So, here we go again, 2018 has now started for me and it commenced with me sitting on a train from Malaga to Madrid – It certainly was a travel day!
It was an early taxi up to the station, 3-hour train to Madrid, then a direct flight out to Dubai for two days’ practice before heading up the road to Abu Dhabi!
As a family, we had such a fun month together after I returned from Australia. We had a hectic and busy nine days in the UK over Xmas but then had some really terrific fun family time back in Spain too; I also got to enjoy some practice in far better weather than I’m used to at this time of the year.
It’s crazy how quickly my children are growing up; they’re both great fun, don’t listen to daddy at all, but I’m amazed how switched on and clever they both seem to be. Jessica just wants to learn all the time, whilst Olivia just wants to cause as much chaos as she can – it’s brilliant, and crazy how different they are!
We tucked them both up in bed on Sunday night, and it was time for me to say ‘bye, as I was up early for my taxi before they would be awake. I’m away for just over three weeks and that’s stretching our ‘family limit’ of time apart – in fact it’s overstretched it!!
We still don’t know if Jessica understands the timescales of daddy’s travels, but she certainly understands I’m away for a good few bedtimes this time. And last night was the first time we’ve had tears from her and asking for me not to go away!!!
That’s a tough pill to swallow for me and Laura, seeing Jess sad, and something which at times I’m sure will make 2018 harder.
But as soon as she gets back to school the next morning and sees her friends, daddy will be forgotten – ha ha!!
Don’t get me wrong, I’m under no illusion that it’s only me going through this… As in all walks of life and like many other jobs, we all make sacrifices and that just happens to be mine…I’m very lucky to do what I do, it’s just a selfish profession whether you want it to be or not!
So, after my full travel day, I landed in Dubai around midnight and grabbed a taxi straight to the hotel near Jumeirah Golf estates where I’m spending day 1 of my practice.
It’s a quality set up, and where the European Tour Performance Institute (ETPI) is based. My plan is to get up there in the morning, spend the day practising, and then at 4pm I’m meeting the Tour Fitness/Physio team for a few hours of testing, as I’m going to start working with them very closely in the 2018 season which is something I’m very excited about.
Having the Physios, Strength & Conditioning coaches, and nutritionists, at each event throughout the season surely should lead to a better chance of progression, improvement and maintaining the good habits!!
What an opportunity!!!!
Sunday, I’m going to head across to The Emirates course where the Desert Classic is played following Abu Dhabi. I’m meeting with Callaway at 10am to test the new Rogue driver, which will be fun!
I’m currently using the Callaway Epic driver since my contract with TaylorMade finished in January, and I’m actually a free agent for 2018 in terms of clubs, with my only commitment being to use Titleist/Footjoy ball, shoe and glove.
So, let’s see how the Rogue performs!!!