Amputee Vet Golfer Is Champions Tour Hopeful

If you’re down in the Tampa-St. Pete area and you see a golfer with a prosthetic leg, don’t ask him what his handicap is. Because it’s not funny, and because he’s probably a lot better than you are.

Donny Alston

(Alston [left, obviously] has a frickin’ Titleist prosthetic)

Donny Alston’s got a dream to be the first amputee player on a professional golf tour, and he’s got a former PGA player in his corner. So I wouldn’t bet too much money in a skins game with him; you won’t have a leg to stand on.

Alston was 18 when he suffered a training accident in the army and had his left leg amputated below the knee.

“When I got hurt, I didn’t think I could be a soldier or a golfer,” he said. “I didn’t really have a desire to be either. I never thought I would play again. I thought I would be awful at it and I don’t like being awful at anything.”

Obviously he was never awful at it; he drew the attention of former PGA tour player Brad Bryant, who offered to sponsor Alston for the Champions Tour when he turns 50 in a few years. Bryant said he wants to inspire veterans, but more importantly, Alston’s just that good.

“I really don’t want to put odds on it,” said Bryant, who turned pro in 1976, “because it’s a real long shot, but when I first met him and watched him swing a golf club, I said, ‘Well, that’s really something. He has a lot of talent.’”

Thanks to Bryant, Alston has a sponsorship so he’s financially taken care of; all he has to do is practice. He’s got a plus 4 handicap now, but to make the Champions Tour, he’ll need about a plus 2. What handicap?