Notes Perrys Personal Choice Family Vacation

By Associated PressJune 3, 2008, 4:00 pm
He is closing in on 50 and so desperate to make the Ryder Cup team that he was willing to skip a major championship to increase his chances. Besides, he didnt think the course was a good fit for his game.
 
Kenny Perry isnt the only player who felt that way.
 
Four years ago, Fred Funk caused a minor stink when he skipped the British Open to play the B.C. Open and boost his chances of making the Ryder Cup team. The circumstances were slightly different, for several players didnt think it was right for Funk to pick up Ryder Cup points the same week as a major.
 
But it showed how much the Ryder Cup means to American players.
 
Funk had no regrets because he didnt think links golf at Royal Troon offered him much hope to succeed. Besides, the Ryder Cup criteria has changed since then and now is based primarily on money. In 2004, third place at the B.C. Open was equivalent to seventh place at the British Open. This year, third place in Milwaukee would be comparable to about 25th place the British Open.
 
Perry has played only three times at Torrey Pines without ever reaching the weekend. He is only hurting himself by not playing the U.S. Open, but feels as though he would be worse off going through a 36-hole qualifier (thats 108 holes in five days) for a course where he doesnt have good vibes. Instead, he will play Memphis, Hartford and Detroit, where he has more success.
 
How could anyone miss a major?
 
Jack Nicklaus said its one thing if Perry were in his 20s and a rising star, quite another for him to be 47 and trying to make a Ryder Cup team played in his home state of Kentucky.
 
Annika Sorenstam, for example, skipped an LPGA Tour major when she was 28, having played overseas and in need of a rest.
 
My goal was never to make the Ryder Cup. It was to win the U.S. Open, Nicklaus said. But I understand. Its a big thing to Kenny. I dont think Kenny is trying to be No. 1 in the world. Hes trying to make a Ryder Cup team in his home state. Thats perfectly fine.
 
Its doubtful that U.S. captain Paul Azinger minds. The money counts double at majors, but Azinger is aware that nearly half of the Americans who finished in the top 10 at majors last year failed to win a tournament.
 
Remember, he wants winners.
 
ITS THE ECONOMY
Memorial host Jack Nicklaus wanted the prize money to be $7 million this year, making it the highest purse among regular PGA TOUR events and equal to the playoff events.
 
Instead, he kept it at $6 million because he thought it would send a bad signal at a time when fans from around central Ohio are struggling with jobs, gas is approaching $4 a gallon and the economy is tight.
 
There are certain times you do certain things, Nicklaus said. I just dont think that sends a good message.
 
FAMILY VACATION
Carl Pettersson is not bashful about putting family before majors.
 
He missed the PGA Championship last year after his wife had their second child, although his logic didnt make sense to some people. Pettersson played the Bridgestone Invitational (which has no cut) a week after his son was born, then skipped Southern Hills the following week. He was trying to collect FedEx Cup points.
 
Pettersson had been eligible for the British Open the last two years, and forgot he had to qualify. The U.S. qualifier is in July, the same week Pettersson had scheduled a beach vacation for his family.
 
Its right in the middle of the vacation, he said. If I go up there (unprepared), why even bother? And if I left to try to qualify, my wife would go nuts. I dont mind. We had a great time last year at the beach, and its good for us to go back.
 
All is not lost.
 
Pettersson has two ways to get in. He can be the leading player among the top five at the John Deere Classic, or be among the top two PGA TOUR members on a special money list that includes THE PLAYERS Championship and five tournaments between this week through the AT&T National at Congressional.
 
That includes the U.S. Open, and Pettersson won his qualifier Monday.
 
COLLEGE CHANGE
Jack Nicklaus wishes there were more match play in college golf to get players more prepared'not for the Ryder Cup, but when tournaments come down to two players over the final few holes.
 
As he shared his sentiments, he learned help was on the way.
 
