Notes Beem the salesman Haneys Tiger update

By Associated PressFebruary 3, 2009, 5:00 pm
SAN DIEGO ' The timing could not have been worse last year for Rich Beem, who failed to keep full status on the PGA Tour for the first time in 10 years as his sponsorship deals expired and the economy soured.
 
But when he started the new season two months later, Beem had a new lineup of sponsors for about the same amount of money.
 
How did the former PGA champion manage such a feat?
 
Basically, I just hit the pavement, Beem said, sounding like a salesman, which he was.
 
Two days after he finished the year at No. 140 on the money list, Beem pulled out his phone book and pored through a stack of business cards he had collected over his last decade on the PGA Tour and tried to strike a deal.
 
As soon as I got done, I just got on the phone, Beem said. I called up people I knew, either CEOs of their business or high enough up and said, Listen, you had talked about doing something with golf, would you like to get into it?
 
His agent helped him negotiate a modest renewal with Callaway Golf (bag, clubs, ball, glove and a logo on the shirt) and a modified deal with Mars, the parent company of Uncle Bens rice. Beem used to wear the logo on his cap, and now will do corporate outings.
 
Beem did the rest on his own.
 
On his cap is Guggenheim Properties, a private financial services firm with offices in Chicago and New York, courtesy of a longtime relationship with Jack Salerno. On the sleeve of his shirt is Nelson Financial Group ' Beem is neighbors in Idaho with one of the executives. He also arranged deals with Oakley (clothing, sunglasses).
 
None of these would be considered blockbuster deals, but each have a personal touch, and provide enough for Beem to take care of travel expenses as he tries to get by on a schedule built on sponsor exemptions and his conditional status.
 
And its a valuable lesson for players to pay attention to the people they meet on the PGA Tour.
 
The best salesperson for anybody is yourself, especially in this game, Beem said. You can sell yourself in pro-ams. How many people do we play golf with? Every week, someone gives me a card, a phone number. They tell you, Anytime youre in town, if you want to get together for dinner, or Anything I can do to help you out.
 
Beem met Salerno at Winged Foot during an outing 11 years ago. Salerno gave him his card, told him to call him if he was ever in Chicago and wanted to play Butler National. Beem took him up on the offer, shot 62 at Butler for the unofficial course record and weve been fast friends ever since.
 
Beem is comfortable in social settings. Instead of looking at pro-ams as a burden, he sees them as opportunity.
 

 
TIGER UPDATE: Swing coach Hank Haney spoke to a full house at the PGA Merchandise Show last week, and with the topic centered around instruction, he delivered one tidbit that might have surprised some of the teaching pros.
 
In the 5 1/2 years that Ive worked with Tiger, weve used video probably four times, Haney said. That might surprise a lot of people.
 
He paused and offered a wry smile.
 
Then again, hes on TV all the time, especially with some of the highlights, Haney said. Hell call me up and say, Did you see that swing on 16? But he knows what his mistakes look like. Once he sees a swing on video, he wont be surprised.
 
Haney has spent most of January at Isleworth with Woods, and while he couldnt say when the worlds No. 1 player would return to competition from his knee surgery, it sounds as though Woods is getting close.
 
Hes not ready right now, Haney said. But hes more ready this week than he was last week. He hasnt had any setbacks. He wants to play Augusta, and hes going to need to get in some events.
 

 
COLLECTORS ITEM: Even for a 19-year-old, Rory McIlroy had reason to wonder where the time has gone.
 
It was 10 years ago when he was watching the World Match Play Championship at Wentworth, the year Colin Montgomerie defeated Mark OMeara for the title. It seems OMeara had holed a bunker shot on the 18th hole of the morning round and gave the ball to a young lad from Northern Ireland.
 
He signed it and Ive still got it, McIlroy said last week.
 
He couldnt resist bringing that up when McIlroy and OMeara, 52, played together the first two rounds of the Dubai Desert Classic, which McIlroy went on to win.
 

 
SLIM CARL: Carl Pettersson started the year looking slimmer than ever, having lost 20 pounds through diet and exercise. Pettersson said he knew it was time for a change when he felt sluggish after rounds, and figured he better get in shape if he wanted to continue competing well into the next decade.
 
I actually dont mind going to the gym, he said. But well see how long this lasts.
 
So far, so good. A month into the season, Pettersson said he has slipped only once, and that was last week at the FBR Open when he made a couple of trips to In-N-Out, the popular hamburger joint.
 
Asked if he was chubby as a kid growing up in Sweden, Pettersson replied, I only lived in Sweden 10 years. You guys make me fat.
 
Pettersson, whose father worked for Volvo, moved to North Carolina when he was 15.
 

