Benoits Run Ends But He Carries On

By Mark MitchellNovember 20, 2007, 5:00 pm
Big Break: MesquiteThe Rat Pack may have hit the fairway with the one-of-a-kind Benoit Beisser, but his Big Break: Mesquite song and dance came to an end in the eighth episode of the 12-week series. He was ushered off the series after losing a three-way Elimination Challenge to Kevin Taylor and Gerry James.
 
Beisser started Tuesdays episode fifth out of the six remaining contestants in the point standings and managed to record 12 points in the episode, which wasnt good enough to avoid the cut line that was set at the top three players.
 
Hiroshi Matsuo posted 19 points to remain the leader in the cumulative point standings after eight shows with 80, 14 better than Josh Warthen, who recorded the most points in the episode with 22.
 
Big Break: Mesquite has implemented a new scoring system to give the series a tournament feel. Each of the 12 shows will consist of challenges that allow the players to earn points that will be used to determine which players make or fail to make the cut. The cut line varies from episode to episode and is based on the players cumulative points for the series. The cut will be announced at the start of each show and will be applied directly after that episodes final Points Challenge. Players who make the cut advance directly to the next episode. Players who fail to make the cut will go to the Elimination Challenge. The competitor with the worst performance in a shows Elimination Challenge will be eliminated from Big Break: Mesquite.
 
After Beissers path to professional golf, even being eliminated is all good. His career was derailed by a number of unusual injuries inflicted while playing hockey, wakeboarding and defending himself and a friend against a drug-raged addict. The injuries didnt keep him from playing golf, though. While at Arizona State, he Monday qualified for the 2002 Tucson Open on the PGA TOUR despite the fact that he was nursing a hangover and was in the middle of college finals. He is proud of the fact that his mother caddied for him in the event, which made her one of the few moms to caddie for their sons in a PGA TOUR event.
 
Admittedly, there was a time that Beissers lifestyle hurt his golf. However, he now pays more attention to his health and has developed an obsession with yoga. As a result, he currently is in the midst of his first injury-free period in his competitive history. In addition to his physical wellness, Beisser has worked on the mental aspect of his game and even changed his sleep patterns to get accustomed to the early morning call times for the shooting of the show. Within 30 minutes of getting the call that he was going to be on the show, Wah was in the gym working out.
 
And that didnt mean pounding 12-ounce curls. Saying Big Break: Mesquite was a once in a lifetime opportunity he set out to make the most of it.
 
After the stunt he pulled to get on the show, he should have given it his all. In his audition tape he dressed in an outfit his sister Laura wore as a contestant in Big Break VI: Trump National and Big Break VII: Reunion. Topping off the look, he danced to the song Im Too Sexy.
 
It was funny and it fit in the audition video that we were putting together, said Beisser. We needed a joke to show how I would be if I got on the show. I was coerced into doing it, but it was fun.
 
When the Big Break: Mesquite merriment ended it was on a green fairway and not a Yellow Brick road. In pure Beisser style, and in tribute to Laura who did the same when her Big Break dreams ended, he kicked is heals Dorothy style in the shows trademark elimination walk.
 
Really, would you expect anything less?
 
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    Hadwin returns to site of last year's 59

    By Will GrayJanuary 17, 2018, 11:04 pm

    Adam Hadwin had a career season last year, one that included shooting a 59 and winning a PGA Tour event. But those two achievements didn't occur in the same week.

    While Hadwin's breakthrough victory came at the Valspar Championship in March, it was at the CareerBuilder Challenge in January when he first made headlines with a third-round 59 at La Quinta Country Club. Hadwin took a lead into the final round as a result, but he ultimately couldn't keep pace with Hudson Swafford.

    He went on to earn a spot at the Tour Championship, and Hadwin made his first career Presidents Cup appearance in October. Now the Canadian returns to Palm Springs, eager to improve on last year's result and hoping to earn a spot in the final group for a third straight year after a T-6 finish in 2016.

    "A lot of good memories here in the desert," Hadwin told reporters. "I feel very comfortable here, very at home. Lots of Canadians, so it's always fun to play well in front of those crowds and hopefully looking forward to another good week."

    Hadwin's 59 last year was somewhat overshadowed, both by the fact that he didn't win the event and that it came just one week after Justin Thomas shot a 59 en route to victory at the Sony Open. But he's still among an exclusive club of just eight players to have broken 60 in competition on Tour and he's eager to get another crack at La Quinta on Saturday.

