 46:06 and 78 in 48:00.

The field included two Olympic track and field athletes.

Bernard Lagat, Tucson, Ariz., won the 2007 world championship in the 1,500 and 5,000 meters. Despite being a beginner golfer – this was his first golf tournament of any kind – Lagat logged the sixth-fastest time Saturday and fourth-fastest time Sunday.

“Regardless of my Speedgolf score, it was an honor and privilege to be invited to participate in this wonderful championship,” Lagat said.

Nick Willis, New Zealand, won the silver medal in the 1,500 meters at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. He entered the final round of this championship in sixth place after an opening round 86 in 44:20, but slipped to 13th place after a final round 97 in 43:07.

Defending Speedgolf world champion Christopher Walker, Woodlands, Tex., entered the final round in fourth place after an opening round 74 in 52:26. The former Notre Dame golf team captain finished the championship with a Sunday round of 73 in 51:12 to finish fourth.

The field also included an 18-hole amateur division of 26 speed golfers.

Final full-field results:

1 Rob Hogan 77 + 39:31 = 116.31 || 79 + 41:24 = 120.24 || 236.55
2 Eri Crum 80 + 45:03 = 125.03 || 73 + 44:31 = 117.31 || 242.34
3 Matt Dehlin 78 + 46:06 = 124.06 || 78 + 48:00 = 126 || 250.06
4 Chris Walker 74 + 52:26 = 126.26 || 73 + 51:12 = 124.12 || 250.38
5 Scott Dawley 77 + 51:43 = 128.43 || 74 + 50:56 = 124.56 || 253.39
6 Scott Manley 80 + 50:25 = 130.25 || 78 + 48:12 = 126.12 || 256.37
7 Allan Phillips 84 + 48:10 = 132.10 || 80 + 45:09 = 125.09 || 257.19
8 Christopher Smith 78 + 58:29 = 136.29 || 72 + 55:29 = 127.29 || 263.58
9 David Denyer 78 + 54:39 = 132.39 || 76 + 55:36 = 131.36 || 264.15
10 Tim Hval 81 + 54:49 = 135.49 || 77 + 52:53 = 129.53 || 265.42
11 Jamie Young 85 + 48:04 = 133.04 || 85 + 49:58 = 134.58 || 268.02
12 Pete Phipps 83 + 52:27 = 135.27 || 79 + 54:39 = 133.39 || 269.06
13 Nick Willis 86 + 44:20 = 130.20 || 97 + 43:07 = 140.07 || 270.27
14 Jaacob Bowden 85 + 59 = 144 || 72 + 55:42 = 127.42 || 271.42
15 David Marshall 84 + 54.27 = 138.27 || 82 + 51:50 = 133.5 || 272.17
16 Tim Scott 83 + 50.34 = 133.34 || 85 + 54:23 = 139.23 || 272.57
17 Scott Gerweck 88 + 50.04 = 138.04 || 85 + 51:07 = 136.07 || 274.11
18 Larry Levinson 80 + 60 = 140 || 76 + 58:29 = 134.29 || 274.29
19 Shanon Hoyt 87 + 50.27 = 137.27 || 83 + 54:18 = 137.18 || 274.45
20 Paul Kivela 92 + 51.28 = 143.28 || 85 + 47:58 = 132.58 || 276.26
21 Ralph Reahard 78 + 66.05 = 144.05 || 75 + 64:30 = 139.3 || 283.35
22 Karl Meltzer 89 + 55.11 = 144.11 || 89 + 50:56 = 139.56 || 284.07
23 Dougal Williams 94 + 54.16 = 148.16 || 84 + 53:35 = 137.35 || 285.51
24 Bernard Lagat 118 + 48.26 = 166.26 || 110 + 47:38 = 157.38 || 324.04
25 Jay Larson 89 + 58.05 = 147.05 || W/D || W/D


24 Years and Younger
1 Ben Stickney Portland, Ore. 81 + 53:54 = 134.54
2 Brenden Edelson Portland, Ore. 76 + 64:38 = 140.38
3 Walter Sherry Portland, Ore. 82 + 60:21 = 142.21
4 Rob McVicker Coos Bay, Ore. 87 + 60:02 = 147.02
5 Boyce Whitesides Atlanta, Ga. 86 + 62:02 = 148.02
6 Morgan Cho Portland, Ore. 96 + 60:53 = 156.53

