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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, May 27, 2006

'Nice guys' get honor of playing with Wie

Associated Press

Rick Hartmann will go from anonymous club pro to sweating in the national spotlight when he tees it up with Michelle Wie on June 5.

The 47-year-old Hartmann will be in a threesome with the Hawai'i 16-year-old, who is aiming to make history in the U.S. Open qualifier at Canoe Brook Country Club in Summit, N.J.

Wie will attempt to become the first woman to qualify for the U.S. Open.

The USGA selected Hartmann and David Gossett to be paired with Wie in what is sure to be the most watched threesome.

"I guess they thought we were nice guys," said Hartmann, the club pro at The Atlantic Golf Club in the ritzy Hamptons section of Eastern Long Island.

"What did I do?" the good-natured Hartmann said. "Why does Rick Hartmann want to play with Michelle Wie? There are 150 (players). There was no way I thought I was going to be put in her group."

A USGA spokesman said Hartmann and Gossett were selected for the Wie pairing because of their experience playing in big events in front of large crowds.