Florida’s Natural Charity Classic
Player Reflection — Daniela Iacobelli
Iacobelli was a rookie on the Symetra Tour in 2010, right out of the Florida Institute of Technology. She earned a LPGA Tour card as a Symetra Tour graduate in 2012 (first full season on Tour) and 2015, making 2013 her LPGA rookie campaign.
The first week back out on Tour is incredibly similar to the first day of school. You have all your new swag thats been waiting to make it’s debut, you’re trying to find out who to sit with at lunch, if you have the same Pro-Am times as anyone you know, and figuring out where everything is, including your golf game (which you’ve seen make random appearances throughout the offseason).
The season opener being in Florida is always fun for me because it’s only about a two-hour drive from home, I stay with a host family that I’ve known for a couple years, and am able to play a golf course I’ve seen transform since college. This past off-season was entirely too long, so I couldn’t wait to get back into tournament mode.
The week leading up to the Florida’s Natural Charity Classic was normal—golfing with buddies, going to the gym, trying to remember how to pack a suitcase. Nothing special. Then, once in Winter Haven, it was as if the off-season didn’t happen. Time flew and before I knew it, it was Friday morning and I’m standing on the first tee, butterflies and all.
It was fun to get back out and hit shots when I needed to. At home, you tend to drop another ball if it doesn’t turn out how you want it to; now it was time to sharpen the pencil and take the test. My expectations were to remember the things I practiced at home, from the shots I learned to the repetitions it took. I saw some moments of clarity and I gave myself little notes all week on what to work on in the time leading up to the next tournament.
Every year you inevitably end up realizing how long the season actually is. That includes how many months straight you have to play, how many holes of golf you’ll compete in, how many states you’ll travel to, as well as how many miles in the air and on the ground you’ll accumulate. It’s crazy to think about what we will all accomplish come October. What’s even more crazy to think is that one tournament is already done and how quickly it will all go by. As for now, on to the next!