1 Jon Hottinger Richmond, Va. 77 + 60:36 = 137.36
2 Brent Schneider Midlothian, Va. 83 + 54:52 = 137.52
3 Bryce Polovnikoff Vancouver, WA 79 + 60:29 = 139.29
4 Eric Arndt Bend, Ore. 85 + 60:02 = 145.20
5 Tucker Mcneil Richmond, Va. 82 + 64:29 = 146.29
6 Kirk Tattersall Richmond, Va. 86 + 62:13 = 148.13
7 Scott Millhouser Coquille, Ore. 90 + 69:46 = 159.46
8 Baker Shogry San Francisco, Calif. 99 + 60:54 = 159.54

1 Brian Noble Johns Creek, Ga. 85 + 59:47 = 144.47
2 Josh Sens Oakland, Calif. 85 + 67:41 = 152.41
3 Wally English Berkeley, Calif. 90 + 66:55 = 156.55
4 Katy Williams Portland, Ore. 97 + 72:36 = 169.36
5 Virginia Deigan Canberra, Australia 106 + 76:12 = 182.12
6 John Gunther Coquille, Ore. 135 + 71:45 = 206.45

1 David Harding Lake Oswego, Ore. 89 + 54:11 = 143.11
2 Gary Sobczak Avon, Ind. 95 + 62:01 = 157.10
3 Fred Tattersall Richmond, Va. 87 + 74:17 = 161.17
4 Gray Grieve Eugene, Ore. 84 + 78:48 = 162.48
5 Ted Stein Pelham Manor, N.Y. 94 + 77:36 = 171.36
6 Mike Cooney Beaverton, Ore. 107 + 68:46 = 175.46  

Interview with Chris Smith, Speedgolf World-Record-Holder



(photo courtesy of Wood Sabold)

Ahead of the Speedgolf World Championship on October 26-27 at Bandon Dunes, caught up with Chris Smith, Portland, Ore., who not only is in the field, but holds the single-round Speedgolf world record of 109.06 (65 in 44:06 at the 2005 Chicago Speedgolf Classic).

Smith, 50, is a golf teaching professional. We asked him about his world-record round, training, how Speedgolf affects traditional golf, and more.

What makes up the ideal Speedgolf course?

A perfect Speedgolf course in terms of what would make it fast would be to have the greens very close to the next tee box, which is often the case at Old Mac. Flatter the better because that saves energy.

Do you lose many golf balls or have any particular strategy to avoid losing your ball?

I don’t hit it far enough to lose many golf balls in general in golf. If you don’t hit it long you better hit it straight! (laughs) I would fit into that category. I hit it long enough to play a Speedgolf course. And, I think most speed golfers figure out pretty quick they’re better off hitting it not quite as far, because running sideways, zig-zagging, looking for golf balls is not good, so I think a general strategy or philosophy for Speedgolf would be to try to hit it short and straight, all things considered.

How has holding the Speedgolf world record affected your professional career?

I don’t know if it’s changed me professionally. Professionally, primarily I coach, teach and then consult on the side with Nike Golf and some other entities. Keep in mind, I meet people everyday (laughs) who don’t even know what Speedgolf is, let alone that I’m the world-record-holder. It certainly hasn’t hurt me professionally and really what it’s allowed me to do is use a lot of what I’ve learned, playing Speedgolf at a high level, and translate that into my teaching and coaching. For example, playing less deliberately, less cautiously.

I do talks and presentations on how to optimize performance and I use my Speedgolf accomplishments as examples of how that kind of training and that kind of approach can help people in different realms, not necessarily Speedgolf, not necessarily golf, but in a lot of different things, so, yeah it’s certainly helped. I wrote a book in 2007, which was based on an article I did for Golf Digest in 2006. Christopher Smith’s book, “I’ve Got 99 Swing Thoughts But, Hit the Ball Ain’t One” and accompanying audiobook, “Better Golf: Whole Brain Learning” are available on his website:

Do you spend more time on the range or at the track?

