Final Four Battle For Three Spots

By November 23, 2004, 5:00 pm
Big Break II LogoEditors Note: The Golf Channel aired the eighth episode of The Big Break II Tuesday night, where 10 highly skilled golfers compete to win an opportunity to play in four Nationwide Tour events televised on The Golf Channel in 2005.

With the show now reduced to just four players, the group was informed that they would be heading to the beach for this weeks skills challenge. Except this challenge was anything but a day at the beach.

In the challenge each contestant had to hit a greenside bunker shot with the player whose shot lands furthest away being removed from the rest of the skills challenge. From there, the remaining three would attempt a 50-yard bunker shot with the same consequences, until the final two got a crack at a 150-yard bunker shot. The last man standing would receive an exemption from the elimination round and the added luxury of staying in Sin City for at least one more night.

The elder statesman of the group, John Turk, was out first, getting beaten by a mere inch on the opening shot. Next, Kip Henley was ousted after his kinda awful 50-yard sand shot came to rest some 36 feet away from the pin.

Thats probably the toughest shot in golf, said Don Donatello about the 50-yard shot.

The Big Break IIThat left just Donatello and Bart Lower to battle it out for immunity from the elimination challenge and also a little something extra that co-host Rick Smith had thrown in. The player coming closest to the flag not only would win the skills challenge but also have a chance to sink the ensuing putt for a two-year lease on a brand new Ford 500.

Lowers shot finished 26 feet from the pin, leaving Donatello a sizable opening for the win.

When Bart hit it like 25 feet from the hole I thought I could still beat him, recalled Donatello on his chances. It was right at the flagstick but short. I mean I hit it perfect. I thought it was going to go in!

But well short it was, leaving Lower a chance to come away with the car. His putt, however, drifted left and never really scared the hole.

Another afternoon off just kickin back and watching the boys sweat it out, said Lower on his invaluable exemption. Just one more. Give me just one more (exemption) and Ill be good to go and that will get me into the finals.

The Top-Flite mulligan challenge had the remaining threesome try to make the best poker hand by hitting at giant targets 30-yards away that looked like a ten, jack, queen, king or ace from a deck of cards. The person with the best hand after seven shots won the mulligan.

Showing a strong short game, Turk dealt himself quite the hand, coming through with five jacks. Ultimately though it was Henley who came up aces in the challenge, as he too collected five of a kind, only his five aces trumped Turks five jacks.

It was finally on to the stress-filled elimination round where one unlucky contestant was destined to be forced off of the show.

The format was simple in that it was pure golf. All three would play a regulation golf hole and the player with the low score would be safe from elimination.

On the first hole, both Donatello and Henley faced short birdie putts that would spell doom for Turk. Donatello, however, was the only one to capitalize on the situation, rolling in his putt to join Lower on the sidelines to watch as Turk and Henley began a mano-a-mano duel.

I hit just a great putt. I clinched my fist in excitement because I want people to know that this means a lot to me, said Donatello about his reaction to his all-important putt.

The Big Break IIAfter each made pars on the second hole of the elimination round, Turk pulled out driver and pushed his tee shot well right, landing in an adjacent fairway. Seeing his opponent in trouble, Henley wisely hit an iron off the tee and left himself with a manageable approach shot.

Turk proceeded to fly his approach over the green, and then chipped on leaving himself a tricky, breaking putt to try and stave off elimination. With Henley in with a par, Turk left his first putt well short and was unable to knock in the par putt, thus sending himself off the show and out of Las Vegas.

I said, You know what? Youve had a good run but its done. That was it, bye-bye, said Turk on his last hurrah. I wish them all the best, everybody that participated. Ive enjoyed the friendships that Ive made and Ive made some friendships for the long term.

Be sure to watch The Golf Channel every Tuesday at 9:00PM (ET), as the race for the four Nationwide Tour exemptions comes down to the final three contestants on The Big Break 2.
 
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  • 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.

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    Image via tom.lovelady on Instagram.

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    Run for the Rose Cup. Sergio Garcia got the green jacket, a lifetime exemption to the game’s most coveted member-member and a long-awaited major, but Justin Rose took home the slightly less prestigious “Rose Cup.”

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    Few have made losing look so dignified and fewer still are as easy to root for.



    Half-Empty Cup. It was the perfect setting, with sweeping views of the Manhattan skyline and the promise of the Tristate masses descending on this fall’s Presidents Cup.

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    Enigma Award. The actual hardware is simply an oversized question mark and was sent directly to Tiger Woods’ South Florida compound following the most curious of seasons.

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    After Further Review Chalice. In April, Lexi Thompson endured a heartbreaking loss at the ANA Inspiration, the byproduct of a surreal ruling that arrived a day late via a viewer e-mail and cost the would-be winner a major championship.

    The entire event was so unsavory that the USGA and R&A made not one but two alterations to the rules and created a “working group” to avoid similar snafus in the future.

    That working group – it turns out the U.S. Ryder Cup team has some sort of copyright on “task force” – initially issued a decision that introduced a “reasonable judgment” and a “naked eye” standard to video reviews, and last week the rule makers kept the changes coming.

    The new protocols on video review will now include an official to monitor tournament broadcasts and ended the practice of allowing fans to call in, or in this case e-mail, possible infractions to officials. The USGA and R&A also eliminated the two-stroke penalty for players who sign incorrect scorecards when the player is unaware of the penalty.

    While all this might be a step in the right direction, it does nothing to change Thompson’s fate. The AFR Chalice won’t change the harsh reality, but at least it will serve as a reminder of how she helped altered the rulemaking landscape.



    Nothing Runs Like a Deere Award. Nothing gets fans fired up like officials turning fields of fescue rough into hay on the eve of a major championship, and the USGA’s decision to do some 11th-hour trimming at Erin Hills in June certainly caught many by surprise.

    Officials said the nip/tuck on four holes was in reaction to a particularly foreboding forecast that never materialized, and the maintenance drew the ire of some players.

    “We have 60 yards from left line to right line,” Rory McIlroy said. “You’ve got 156 of the best players in the world here; if we can’t hit it within that avenue, you might as well pack your bags and go home.”

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    Full-field scores from the Indonesian Masters


    Snedeker started the year ranked No. 28, but after missing five months because of injury he entered the week ranked No. 51 and is projected to slip even further by the end of the month. As a result, he likely needs a top-3 finish in order to secure a return to the Masters, which he has missed only once since 2007.

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