kelepi finau

In 2006, he set a Tour record by making the cut in an event at age 16. The Finaus dominated the Utah junior golf circuit over the next few years, but Tony’s profile began to rise nationally at the 2002 Junior World event at Torrey Pines, where he won the 11-12 age division. Kelepi, now 53 and remarried, watched every session in the garage, listened to every lesson at Thanksgiving Point, walked every match for West High and drove across the country for every important tournament.

My parents believed in me, and that’s a huge reason why I’m here today.”. Edit Profile. That hasn't happened yet, but it seems inevitable. He finished third. Behind the net was a mattress dotted with spray paint – targets to hit from about 5 feet away, so they could work on their trajectory and starting lines. I don’t know if I would be where I am today if I didn’t make that choice. Gipper only had himself, and when it’s easy for them, there’s a slight sense of entitlement to these kids. "My dad didn't really know how to play golf, but he self-learned so he could teach us," Tony said. Otherwise, I would've had them playing football.". Three years after sleeping in his mother’s car, he pocketed $7,960 in his Tour debut in the same city. They started playing when they were young. His mother’s death was just one of several life changes that year; he also married at 22 and had a son, Jraice, shortly after. It’s natural to look at Finau’s career progression and wonder what took so long, wonder why he needed six years to reach golf’s equivalent of Triple A, wonder whether the many skeptics back in ’07 were right after all. Tony and his brother Gripper had an interest in Golf. He drove to the Jordan River Par-3 course down the street and studied the golfers slashing away on the range. "I feel like mothers and wives are smart when it comes to this kind of thing. "This was literally babysitting.". But he has tremendous flexibility for a big guy; he has really kept his range of motion and clears his body nicely. Inspired by Woods, and envious of his brother’s instant success, he began to spend more time on the course than the hardwood, if only to keep pace. Everything just kind of fell in my lap at a young age. "And he was poised and he hit the ball a mile. A lot of times college can get you sidetracked. A few of his wife’s cousins played, so he called them and asked questions. “It’s one of the proudest accomplishments I’ve ever had on the golf course,” Tony said. Kelepi Finau. "I'm not different from them and there's no reason they can't someday do what I'm doing.". Experts on the business and game of golf.

View Photos. But the brothers stayed the course and stayed on the course. Copyright © 1996 - But while Blair trained with his father, Jimmy, an accomplished player with PGA Tour experience, at their family-owned, heated driving range, the Finaus beat balls in their garage until they were 14, until they were too tall and their clubs clanked off the metal beams. Things were thrown at me very fast.”. Kelepi passed away on January 6 2005, at age 63.

"(Tony's) hands, his wedge game and his putting were great for a big guy," said former University of Hawaii football coach June Jones, who played rounds with both while they were teenagers. For the next two years, they struggled to fill out an eight-man roster, even after tryouts, but as a sophomore Tony won medalist honors at the 4A state championship after a closing 63. He hits the back of the ball solidly, and he does it a lot.”, Tony Finau at this year's Northern Trust Open. Ravena worked odd jobs and juggled the hectic lives of seven kids. and But there was a cost for all of that time and energy lost. Finau made the cut that week, thanks to a Friday 65, and led the field in driving distance, at 331.6 yards per pop, while playing a big, hard hook.

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