    "If I'm in the same position on 18, I'm gunning for 58 this year," Hadwin said, "not playing safe for 59."

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    Rahm: If I thought like Phil, I could not hit a shot

    By Will GrayJanuary 17, 2018, 10:39 pm

    When it comes to Jon Rahm and Phil Mickelson, there are plenty of common bonds. Both starred at Arizona State, both are now repped by the same agency and Rahm's former college coach and agent, Tim Mickelson, now serves full-time as his brother's caddie.

    Those commonalities mean the two men have played plenty of practice rounds together, but the roads quickly diverge when it comes to on-course behavior. Rahm is quick, fiery and decisive; Mickelson is one of the most analytical players on Tour. And as Rahm told reporters Wednesday at the CareerBuilder Challenge, those differences won't end anytime soon.

    "I don't need much. 'OK, it's like 120 (yards), this shot, right," Rahm said. "And then you have Phil, it's like, 'Oh, this shot, the moisture, this going on, this is like one mile an hour wind sideways, it's going to affect it one yard. This green is soft, this trajectory. They're thinking, and I'm like, 'I'm lost.' I'm like, 'God if I do that thought process, I could not hit a golf shot.'"


    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos


    The tactics may be more simplified, but Rahm can't argue with the results. While Mickelson is in the midst of a winless drought that is approaching five years, Rahm won three times around the world last year and will defend a PGA Tour title for the first time next week at Torrey Pines.

    Both men are in the field this week in Palm Springs, where Mickelson will make his 2018 debut with what Rahm fully expects to be another dose of high-level analytics for the five-time major winner with his brother on the bag.

    "It's funny, he gets to the green and then it's the same thing. He's very detail-oriented," Rahm said of Mickelson. "I'm there listening and I'm like, 'Man, I hope we're never paired together for anything because I can't think like this. I would not be able to play golf like that. But for me to listen to all that is really fun."

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    DJ changes tune on golf ball distance debate

    By Will GrayJanuary 17, 2018, 9:16 pm

    World No. 1 Dustin Johnson is already one of the longest hitters in golf, so he's not looking for any changes to be made to golf ball technology - despite comments from him that hinted at just such a notion two months ago.

    Johnson is in the Middle East this week for the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, and he told BBC Sport Wednesday that he wouldn't be in favor of making changes to the golf ball in order to remedy some of the eye-popping distances players are hitting the ball with ever-increasing frequency.

    "It's not like we are dominating golf courses," Johnson said. "When was the last time you saw someone make the game too easy? I don't really understand what all the debate is about because it doesn't matter how far it goes; it is about getting it in the hole."

    Johnson's rhetorical question might be answered simply by looking back at his performance at the Sentry Tournament of Champions earlier this month, an eight-shot romp that featured a tee shot on the 433-yard 12th hole that bounded down a slope to within inches of the hole.

    Johnson appeared much more willing to consider a reduced-distance ball option at the Hero World Challenge in November, when he sat next to tournament host Tiger Woods and supported Woods' notion that the ball should be addressed.

    "I don't mind seeing every other professional sport, they play with one ball. All the pros play with the same ball," Johnson said. "In baseball, the guys that are bigger and stronger, they can hit a baseball a lot further than the smaller guys. ... I think there should be some kind of an advantage for guys who work on hitting it far and getting that speed that's needed, so having a ball, like the same ball that everyone plays, there's going to be, you're going to have more of an advantage."

    Speaking Wednesday in Abu Dhabi, Johnson stood by the notion that regardless of whether the rules change or stay the same, he plans to have a leg up on the competition.

    "If the ball is limited then it is going to limit everyone," he said. "I'm still going to hit it that much further than I guess the average Tour player."

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    LPGA lists April date for new LA event

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 17, 2018, 8:18 pm

    The LPGA’s return to Los Angeles will come with the new Hugel-JTBC Open being played at Wilshire Country Club April 19-22, the tour announced Wednesday.

    When the LPGA originally released its schedule, it listed the Los Angeles event with the site to be announced at a later date.

    The Hugel-JTBC Open will feature a 144-player field and a $1.5 million purse. It expands the tour’s West Coast swing, which will now be made up of four events in California in March and April.

    The LPGA last played in Los Angeles in 2005. Wilshire Country Club hosted The Office Depot in 2001, with Annika Sorenstam winning there.