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East County Athlete of the Week: Ed Furtado

The golfer talks hole-in-ones and his origins in the sport.

Ed Furtado.
Ed Furtado.
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Ed Furtado, 63, moved to Lakewood Ranch three years ago from Warwick, R.I. Furtado sank a hole-in-one March 11 on the No. 2 hole of Lakewood Ranch Golf and Country Club's Cypress Links course. Furtado used a 5-hybrid on the 165-yard hole. It is Furtado's fourth career hole-in-one. 

When did you start playing golf?

I started a little late. I was 14. I played hockey and baseball. Those were the sports my father (Ed Furtado Sr.) introduced me to first. He didn't play golf, but some kids in our neighborhood in Providence, R.I., did. Us kids learned the game together. It was cool. 

What is the appeal to you?

I love the challenge of it. You're competing against the course and you're competing against yourself. You're always trying to get better, with mixed results. 

Are you as enthusiastic about the sport as you once were?

I think my wife (Regina Cantwell) would tell you I'm obsessed with it. I got obsessed early on in the process, when I was 16. In the winter, when there was no snow on the ground but it was still cold, I would go out by myself to play golf. The hazards were frozen at all the public nine hole courses, but that was OK. 

What is your best skill?

I think my best skill is course management. I'm a good ball striker. My handicap is approximately 5. But I'm not great in one particular area. I have to think my way around the course. 

What happened on the hole-in-one?

It was the No. 2 hole on the Cypress Links course. I was playing with a few friends (Myles Silberstein, Rob Bray and Dave Grossman). The course was playing a little long that day. There was a bit of a breeze in my face. I hit a 5-hybrid right at the flag. The way that hole is, though, you cannot get a good look at the green because of the angle. You can see the flag but it's tough to see the hole. I saw the ball disappear but I didn't know if it went in or not. It turns out it did. It's funny, I didn't have any hole-in-ones for 45 years and I've had four in the last five years. Of course, I've played a lot of par 3s in that time. 

What is your favorite memory?

The first time I played St. Andrews (Golf Club). That was probably 15 years ago. It was at the end of a guys golf trip to Scotland. We had been there for almost two weeks. St. Andrews was the last stop on our trip. I played well, I shot a 75. The golf course itself is kind of pedestrian. It's the history of it that gets to you. Anybody who is anybody within the game has played there. 

What is your favorite food?

Ooh, I love Italian food. 

What are your hobbies?

I'm not sure I have any hobbies other than golf. I'm on the course five days a week. I do love to travel, so I'll say that, even though when I travel I'm probably going to a golf destination. 

What is your favorite TV show or movie?

My favorite movie is probably "Big." That's probably 30 years old by now. (It was released in 1988.) With TV, my wife and I have been enjoying "Longmire," though we're about to finish that. We'll need something new to watch soon. 

What is the best advice you have received?

Work hard at whatever you choose to pursue. That has a lot to do with success. It's funny how the people that work hard also seem to have better luck. It's a good life lesson.

Finish this sentence: "Ed Furtado is …" 

… Outgoing. I think people around here would say I'm chatty. I didn't used to be, but I've settled in here well. So I think that's what people would say: 'He never shuts up!'  



Ryan Kohn

Ryan Kohn is the sports editor for Sarasota and East County and a Missouri School of Journalism graduate. He was born and raised in Olney, Maryland. His biggest inspirations are Wright Thompson and Alex Ovechkin. His strongest belief is that mint chip ice cream is unbeatable.

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