J.B. Holmes is the lone American taking the British Open by storm so far this weekend in Northern Ireland.
He’s currently in third after three rounds at -10, six behind the current leader Shane Lowry and just two behind Tommy Fleetwood in second.
Holmes took the lead after the first round, shooting 5-under 66 on Thursday.
Here are five things to know about the American that is trying to pull off one of his biggest wins ever.
Holmes struggled like crazy before The Open.
In mid-February, J.B. Holmes won the Genesis Open. After that, he had a dozen starts with seven miss cuts and a withdrawal. He also failed to escape group play at the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play and had a few finishes outside of the top-60. In short, he’s been struggling.
But he’s also a five-time PGA Tour winner
Despite the recent struggles, Holmes is no slouch. He’s a five-time winner – the Genesis Open win is his latest in the Tour – and he is 2-2 in the PGA Tour playoffs, winning it last in 2015 at the Shell Houston Open.
He plays really, really slow
Golf Twitter has complained like crazy about Holmes slow pace of play in the Genesis Open earlier this year and continues to get heat for his sloth-like pace in The Open.
He played on his high school golf team for a decade
J.B. Holmes graduated high school on schedule but played for his high school team in Kentucky since he was in the third grade. “I lettered for 10 years. I don’t know if that’s a record,” he said in a story in Sports Illustrated.
He suffered two brain surgeries in 2011
J.B. Holmes doesn’t make much of a pair of brain surgeries he went through in 2011, but both presented huge obstacles to his golf career. He withdrew from the PGA Championship in 2011 after dealing with vertigo symptoms since May 2011 and was diagnosed with structural defects in the cerebellum.
A month after surgery, he started getting headaches and vomiting and it was discovered that fluid built up around the scar and that he was allergic to the adhesive used on the webbed titanium plate at the base of his skull. He has a chunk of bone from his skull sitting in his closet from his second surgery in September 2011. Talk about skeletons in his closet.