TUESDAY  | MARCH 5, 2019
by Jeff Shain

A few years ago, the Arnold Palmer Invitational ran a series of 15-second spots that featured Palmer adding the personal touch to various tasks to get ready for the tournament – calling players, swapping out pin flags, even some light landscaping.

The sight of an 85-year-old Palmer on his stomach stalking a wayward blade of grass with tiny scissors – “Got you, you son of a gun!” – is still good for a chuckle. And the message was unquestionably on point.

This is Arnie’s baby. Come be a part of it, whether you’re a player or a fan.

 


i

by Alex Miceli

When the USGA launched its revised Rules of Golf on Jan. 1, it didn’t take long for professional golfers to voice concerns. With the intent of simplifying the rules, the USGA was staring at a P.R. nightmare, which the association did everything to avoid by working with the PGA Tour, PGA of America, LPGA and other leaders in the game.

Among the changes, three new rules have taken on lives of their own: the option of leaving the flagstick in while putting on the green; mandatory knee-high drops; and a prohibition on caddies setting up players before their shots (“PGA Tour players talk rules rebellion,” March 4). Everyone seemingly has an opinion, even those who are retired from professional golf.

 


PGA Tour should follow rules lead of other sports
The only thing that doesn’t make sense is why the PGA Tour hasn’t developed its own set of rules (“PGA Tour players talk rules rebellion,” March 4).

The USGA has been around for more than 100 years; the PGA Tour for 50. The pros play a different game. They play for millions of dollars. The amateurs play for Nassaus on the weekend. Except for the U.S. Open, there is no reason why the PGA Tour shouldn’t develop its own set of rules. The Tour has a policy board. The Tour disciplines its own for specific violations of policy, so why not have rules for the Tour?

 


Withdrew: Tiger Woods, from this week’s Arnold Palmer Invitational, citing a “neck strain” in a Twitter post Monday afternoon. Woods, 43, has won eight times at Bay Hill, the late Arnold Palmer’s home club in Orlando, Fla. Woods added that his lower back, which underwent fusion surgery in 2017, is “fine” and that he has “no long-term concerns.”

 


10-1

Odds for favorite Dustin Johnson to win the Masters, according to GolfOdds.com. Johnson, who reclaimed the No. 1 spot in the Official World Golf Ranking, has not finished better than fourth at the Masters, but he owns top-10 results in his past three starts at Augusta National.

 



RADIO, TV AND PODCASTS

Hawk & Rude: Slow play, D.J. and . . . shorts?
Co-hosts John Hawkins and Jeff Rude take on a variety of subjects, including golf’s most pervasive problem: pace of play.




FROM THE INDUSTRY

The Ak-Chin Smash in the Sun will be held April 13-16 next to Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino in Maricopa, Ariz., organizers announced. For the second consecutive year, the Ak-Chin Indian Community will team with the World Long Drive Association to host the event. The contest will feature a 54-man field in the Open Division and a 16-member Women’s Division.

 

The winner of the PGA Tour’s Honda Classic wore Champ Zarma Tour cleats, according to manufacturer PrideSports. He was one of 27 of the top 30 finishers at the Honda Classic who wore replaceable cleats in their shoes.

 

Branson Convention and Visitors Bureau has retained Dan Shepherd Public Relations to market the golf destination in southwest Missouri. Branson is the site of an annual Champions Tour tournament, the Legends of Golf at Big Cedar Lodge, in April. It also recently opened Payne’s Valley, a 19-hole Tiger Woods-designed tribute to the late Payne Stewart, who grew up in nearby Springfield.

 

Global Value Commerce has added putters and wedges from Ping, Callaway, TaylorMade, Titleist, Scotty Cameron, Cleveland and Odyssey to its U-try club trial program on GlobalGolf.com. GVC owns and operates an e-commerce platform for new and used golf gear.

 

KemperSports has been selected by the Oneida Golf Enterprise to manage Thornberry Creek at Oneida in Green Bay, Wis. Thornberry Creek plays host to the Thornberry Creek LPGA Classic and serves as the official course of the NFL’s Green Bay Packers.

 

Garmany Golf is accepting team reservations to its fourth annual Pebble Beach Pro-Am in January at Pebble Beach (Calif.) Golf Links. The tournament, scheduled one week before the PGA Tour’s annual event on the Monterey Peninsula, will be played Jan. 26-30. Teams consisting of one PGA club pro and three amateur partners will play Pebble Beach, Spyglass Hill and the Links at Spanish Bay in addition to the week of activities.

 

Boyne Resorts announced its Great Escape Golf Vacation package to northern Michigan this summer. Boyne Resorts features three resort destinations and 10 golf courses, within a 45-minute drive of one another. The package includes five nights at Boyne Highlands Resort or Boyne Mountain Resort, breakfast and dinners daily and unlimited golf on seven of Boyne’s championship courses, plus other perks.

 

Villa del Palmar Beach Resort & Spa at The Islands of Loreto is offering a Golf or Spa Package to visit Baja California, Mexico. The package, available through May 2, includes play at TPC Danzante Bay, a Rees Jones design set against the Sierra de la Giganta mountains along the Sea of Cortez.

 


CALENDAR
March 7-10
Symetra: Skyigolf Championship

Charlotte Harbor National GC, North Port, Fla.

European: Commercial Bank Qatar Masters

Doha (Qatar) GC

PGA Tour: Arnold Palmer Invitational

Bay Hill Club & Lodge, Orlando, Fla.

March 8-10
Champions: Hoag Classic

Newport Beach (Calif.) Country Club


      
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