Golf Channel Announces Dedicated Online Platform with Launch of TravelGolf Brand

By Golf Channel Public RelationsFebruary 4, 2010, 4:43 am

ORLANDO, Fla. (Feb. 3, 2010) – Golf Channel will look to further extend the power of its brand in the travel space as it unveils its new online travel platform: TravelGolf.  Serving as the ultimate hub for vacationing golfers, TravelGolf provides the most comprehensive and insightful information about the best places around the world to play golf and have access to a host of other services that will help them to enjoy a golfing vacation to the fullest. Golf Channel parent company Comcast Corporation’s recent acquisition of WorldGolf.com, home to the largest collection of national, regional and local golf travel domains, will serve as the foundation of Golf Channel’s TravelGolf brand.  The new TravelGolf umbrella site is scheduled to launch this spring. 

To build out TravelGolf, Golf Channel has access to more than 450 golf travel domain names and 75 unique golf and travel brands through its proprietary WorldGolf Network of Web sites.  Combined, those sites already garner more that 3.5 million page views and 1.1 million unique visitors per month. 

“Access to these travel domains has provided us with an enormous base to build out our online travel business. The new TravelGolf banner will fulfill our goal of offering  a comprehensive, one-stop experience where golfers can find all the information and services that will make it easier for them to create and book their ultimate golf vacation,” said Gene Pizzolato, chief operating officer for Golf Channel New Media Ventures.  “This new brand will benefit greatly from the resources of the world’s number-one golf television network, which is creating various platforms to not only help golfers enjoy and improve their games, but also to help grow the game of golf.”

Golf Channel initially is renovating six of its TravelGolf sites that spotlight some of the biggest golf vacation destinations, with HawaiiGolf.com and HiltonHeadGolf.com leading the way and already operational. Each clean, sleekly designed site under the new TravelGolf umbrella will be populated by a robust, easy to navigate content line-up geared toward each destination.  This will include golf course reviews, hotel and resort booking opportunities, travel packages and destination features, as well as integration of other Golf Channel properties, such as the ability to book tee times in the spotlighted vacation destination through its GolfNow.com service (featuring more than 1,800 courses), access to GolfChannel.com’s online library of more than 2,500 instructional videos, and the ability to browse product reviews and tips from local golf pros, as well as the Golf Channel Am Tour, the largest amateur tour in the country with more than 800 tournaments in 60 local chapters, giving players access to some of the most renowned golf courses.

About Golf Channel
Golf Channel is a multimedia, golf entertainment and services company based in Orlando, Fla.  The Golf Channel cable network, co-founded by Arnold Palmer and a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:  CMCSA, CMCSK), is available in more than 120 million homes worldwide through cable, satellite and wireless companies.  Exclusive partnerships with the world’s top tours allow Golf Channel to feature more live golf coverage than all other networks combined, added to a programming schedule distinguished by golf’s best news, instruction and original programming.  Golf Channel’s inventive digital platform includes a suite of sites designed to be a one-stop, personal golf concierge service:  Golf Channel.com provides the most complete coverage of the major golf tournaments, with news and analysis led by an all-star editorial team; GolfNow.com is the Internet’s most comprehensive online tee time booking service, offering users the ability to book tee-times at more than 1,800 courses nationwide at any time of day; and TravelGolf.com is the premier online golf travel network featuring the largest collection of national, regional and local golf travel domains.  Additionally, Golf Channel manages and operates the Golf Channel Am Tour, the largest amateur tour in the country, currently comprising of more than 800 tournaments in 60 local chapters nationwide.  The Golf Channel Am Tour provides casual players with a professionally-run golf tournament experience and the access to play at some of the greatest and most challenging courses in their hometowns.

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Langer not playing to pass Irwin, but he just might

By Tim RosaforteJanuary 16, 2018, 1:40 pm

Bernhard Langer goes back out on tour this week to chase down more than Hale Irwin’s PGA Tour Champions record of 45 career victories. His chase is against himself.

“I’m not playing to beat Hale Irwin’s record,” Langer told me before heading to Hawaii to defend his title at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai. “I play golf to play the best I can, to be a good role model, and to enjoy a few more years that are left.”

Langer turned 60 on Aug. 27 and was presented a massage chair by his family as a birthday gift. Instead of reclining (which he does to watch golf and football), he won three more times to close out a seven-win campaign that included three major championships. A year prior, coming off a four-victory season, Langer told me after winning his fourth Charles Schwab Cup that surpassing Irwin’s record was possible but not probable. With 36 career victories and 11 in his last two years, he has changed his tone to making up the nine-tournament difference as “probable.”

“If I could continue a few more years on that ratio, I could get close or pass him,” Langer told me from his home in Boca Raton, Fla. “It will get harder. I’m 60 now. It’s a big challenge but I don’t shy away from challenges.”


