Adam Scott takes advice from surging legend Kelly Slater on longevity

Adam Scott knows the money is so good in golf now his newly achieved place as the seventh highest earner in PGA Tour history won’t last long.

But the Australian star’s effort to pass $86m in earnings after his maiden outing for 2023 in Hawaii last week was testament more to longevity, something his surfing buddy Kelly Slater showed by winning the Pipe Masters last year, right before the 11-time world champ turned 50.

Scott, now 42, used his time in Hawaii to hang out with his legendary mate, swimming though, not surfing, on the North Shore and tapped into Slater’s pearls of wisdom about “letting go” to enhance his still burning major ambitions 22 years after he made his PGA Tour debut.

“You know, he is a wealth of knowledge on peak performing, let’s say, and executing at the biggest moments,” Scott said ahead of the Sony Open.

“I don’t go up there just to have deep and meaningfuls and try and tap into him on that, but when you’re around a guy like that, you always take something out of the encounter.

“Even yesterday being up there on the North Shore, just going out for a swim in the ocean with him, it sounds too spiritual but a bit of an enlightening experience and just being able to let go a little bit.

“That’s a feeling I get from Kelly a lot, like, ‘Adam, just let go a little bit’.”

“I think at this point in my career, it’s a good thing to remember because I’ve done a lot of work over the years, and I know instinctively how to swing the club and chip and putt and do all those things, and you do have to just let go and do it and not be so controlled I think at this point.”

Scott, whose career earnings on the PGA moved to a tick over $87m ($US60m) last week, said the money list should be replaced by how long people played on tour because “guys are going to fly by me soon” as purses increase.

But money has never been a motivator for the 2013 Masters champ, who will again target the majors knowing every year his competitors get younger. Not getting caught in a “grind mentality” is the key to Scott meeting his still high expectations.

“The physical aspect over 40 I think definitely is a big part of playing top, top level golf because you’re playing against mostly mid to young 20-year-olds, even 30-year-olds. It’s a very different physical state,” he said.

“Then the motivation obviously is the big part of mental, so that’s really having a good balance in your life, to be able to maintain the motivation to not get stuck on the tour in a grind kind of mentality and more of it’s just a really good spot to be.

“They’re all the things I’m trying to do. Physically, I’m in a good space. Kelly has worked hard on all those things.

“He’s a great example of longevity at the highest level. You never know whether you’re going to get little pearls of wisdom here or there when you’re hanging around people like Kelly Slater.”

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