Swedish golfer Jonas Blixt has stood out since his amateur days. But in 2013, Blixt stood out for another reason.
During the final round of The Barclays on the PGA Tour, Blixt was paired with Ricky Fowler. Fowler is well known for wearing orange during final rounds, so Blixt decided to have a bit of fun.
As a friend of Fowler and a fellow Puma golfer, Blixt decided to also wear an all-orange outfit.
That certainly got some recognition for a man who at the start of his career didn’t get much of the spotlight.
After leading Florida State University to their first Conference title, Blixt turned professional in 2008.
His breakthrough came on the PGA Tour in 2012 when he won the Frys.com Open. And he immediately paid tribute to his father, Hans-Ove.
“It's all my dad. My dad loves the game. He's the biggest grinder I know. He always wants to compete. The more pressure you put on him the better he plays. Other than him, I never really had a role model in golf when I was growing up. I was more interested in ice hockey. I wanted to be an ice hockey player. But I never really got big enough or good enough to play ice hockey, so golf kind of suited me pretty well. I just kept on playing golf and trying to make a career out of it.”
When Blixt claimed his second PGA Tour victory in the 2013 Greenbrier Classic, it seemed his decision to abandon ice hockey for golf was indeed the correct one.
The fun-loving Blixt will be hoping to follow in his Swedish countryman Henrik Stenson’s footsteps with a victory in “Africa’s Major”. And you can bet he’ll have as much fun as Stenson on the way.
Blixt, whose surname translates to “lightning bolt”, is always up for a bit of fun and a challenge.
While he was at college, Blixt and a friend decided to give up fizzy drinks for a year. The deal was that the first one to crack would have to ride one of America’s most fearsome rollercoasters, The Kraken at Sea World, for two hours.
This year Blixt made his first appearance at Augusta National Golf Club in the Masters and finished tied second. That came after his fourth-place finish in the PGA Championship in 2013.
All of which suggests he could well become the first Swede to win a Major.
“I would love to be the first one. That's one of my lifelong dreams. I hope that curse kind of ends soon. I’m going to do as much as I can and work hard at it to end it. I think it would be huge for Swedish golf.”