Doing a flip off a bridge tethered only by a bungy cord around her ankles was a key ingredient in American Samantha Troyanovich taking an early lead in the ISPS Handa NZ Women’s Open at the Clearwater Golf Club in Christchurch.
Three consecutive birdies at the start of her second nine (she started on 10) were instrumental in her shooting a five-under 67 to share the lead with Denmark’s Nanna Koerstz Madsen at the end of the morning round.
“The bungy jump kind of put things in perspective for me. It is just golf at the end of the day. It didn’t matter if I was going to shot 65 or 105 today, I was just going to enjoy it.”
Troyanovich cherished the early morning conditions compared with a practice round she had several days ago. “I know the wind can be quite brutual because I played a practice round in a tonne of wind the other day. I think it stood me well as I came out here today and thought that this is not too bad. It was a good thing for me,” she said.
Troyanovich had six birdies, her only blemish being her second last hole (8th) where she narrowly avoided the water in scoring a bogey.
“I’m only taking one day at a time. As I have said, I have been struggling. I just need to play with a smile on my face. I am really happy to be here and it is an honour playing with such great players,” she said.