Q&A with Junior Golfers at the Nature Valley First Tee Open at Pebble Beach

Categories: I am the First Tee, PURE Insurance Championship
Jared and Elizabeth
Jared Robinson and Elizabeth Nguyen at Pebble Beach

Representing The First Tee of the Sandhills, Elizabeth Nguyen and Jared Robinson both played in the 2015 Nature Valley First Tee Open at Pebble Beach

To get a participant’s perspective, we asked two junior golfers to interview each other about their experiences during the week of the tournament.

Read more about their insightful, energetic and thoughtful answers.

QUESTIONS ELIZABETH NGUYEN ASKED JARED ROBINSON:

How was traveling across the country for the first time for you?
I didn’t know what to expect at first, if it was smooth or ‘funky.’ It was smooth, a few bumps in the air. It was neat being able to see the views of the sky. But the lady at security yelled at me for not taking my computer out of my book-bag.

Was there one single thing that made you the most nervous during the week?
On Saturday, on the front 9, the cameras started following my group. I wasn’t sure if they were videoing for TV, so I was worried that I had to hit every shot perfectly.

Jared and Champions Tour player Davis Love III
Jared and Champions Tour player Davis Love III

Was there one thing that surprised you most about the week?
I was really surprised by how nice all the Champions Tour players were to us. I thought they would be more to themselves and their caddies. But my partner, Davis Love III, helped me read almost all of my putts.

 Favorite surprise item/gift from pebble beach?

The signed banners from the Champions Tour players–they were like 6 ft tall! And of course I liked the new golf bag. But I LOVED the Nature Valley bars that were free. I probably ate 30 of them…almond one was probably my favorite.

QUESTIONS JARED ROBINSON ASKED ELIZABETH NGUYEN:  

Dinner on Thursday night with all the speakers: Who was your favorite and why did they speak to you? How did you connect with them?
The Former Secretary of Defense, Leon Panetta, was really amazing. I liked hearing about integrity, which is also my favorite core value, and about subjects that are very important to me, and that have effected all of us, especially my dad being in the military. He was the example of making tough choices for the greater good of everyone, and having the integrity to do so without succumbing to pressures.

How was this experience different than attending last year with your brother, Alex?
The experience this year was completely different. There was more pressure this year and a lot more to do! Last year I would sit in the rough at Pebble Beach and think about how nice and soft it was, while this year I was avoiding the thickness of it! It was fun last year to be the cheerleader for my brother and it gave me motivation to be back this year.

Rocco Mediate and Elizabeth are interviewed during the tournament
Rocco Mediate and Elizabeth are interviewed during the tournament

What moment of the week made you the most nervous and why?
The most nervous I was this week definitely was playing Pebble Beach with my Champions Tour pro, Rocco Mediate, on the first day. Cameras and a TV crew followed us the entire round, so by hole 7 I was nearly shaking! Which is probably why I chunked it, but it really surprised me how hard it is to play and focus on your game at such a venue and knowing that you are on live TV. The camera came right up next to me so it was really hard to block it out.

What was your biggest surprise moment or most unexpected activity of the week?
The biggest surprise to me was how they announced our pairings. They assembled all of us up on the first day and acted as if they were going to announce our partners, then told us to look in our bags for our players name! Every participant sprinted as fast as they could to our flag and bag and searched the pockets for the long anticipated envelope awaiting us. It was really exciting and a rush of adrenaline.

2015 Nature Valley First Tee Open_pairings party

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