What Will Tigers Tracks Look Like

By Brian HewittDecember 14, 2006, 5:00 pm
How interesting when Tiger Woods said this week: I think pretty much everything has been written about me.
Woods was referring specifically to how people respect his privacy more now that he has been in the public eye for 10 years and how that familiarity has bred comfort.
But everything hasnt been written about Woods. Recently we learned Woods is going to design a golf course in the Middle East. How, I wondered, would that affect his time management and his ability to play golf at its highest level?
And what, I wondered, would be the characteristics of a Tiger Woods golf design?
So I asked Tiger Woods the first question and Davis Love the second one.
People think, yeah, youve got to design nine or 10 courses a year, Woods replied. Im only entering one right now. You take it one at a time. Ill do this one and see how it goes.
And then if its something I can feel I can handle more (I will). If I cant, if I can only do one, then one it is. But the main thing is to do it with the same passion, same intensity as I do anything else. Thats just kind of how I am. But if I cant give it my all, theres really no sense in doing it.
In other words, dont expect Tiger Woods to sacrifice his golf game for his interest in design. But dont expect him to mail it in on the design front either.
Love, a maturing golf course designer in his right, smiled when I asked him to predict the idiosyncrasies of a Tiger Woods design.
It's going to be interesting to see where Tiger goes and what he likes, Love said. We see what Jack (Nicklaus) likes and we see what Arnie (Arnold Palmer) likes and what (Tom) Weiskopf likes, so it's going to be interesting to see what actually it is Tiger likes and see if some of these tournaments get him to build them a golf course like that and see who will come play it.
My wife and I went to the Phillips Art Gallery in Washington and we walked around. And I keep using this analogy: We all can go to an art gallery and we're all going to like something different. But if it's a classic, it's a classic no matter what.
I might like (Donald) Ross and (Seth) Raynor, someone else might like (A.W.) Tillinghast. That doesn't make any of them wrong.
If you don't like Jack's courses or Arnie's courses or Pete Dye's courses, it doesn't make them wrong.
It's going to be interesting to see what Tiger likes and what Phil (Mickelson) likes, and we know what (Ben) Crenshaw likes. I followed him around like a puppy dog. I want to learn what he's figured out because he's got it figured out.
We'll basically see what those guys do. The opportunity for us is they're looking for market. Phil Mickelson is going to be a huge name, Tiger Woods is going to be a huge name wherever he goes.
I think that (name value) gives a guy like Jack Nicklaus an opportunity to go out and be creative. Obviously Jack and Arnie have been very successful. Their courses don't look anything alike.
Bottom line?
You get the sense Woods golf courses will be big on variety. They will be heavily influenced by his experience with links golf in Europe. And they will be sited only on special pieces of land.
Id like to see Woods and Nicklaus collaborate in a sylvan setting'Nicklaus Woods?
And Id be surprised if Woods and Nike dont collaborate one day on a golf course. I wouldnt be surprised if the 18th hole was a dogleg in the shape of, yes, a swoosh.
The possibilities, really, are endless.
Email your thoughts to Brian Hewitt
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What's in the bag: CareerBuilder winner Rahm

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 22, 2018, 10:37 pm

Jon Rahm defeated Andrew Landry in a playoff to earn his second PGA Tour title at the CareerBuilder Challenge. Here's what's in his bag:

Driver: TaylorMade M4 (9.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

Fairway wood: TaylorMade M3 (19 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

Irons: TaylorMade P790 (3), P750 (4-PW), with Project X 6.5 shafts

Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (52, 56 degrees), Milled Grind Hi-Toe (60 degrees), with Project X 6.5 shafts

Putter: TaylorMade Spider Tour Red

Ball: TaylorMade TP5x

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Strange irked by Rahm-Landry friendly playoff

By Jason CrookJanuary 22, 2018, 9:45 pm

Curtis Strange knows a thing or two about winning golf tournaments, and based on his reaction to the CareerBuilder Challenge playoff on Sunday, it’s safe to say he did things a little differently while picking up 17 PGA Tour victories in his Hall-of-Fame career.

While Jon Rahm and Andrew Landry were “battling” through four extra holes, Strange, 62, tweeted his issues with the duo’s constant chit-chat and friendly banter down the stretch at La Quinta Country Club, where Rahm eventually came out on top.

The two-time U.S. Open champ then engaged with some followers to explain his point a little more in depth.

