- Hunter Haas
Competitive. Driven. Focused. Committed. These are all words easily used to describe Hunter Haas the golfer. They are also words well suited to Hunter Haas the chef. The man who entered the week at 26th on the Nationwide Tour Official Money List is also an accomplished barbecue cook. Cooking competitively is such a passion of his, that Hunter skipped this year’s Mexico Open to compete at the Zops Abilene Wild Game Feast.
While working to perfect recipes for chili, pork spare ribs, steak fajitas, and all sorts of chicken dishes, Haas shares his hobby with his friends and colleagues. Last month he packed up his smoker and grill and towed his trailer to Midland, Texas where he cooked as much food as he could for the players, caddies and staff of the WNB Golf Classic. Rumor has it the food was so good the crowd cleaned him out in 30 minutes!
To be sure, Haas is passionate about his vocation as well. He postponed by a year his decision to turn professional when he won the 1999 U.S. Public Links. That victory garnered him an invitation to the 2000 Masters Tournament, an experience he simply could not let pass. That week was one of many events which propelled Hunter to a tie for 8th at the 2000 PGA Tour Qualifying School, a full exemption to the 2001 PGA Tour, and a hot start to his professional career.
Haas in now in his eighth year as a pro and is well positioned to return to the PGA Tour following this week's season-ending Nationwide Tour Championship. Haas sits a mere $469 outside of the Top 25 and a ticket to 2009 PGA Tour. Since every player in the 59-man field will cash a check, Hunter would like to decide his own fate with a strong performance.
Haas fired a first round 3-under 68, good for a share of ninth place at TPC Craig Ranch, just outside of Dallas and in proximity to his Fort Worth home. In fact, when he is home, Hunter plays at least 6o percent of his golf at Craig Ranch. While that may not give him a huge advantage in the Tour Championship, Haas contends, “it sure doesn’t hurt!”
What's in Hunter Haas' Bag?: Titleist Pro V1
golf ball, 907D2 driv
er (9.5), 904F 3-wood (15.0), AP2 irons (4-9)
, Vokey Design Spin Milled
pitching (50), gap (52), sand (56) and lob (60) wedges.