Bernhard Langer, Hale Irwin at the 1991 Ryder Cup (Getty Images)


Langer spent his off-season playing the PNC Father/Son, taking his family on a ski vacation at Big Sky in Yellowstone, Montana, and to New York for New Year’s. He ranks himself as a scratch skier, having skied since he was four years old in Germany. The risk of injury is worth it, considering how much he loves “the scenery, the gravity and the speed.”

Since returning from New York, Langer has immersed himself into preparing for the 2018 season. Swing coach Willy Hoffman, who he has worked with since his boyhood days as an as assistant pro in Germany, flew to Florida for their 43rd year of training.

“He’s a straight shooter,” Hoffman told me. “He says, 'Willy, every hour is an hour off my life and we have 24 hours every day.'"

As for Irwin, they have maintained a respectful relationship that goes back to their deciding singles match in the 1991 Ryder Cup. Last year they were brought back to Kiawah Island for a corporate appearance where they reminisced and shared the thought that nobody should ever have to bear what Langer went through, missing a 6-footer on the 18th green. That was 27 years ago. Both are in the Hall of Fame.

"I enjoy hanging out with Hale," Langer says.

Langer’s chase of Irwin’s record is not going to change their legacies. As Hoffman pointed out, “Yes, (Bernhard) is a rich man compared to his younger days. He had no money, no nothing. But today you don’t feel a difference when you talk to him. He’s always on the ground.”

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McIlroy: Ryder Cup won't be as easy as USA thinks

By Ryan LavnerJanuary 16, 2018, 1:18 pm

The Americans have won their past two international team competitions by a combined score of 38-22, but Rory McIlroy isn’t expecting another pushover at the Ryder Cup in September.

McIlroy admitted that the U.S. team will be strong, and that its core of young players (including Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas and Rickie Fowler) will be a force for the next decade. But he told reporters Tuesday at the HSBC Abu Dhabi Championship that course setup will play a significant role.

“If you look at Hazeltine and how they set the course up – big, wide fairways, no rough, pins in the middle of greens – it wasn’t set up for the way the Europeans like to play,” McIlroy said, referring to the Americans’ 17-11 victory in 2016. “I think Paris will be a completely different kettle of fish, so different.”

At every Ryder Cup, the home team has the final say on course setup. Justin Rose was the most outspoken about the setup at Hazeltine, saying afterward that it was “incredibly weak” and had a “pro-am feel.” 

And so this year’s French Open figures to be a popular stop for European Tour players – it’s being held once again at Le Golf National, site of the matches in September. Tommy Fleetwood won last year’s event at 12 under.

“I’m confident,” McIlroy said. “Everything being all well and good, I’ll be on that team and I feel like we’ll have a really good chance.

“The Americans have obviously been buoyant about their chances, but it’s never as easy as that. The Ryder Cup is always close. It always comes down to a few key moments, and it will be no different in Paris. I think we’ll have a great team and it definitely won’t be as easy as they think it’s going to be.” 

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Floodlights may be used at Dubai Desert Classic

By Ryan LavnerJanuary 16, 2018, 12:44 pm

No round at next week’s Dubai Desert Classic will be suspended because of darkness.

Tournament officials have installed state-of-the-art floodlighting around the ninth and 18th greens to ensure that all 132 players can finish their round.

With the event being moved up a week in the schedule, the European Tour was initially concerned about the amount of daylight and trimmed the field to 126 players. Playing under the lights fixed that dilemma.

“This is a wonderful idea and fits perfectly with our desire to bring innovation to our sport,” European Tour chief executive Keith Pelley said. “No professional golfer ever wants to come back the following morning to complete a round due to lack of daylight, and this intervention, should it be required, will rule out that necessity.”

Next week’s headliners include Rory McIlroy, Sergio Garcia and Henrik Stenson. 

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Ortiz takes Web.com Tour clubhouse lead in Bahamas

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 16, 2018, 2:19 am

Former Web.com Tour Player of the Year Carlos Ortiz shot a bogey-free, 4-under-par 68 Monday to take the clubhouse lead in The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals Emerald Bay.

Four other players - Lee McCoy, Brandon Matthews, Sung Jae Im and Mark Anderson - were still on the course and tied with Ortiz at 6-under 210 when third-round play was suspended by darkness at 5:32 p.m. local time. It is scheduled to resume at 7:15 a.m. Tuesday.

Ortiz, a 26-year-old from Guadalajara, Mexico, is in search of his fourth Web.com Tour victory. In 2014, the former University of North Texas standout earned a three-win promotion on his way to being voted Web.com Tour Player of the Year.

McCoy, a 23-year-old from Dunedin, Fla., is looking to become the first player to earn medalist honors at Q-School and then win the opening event of the season.