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Kyle Berkshire won a third World Long Drive championship on Sunday, as bunkered’s James Tait was edged out in the semi-finals.
The 2023 final was agonisingly close, with just one yard separating Berkshire and compatriot Sean Johnson at the Bobby Jones Golf Course in Atlanta.
Berkshire, who won the title in 2019 and 2021, beat Johnson with a 398-yard drive from his six attempts.
In the lead-up to the event, the 26-year-old smashed the longest drive record, as he recorded a mind-boggling 579-yard tee shot in Wyoming.
He said on Instagram: “3-time world champ. It feels unreal to say those words.
“The adversity I faced and the pressure I felt throughout this week was on a level I’ve never dealt with before in my career.
Despite carding the longest drive of the day on Saturday and Sunday at 450 and 438, respectively, the championship’s longest drive was struck by Tait.
The Scot finished in third place overall, and his 452-yard drive in Sunday’s quarter-final was the furthest all week.
The 33-year-old lost to Johnson in the second semi-final, as the 2022 Rookie of the Year moved into his first World Long Drive final.
Making his third appearance in the tournament, Tait was using a specially built Callaway Paradym driver.
Prior to this year’s event, the St Andrews-based golfer’s longest drive in a tournament was 405 yards, which he beat twice in America.
In the Senior Divison, Ryan Reisbeck’s 372-yard drive was enough to defeat Robert Oristaglio.
Reisbeck said: “I’ve been chasing this goal for 13 years now and it’s great to finally achieve it.”
Meanwhile, Monica Lieving took home her first women’s World Long Drive title with a 288-yard drive against four-time world champion Phillis Meti.
All three division winners won with a 48” Kinetixx Velocity LD30+ shaft but on different drivers.
Reisbeck and Lieving used the Callaway Paradym Long Drive head and Berkshire used the Cobra Aerojet Long Drive head.
The three champions share practice facilities, as they all train out of One Stop Power Shop in North Carolina and are coached by Bobby Peterson.
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