Kuchar enjoys opening of PGA Show week

Matt Kuchar

Matt Kuchar

ORLANDO, Fla. – When he was a high school golfer living just outside Orlando, Matt Kuchar used to join his dad, Peter, borrow some badges from the pro at his club, and visit the PGA Merchandise Show, just a kid walking through hallways filled with golf toys.

On Thursday morning, Kuchar was back at the Show, but this time he was there to open it. Coming off a year in which he led the PGA Tour in earnings, finished second in the FedEx Cup and made his first Ryder Cup team, Kuchar is getting opportunities to do things he hasn’t done before, and he’s enjoying every minute.

“I had so much fun here as a kid, so I knew it would be a good time,” Kuchar said Thursday afternoon, taking a rest inside the private office of the Bridgestone Golf booth. “We used to leave here with bags and bags of goodies. I had a few free minutes to walk through the Show this morning, and it’s still amazing to me. All the knicknacks, it’s mindboggling to see.

“I’m blown away by all the different gadgets and gizmos and gifts. It’s fun to see. I get a lot of gifts from tournaments, and you get tee bags at these charity events, and you’d think they’d be out of ideas. I mean, how many shoebags can you have in the closet? But you come here and it’s endless. It’s an endless supply of people with new ideas.”

Kuchar said he got a lot of cool things after representing the U.S. at the Ryder Cup last autumn in Wales. The best? A miniature Ryder Cup, the bottom of which was emblazoned with all the engraved signatures of his teammates.

Kuchar was headed home to Georgia Thursday evening, and this time, like those days as a kid, he was bringing home at least one pretty neat goodie. On the floor of the PGA Show first-thing Thursday morning, he was awarded the 2010 Vardon Trophy, given to the PGA Tour player with the lowest scoring average.

“It’s pretty awesome to have that one, with all the names that are on that trophy,” he said. “That’s the first I’d seen it. It will certainly find a special place in my house. The Vardon Trophy shows a certain level of consistency, and I’m pretty proud of that.”

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