Tales from Scotland

By Jay CoffinJuly 22, 2010, 11:44 pm

Emptying out the notebook from a wild 10-day excursion to Scotland for the Open Championship at St. Andrews.

  • Spent several days up north in the Highlands before arriving in St. Andrews. Spent the first night at Skibo Castle, which was a far cry from the St. Andrews University dorms that I slept in for the Open Championship. Madonna was married there 10 years ago. At Skibo, not the dorms. My room was larger than all of the apartments I lived in during college.
  • If you ever go to Skibo you will meet Alan Grant, or Alan the Grant as he’s often called. An entertaining and colorful dude.
  • Royal Dornoch is an absolute treat and is easily in my top-3 favorite golf courses. The other two courses on my list were played in great weather, not the 40 mph winds and rain that we encountered at Dornoch.
  • Castle Stuart is a year old and seems like it’s been there for over 100. It’s nicely woven into the terrain and the large fairways were helpful, especially since I developed a nasty snap hook during the trip.
  • Neat touch at Castle Stuart was the soda machine halfway up a ridiculously steep hill from the 12th green to the 13th tee. The starter gives you a token for the machine before you tee off. At the time it seems hokey. Three hours later when you need it, not so hokey.
  • Had dinner at Castle Stuart with a room full of Brits while the World Cup finale was on the telly. Interesting. During halftime I asked if they could switch to the U.S. Women’s Open so I could see Paula Creamer win her first major. They obliged and wanted to rip my head off at the same time.
  • Discovered Kummel, a sweet, colorless drink with a licorice taste that is extremely popular at many high-end clubs in Scotland. It packs a mean punch but certainly warms you up after finishing a chilly round of golf. It’s a must-try.
  • Played Crail, not a big fan. Way too quirky. Tough to get comfortable on a golf course when your three swing thoughts are don’t hit anyone, don’t get hit and I’m not exactly sure if I’m playing the right hole.
  • Driving on the other side of the road really isn’t that difficult. It makes Americans nervous but it shouldn’t. Think left, look right was the best tip I received. The roundabouts can be tricky but, once you get the hang of them, you realize that they’re much more efficient than stoplights and they make traffic flow better.
  • Never fall for the “omen” bet. You know, the one where you have to bet on the last player you see before heading into a betting parlor? I spotted a player-to-remain-nameless talking on his cell phone just before I walked into Ladbrokes and put a few pounds on him. That player shot 80 in the second round and was on the first flight out of town Friday night.
  • Went to have lunch in the Media Centre early in the week at the Open Championship and one option was a bowl of something with breading on top. I asked what it was and thought I heard “fresh pie.” Turns out, it was fish pie. Fish, good. Pie, good. Fish pie, not good.
  • I forgot to ask an important question while there. It’s no secret that Americans typically aren’t fond of Scottish food. Are Scots fond of American food?
  • There’s never a bad time to swing by the Dunvegan, the best pub and hotel in St. Andrews, which is 112 yards from the Old Course. Ran into everyone from Fluff Cowan to Todd Hamilton to Lucas Glover. Owners Jack and Sheena Willoughby are always an absolute joy to spend time with.
  • Hopped the fence late Saturday evening with several others to visit Old Tom Morris’ grave. I thought it was going to be a creepy experience but it turned out to be a hoot. Made sure not to step anywhere near the tombstone. Wanted to make sure I’m not forever cursed with the aforementioned snap hooks.
  • Louis Oosthuizen sucked the life out of the Open Championship on Sunday. Wish there was more drama. That said, Oosthuizen deserves all the praise, he played flawlessly, which is likely to get lost in the shuffle.
  • Speaking of Oosthuizen, a perk of being a writer is that I only have to know how to spell his name, don’t have to know how to pronounce it. Still, in this case, it’s probably a push with my on-air brethren who’ve had to say it ad nauseam the past week.
  • Would do it all again in a heartbeat.
Getty Images

Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 11:27 pm

Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.

The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.

Getty Images

Rose leads Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose completed the final two holes of his second round early Saturday for a 3-under 69 and a one-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose, who had a first-round 62, was among a quarter of the field forced off the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course after weather delays on Friday.

The Englishman, who bogeyed his last hole, had a two-round total of 13-under 131.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who completed his 64 on Friday, was in second place.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. 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. He has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season.

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

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

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