Depends what’s broken. I actually just got back from a track workout. I have to be very careful what I do from a running standpoint now because I’ve got a few miles on my odometer. I have very little cartilage left in either of my hips, basically arthritic. So, I’m a big believer in whatever you’re trying to get better at, the best way to get better at “that”, is to do “that” so I take any opportunity I can get to actually play Speedgolf – which is the ultimate training because it combines the running with the golf. If that’s not available, then I will replicate in my run what would happen in a round of Speedgolf, so a lot of stopping and starting and when I practice on the range I will practice with a club and the shot that I would probably be hitting. All my training for the World Championship will be geared toward what I think specifically will happen those two days at Old Mac and at Bandon Dunes.

Do you actively monitor your heart rate as you play Speedgolf?

I don’t, but I probably should. (laughs) I know a lot of people do. You’re trying to go as hard as you can and then when you get to your next shot, not take too long to recover, and then, very critical, hit a good shot. It’s not just people sprinting, slapping shots around, because otherwise people would shoot 120, which really isn’t very interesting. The fitter you can get, the faster you can run and more importantly, the faster you recover when you get to your next shot, so you take less time to recover and still get in a good golf shot.

From tee to green, does how you play the hole evolve in your mind like it does for a regular round, just at a faster pace?

Well, you’re thinking about your next shot more than in traditional golf, because your next shot is literally only seconds away. Let’s say you’re playing the first hole at Old Mac (par-4, 304 yards). You hit your drive. You grab your bag and you’re running 200 to 300 yards toward your drive and you have to start to calculate feet and visualize about how far you’re going to hit your next shot depending on distance, pin placement, conditions, uphill/downhill.

The greatest thing about Speedgolf is, let me put it this way… All these supposedly fabulous laser GPS devises, uh, there’s one that we all have that works way better and way faster and it’s called your mind body system. It’s amazing what you can do with less than precise yardages, less than a full set of clubs just relying on your system.

In normal golf you hit a shot and it could be five to ten minutes before you hit your next shot and you have a laser or a GPS and it does all the work for you, and you’ve got all your clubs. Speedgolf is a phenomenal way to train for regular golf, because it’s the perfect example of making your training more difficult than the actual game.

Can you describe your World Record round?

2005 in Chicago. We had an event for several years at Jackson Park Golf Course, which is a public course that’s existed for quite some time. It actually had some USGA events back in the day. Very flat. Very short. I’d say close to 6,000 yards, no more. We’d always have fast times there, with some good scores.

I was in a particularly good frame of mind. Was I fit? Yeah. Did I hit some good shots? Yeah. I was very patient with myself. I was very tolerant of bad shots. It was a very enjoyable round. I think we all tend to beat ourselves up, especially if we’re good players and we need to have more empathy toward ourselves and I did that day.

It was a funny round. I made a lot of birdies and a lot of bogies. I tend to plod around making pars, a birdie here a bogey there. That day was good.

It’s a par 70 golf course. I shot 5-under-par in 44 minutes and six seconds. I had six clubs.

Actually, I have a couple pretty cool mental images. The last hole at Jackson Park is a short par-4. It’s less than 300 yards, I don’t know, it might be 275-280. You’ve got out-of-bounds to the right and trees down the left side. I hit my tee shot to one foot there. I almost made it. I tapped in for eagle, 65. It was a cool way to finish.

So, yeah, I can say I was in a state of mind that was very conducive to playing good golf: patient with myself, tolerant, empathetic. No expectations, you know, which is easy to say, but I just allowed things to happen. I made a double that day and I made some bogies. It was a good round. I’ve had a lot of good rounds like that, but not in competition. That happened to be one in a top position with scorekeepers and whatnot, so yeah, it was cool. I’m proud of it.

I think someday, someone’s going to take that down, but it’s going to have to be the right golf course. It’s not going to happen at Bandon Dunes, I don’t think. I think Bandon’s too hard. It’s too challenging, especially here for people who don’t know how to play links courses. Nonetheless, records are meant to be broken, so, someday soon.

Did you know at any time during the round that you were playing for a world record?

I was just playing one shot at a time and not looking ahead, not looking behind. Another great thing about Speedgolf is what every sport psychologist is always trying to help people with: Stay in the present. Well, when you are playing Speedgolf you are in the present, because if you hit a bad shot, rather than having time to think about it or worry about it, your next shot is literally seconds away, so you are in the present. Everyone from the Buddha to Dr. Bob Rotella is trying to get people to stay in the present and enjoy it.

