WHILE IN TURKEY for the Race to Dubai Sergio
Garcia, Henrik Stenson and Lee Westwood were invited to try hitting golfballs
over the walls of the impressive 2000 year old amphitheatre of Aspendos. Ian
Poulter remained at the hotel, tweeting that because of the gorgeous food he
was too full to move. Perhaps he should
have gone out and practised his putting.
THE 2015 IRISH OPEN will be played on
a course familiar to both Rickie Fowler and Rory MciIroy. Royal
County Down in Northern Ireland hosted the 2007 Walker Cup when the two first duelled as 18 year old
After McIlroy was victorious this
year at the Open and PGA Championship the two were reunited at the Ryder Cup when McIlroy again got the upper hand both in the foursomes
and in their Sunday singles match, winning 5 and 4.
Fowler is keen to have another shot
at McIlroy. "When Rory told me the
Irish Open was going to Royal County Down I was really keen to play. We will have
plenty to reminisce about” he added, polishing his Derringer before slipping it
into the inside pocket of his raincoat (sorry, got carried away.)
PAUL AZINGER cashed in after the 2008 Ryder Cup by
writing a telltale book and embarrassing the players. Paul McGinley will not be doing the same. “I wanted the lads to know that what happened
behind the scenes stayed there” he said, “so I promised there would be no
book.” Stout fellow.
MIGUEL ANGEL JIMENEZ may be on the short list for 2016
Ryder Cup Captain but his lack of fluency in English may scupper him. Fellow countryman Sergio Garcia doesn’t think
Jimenez’s English, while OK for ordering cigars, is good enough to deal with
the demands of the job. At least he has
plenty of time to sign up for night classes.
GOLF MANUFACTURERS have unleashed a new range of
expensive toys on recession hit America, proving that their heads are still
firmly either in the sand or the clouds.
TaylorMade’s offerings include the R15 driver, with Front Track Technology. Two sliding weights can be moved to a variety
of positions in the head, changing the combinations of distance, forgiveness
and draw/fade bias. The Front Track also
acts as a Speed Pocket, which expands the size of the sweetspot and reduces
spin. Only £369! Just in time for Christmas!
As if that weren’t enough, the new RSi irons feature Face
Slot Technology; slots either side of the face which according to TM, work in
conjunction with Speed Pockets to give improved performance on shots that don’t
hit the sweetspot. The RSi 1 irons replace the Speedblades, the R15 driver the
SLDR. So tough luck on the shops that
invested in SLDRs and Speedblades.
GOLF MOVES DOWN UNDER this month with the Australian Open, Masters and
PGA. If Adam Scott managed to win his third gold jacket in Melbourne
at the weekend he will next have to face Rory McIlroy. Rory, fresh from collecting his goodies in
Dubai will be winging over to defend his Australian Open title in Sydney on
November 27th. The PGA
Championship on the Gold Coast in early December follows. It will be the last chance this season for
the world No. 2. to hang a major trophy on his Christmas Tree.
BACK IN the murky past our regular Sunday foursome
would hold earnest discussions in the 19th on everything from local
politics to the pitiful size of the measure.
Enjoying a post round pint recently with my Sunday four I noticed our
discussion consisted solely of our ailments, symptoms and treatment! But as they say, after sixty if you don’t
wake up with aches and pains you’re probably dead!
Until next time: Happy Golfing!
Contact Mick for all your regripping and repairs: 638 859 475.
PATRICK REED’S Ryder Cup opponents collared him last week
when he returned to the UK for the Volvo World Matchplay and had their photo
taken mimicking Reed’s gesture to the crowd at Gleneagles. Reed took it all in good part. For the camera anyway. Back in his hotel room he probably chewed the
FRANK STABLEORD deserves to be remembered by amateur golfers everywhere. Dr. Stableford was a surgeon in the Boer war
and WWI, afterwards becoming Captain of Wallasey Golf Club on the Wirral. Hedevised a system of points scoring
after realizing one day that many players were getting very little fun out of
their golf, often tearing up their score cards after a few holes, especially at
Wallasey, where strong winds could make play extremely difficult.
handicaps had originally been used for the purpose of wagers but eventually
there was a need for a central handicapping authority. In 1881 the use of three rounds and then take
the average was adopted. Many clubs
played medal competitions, hard for the less formal golfer, or they played
against bogey, based on the best average scores over a particular course, which
was very individual, with widely differing standards.
Dr. Stableford’s points system was first
played in competition at Wallasey on 16th May 1932, and was an
instant success. At the time the maximum
male handicap was 21, but not liking the idea of anyone receiving 2 strokes at
a hole, he restricted the allowance to 7/8th of handicap, giving a
maximum of 18 shots. Gradually he
refined the system to give 4bbb, foursomes and mixed matches.
The great advantage of Dr. Stableford’s
system is that it enables a player to continue after a few bad holes, and
speeds up play by letting a player pick up when he is out of contention. It was Henry Longhurst’s opinion that “No
single man did more to increase the enjoyment of the more humble golfer.”
GOLF IN AMERICA can be interesting. Approaching the 16th green in
Montana a golfer came across three bear cubs wrestling with the flag (no sign of Goldilocks.) And in Oregon an eagle landed on the green,
picked a player’s golf ball up in it’s beak and flew off. The
surprised golfer said: “I’d been hoping
for an eagle all day.”In case you’re wondering, rule 18/1 has it covered: If a ball at rest is
moved by an outside agency, there is no penalty and the ball must be replaced.
RORY McILROY has pulled out of the Shanghai HSBC
and BMW Masters to prepare for his forthcoming courtroom battle against Horizon
Sports Management. Horizon is
countersuing for breach of contract. For
both protagonists millions are at stake.
For the lawyers Christmas has come early.
FATHER AND SON Championship returns to Valle del Este, Almeria, from 27th
October to 1st November. Over 50 teams compete for the title of best
scratch and handicap Father and Son team in Europe. Last year’s winners, both from England, will return
free as part of their prize.
Open to any
pro or amateur team, maximum handicap 24, contestants’ ages range from 10 to 90 (not a
team presumably) The 54 hole 2bbb Stableford event brings golfers and their families
over for a great week in the sun. Sky
Sports cameras, press and announcers all make it as close to a pro championship
as possible, and with evening entertainment, spas and a carnival atmosphere it
is proving a popular annual fixture.
“Columbus went round the world in 1492;
that isn’t a lot of strokes when you consider the course.” Lee Trevino (Who else?)
Just a reminder folks that any loose
change dropped in to the poppy boxes this month will all help this very worthy
Until next time, happy golfing.
Contact Mick for your regripping and repairs. Tel. 638 859 475.