 
IRONMEN: Brian Gay is finally taking a week off after playing the first four tournaments, all 17 rounds at par or better.
 
Four other players havent missed a beat, although they have missed a cut.
 
Daniel Chopra, Chez Reavie, Johnson Wagner and Ryuji Imada are scheduled to play the Buick Invitational, giving them five straight weeks on Tour. Chopra and Johnson have yet to make a 36-hole cut (there was no cut in the winners-only field at Kapalua).
 

 
DIVOTS: Lorena Ochoa is changing up her bag for the 2009 season. Ochoa said she will replace her 5-wood with another wedge, giving her four wedges. And a new putter, she said with a smile. David Toms has 12 consecutive rounds in the 60s dating to the second round of the Sony Open. BMW will be the title sponsor of the Italian Open, giving it three title sponsorships on the European Tour.
 

 
STAT OF THE WEEK: The last 13 winners of the Buick Invitational are major champions, the longest streak of any PGA Tour event except for the four majors.
 

 
FINAL WORD: Im getting another 25 with this club. That would be 2 feet, 1 inch.'Bart Bryant, 46, who was 166th in driving distance last year.
 
Related Links:
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  • If Park is nervous, she sure doesn't show it

    By Randall MellNovember 17, 2017, 11:24 pm

    NAPLES, Fla. – Sung Hyun Park says she can feel her heart pounding every time she steps to the first tee.

    She says she always gets nervous starting a round.

    You don’t believe it, though.

    She looks like she would be comfortable directing a sky full of Boeing 737s as an air traffic controller at Incheon International Airport . . .

    Or talking people off the ledges of skyscrapers . . .

    Or disarming ticking bombs . . .

    “In terms of golf, I always get nervous,” she insists.

    Everything about Park was at odds with that admission Friday, after she took control halfway through the CME Group Tour Championship.

    Her Korean nickname is “Dan Gong,” which means “Shut up and attack.” Now that sounds right. That’s what she looks like she is doing, trying to run roughshod through the Tour Championship in a historic sweep of all the LPGA’s most important awards and honors.

    Park got just one look at Tiburon Golf Club before this championship began, playing in Wednesday’s pro-am. Then she marched out Thursday and shot 67, then came out Friday and shot 65.

    At 12 under overall, Park has a three-shot lead on Caroline Masson and Sarah Jane Smith.

    She is six shots up on Lexi Thompson, who leads the CME Globe point standings in the race for the $1 million jackpot.

    She is 11 shots up on world No. 1 Shanshan Feng.

    And 11 shots up on So Yeon Ryu, who leads the Rolex Player of the Year point standings.


    CME Group Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

    Full-field scores from the CME Group Tour Championship


    There’s a long way to go, but Park is in position to make an epic sweep, to win the Tour Championship, that CME Globe jackpot, the Rolex Player of the Year Award, the Rolex Rookie of the Year Award, the Vare Trophy for low scoring average, the LPGA money-winning title and the Rolex world No. 1 ranking.

    Nobody’s ever dominated a weekend like that in women’s golf.

    It’s all there for the taking now, if Park can keep this going.

    Park has another nickname back in South Korea. Her fans call her “Namdalla.” That means “I am different.” She’ll prove that if she owns this weekend.

    Park, 24, isn’t assuming anything. She’s humbly aware how much talent is flooding the LPGA, how the tour’s depth was underscored in a year where five different players have reigned as world No. 1, five different players won majors and 22 different winners stepped forward in 32 events.

    “I don’t think it’s quite that far a lead,” Park said of her three-shot advantage. “Two, three shots can change at any moment.”

    About those nerves that Park insists plague her, even Hall of Famer Judy Rankin can’t see it.

    Not when Park unsheathes a driver on a tee box.

    “She’s the most fearless driver of the ball out here,” Rankin said. “I would put Lexi a close second and everybody else a distant third. She hits drivers on holes where you shouldn’t, and she hits it long and she just throws it right down there between hazard stakes that are 10 yards apart, like it’s nothing. Now, that’s a little hyperbole, but she will hit driver almost everywhere.”

    David Jones, Park’s caddie, will attest to that. He was on Park’s bag when she won the U.S. Women’s Open in July and won the Canadian Pacific Women’s Open in August.

    “She reaches for driver a lot because she is a good driver,” Jones said. “She isn’t reckless. She’s as accurate with a driver as she is a 3-wood.”

    Park and Thompson played together in the first round. Park is eighth on tour in driving distance, averaging 270 yards per drive, and Thompson is third, averaging 274.

    Thompson loves to hit driver, too, but . . . 

    “Lexi hit a lot of 3-woods compared to us when we played together yesterday,” Jones said.

    Jones doesn’t find himself talking Park out of hitting driver much.

