Chimera playing like golf's 'natural'

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 10:01 AM ET

Some people practise till their hands are raw, frustrate themselves to near madness in the name of par - and still don't make it.

Then there's Jason Chimera. To say that the game comes easy to the one handicap is an understatement.

"I've never been too serious about it,'' said the Columbus Blue Jackets winger. "I've never taken a lesson. It came naturally. The first year I played golf, when I was a kid, I was in the 80s. There was probably a little cheating involved back then, but still, it came pretty naturally.''

Chimera, who occasionally dips into the 60s, shot 77 yesterday in the Grant Fuhr Celebrity Classic, showing some nerves in the first real tournament of his life. It was still good enough for sixth in a field of 30, but was well below his usual standards.

"I don't think golf ever gets easy or less frustrating, whether you're a 20 handicap or a scratch player,'' he said. "It's a hard sport to conquer. It can be just as frustrating (for players who can shoot par)because when you do shoot in the 80s, you're REALLY mad at yourself.''

MR. PERFECT: Dick Anderson, the NFL's defensive player of the year in 1973, wears one of the most treasured rings in sports - from the 1972 Super Bowl, when his Miami Dolphins posted an undefeated season.

The feat has never been duplicated.

"Every four or five years they bring us out of mothballs when a team has a chance late in the season,'' grinned Anderson.

"We watch with interest. and I can't say I'm unhappy when they don't make it.''

TOUR CHALLENGE: The celebrity players will no sooner be off the course than Blackhawk will open its doors again, the Tom Watson, Paul Azinger, Natalie Gulbis and Peter Jacobsen.

The second annual Blackhawk Tour Challenge goes Aug. 14.

This year's even will feature better sightlines and access, as the number of tickets up for sale has been cut in half.

Tickets are still available at Blackhawk or through the Caritas Hospital Foundation at 482-8232.


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