Its Official Sergio Goes with TaylorMade-adidas
SERGIO GOES TMaG: As expected, Sergio Garcia has left Titleist to join the tour staff of TaylorMade-adidas Golf. The parties arent talking about the terms, but sources say the deal is worth $7 million per year over five years.
For that, TMaG gets the 22-year-old Spaniard head-to-toe. Garcia has been wearing adidas apparel and shoes since he turned pro in 1999. Now hell also wear adidas headgear, and hell play TaylorMade clubs and a Maxfli golf ball. (TaylorMade completed its purchase of Maxfli this year.)
'When we looked at who would be the 'perfect global icon,' as the marketing types like to say, the guy who stood out was Sergio, said Mark King, TMaGs president and CEO. Hes young, passionate, and he wants to be No. 1.'
Sergios not wasting any time trying to please the new boss. King and adidas officials were in Paris Oct. 9 to sign the new deal at the European Tours Trophee Lancome event, and Garcia showed up with 11 TMaG clubs in his bag. Hes using the 580 driver, largest in the new 500 line, as well as 300 Series forged irons up through the 5-iron. For 6-iron and shorter, Garcia is using the RAC Muscleback clubs, which North American consumers havent seen yet. There is a RAC wedge series out, but the irons wont available in the U.S. until January.
Over the past few weeks, the Garcia deal was half of a secret it seems everyone knew. As Garcia jumps over from Titleist, longtime TaylorMade endorser Ernie Els will go over to Titleist for club and bag (he has already been a Titleist golf ball endorser for some time) in a switch that has all the earmarks of a baseball-style trade. (For more analysis, see Barr on Business for October 4.) Each company has its separate goals with respect to endorsement staff dynamics and salary cap room. But the bottom-line reason for all the late-season endorsement positioning is marketing. The stakes get higher in the premium segment of the equipment market, which is weathering a tough economy.
But how do you measure the return on investment on the kind of expenditure TMaG will have to lay out for Garcia?
'There are ways ' surveys of articles, TV time, how many impressions people see, King said. But from the intuitive standpoint, you have to go with the notion that this guy is going to be good for the company. You trust in the momentum ' mom and momentum will translate into sales.'
DYNA, BLOW YOUR HORN: Dyna-Powered wedges built by Wilson Golf in the 1950s and 1960s can still be found in a lot of bags. Wilson has never abandoned the seasoned trademark, and now plans five new members of that illustrious family.
The latest models include a gap wedge (52 degrees of loft and 3 degrees of bounce), two sand wedges (54 loft / 8 bounce and 56 loft / 10 bounce), and a pair of lob wedges (58 loft / 6 bounce and 60 loft / 3 bounce). Theyll be available this month at a suggested retail price of $130 each.
KEEPING UP WITH ONE OF THE JONESES: If the rich indeed get richer, then golf-heavy Charleston, S.C. is about the levitate near a new tax bracket.
Noted architect Rees Jones will design a new course on Daniel Island, a 4,000-acre, upscale real estate development on an island within the Charleston city limits. The island already features a Tom Fazio design.
Jones promises multiple shot options, but good players had better bring the A game. Jones is well known for his work as the Open Doctor, remodeling courses for U.S. Opens and other big events. Among courses on that list are Bethpage Black, site of this years U.S. Open; Hazeltine National, where Rich Beem won the PGA Championship; and East Lake Golf Club, a veteran site of the PGA Tour Championship.
Perez skips Torrey, 'upset' with Ryder Cup standings
Pat Perez is unhappy about his standing on the U.S. Ryder Cup points list, and his situation won't improve this week.
Perez won the CIMB Classic during the fall portion of this season, and he followed that with a T-5 finish at the inaugural CJ Cup. But he didn't receive any Ryder Cup points for either result because of a rule enacted by the American task force prior to the 2014 Ryder Cup which only awards points during the calendar year of the biennial matches as well as select events like majors and WGCs during the prior year.
As a result, Perez is currently 17th in the American points race - behind players like Patrick Reed, Zach Johnson, Bill Haas and James Hahn, none of whom have won a tournament since the 2016 Ryder Cup - as he looks to make a U.S. squad for the first time at age 42.
