While making the media rounds in New York City to promote the Chase for the Sprint Cup, which begins Sunday on NBCSN, Jeff Gordon appeared on SiriusXM PGA Radio and shared a story about how he earned a new fan during a pro-am tournament 15 years ago.
“This is the thing I don’t get about these pro-ams. There are pros and there are amateurs,” Gordon said. “But the fans that come out to watch think everyone’s a pro. So they line up down this tee box as if I’m going to hit it straight.”
Gordon said he doesn’t get nervous as he’s about to tee off, but he does about the possibility of the ball hitting a spectator. This happened when he participated in the Bob Hope Classic.
“I was playing with Peter Jacobsen and we were on a Par-3. I thought we had a decent shot,” Gordon recalled. “But those people sit very close to the fringe at that tournament. I hit a lady.”
But Gordon didn’t know he had.
Gordon and Jacobsen were walking to their next shot when Jacobsen leaned over to Gordon and said to pick up his ball and go tell her he was sorry.
“You knocked the heck out of this lady, there’s blood everywhere,”Jacobsen said.
Gordon immediately went over to the woman, who was wearing a white-knit sweater that had blood on it. He signed the ball and gave it to her husband as she was being loaded on a stretcher.
But Gordon’s nerves were shot after the incident. He soon stopped playing in that event.
Gordon revealed that the incident and the ball itself made a surprise return to him this year at the track.
“A guy came to the race track and he had that ball and he said, ‘That was my mom that you hit … They kept the ball and they’ve been big fans of your’s ever since.”