July 14, 2007
Volume VI, Issue 11
Free plug for Marriott, you’d think they’d give me a weekend stay or something…
Sometimes you come across something that just feels right. This is one of those times. Marriott Golf has introduced a program where children 15 and under can use a rental set at no charge when playing golf with a paying adult. This is an extension of a program where children 15 and under can play for gratis with a paying adult at Marriott Resort facilities across the country. Now the clubs will also be included. The clubs are Accu-Length Expandable Junior Golf Clubs. Restrictions apply, but now there’s no excuse for leaving the little ones in the hotel room. Visit www.marriottgolf.com
for more information.
I like this guy, kind of like I like Phil, cut from the same kilt or whatever…
Just when we thought Colin Montgomerie was winding down, the Scot up and wins a European Tour event in Ireland, the 31st of his illustrious career. Never a winner in the United States or in a major championship, Monty nonetheless has quite the record, having captured eight European money titles. This victory was his first since 2005 and gave him renewed optimism that maybe he could bag that first major after all at the British Open, to be played in his homeland at Carnoustie. Does he have a run at the Claret Jug in him? "I am still capable of winning," he said. "I have proved it again. I have proved it to myself and hopefully I can do it again." Montgomerie apparently believes he still has time to end his 0-for-62 drought in the majors. If this were a coin toss, the odds would certainly be with him, but this is golf.
My odds of getting tickets are about to become much worse…
Speaking of Monty, one place where he never had any difficulty winning was at the Ryder Cup. And although the event is still more than a year away, tickets are already on offer. With demand expected to exceed supply, the PGA of America is accepting entries for 2008 Ryder Cup tickets through Sept. 30. You can register online at www.RyderCup.com
. A random drawing will be held in October with results announced in November. The gallery for the event, Sept. 16-21, 2008, will be limited to 40,000 per day. Daily tickets are $40 for the practice rounds, $90 for Friday and Saturday play and $100 for Sunday. The 37th Ryder Cup matches will be at Valhalla in Louisville, Ky., site of Tiger Woods’ 2000 PGA Championship victory.
Phil, foiled again…
Just when everything was in place for Phil Mickelson to make another run at Tiger Woods, he suffered a wrist injury that will likely impact the rest of his season. He missed the cut at the U.S. Open and again at Woods’ tournament, the AT&T National. In two of his last three rounds, Mickelson failed to make a birdie. And he admitted, “I’m going to be leery all year. It’s not like I’m going to ever be confident and going aggressively after it.’’ That does not bode well for the rest of the season. Even when healthy, Mickelson usually putters in the last half of the season. In his career, 24 of his 31 victories have come before the U.S. Open, with just seven following. Unless there is a quick recovery, endorsement money will most likely be Phil’s big earnings play in 2007.
Darn, I am foiled again…
Just when you finish writing a blurb with a prediction you read the results from Loch Lomond, and say ouch! Phil Mickelson shot a 6-under 65 Thursday to share the lead in the first round of the The Barclays Scottish Open. Phil, a two-time Masters champion had an eagle and five birdies in the British Open warm-up.
Be one with the ball grasshopper, serenity is near…
PGA Tour player Will MacKenzie was bidding for a spot in his first major championship. He was attempting to qualify for the British Open in a one-day, 36-hole affair at Oakland Hills. On his quest to earning a qualifying spot, MacKenzie missed a 6-foot birdie putt on his 15th hole, and got a tad angry. He slammed his putter to the ground, causing it to break and rendering it useless for the rest of the round. Think it didn’t matter? MacKenzie had to use his wedge for putting on the remaining three greens, he finished with consecutive double bogeys – and missed qualifying by two shots. Ouch. Is it just me or does this sound like a John Daly story?
Gaining skill in chipping is perhaps one of golf's most important components to improve scoring for the amateur.
Why you ask?
Simple. The average amateur is not particularly adept at hitting greens in regulation and in order to make that all elusive par, the golfer must be able to chip the ball close. First we must define the term chipping. (Note this is a loose definition and may not hold up in any court!)
Chipping: A shot in golf from no more than twenty yards off the putting green requiring touch and creativity in order to make the ball stop as close to the hole as possible.
So if you can make the ball stop close to the hole your chances of one-putting the green are increased. This is good!
The chipping stroke should, in most cases, emulate a good putting stroke: mostly shoulders and very little wrist action. This motion can be seen best when watching pros like Tiger Woods and Sergio Garcia play a fairway wood from off the green.
Speaking of the fairway wood off the green, this is a very creative shot not intended for the faint of heart. Most amateurs would do well to select a seven iron or eight iron when they can bump and run the ball to the hole and a pitching wedge or sand wedge when a soft landing is required.
Be sure to pick out a target landing area and have a read on which way the ball will break once it starts to roll.
Chipping well can easily reduce your strokes per round by three to five. Practice this shot for at least fifteen minutes of your practice time per hour. It will help you to understand breaks in the green and speed control involved in getting the ball close!
