Paul Claxton might have found a new preparation technique for golf tournaments: stay busy.
The Vidalia native took home the Georgia Open title by four strokes Sunday. That's not bad who admits he hasn't had a ton of time for competitive golf lately.
"I've been so immersed in my job at Hawk's Point in Vidalia that my golf game has kind of taken a back seat," the Hawk's Point golf pro says. "I've had so many other things on my mind that I never really got nervous or too worked up about it. Maybe that's what I need to try going forward."
Claxton had just one bogey Sunday, and birdied five holes on his way to a four-under final round, and a -13 score to claim the championship.
"I just hit the ball down the fairway, got it on the green, and scored very well today," Claxton says. "That's pretty good playing around this facility."
Savannah's Tim O'Neal and St. Simons Island's Dylan Freeman were part of a three-way tie for second place at -9. Mark Silvers of Savannah played himself into the top ten with a five-under 67 Sunday. He finished T8 at -7.
But no one was catching Claxton, who finished off a solid four rounds with five straight pars.
"It's been a long time since I won a golf tournament. So anytime you win something, it's just a big thrill," Claxton says. "To win close to home and around some of my friends here, it's real special."
There won't be much time for the former Georgia Bulldog to celebrate though. Claxton is off to Quail Hollow in Charlotte for his first PGA Championship next week.
He says a win Sunday will give him a little extra confidence as he tees it up with the world's best.
"It's great to get four rounds of competitive golf under my belt before I go up there. I'm looking forward to seeing some old friends when I get there," Claxton says. "I'm going to go up there and enjoy it, not put too much pressure on myself, and just kind of drink it in."
The PGA Championship begins Thursday morning. Claxton will be tee off with fellow Georgia Bulldog Russell Henley and Joost Luiten at 12:50 p.m.