It was cold. Rain waters ran deep in the arroyos. The wind magically blew against every shot of every golfer . . . but one. While the field averaged over 90 strokes per round and only two other golfers beat net par and then only by one stroke (71), Jim Speck whipped the course like an evil stepchild. Speck turned in a net 65 to leave the competition stuck in the mud six strokes back. He also shared low gross honors. Speck played so well he beat his own season personal best by five strokes.
Speck’s performance was so dominant he even beat himself. When Sandy Wiener’s partner walked off the course because conditions were too inhumane for golf, Wiener was forced to get a blind draw at the end of the round. As luck would have it, he drew Speck. As a result, Wiener was thrust into first place in the team game. In the skins game, Speck picked up three of them. He was kind enough to leave a couple of table scraps for Jim Woods, Bruce Partridge, Mike Wentrup and Jim Stewart. It was a specktacle to behold.
1. Jim Speck – 65
2. Dan Hourihan and Howard Garr – 71
1. Jim Speck, Dave Inman and Gary Anzalone – 82
With the exception of Speck, no one fooled Mother Nature. Bogeys or worse outnumbered birdies by a factor of twenty-to-one. Holes #3, #4, #7 and #8 Lakes and #1, #2, #5 and #9 Dunes played at well over bogey. The average score on the day was 90.6. The field could only muster a total of a dozen birdies on what is usually the easiest course combination. With conditions as they were, you can do little but respeck the winner.