That certainly helped, so, no. I wasn’t thinking about the score until the end. I knew I was playing pretty good. Every once in a while I’d look at my watch, just to see what kind of pace I’m going at, but there wasn’t a target up there.

Do you find yourself comparing rounds you play now to that one?

No, not really. Accepting change and accepting time, accepting aging… It’s something we all have to deal with. I look at Arnold Palmer playing golf now, in 2013. Does he compare that to how he played in the 60s? He can’t. He’s got to find different reasons to play, different reasons for enjoyment.

I don’t know if my golf game’s any better or worse than it was back then. I’m definitely slowing down. I think I can get fitter between injuries and illness, but it’s been a pretty tough year-and-a-half or so, but I also know my body is asking me to do different things.

It’s all a part of growing, evolving. I’m just going to do my best. As long as I have given my best, then that’s all I can ask. Things are constantly changing and I think we begin to suffer (laughs) when we fail to see the impermanence of everything. Easier said than done, but that’s the direction I’m trying to move in.

BONUS AUDIO: More Q&A with Chris Smith. Click play on our Soundcloud player below.

Elite runners and golfers to compete for 2013 Speedgolf World Championship, October 26-27 at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort


BANDON, Ore. – In just its second year of existence, the Speedgolf World Championship has assembled an elite field of 55 speed golfers from six different countries who will vie for the 2013 title at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort on October 26-27.

The field has several marquee competitors, including two Olympic track and field athletes. Nick Willis, New Zealand, won the silver medal in the 1,500 meters at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. Bernard Lagat, Tucson, Ariz., won the 2007 world championship in the 1,500 and 5,000 meters.

Defending Speedgolf world champion Christopher Walker, Woodlands, Tex., returns to defend his title. The former Notre Dame golf team captain is pursuing a professional golf career through the mini-tour circuit.

The format of Speedgolf is simple: Total strokes plus the total minutes and seconds it takes the player to complete his or her round. At last year’s world championship Walker shot 77 in 53:29 in Round 1, and 76 in 56:59 in Round 2 for a two-day total of 263.28.

The Speedgolf world record for a single round is 109.06 (65 in 44:06), set by Christopher Smith, Portland, Ore., at the 2005 Chicago Speedgolf Classic. Smith is also in this year’s field.

“We are incredibly excited for this year's championship,” said Timothy Scott, executive director of Speedgolf International. “The quality and depth of the field this year is unprecedented in Speedgolf history. And where else would you rather contest this championship than at Bandon Dunes?”

The field is divided into two divisions: Pro/Elite (30 players, 36 holes) and Age-Groupers (25 players, 18 holes). The Pro/Elite group plays Round 1 on Saturday, October 26 on the Old Macdonald course, with Round 2 on Sunday, October 27 on the Bandon Dunes course. The Age-Groupers field plays Sunday only, on the Bandon Dunes course.

Saturday tee times are 7:55 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. PDT; Sunday tee times are 7:55 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. PDT.

The championship is webcast live on at 8:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. PDT both days. The same coverage can also be seen on


About Bandon Dunes Founded in 1999 by Chicago businessman and philanthropist Mike Keiser, Bandon Dunes Golf Resort is home to four 18-hole courses and a 13-hole par-3 course. The foursome of Bandon Dunes, Pacific Dunes, Bandon Trails and Old Macdonald gives the resort the distinction of being the only property with four courses ranked in the top half of Golf Magazine’s Top 100 Courses in America. Bandon Preserve is one of the most highly-acclaimed par-3 courses in America, and 100% of its net proceeds benefit the Wild Rivers Coast Alliance, an organization that funds projects on the southern coast of Oregon that are committed to conservation, community and economy.

Media Contact:
Erik Peterson
Director of Communications
Bandon Dunes Golf Resort

Interview with Chris Walker, 2012 Speedgolf World Champion



(photo courtesy of Wood Sabold)

On October 26-27, elite speed-golfers from around the world will visit Bandon Dunes Golf Resort for the 2nd-Annual Speedgolf World Championship. The 36-hole competition is held at the resort’s Bandon Dunes and Old Macdonald courses.

