PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP) — Barbara Fathauer walked through the clubhouse at the Tesoro Club, holding two photos of her then-18-month-old twin sons.
“Let me show you,” she offered.
Daryl Fathauer groaned, mildly embarrassed.
“That’s my job,” she said. “I’m the mom.”
Her boys are 21-year-old men now, and on Thursday, she’ll get another bunch of photos for the family scrapbook. At the Ginn sur mer Classic, the Fathauers – Daryl and Derek, seniors at Louisville who grew up 10 minutes from the Tesero Club in Jensen Beach, Fla. – will become the first twins to play in a PGA Tour event since Curtis and Allen Strange were in the Texas Open together 26 years ago.
They’re here on a sponsor’s exemption, but they can play.
Derek Fathauer reached the quarterfinals of this year’s U.S. Amateur and Daryl Fathauer won the Alister MacKenzie Invitational in San Francisco earlier this month, his third collegiate victory.
“We’re pretty excited about playing,” Daryl Fathauer said before the twins played an afternoon round in Wednesday’s pro-am. “It’s in our hometown, all our friends and family can come out and watch us. We’re thankful for getting the exemption from The Ginn Company and so far, it’s been a lot of fun.”
One wonders if the Fathauers – or anyone else – will find the par-73 layout to be all that fun starting Thursday. It measures nearly 7,400 yards, not including some fairly long distances between many greens and tees that will necessitate players to be shuttled several times during the round.
This is a first-time event; the tournament was originally scheduled to be in Fresno, Calif., until construction and financial problems with that site forced the tour to seek another venue earlier this year.
Most players in the field hadn’t played Tesoro Club until this week, some not before Wednesday.
“Other than the obvious distance between the greens and tees, I thought most of the holes were nice holes,” said Mark Calcavecchia, who’s 12th on the money list this year with more than $2.9 million and one of only two players among the world’s top 50 rankings in this field. “I thought it was a pretty nice course.”
The Fathauers have one advantage over most of the field: They’ve seen this layout before.
They played a practice round – albeit from forward tees – a couple weeks ago, and tested the layout from the tournament tees Wednesday.
“I would say we’re just here to enjoy it and make the best of it,” Derek Fathauer said. “And whether we make the cut or not, we’re not really looking at that. We’ll just play our best and see where that gets us.”
The twins expect a group of at least 50 people, maybe more, following them around Thursday and Friday. They will not be in the same threesome for the first- and second-rounds; Derek Fathauer will play with Jeff Overton and Bryce Molder, while Daryl Fathauer is set to play alongside Johnson Wagner and Jarrod Lyle.
They expect to be a little bit nervous, for good reason.
“Just think of it as any other day of golf that you go out there for,” Daryl Fathauer said. “I don’t know how it’s going to be playing in the tournament, you know, with the pros and having a gallery watching you. But both of us have played in some pretty big tournaments so we’ve seen a little bit of what it’s like.”