DECATUR, Ala. - In two weeks the 50th annual DAIKIN Spirit of America golf tournament tees off at Burning Tree Country Club in Decatur, but for the first time, the defending champ calls the River City home. It took a playoff, but Matt Gourgeot became the first Decatur resident to ever win the spirit last year, and the Burning Tree member is back to defend his title. After years of finishing near the top of the leader board, Gougeot finally broke through for the elusive win. Now with the monkey of his back, he says he's a little more relaxed going into this year's tournament.
"Winning once definitely takes the pressure off, no it's just go out there and have fun. It's really my favorite tournament of the year. It's my home track, and all of my family is here," Gourgeot told WHNT. "For a few years there all the members would say are you ever going to win the spirit, are you finally going to win it this year? This year it's are you going to repeat? That's better to hear than the other way."
The tournament tees off Thursday, July 6.