The reigning champion is Chris Walker, Woodlands, Tex., a former member of the Notre Dame golf team who now plays professionally on mini-tours. At last year's championship at Bandon Dunes, Walker shot 76-77 with a total time of 1 hour, 50 minutes and 28 seconds. blogger Nick Martin recently caught up with Walker for an interview.

What sets Bandon Dunes apart from other courses at which you've competed?

I have competed at Bandon Dunes in both Speedgolf and regular golf. The thing about Bandon is there are times I don’t even feel like I am on planet Earth. Bandon is so secluded that there isn’t much distraction, besides the scenery. It’s is a special place to me, especially after winning last year’s world championship there. At Bandon, regardless of how you are playing, there is always a moment where you look out to the ocean, and for that split second you are absolutely at peace with the world. How can a moment like that not make Bandon a place unlike any other?

Do you have a favorite course at Bandon Dunes?

I have played all four 18-hole courses. Each is unique in its own way. But for me, it has to be Bandon Dunes. It’s where I won my first world title and it will always be special to me.

When you compete at a new course, do you play at a traditional pace first or is it always at speed?

Practice rounds are where we play at traditional pace. You want to make sure you collect as much information as you can before the Speedgolf event starts.

How have things changed for you professionally since winning last year?

For me, Speedgolf is an escape from the grind of playing professionally on mini-tours. I have new goals that spread across both my regular golf schedule as well as my Speedgolf. It is an exciting time for me to be coming back to Bandon.

Have you done anything differently?

My training regime is more finely tuned toward running, but really that’s about all that has changed.

How do you prepare for an event?

I like to play. Bottom line – I want to be out on the course. A quarterback can only watch so much game film and do so much strength training. They want to be out on the field where games happen. Being on the course allows you to find a rhythm leading up to an event.

Do you prefer a links style course to a different style (e.g. parkland or mountain)?

I would say a link better fits my game.

Does your strategy change based on the style of course?

Always. The key is to keep the ball in front of you and take advantage of the opportunities that come your way. Not to keep using football analogies, but it’s like when a QB uses the phrase: “I took what the defense gave me.”

In Speedgolf you have to take what the course gives you. You’ll hear golfers say things like “Oh, that’s a green light pin,” meaning it’s an opportunity to be aggressive. Each course presents its own opportunities for scoring. Some easier than others, some harder.

Are you looking forward to the Championship?

I wake up every morning excited that it is one day closer. “Looking forward” would be the understatement of the year. Haha.

What is your training regime?

My training regime consists of daily running, workouts, and golf practice. I generally will try and get Speedgolf rounds in twice a week as my schedule allows.

Do you spend more time at the range or the track?

I spend more time on the range. I am a golfer far more than I am a runner. My Speedgolf strategy will always be to outscore my opponents and gradually bring down my time.

When you go for a run, around town for example, do you carry your clubs?

I never have brought my clubs with me. There is a sports complex near my house where I will do some of my training. A few times I have taken a 10-pound dumbbell with me so I can get the feel of some extra weight in my hands.

When you're training, do you prefer to run on grass exclusively or does it matter?

I always prefer to run on grass. With Speedgolf, I will very rarely be running on anything but uneven grass surfaces.

Is there any comparison or correlation between Speedgolf and the Olympic Biathlon? (The Biathlon is a Winter Olympics event combining long distance cross-country skiing with rifle target shooting)

No doubt. To me, the principles of both are very similar. We are trying to hit a golf ball to a very specific target and a big part of that is being able to control breathing and increased heart rate. It takes very similar skills to that of the Olympic Biathlon.

Do you actively monitor your heart rate while you’re playing?

That has never really been something I watch while playing. I do wear a watch that measures time, distance, heart rate, etc. But for the most part my focus is trying to get the ball in the hole.

Do you ever slow down your pace to keep your heart rate within a certain level or is it just a constant push?

I always tend to slow down as I approach my shot, especially putting. I want to bring my heart rate down enough to be able to utilize a fluid golf swing. I would say putting is the most difficult task when it comes to having an increased heart rate.

What attracted you to speed golf?