So, yeah ... don't think he's changing his perspective on this topic anytime soon ever.

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Randall's Rant: The Euros won't just roll over

By Randall MellJanuary 22, 2018, 9:36 pm

The Ryder Cup may not be the King Kong of golf events yet, but you can hear the biennial international team event thumping its chest a full eight months out.

As anticipation for this year’s big events goes, there is more buzz about Europe’s bid to hold off a rejuvenated American effort in Paris in September than there is about the Masters coming up in April.

Thank Europe’s phenomenal success last weekend for that.

And Rory McIlroy’s impassioned remarks in Abu Dhabi.

And the provocative bulletin board material a certain Sports Illustrated writer provided the Europeans a couple months ago, with a stinging assault on the Euro chances that read like an obituary.

McIlroy was asked in a news conference before his 2018 debut last week what he was most excited about this year.

The Ryder Cup topped his list.

Though McIlroy will be trying to complete the career Grand Slam at Augusta National come April, he talked more about the Ryder Cup than he did any of the game’s major championships.

When asked a follow-up about the American team’s resurgence after a task-force overhaul and the injection of young, new star power, McIlroy nearly started breaking down the matchup. He talked about the young Americans and how good they are.

“Yeah, the Americans have been, obviously, very buoyant about their chances and whatever, but it’s never as easy as that. ... The Ryder Cup’s always close,” McIlroy said. “I think we’ll have a great team, and it definitely won’t be as easy as they think it’s going to be.”

McIlroy may have been talking about Alan Shipnuck’s bold prediction after the American Presidents Cup rout last fall.

Or similar assertions from TV analysts.

“The Ryder Cup is dead – you just don’t know it yet,” Shipnuck wrote. “One of the greatest events in sport is on the verge of irrelevancy. The young, talented, hungry golfers from the United States, benefitting from the cohesive leadership of the Task Force era, are going to roll to victory in 2018 in Paris.”

European Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn won’t find words that will motivate the Euros more than that as he watches his prospective players jockey to make the team.

And, boy, did they jockey last weekend.

The Euros dominated across the planet, not that they did it with the Ryder Cup as some rallying cry, because they didn’t. But it was a heck of an encouraging start to the year for Bjorn to witness.

Spain’s Jon Rahm won the CareerBuilder Challenge on the PGA Tour, England’s Tommy Fleetwood started the week at Abu Dhabi paired with American and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and won the European Tour event, and Spain’s Sergio Garcia won the Singapore Open in a rout on the Asian Tour.

And McIlroy looked close to being in midseason form, tying for third in his first start in three months.

Yes, it’s only January, and the Ryder Cup is still a long way off, with so much still to unfold, but you got an early sense from McIlroy how much defending European turf will mean to him and the Euros in Paris in September.

The Masters is great theater, the U.S. Open a rigorous test, The Open and the PGA Championship historically important, too, but the Ryder Cup touches a nerve none of those do.

The Ryder Cup stokes more fervor, provokes more passion and incites more vitriol than any other event in golf.

More bulletin board material, too.

Yeah, it’s a long way off, but you can already hear the Ryder Cup’s King Kong like footsteps in its distant approach. Watching how the American and European teams come together will be an ongoing drama through spring and summer.

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Quail Hollow officials promise players easier conditions

By Rex HoggardJanuary 22, 2018, 9:14 pm

Quail Hollow Club - a staple on the PGA Tour since 2003 - debuted as a longer, tougher version of itself at last year’s PGA Championship, receiving mixed reviews from players.

The course played to a lengthened 7,600 yards at last year’s PGA and a 73.46 stroke average, the toughest course in relation to par on Tour in 2017. As a result, it left some players less than excited to return to the Charlotte, N.C.-area layout later this spring for the Wells Fargo Championship.

It’s that lack of enthusiasm that led officials at Quail Hollow to send a video to players saying, essentially, that the course players have lauded for years will be back in May.

The video, which includes Quail Hollow president Johnny Harris and runs nearly five minutes, begins with an explanation of how the first hole, which played as a 524-yard par 4 at the PGA, will play much shorter at the Wells Fargo Championship.

“I had a number of my friends who were playing in the tournament tell me that tee was better suited as a lemonade stand,” Harris joked of the new tee box on the fourth hole. “I doubt we’ll ever see that tee used again in competition.”

Harris also explained that the greens, which became too fast for some, will be “softer” for this year’s Wells Fargo Championship.