2004 Ryder Cup One Year and Counting

By Associated PressSeptember 17, 2003, 4:00 pm
04 Ryder CupAndy Odenbach has spent two years preparing for a competition that starts a year from Wednesday - The Ryder Cup.
 
The tournament director for the 2004 Ryder Cup buzzed around Oakland Hills Country Club in a golf cart Tuesday, carrying a list of things to do.
 
One moment, Odenbach checked on the status of new roads being constructed around the perimeter of the course. The next, he gave tours of temporary corporate tents in the parking lot.
 
'Tent' isn't exactly the right word; these decorated structures contain plasma television screens and staffed bars. All 58 of the top-tier chalets, which can entertain up to 100 people, have been sold to corporations for as much as $350,000.
 
The rich, however, will not be alone in the daily crowd of 45,000 attending one of golf's premier events.
 
More than 100,000 people have entered a random drawing for daily and weekly tickets. The drawing will be held Sept. 30 and ticket-holders will be notified two weeks later.
 
'Having daily tickets available is going to allow anyone to attend this event,' Odenbach said. 'The people that applied for tickets will have a one-in-five chance of winning tickets, but that's better than no chance for some people because daily tickets were not sold for the Ryder Cup in 1999 or 2002.'
 
Heavy equipment has been moving over the course for months to create new roads, cart paths and areas for cable and water to be transported. Letters have been sent to 3,500 volunteers, all of whom will be subject to background checks as will all vendors.
 
'We're trying to get as much done before the winter,' Odenbach said.
 
In June, Odenbach and others will have to focus on building 300,000 square feet of temporary buildings.
 
Subtle changes will be made to the course dubbed 'The Monster' by Ben Hogan, who won the 1951 U.S. Open at Oakland Hills. The storied venue has hosted six U.S. Opens, two PGA championships, two U.S. Senior Opens and last year's U.S. Amateur.
 
Eight fairways will be narrowed to bring more bunkers into play, and No. 6, a par-4, will be shortened about 15 yards, to 315, giving players an opportunity to drive the green.
 
'I don't want to beat the Europeans on course setup,' U.S. captain Hal Sutton has said. 'I want to beat them with sterling play.'
 
Europe has won or retained the Ryder Cup in six of the last nine matches. Last year at The Belfry in England, Europe won by three points - the largest margin in 17 years.
 
Sutton, who has competed in four Ryder Cups including last year's, said he would not be a captain-player if he made the team in 2004.
 
Bernhard Langer said last month he would consider giving up his spot as captain of the European team if it looked as though he could make the squad as a player.
 
'I think the most important thing is that we have the 12 best players on the course against the Americans,' said Langer, a two-time Masters champion.
 
The Ryder Cup will be the first of five major sporting events the Detroit area will host over a six-year period.
 
'This area has done a phenomenal job of getting these huge events to come,' Odenbach said. 'We'll be the first to test the waters, and we're excited because the red carpet is ready to be rolled out to show the world that Detroit is a great city for an event.'
 
Odenbach was told recently that the Farmer's Almanac predicts a 68 percent chance of rain during the 2004 Ryder Cup.
 
'It's the only thing we can't control, but I'm betting on the 32 percent,' Odenbach said on a picture-perfect day in the 70s. 'I'll take six days like this.'
 
Related Links:
  • '02 Ryder Cup Coverage
     
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  • Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

    By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

    Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

    ''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

    They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

    ''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

    Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

    ''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

    Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

    Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

    Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

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    Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 16, 2017, 5:46 pm

    Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.

    Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”

    Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told GolfChannel.com that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.

    Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.

    The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.

    Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters

    By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 3:52 pm

    JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.

    Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.

    Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.

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    Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 11:27 pm

    Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.

    The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.