THE beers are on Brooks Koepka for EVERY New Yorker after he pulled off a brilliant trick shot in a stunt set up by one of America’s biggest brewers.
But if the world No 2 continues his astonishing run in the Majors, there is every chance Koepka himself will be floating in champagne on Sunday evening.
When you look at Koepka’s record in golf’s premier events, it is hard to understand why he is not a clear favourite to win for the fourth time in his last eight starts – that is right, a victory in every other Major.
He is the defending champion, after all. And no-one has shown the same level of constancy in the Grand Slam events since Tiger Woods won a ridiculous seven out of eleven between 2000-2002.
It was a re-energised Woods who thwarted his fellow American’s latest big for glory by pushing him into a share of second place at Augusta last month.
But Koepka, 29, is clearly the best big game hunter golf has seen since Tiger’s golden era.
You’ve got so many guys playing who are mentally going to beat themselves up. You can almost predict who is going to be there come the back nine on Sunday. Half the guys, you’ve already beat them by the time you’ve stepped on the first tee.
He seems to find it hard to get fired up for regular PGA Tour events, as illustrated by his record of just two wins outside the Majors.
There was more evidence of that as he finished fourth behind Korea’s Sung Kang on Sunday in the Byron Nelson Classic, against a field he should have eaten for breakfast.
But he still shot 20 under par, and you can bet your life he will be champing at the bit when the tape goes up at Bethpage on Thursday, especially with thousands of grateful New Yorkers cheering him on.
The beer belter involved Koepka hitting a twenty foot target on a moving barge.
He was allowed three attempts, but nailed it first time – and now everyone who buys one of the sponsor’s beers this week can get a second one for nothing.
Koepka – dubbed golf's strongest man- grinned: “It will be good to have plenty of support, especially as New Yorkers can be a loud crowd.
“I was the ‘bad’ guy if you like at last year’s PGA, the man who spoiled everyone’s dreams by beating Tiger into second place.
"He got his own back in the Masters, and I have to admit, even I thought it was pretty cool to see him winning big again.
“But I’m ready to go again, and I feel good about my game. I don’t want to say maybe I’m a different person when I show up to the Majors, but I am very focused, very disciplined.
“In the house we’re renting I’ll have my agent and my coach with me, and the chef from one of my favourite restaurants cooking for us. Everyone’s much more on the same routine.
"Everybody knows what to expect, what to do.
“I think sometimes I expect too much out of myself in a regular Tour event.
I know I should win it and I don’t give myself the opportunity to do it – maybe a little lack of focus, or just trying too hard.
“But at the end of the day, my primary focus is on Majors, as is everyone else out here.
Bank on Brooks
Koepka’s last seven finishes in the Majors –
T2 – Masters 2019
Win – USPGA 2018
T39 – The Open 2018
Win – US Open 2018
T13 – USPGA 2017
6 – The Open 2017
Win – US Open 2017
“And to my way of thinking, winning the Majors is probably less difficult – I don’t want to say easier, because nothing about the Majors is easy.
"But I feel it kind of is more straightforward.
“You’ve got so many guys playing who are mentally going to beat themselves up.
"Especially by Saturday, you can pretty much almost predict who is going to be there come the back nine on Sunday.
“That’s what I love about going to a Major.
"Half the guys, you’ve already beat them by the time you’ve stepped on the first tee.”
Turkish Airlines now operate daily flights from Gatwick to the golf hub of Antalya – and carries golf clubs free.
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