Adrenaline junkie Hoffmann getting his kicks at Bay Hill

Fri Mar 20, 2015 10:20pm EDT
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(Reuters) - For a self-confessed "adrenaline junkie", golf presents its own set of challenges that Morgan Hoffmann enjoys getting to grips with.

The 25-year-old New Jersey native has a pilot's license, like to drive fast cars and is a former ice hockey player, but this week all his focus is on winning his first PGA Tour title at the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill.

Hoffmann, who takes a three-shot lead into the third round after opening with a 66 and posting a 65 on Friday, said he turned down a chance to skate with NHL legend Wayne Gretzky just last week.

"I was actually supposed to go to Vegas last week to go skate with Gretzky. He has a celebrity (tournament) for hockey," said Hoffmann, who picked the flatstick over the hockey stick in high school.

"That would have been fun but I feel a little bit smart and try not to get hurt."

Hoffmann, a defenseman on the ice, said ice hockey might have been a viable career path.

"I loved it," the former Oklahoma State golfer said.

"If I wasn't playing golf I'd be playing hockey for sure. I would like to think I would have gone pretty far but, I had to pick -- my dad made me pick one sport in high school and it turned out to be the right choice."

Hoffmann also has a healthy appetite. He had five eggs, turkey, oatmeal, raspberry and strawberries before his morning tee time and sampled some turkey breast, sweet potatoes and green beans on the course.   Continued...

Morgan Hoffmann prepares to putt on the 1st during the second round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by MasterCard at Bay Hill Club & Lodge . Mandatory Credit: Kevin Liles-USA TODAY Sports