Gregg Grost, head of the Golf Coaches Association of America, said the NCAA Championship will revamp its formula next year. Grost said 30 teams will qualify and play 54 holes, with an NCAA individual champion and the top eight teams advancing.
 
Then comes a bracket of eight teams that are seeded based on their scores. The format would be medal-match play with players per team. Medal matches mean whichever has the lowest medal score wins the match.
 
There would be three rounds to determine the winner.
 
Grost said the format would be announced later this month, but he already got a thumbs-up from Nicklaus.
 
Im delighted, Nicklaus said. Then youre giving them the opportunity to learn how to play competitive golf.
 
SUZANN AND THE KING
Suzann Pettersen is a member at Bay Hill, and the biggest perk is running into Arnold Palmer.
 
Ive been around good players out here, like Juli Inkster, Meg Mallon, Beth Daniel. But to be able to get to know and dig into Mr. Palmers head, thats fun, she said. Hes like a grandpa out there. Hes so nice, always friendly, always smiles, always signs autographs.
 
She noticed something else about Palmer, who turns 79 in September.
 
Hes always on the range, she said. Hes there every morning. Any time hes unhappy with his game, hell go get a few drivers from his garage and go hit some. And hes like, all of a sudden, Ive got it! Hes like 79 years old. Were like, OK, thats great.
 
What a character.
 
DIVOTS
Colin Montgomerie fell out of the top 100 this week, leaving Alastair Forsyth at No. 95 as the highest-ranked player from Scotland Lorena Ochoa says she struggled to learn English when she arrived from Mexico to attend the University of Arizona. She wanted to major in psychology. I went into a few classes and I couldnt understand a word, she said. So I have to change to P.E. Ochoa, who spoke for a half-hour with ease, said she still laments her lack of vocabulary and grammar. Paula Creamer had her left ankle taped at the LPGA Championship. She attributed it to tendinitis.
 
STAT OF THE WEEK
Of the 160 amateurs who made it through local qualifying, only five of them earned a spot in the U.S. Open.
 
FINAL WORD
I thought Id win more tournaments by now, but Im not going to stop trying.'Lee Janzen, whose eighth and most recent victory was 10 years ago at the U.S. Open.
 
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    Rose leads halted Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

    By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

    JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters when bad weather stopped play Friday during the second round.

    The Englishman, who shot a 10-under 62 on Thursday, had completed 13 holes and was 5 under on the day at the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course.

    Kiradech Aphibarnrat (64) was in second place.

    Brandt Snedeker withdrew wit on the 11th hole at 2 under for the day after shooting an opening 72.

    There was no reason given for his withdrawal, but the American has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season. 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.

    Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

    Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

    Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

    None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.


    Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


    Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

    An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

    In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

    Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.


    Playing with the pros

    Tiger, DJ and Faxon

    Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

    Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

    Rory faces criticism

    Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

    Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'


    President at the Presidents Cup


    Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

    Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

    Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump


    Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

    Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

    Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73


    Cart on the green


    Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green


    Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open


    Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

    Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

    Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National


    Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open


    Trump golf properties

    Vandalism

    Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

    Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses

    Finances


    Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

    Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

    Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

    Reportedly fake TIME covers


    Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover


    Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

    Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

    Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up


    Pros comment on the president

    Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

    Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump

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    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm

    Spieth, Thomas headline winter break trip to Cabo

    By Grill Room TeamDecember 15, 2017, 1:05 am

    Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth. Really good at golf. Really good at vacationing.

    With #SB2K18 still months away, Thomas and Spieth headlined a vacation to Cabo San Lucas, and this will shock you but it looks like they had a great time.

    Spring break veteran Smylie Kaufman joined the party, as did Thomas' roommate, Tom Lovelady, who continued his shirtless trend.

    The gang played all the hits, including shoeless golf in baketball jerseys and late nights with Casamigos tequila.

    Image via tom.lovelady on Instagram.

    In conclusion, it's still good to be these guys.