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“Where’s Tiger”: Ryan Blaney Baffled by Golf Legend’s Absence After an Honest Confession About Max Homa

Published 04/12/2024, 12:20 PM EDT

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As we keep harping on Hendrick Motorsports’ storybook finish in Martinsville, how about a little break from the race tracks? The next big sports crossover news is up for grabs. Time and again bigwigs from other sports have dabbled in NASCAR. Most importantly, Michael Jordan runs 23XI, and most recently, Paige Spiranac hoped to get behind a NASCAR wheel.

The athletes keep exchanging opinions about each other’s sports as well. Baseball legend Joe Girardi recently lauded Denny Hamlin. Now racers provide their take on another ball sport: golf, and Ryan Blaney shared some fanboy takes on it.

Ryan Blaney is flabbergasted to see his idol missing

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A few prominent Cup drivers were rounded up for an interesting session. They got to set aside their tensions for the upcoming race at Texas Motor Speedway and unwind on golf. Among them, Chase Elliott publicly admitted to playing golf as a serious hobby. After his turbulent snowboarding activities in 2023, Elliott enjoys the peaceful game in his off-time.

Yet Ryan Blaney was the most vocal in the group. When the drivers were shown flashcards of famous golf personalities, the reigning Cup champion bubbled with enthusiasm. First up was six-time PGA tour winner Max Homa, and the Team Penske driver let slip his fanboy emotions.

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“I like Max Homa…I’ve tried to message him a couple of times on Instagram though…I slid into his DMs…He’s a funny guy.” Reacting to this nosy behavior, Hendrick driver Chase Elliott was genuinely curious. “He was in his DMs? What was he in his DMs for?”

 

 

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That was not the end of Blaney’s soaring golf passion. When the flashcards ran out, Ryan Blaney could not hold back a puzzled outburst.

He thundered: “If Tiger ain’t in there, I’m…Where’s Tiger?! How do you not put Tiger in there?” At this point, we knew who Ryan Blaney saluted as his biggest golf idol. And with good reason, too. Five-time Masters champion Tiger Woods recently came back to the Augusta National Golf Club course with a roar. He swung his bat in arguably the best performance ever since his near-fatal car crash in 2021.

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Tiger Woods’ immeasurable contribution to golf has been used as a yardstick in NASCAR.

Woods was an inspiration for racers

Ryan Blaney and Chase Elliott harp on their favorite golfers today, but one has truly inspired them in their racing careers. When both were young and upcoming drivers in 2018, Tiger Woods’ growth was an example for them. Chase Elliott won his first race at Watkins Glen in 2018. Kurt Busch took that chance to compare him and Blaney with the golfing legend.

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“If they start collecting wins, that’s going to help the sport just like with Tiger Woods,” Busch said. “It’s the sentimental value of coming back after some difficulties and putting on that Tiger-esque run. I think these kids who are coming up now need a couple more wins here or there, and it’s going to blossom from there.”

Both drivers have come a long way, with Elliott’s 18 Cup wins and Blaney’s 10 along with a Championship title.

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Written by:

Sumedha Mukherjee

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Sumedha Mukherjee is a NASCAR Writer at EssentiallySports who is known for her in-depth track analysis as well as her lifestyle coverage of Cup drivers like Denny Hamlin and Kevin Harvick. Inspired by the Kiwi's journey so far, Sumedha has also written pieces on Shane Van Gisbergen, predicting how the Supercars Champion would do in the new and unfamiliar American setting. Pairing her research skills with her vast experience as a writer, Sumedha creates stories her readers can easily get lost in.
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Edited by:

Shreya Singh