Speedgolf is a very freeing experience for me. I have played tournament golf for 14 years now. Most of that time consists of playing in threesomes and foursomes. Rounds can last anywhere between 3.5 to 5.5 hours. For me, Speedgolf is a freeing feeling that I have not really had the opportunity to experience. It is nice to know that I am out there all alone and can go at my own pace.

Were you a runner or golfer first?

Golfer. 100%.

After you hit the ball, are you thinking about your next shot, or is it more cat and mouse?

It’s funny, for all my golf career I have heard and read about how it’s impossible to stay focused for the 4.5 hours that a round of golf can take. Sports psychologists urge golfers to take the time in between shots to let their mind wander and then refocus before the next shot. Speedgolf completely flips that notion on its head. Not only is it possible to focus for the 40-50 minutes a round of Speedgolf takes, it is a necessity. You absolutely have to be thinking constantly about the next shot. There always has to be a strategy of thinking ahead. Failure to do so, especially at a challenging course like Bandon Dunes, will result in continuous circumstances where the golfer will find themselves in troubled spots struggling to make a par or bogey. Generally, I will spend an hour or so the night before a round of Speedgolf studying a yardage book for the course and formulating a game plan that will allow me to keep the ball in the right spots on difficult holes while being in position to succeed on holes that may present an opportunity to make birdie.

From tee to green, does the hole evolve like it does for a regular round, just at a faster pace?

Yes and no. I would argue that in theory it basically evolves like a regular round. You hit it off the tee, go find it and hit it toward the green. It’s all the same, right? Well, in a regular round, I will have the time to get an exact yardage, know where I want to place the ball, and strategize a specific shot with a specific club to accomplish that goal. In Speedgolf I basically have to make an educated guess with yardage, I have only six clubs, and I am working with a lot less information such as the pin location, etc. What Speedgolf requires from me that a normal round of golf sometime doesn’t is a tremendous combination of feel and creativity. I know I am trying to get the ball close to the hole with limited information and a club that generally does not fly that distance. For me, this is where I come alive and really have a blast. I love creating something from nothing. And Speedgolf will certainly put you in situation where that is necessary.

What do you do when you lose your ball?

Speedgolf has a few specific rule changes in regards to a lost ball. When a ball is lost, the player may drop the ball on the line of entry in which the golfer believes his or her ball to have crossed. The reason the rule is different from the USGA’s rule for a lost ball is because in Speedgolf, the penalty would result in stroke, distance, and time. This is almost like a 3-shot penalty. So for Speedgolf, the rule must be adapted to account for the time factor.

Do you even lose many balls?

It occurs every once in a while. I lost one ball last year in the world championship so it does happen. The key is to realize when to stop searching and move on with your round to conserve time.

How many tournaments do you compete in every year?

Speedgolf-wise, I will do three this year. Regular golf, maybe 20-25 events.

Is there a type or style of golf course layout that is better or more conducive to Speedgolf?

Not necessarily. Every golf course presents its own challenges. That’s what can make Speedgolf unique. If you want lower scores, a more straight forward, flat layout will produce lower scores and faster times. But part of Speedgolf is adapting to the course that you will have to play that week.

It seems that a links course would lend itself more to a Speedgolf style. Is that the case?

On paper, yes. And if you asked the players, they would probably prefer that style of course for Speedgolf. But generally, we’ll just play the course we are giving.

Would you like to see more people in the sport?

Yes. Speedgolf draws on people with both golf and running backgrounds. Everyone who competes brings to the table their own unique skillset that allows them to be successful.

Has Speedgolf influenced traditional style golf in any way – aside from, maybe, pace of play?

I would argue that Speedgolf has increased my ability to be creative in my normal rounds. For many, Speedgolf is proof that you do not have to take a great amount of time to hit a quality shot and shoot quality scores. At our last Speedgolf event in Portland we had rounds of 70, 72, 72, 74, and 75. Plain and simple, those are good numbers no matter what the pace.

Would you like to see golf courses dedicated exclusively to Speedgolf?


If you could design a Speedgolf course, what would it look like?