"That kind of upset me a little bit, the fact that I'm (17) on the list, but I should probably be (No.) 3 or 4," Perez told Golf Digest. "So it kind of put a bitter taste in my mouth. The fact that you win on the PGA Tour and you beat some good players, yet you don't get any points because of what our committee has decided to do."
Perez won't be earning any points this week because he has opted to tee it up at the European Tour's Omega Dubai Desert Classic. The decision comes after Perez finished T-21 last week at the Singapore Open, and it means that the veteran is missing the Farmers Insurance Open in his former hometown of San Diego for the first time since 2001.
Perez went to high school a few minutes from Torrey Pines, and he defeated a field that included Tiger Woods to win the junior world title on the South Course in 1993. His father, Tony, has been a longtime starter on the tournament's opening hole, and Perez was a runner-up in 2014 and tied for fourth last year.
Woods favored to miss Farmers Insurance Open cut
If the Las Vegas bookmakers are to be believed, folks in the San Diego area hoping to see Tiger Woods this week might want to head to Torrey Pines early.
Woods is making his first competitive start of the year this week at the Farmers Insurance Open, and it will be his first official start on the PGA Tour since last year's event. He missed nearly all of 2017 because of a back injury before returning with a T-9 finish last month at the Hero World Challenge.
But the South Course at Torrey Pines is a far different test than Albany, and the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook lists Woods as a -180 favorite to miss the 36-hole cut. It means bettors must wager $180 to win $100, while his +150 odds to make the cut mean a bettor can win $150 with a $100 wager.
Woods is listed at 25/1 to win. He won the tournament for the seventh time in 2013, but in three appearances since he has missed the 36-hole cut, missed the 54-hole cut and withdrawn after 12 holes.
Here's a look at the various Woods-related prop bets available at the Westgate:
Will Woods make the 36-hole cut? Yes +150, No -180
Lowest single-round score (both courses par 72): Over/Under 70
Highest single-round score: Over/Under 74.5
Will Woods finish inside the top 10? Yes +350, No -450
Will Woods finish inside the top 20? Yes +170, No -200
Will Woods withdraw during the tournament? Yes +650, No -1000
Monahan buoyed by Tour's sponsor agreements
SAN DIEGO – Farmers Insurance announced on Tuesday at Torrey Pines a seven-year extension of the company’s sponsorship of the Southern California PGA Tour event. This comes on the heels of Sony extending its sponsorship of the year’s first full-field event in Hawaii through 2022.
Although these might seem to be relatively predictable moves, considering the drastic makeover of the Tour schedule that will begin with the 2018-19 season, it is a telling sign of the confidence corporations have in professional golf.
“It’s a compliment to our players and the value that the sponsors are achieving,” Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said.
Monahan said that before 2014 there were no 10-year title sponsorship agreements in place. Now there are seven events sponsored for 10-years, and another five tournaments that have agreements in place of at least seven years.
“What it means is, it gives organizations like the Century Club [which hosts this week’s Farmers Insurance Open], when you have that level of stability on a long-term basis that allows you to invest in your product, to grow interest and to grow the impact of it,” Monahan said. “You experienced what this was like in 2010 or seen other tournaments that you don’t know what the future is.S o to go out and sell and inspire a community and you can’t state that we have a long-term agreement it’s more difficult.”
Events like this year’s Houston Open, Colonial in Fort Worth, Texas, and The National all currently don’t have title sponsors – although officials at Colonial are confident they can piece together a sponsorship package. But even that is encouraging to Monahan considering the uncertainty surrounding next season’s schedule, which will include the PGA Championship moving to May and The Players to March as well as a pre-Labor Day finish to the season.
“When you look back historically to any given year [the number of events needing sponsors] is lower than the typical average,” Monahan said. “As we start looking to a new schedule next year, you get excited about a great schedule with a great group of partners.”
Day WDs from Farmers pro-am because of sore back
SAN DIEGO – Jason Day has withdrawn from the Wednesday pro-am at the Farmers Insurance Open, citing a sore back.
Day, the 2015 champion, played a practice round with Tiger Woods and Bryson DeChambeau on Tuesday at Torrey Pines, and he is still expected to play in the tournament.
Day was replaced in the pro-am by Whee Kim.
Making his first start since the Australian Open in November, Day is scheduled to tee off at 1:30 p.m. ET Thursday alongside Jon Rahm and Brandt Snedeker.