    “It’s really simple,” Jones said. “When you hit driver as straight as she does, why mess around?”

    Count Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee, a student of the swing, among admirers of Park’s abilities.

    “No other swing in the game comes close to her technical perfection and elegance in my opinion,” Chamblee tweeted Friday.

    Come Sunday, Park hopes to complete a perfect sweep of the LPGA’s most important awards.

    National champion Sooners meet with Trump in D.C.

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 17, 2017, 11:10 pm

    The national champion Oklahoma men's golf team visited Washington D.C. on Frday and met with President Donald Trump.

    Oklahoma topped Oregon, 3 1/2 to 1 1/2, in last year's national final at Rich Harvest Farms to win their second national championship and first since 1989.

    These pictures from the team's trip to Washington popped up on social media late Friday afternoon:

    Rookie Cook (66-62) credits prior Tour experience

    By Rex HoggardNovember 17, 2017, 10:36 pm

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Austin Cook is a rookie only on paper. At least, that’s the way he’s played since joining the circuit this season.

    This week’s RSM Classic is Cook’s fourth start on Tour, and rounds of 66-62 secured his fourth made cut of the young season. More importantly, his 14-under total moved him into the lead at Sea Island Resort.

    “I really think that a couple years ago, the experience that I have had, I think I've played maybe 10 events, nine events before this season,” Cook said. “Being in contention a few times and making cuts, having my card has really prepared me for this.”


    RSM Classic: Articles, photos and videos

    Full-field scores from the RSM Classic


    Cook has been perfect this week at the RSM Classic and moved into contention with four consecutive birdies starting at No. 13 (he began his round on the 10th hole of the Seaside course). A 6-footer for birdie at the last moved him one stroke clear of Brian Gay.

    In fact, Cook hasn’t come close to making a bogey this week thanks to an equally flawless ball-striking round that moved him to first in the field in strokes gained: tee to green.

    If Cook has played like a veteran this week, a portion of that credit goes to long-time Tour caddie Kip Henley, who began working for Cook during this year’s Web.com Tour finals.

    “He’s got a great golf brain,” Henley said. “That’s the most flawless round of golf I’ve ever seen.”

    Cook fires 62 for one-shot lead at RSM Classic

    By Associated PressNovember 17, 2017, 10:26 pm

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – PGA Tour rookie Austin Cook made a 6-foot birdie putt on his final hole for an 8-under 62 and a one-shot lead going into the weekend at the RSM Classic.

    Cook has gone 36 holes without a bogey on the Plantation and Seaside courses at Sea Island Golf Club. He played Seaside - the site of the final two rounds in the last PGA Tour event of the calendar year - on Friday and ran off four straight birdies on his opening nine holes.

    ''We've just been able to it hit the ball really well,'' Cook said. ''Speed on greens has been really good and getting up-and-down has been great. I've been able to hit it pretty close to the hole to make some pretty stress-free putts. But the couple putts that I have had of some length for par, I've been able to roll them in. Everything's going well.''

    The 26-year-old former Arkansas player was at 14-under 128 and had a one-stroke lead over Brian Gay, who shot 64 on Seaside. No one else was closer than five shots going into the final two rounds.

    The 45-year-old Gay won the last of his four PGA Tour titles in 2013.


    RSM Classic: Articles, photos and videos

    Full-field scores from the RSM Classic


    ''I've hit a lot of greens and fairways,'' Gay said. ''I've hit the ball, kept it in front of me. There's a lot of trouble out here, especially with the wind blowing, so I haven't had to make too many saves the first couple days and I putted well.''

    Cook has made the weekend cuts in all four of his starts this season. He earned his PGA Tour card through the Web.com Tour, and has hired Gay's former caddie, Kip Henley.

    ''With him being out here so long, he knows everybody, so it's not like I'm completely the new kid on the block,'' Cook said. ''He's introduced me to a lot of people, so it's just making me feel comfortable out here. He knows his way around these golf courses. We're working really well together.''

    First-round leader Chris Kirk followed his opening 63 on the Plantation with a 70 on the Seaside to drop into a tie for third at 9 under with C.T. Pan (65) and Vaughn Taylor (66).

    Brandt Snedeker is looking strong in his first start in some five months because of a sternum injury. Snedeker shot a 67 on the Plantation course and was six shots back at 8 under.

    ''I was hitting the ball really well coming down here,'' Snedeker said. ''I was anxious to see how I would hold up under pressure. I haven't played a tournament in five months, so it's held up better than I thought it would. Ball-striking's been really good, mental capacity's been unbelievable.

    ''I think being so fresh, excited to be out there and thinking clearly. My short game, which has always been a strength of mine, I didn't know how sharp it was going to be. It's been really good so far.''