August 24—Andy Roberts won Gold Rush golf tournament for the eighth time last weekend at Windridge Country Club.
It was just another weekend of golf for Roberts, who has been one of the top golfers in the area for many years.
“I’ve traveled a lot this year, placed in the top 20 at the State Am, tied for eighth at the Kentucky Open,” Roberts said. “I’ve played in a couple of invitationals. Me and a buddy won State 2-man.”
Roberts didn’t play much in the summer of 2022 due to an elbow injury, and he traveled to Scotland with some friends to do a bucket list golf trip.
“That was the only year recently where I felt like I took a decent amount of time and tournaments,” Roberts said.
He still works on his game every day in some way.
“I want to practice every day,” Roberts said. “I used to hit a lot more balls than I do now. I’m trying to maintain that. Since last year with the injury, I don’t feel like hitting golf balls. I’m working on wedges, putting, chips.
“If I have to improve on anything, it would be overall ball striking. If I hit the fairways and swing well, I’m usually in pretty good shape.”
Roberts won the Gold Rush for the first time in 2003. He also won the long-running event at Windridge in 2006, 2009, 2012, 2014, 2019, 2022 and ’23 last week.
Roberts shot 135 (68-67) for the win. Cameron Carrico was second with 139 (67-72).
Being at the top of the field has a different feel to Roberts now than it did 15 years ago.
“It’s definitely different,” Roberts said. “Cameron (Carrico) and I played 36 holes together (in the Gold Rush). It felt like it meant more to me 15 years ago or so. Then every stroke was like the end of the world. Now it’s like, that was a terrible shot,’ but you just keep going. You’re never going to be perfect, you’re realistic about where you’re playing. In a tournament, you play well and you’re determined.”
Don’t get the sense that Roberts doesn’t like to compete like he once did.
“It’s voluntary misery,” Roberts said of tournament golf. “You sign up, throw yourself out there. I still enjoy being in the last group, trying to close out a tournament and win. When you hit a good shot, it’s always fun.”
At this year’s Gold Rush, Roberts didn’t feel like he was swinging the clubs well until late Sunday.
“I didn’t feel like I was swinging well, but I made it,” Roberts said. “The last five holes I hit a bad shot on 13 but I felt like I figured something out and then I played the last five holes pretty well and I played well down to the finish. Windridge is a quirky course It seems like there’s trouble on every hole you’re out there and instead of attacking you’re playing defensively it’s who can control that course i’ve been playing gold rush forever you got an idea out there , but it takes a while to learn how to play it. I have a way of attacking the court a little bit and playing the court, and I stick to that.”
Roberts will have a few more events to attend this summer. He will compete with a partner in the John R. Williams Invitational at the famed Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, NY
“It’s amazing up there,” Roberts said.