I would like to design maybe a combination course. Maybe the front nine would be up in the tree line with some narrow, shorter holes. Then once the turn is made the course really opens up into more of a links style. Longer, well-bunkered holes would make for a difficult finish. I like courses that have holes with different personalities. I don’t want to see a bunch of cookie cutter holes. I want to stand on the tee and say, “Wow, this isn’t what I expected to see this hole doing.”

What would be different?

I would make it a point to have a stretch of 3-4 very difficult holes in a row. Something like 8-11. Then right after that, have 3-4 easier holes. That way, in the mind of the golfer, they reach that 8th tee and say “Okay, here is the round right here. If I can grind out there four holes, I will have some birdie opportunities coming in that I can take advantage of.”

What would be the same?

I wouldn’t want to do anything extreme to the terrain. I have played some really hilly courses and I don’t feel like those are conducive to Speedgolf scoring.

See Bandon Dunes Speedgolf Event on Masters Saturday


Bandon Dunes hosted the Inaugural Speedgolf World Championships and it is scheduled to air on CBS on April 13th (right before the Masters). The event consisted of 45 amateurs and 15 professionals who were competing for a $50K purse. The professional field competed in a 2-day event at Old Macdonald (Oct. 20) and Bandon Dunes (Oct. 21), while the amateurs only ran on Oct. 21 at Bandon Dunes. For more events from Bandon Dunes we've created some handy cell-phone back-grounds to remind you of the great events we have coming up.

Event iPhone Wallpaper

To see more information and the results of the Speedgolf Championship please click this link!

Bandon Dunes Host Inaugural Speedgolf World Championships


Over this past weekend, Bandon Dunes hosted the Inaugural Speedgolf World Championships. The event consisted of 45 amateurs and 15 professionals who were competing for a $50K purse. The professional field competed in a 2-day event at Old Macdonald (Oct. 20) and Bandon Dunes (Oct. 21), while the amateurs only ran on Oct. 21 at Bandon Dunes. Congratulations to all who took part in the event - especially the winners: Chris Walker - professional

Mark Stockamp - amateur        

All Results are below:

Professional Field

1. Chris Walker - 262.88
2. Tim Scott - 264.47
3. Tim Hval - 265.80
4. Christopher Smith - 267.84
5. Jaacob Bowden - 270.18
6. Todd Killingsworth - 272.39
7. Robert Hogan - 273.05
8. Gretchen Johnson - 273.38
9. Michael Chupka - 274.26
10. Kris Moe - 278.71
11. Jeff Simonds - 280.30
12. Arno Lindsberger - 288.53
13. Brandon Carter - 297.25
14. Kyle Warren - 303.75
15. Paul Gorman - 310.42

Amateur Field :

24-and-under division

1. Mark Stockamp - 128.29 (overall amateur champion)
2. Boyce Whitesides - 151.25
3. Ben Stickney - 153.21
4. Walter Sherry - 161.31
5. Conor Oliver - 164.34
6. Vincent Loduca - 203.32
7. Trevor Luu - 211.25

25-39 age division
1. Dougal Williams - 135.43
2. Alex Casebeer - 138.41
3. Alec MacColl - 141.10
4. Bryce Polovnikoff - 143.50
5. Kirk Tatterstall - 148.09
6. Chris Abbott - 149.35
7. Eric Arndt - 158.59
8. Katy Williams - 159.16
9. Kristian Beyer - 159.36
10. Akbar Chisti - 170.36
11. Kent Sasaki - 179.11

40-49 age division

1. Lawrence Levinson - 140.09
2. Drew Faust - 147.35
3. Wally English - 155.08
4. John Box - 159.29
5. Mike Cooney - 165.02
6. Ben Pape - 166.14
7. Craig Karem - 167.02
8. Mark Damon - 168.17
9. Mark Robbins - 169.39
10. Michael Salas - 180.03
11. John Gunther - 188.05

50 and over age division

1. David Harding - 136.23
2. Terrell Coffied - 146.35
3. Cary Kangas - 147.54
4. Fred Tattersall - 161.06
5. Gray Grieve - 166.39
6. Carl Trabant - 168.13
7. Bill McFadden - 172.26
8. Noel Lucky - 178.46
9. Andy Klumpp - 181.13
10. Steve Boebel - 191.39
11. Jeff Ris - 197.54
12. Andrew Beyer - 197.35  

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