- Swing with shoulders
- Use putting stroke
- Be creative when chipping
More than a Wie bit of time off may be necessary…
Michele Wie has been getting some poor advice this year. She broke her wrist in a fall back in January, then tried to hide the injury. After four months off, the wrist was still bothering her. A full disclosure would have meant cutting her some slack. Golfers need strong wrists and they need to practice. Wie had neither going for her. Now her motives are being questioned right along with her game.
If Michelle Wie is smart – and she’s done a good job of testing the notion – she will take a good bit of time off, rest her ailing wrist and clear her head. She’s not doing herself any good competing in professional golf tournaments when she is not up to par. When Wie withdrew from the U.S. Women’s Open during the second round, she was hopelessly out of contention and had no chance of making the 36-hole cut. It was the second time in three tournaments she withdrew. At the other, the LPGA Championship, Wie finished 35 shots behind the winner. It’s a long way from the player who contended at three major championships last year.
You the “insensitive” man, taken to the extreme?
There was more than a little surprise when Tiger Woods revealed that his wife, Elin, was hospitalized on the Thursday of the U.S. Open with non-life threatening complications related to her pregnancy. Woods never said a word, competed in the U.S. Open and finished a stroke behind winner Angel Cabrera. Woods hustled back to Orlando that night on his private plane and made it to the hospital in time for the delivery of the couple’s first child, a girl named Sam Alexis. It made many wonder what would have happened had Woods tied Cabrera, forcing a playoff the next day. But when he disclosed that his wife had been in the hospital – both doctor and mom told Tiger not to come home – it made a few wonder what they would have done. Could you imagine not halting a business trip with your wife in the hospital, a baby due any day? Of course, the U.S. Open is not just any business trip. Still...
|2007 PGA Tour Schedule || ||Winner |
|Mercedes Benz Championship ||Jan 4-7 ||Vijay Singh |
|Sony Open in Hawaii ||Jan 11-14 ||Paul Goydos |
|Bob Hope Classic ||Jan 18-21 ||Charley Hoffman |
|Buick Invitational ||Jan 25-28 ||Tiger Woods |
|FBR Open ||Feb 1-4 ||Aaron Braddeley |
|AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro AM ||Feb 8-11 ||Phil Mickelson |
|Nissan Open ||Feb 15-18 ||Charles Howell III |
|WGC-Accenture Match Play ||Feb 21-25 ||Henrik Stenson |
|The Honda Classic ||Mar 1-4 ||Mark Wilson |
|Tampa Bay Championship ||Mar 8-11 ||Mark Calcavecchia |
|Arnold Palmer Invitational ||Mar 15-18 ||Vijay Singh |
|WGC-CA Championship ||Mar 22-25 ||Tiger Woods |
|Shell Houston Open ||Mar 29-1 ||Adam Scott |
|The Masters ||Apr 5-8 ||Zach Johnson |
|Verizon Heritage ||Apr 12-15 ||Boo Weekly |
|Zurich Classic of New Orleans ||Apr 19-22 ||Nick Watney |
|EDS Byron Nelson Championship ||Apr 26-29 ||Scott Verplank |
|Wachovia Championship ||May 3-6 || Tiger Woods |
|The Players Championship ||May 10-13 ||Phil Mickelson |
|AT&T Classic ||May 17-20 ||Zack Johnson |
|Crown Plaza Invitational at Colonial ||May 24-26 ||Rory Sabbatini |
|The Memorial Tournament ||May 31-3 ||K. J. Choi |
|Stanford St.Jude Championship ||Jun 7-10 ||Woody Austin |
|U.S. Open Championship ||Jun 14-17 ||Angel Cabrera |
|Travelers Championship ||Jun 21-24 ||Hunter Mahan |
|Buick Open ||Jun 28-1 ||Brian Bateman |
|The International ||July 5-8 ||K. J. Choi |
|John Deere Classic ||July 12-15 |
|U.S. Bank Championship ||July 19-22 |
|British Open ||July 19-22 |
|Canadian Open ||July 26-29 |
|Reno-Tahoe Open ||Aug 2-5 |
|WGC-Bridgestone Invitational ||Aug 2-5 |
|PGA Championship ||Aug 9-12 |
|Wyndham Championship ||Aug 16-19 |
|The Barclays ||Aug 23-26 |
|Deutsche Bank Championship ||Aug 31-3 |
|BMW Championship ||Sep 6-9 |
|The Tour Championship ||Sep 13-16 |
|Turning Stone Resort Championship ||Sep 20-23 |
|Viking Classic ||Sep 27-30 |
|The Presidents Cup ||Sep 27-30 |
|Valero Texas Open ||Oct 4-7 |
|Frys.com Open in Las Vegas ||Oct 11-14 |
|Fry.s Electronics Open ||Oct 18-21 |
|Running Horse Golf Championship ||Oct 25-28 |
|Walt Disney World Resort Classic ||Nov 1-4 |