Notes Uproar Over RA Officials Racist Jokes

By Associated PressJuly 18, 2007, 4:00 pm
CARNOUSTIE, Scotland -- A Royal & Ancient rules official started his dinner speech with a fantastic impersonation of Seve Ballesteros, which segued to a series of racial and ethnic jokes. One day later, Graham Brown was under more scrutiny than Tiger Woods at the British Open.
 
Brown, a member of the Rules of Golf committee for the R&A, was the guest speaker Tuesday night at the Association of Golf Writers dinner held at Carnoustie and attended by the top brass in golf, including R&A chief executive Peter Dawson, PGA TOUR commissioner Tim Finchem and USGA executive director David Fay.
 
Dawson distanced the R&A from Brown's jokes but said he would not be asked to resign.
 
'He was in no way representing the R&A,' Dawson said. 'We know Graham Brown very well, and I can say absolutely that he is certainly not a racist as an individual. But I have spoken to him today. He is horrified at the impression he has left and horrified at learning the effects of some of his remarks.
 
'The R&A would not wish to be associated with that kind of thing.'
 
The jokes included a reference to Japanese golfers and a black caddie at Augusta National.
 
Martin Kippax, chairman of the championship committee at the R&A, said he saw no reason to force Brown to resign.
 
'Graham is a good golfer. He's a very knowledgeable individual with regards to the rules of golf, and he's a very useful member of our Rules of Golf committee,' Kippax said. 'What happened last night is something that is quite independent.'
 
The AGW issued a statement apologizing to the guests and members.
 
'We will make every effort to ensure this does not happen again,' the AGW said.
 
Brown could not be located for comment.
 
IRISH EYES ARE CRYING:
The British Open only has been played in Ireland once in its 147-year history. Chances of it returning to one of the links courses on the Emerald Isle are remote.
 
The R&A currently uses nine courses, with St. Andrews getting the British Open twice during the rotation. Chief executive Peter Dawson said one criteria is whether the property is big enough to stage such a big event.
 
'We're not closed-minded to say we'll always have these nine courses,' Dawson said. 'But right now, we're not actively considering another venue that is true potential for the Open.'
 
One suggestion was Royal County Down, which will stage the Walker Cup in September.
 
'It's a course we know very well,' Dawson said. 'It is really an Open Championship venue? Love the course; I think it's terrific. No, I don't think it's a big enough golf course for The Open. But it's a lovely, lovely golf course.'
 
The only British Open held in Ireland was at Portrush in 1951.
 
HALL OF FAME:
Former British Open champion Kel Nagle and three-time British Amateur champion Joe Carr have been selected to the World Golf Hall of Fame, filling out a 2007 class that will feature six inductees Nov. 12 at the World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Fla.
 
Nagle, an Australian whose 61 worldwide victories included a claret jug from St. Andrews, was selected through the veteran's category. Carr was chosen through the lifetime achievement category.
 
Nagle, 87, is the fifth Australian headed for the Hall of Fame.
 
'I'm sure he's going to be thrilled,' Gary Player said. 'It's nice to go to your grave at 87 knowing that you've been recognized and going into the Hall of Fame, which is very important in an athlete's career.'
 
Nagle's greatest victory came in 1960, when Arnold Palmer made his British Open debut while creating the modern version of the Grand Slam. He almost won another major, but Player beat him in a playoff in the 1965 U.S. Open at Bellerive.
 
Carr won the British Amateur three times, won 37 titles in Ireland and played in the Walker Cup a record 10 times.
 
Others to be inducted this fall are Curtis Strange, Hubert Green, Se Ri Pak and Charles Blair Macdonald.
 
SURPRISED TO BE HERE:
Lucas Glover failed at every turn to qualify for the British Open. He got here, anyway.
 
Glover narrowly finished outside the top 50 in the world ranking when that exemption was decided. His next option was 36-hole qualifying at Oakland Hills, but he withdrew after nine holes at 6 over par. He played well at the AT&T National and the John Deere Classic, but not well enough to be the top player not already eligible.
 
He flew to Carnoustie as an alternate and was in the field when his plane landed.
 
'I didn't play my way in, so this is gravy,' Glover said.
 
He replaced Shingo Katayama, who withdrew with injuries.
 
Glover thought the R&A might kick him off the alternate list because he withdrew from the U.S. qualifier. He was grinding so much on his game at the Buick Open that he never had time to practice at Oakland Hills, and he wanted to see the course after the PGA Tour event.
 
'I got there Sunday and asked if I could ride around,' Glover said. 'They said, 'No more carts.' I just got done walking six days in a row, and I said, 'I'm not walking 36 more.' I figured out where the 10th tee and the driving range were, went back to the hotel, shot 6 over on the front. I was stiff, my back was sore, so I bagged it.'
 
But it worked out well.
 
QUIET, PLEASE:
After so many mobile phones (most of them used for taking pictures of Tiger Woods) last year at Hoylake, the R&A banned cell phones at the British Open for the first time.
 
This came as good news to Colin Montgomerie. The joke is always that Monty could hear a fly break wind in England when he's standing over a shot in Scotland.
 
He knows it, based on his sarcastic response.
 
'I'm fine with photographers on the course,' he said. 'It's the other players that I feel that was brought in for. The likes of Retief Goosen, and people like that, the people that really get upset over these type of things.'
 
Now if they can just ban the flies.
 
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    Perez skips Torrey, 'upset' with Ryder Cup standings

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 2:19 am

    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.

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    Woods favored to miss Farmers Insurance Open cut

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 1:54 am

    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

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    Monahan buoyed by Tour's sponsor agreements

    By Rex HoggardJanuary 24, 2018, 12:27 am

    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.”

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    Day WDs from Farmers pro-am because of sore back

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 24, 2018, 12:07 am

    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.