What's up, guys! I recently had the pleasure of interviewing fellow Sacramento, CA native and 2013 ReMax Women's World Long Drive Champion, Heather LeMaster.
Her and I both graduated from Sacramento State and competed on the women's golf team there. I wish I could say that our driving capabilities are similar, but sadly the same alma mater is all we share! This week she is gearing up for the American Century Championship in beautiful South Lake Tahoe where she is competing for the 2016 title and also going to attempt to set the World Record for the Long Drive Record at Elevation. I asked her what she did to prep for the tournament and any advice she has for someone who wants to add more distance off the tee:
What got you started? I started golf at a young age. It's something my grandparents and mom did to enjoy together. My uncle built my clubs, so from the very get go, I had something that fit me, and family to do it with. I grew pretty quickly, and sooner than later I was using my grandma's clubs. Grandpa and I would practice together, as it worked out he always let me tee off, he let me putt too, but he was a way better putter than I was.
What is your biggest area for improvement in your game today? I feel like in golf, there is always so much to learn and that I can improve on. Golf is something that I'll never stop trying to be better at. Currently, I'd say I wish I was better at hitting the green from 150 yards. I feel that Edgewood's elevation will help me because it takes that mid-iron out of my hand, and puts a shorter club in it.
What is your training regimen like for golf and fitness? Gregory Johnson and James McDonald. Constantly help me improve my training. Even living in Texas with my fiancé they keep their eyes on me. Without a solid training regiment, I'm positive my body wouldn't hold up through the days and months of LongDrive I participate in.
What began your desire to hit the ball far? To be honest, I really missed playing. On course, I was significantly longer than other gals, but I never thought about competing in long drive because I didn't even know they had a women's division. I was out practicing one day, and met a Senior Long Drive competition named Lonnie White. He was ripping the ball across the Haggin Oaks driving range, and I had to give it a try!!! I landed my first sponsor 6months later, and won my world title a year after that! I feel truly blessed with places I've gone to, and people I've met in my Longdrive career.
Is it something that came naturally to you or did you work hard to achieve distance? I feel length I have off the tee is more natural. I have fun swinging for the stars and being #ladylong
What are some things you do to hit it further? I swing a 48" driver, and hit a 7.5* Callaway head. My equipment makes the biggest difference.
What is your best piece of advice to someone who is trying to hit it farther? I always tell people that if they want to hit the ball farther, then make sure your contact is the best it can be, then start building swing speed, try new postures, and new gearing ratios. I try to remind them that when they want length, accuracy may suffer. It's a give and take.
What is your goal one year from today? 4 months from now, I want to win the World Long Drive Championships at the Winstar Casino. One year from now, I want to have my PGA Certifications completed.
What would be your ultimate career achievement? To be recognized as an outstanding and accomplished PGA female golf instructor.
Who/what is your favorite:
Hobby? Riding Horses, being outdoors.
Food? Authentic Sushi or a great Steak
Song? Just play me something country.
Any advice for young girls who are wanting to play golf? Advice for women just starting to play? Give yourself as much opportunity as you can. Golf is the sport of business and you can play it your entire life. Golf teaches you responsibility, and leadership roles. Not to mention the great feeling of being outdoors, and enjoying some exercise.
Best piece of advice you've ever gotten? Do things you love, because as long as you love it, you'll always be successful and it will never feel like work.
My money is on Heather this tournament. You got this, girl! Represent SacTown! Be sure to tune into my Facebook page as I will be Facebook Live-ing on the driving range during this event Tuesday July 19th at 5pm! Make sure you cheer her on and hopefully witness a new world record!
Photos courtesy of www.heatherlemaster.com