A.O. Smith announced it will sponsor PGA newcomer Tommy "Two Gloves" Gainey for the upcoming 2008 PGA Tour season. Gainey, the self-taught golfer from Bishopville, SC, is a former employee at A.O. Smith’s McBee, SC water heater plant.
Gainey’s life-long passion has been to play the game of golf professionally. Former co-workers say he used to play a round every chance that he got. Gainey says a majority of his free time away from the plant was on the course.
“I can honestly say that part of my check used to go toward golf in some form or fashion every week. I guess you can say A.O. Smith started supporting me and my love for the game before they even realized it,” said Gainey.
Last year, Gainey was the winner of both the 2007 Tarheel Tour Oldfield Open and the 2007 Hooters Tour Bentonville Open. After starring on The Golf Channel's "Big Break II," he was asked back to compete on "Big Break VII; The Reunion at Reunion," and he walked away with the winner's trophy. In December, Gainey reached his lifelong ambition, earning his tour card by finishing tied for 19th at the PGA Q-School.
“We are very proud of Tommy for all of his recent accomplishments and are honored to be sponsoring him on this year’s tour,” said Ajita Rajendra, president, A.O. Smith Water Products. “We wish him luck and will be following his progress this year.”
Gainey made the cut in his first PGA tournament appearance in 2008 at the Sony Open in Honolulu, Hawaii.