Cruising the Course with speed golfer Luther Olson
Playing 18 holes of golf is a relaxing day for most. It’s a chance to catch up with some friends, have a few drinks, and share some laughs. But for Holmen resident Luther Olson, it’s golf, but much faster.
Three years ago, Luther decided to combine two of his hobbies, golf and running.
“I get to play golf, and I get done in an hour rather than four hours, which is great for family,” Luther said. “I have a 9 and 11-year-old, and time with them is valuable. I can’t spend four hours on the course multiple times a week.”
It’s not your old-fashioned gentleman’s game. Instead, speed golf combines the player’s score with the time it takes to finish the round.
“You take your mind out of it, and
you don’t have to stand over the ball thinking about what can go wrong,” Luther said. “It’s just a lot of fun.”
Among his peers, Luther may not shoot the lowest score, but his unique style makes him one of the fastest.
“Speed golf is about speed, so you want to carry the minimal amount of clubs,” Luther explained. “You can’t have a full bag lugging that around. Most guys carry four to five clubs. I use two clubs. 150 on in is my pitching wedge, 150 on out is my fairway wood.”
So with just two clubs, Luther gave it a shot, and decided to compete against the best speed golfers in the world. Low and behold, he won the first competition he entered.
“I thought, I wonder if I could play with those guys, even though I’m not a golfer,” Luther questioned.
The answer was a resounding Yes. Luther has competed in a dozen tournaments all throughout the country since 2019, winning two of them, and consistently finishing in the top five. It has become somewhat of a full time hobby for the 47-year-old, a hobby he doesn’t plan on giving up any time soon.
“Running out here five or six times a week when I’m 80, that would be awesome,” Luther said. “I’m going to be a lot slower, hitting a lot less, but to be able to do this sport until that time, and to be in shape, that’s what it’s all about.”
Luther will be competing in the SpeedGolf World Championships in St. Augustine, Florida on November 14th and 15th.
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