'Go Annika' Celebrates 10-Year Anniversary of Historic Moment When Annika Sorenstam Teed It Up Against The Men Of The PGA TOUR

By Golf Channel Public RelationsMay 15, 2013, 8:42 pm

Marking 10 years to the day of the historic moment when Annika Sorenstam hit one of the most famous tee shots ever and became the first woman in modern history to test her mettle among men in a PGA TOUR event, Golf Channel will air a definitive retrospection of that slice of history in Go Annika, airing Wednesday, May 22, at 9 p.m. ET.

Golf Channel producers have compiled more than 20 interviews to tell the story that surrounded the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial (then titled Bank of America Colonial) that year, including exclusive access to Sorenstam and the people closest to her.  The 30-minute documentary will detail how and why the World Golf Hall-of-Famer and the best female golfer of her generation came to play in the tournament and reveal for the first time her words about how being under such an intense microscope then changed her outlook about her career and life forever.

“Facing some of the fiercest scrutiny any golfer has ever encountered, Annika embraced the moment like we’ve always known her to do – with dignity, grace and a competitor’s spirit,” said Golf Channel Executive Producer Molly Solomon.  “We remain in awe of all her extraordinary accomplishments and are thrilled that she has allowed our cameras to document the 10th anniversary of that occasion at Colonial.”

Viewers will be treated to previously unknown stories related to Sorenstam’s feat, including rare reminiscences from her caddie Terry McNamara and agent Mark Steinberg.  “I was just sitting off to the side probably typing an email and not really too focused on what the answer would be because I probably could’ve predicted what the answer would’ve been. But I was wrong. And I remember stopping in my tracks when I heard her say, ‘Yeah I would do that,’” said Steinberg, recalling the press conference when Sorenstam was asked if she would ever consider playing in a PGA TOUR event.

The documentary includes a surprise meeting at Colonial Country Club between Sorenstam and her playing partners on that Friday in 2003 – then PGA TOUR rookies Aaron Barber and Dean Wilson – who recounted what the atmosphere was like walking 18 holes with Sorenstam.  The three had not talked about their shared adventure since that historic day.  Additional interviews include David Feherty, who worked that day for CBS; Sorenstam’s parents; Bank of America Colonial Tournament Chairman Dee Finley; and PGA TOUR pros who played in the tournament, including Fred Funk, Kenny Perry, Mark Calcavecchia, Jim Furyk and Luke Donald.

The documentary also recounts the side-show moments of the week, including the protests by PGA TOUR veterans Vijay Singh and Nick Price, and the fans, who dressed in costumes, held signs and wore slogan buttons.

Go Annika joins a list of acclaimed Golf Channel Original Documentaries, which have included Uneven Fairways, Caddy for Life, Frank Chirkinian: The Master Storyteller, American Triumvirate and War by the Shore.

Annika Sorenstam is a regular contributor to Morning Drive on Golf Channel.

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Kelly, Sauers co-lead in Hawaii; Monty, Couples in mix

By Associated PressJanuary 19, 2018, 3:52 am

KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii - Fresh off a solid performance on Oahu, Jerry Kelly shot an 8-under 64 on the Big Island on Thursday to share the first-round lead at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship, the season opener on the PGA Tour Champions.

The 51-year-old Kelly, who tied for 14th at the PGA Tour's Sony Open last week in Honolulu, birdied five of his final seven holes to shoot 30 on the back nine at Hualalai. He won twice last season, his first on the over-50 tour.

Gene Sauers also shot 64, going bogey-free amid calm conditions. Thirty-two of the 44 players broke par in the limited-field event, which includes winners from last season, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.

Rocco Mediate and Colin Montgomerie were one shot back, and Fred Couples, Kevin Sutherland and Kirk Triplett were another shot behind.

Bernhard Langer, defending the first of his seven 2017 titles, was in the middle of the pack after a 69.

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Rahm (62) fires career low round

By Will GrayJanuary 19, 2018, 12:03 am

The scores were predictably low during the opening round of the CareerBuilder Challenge, where the top-ranked player in the field currently sits atop the standings. Here's how things look after the first day in Palm Springs as Jon Rahm is out to an early advantage:

Leaderboard: Jon Rahm (-10), Austin Cook (-9), Andrew Landry (-9), Jason Kokrak (-9), Brandon Harkins (-8), Martin Piller (-8), Aaron Wise (-8), Beau Hossler (-8)

What it means: Rahm is coming off a runner-up finish two weeks ago at Kapalua, and he picked up right where he left off with a 10-under 62 at La Quinta Country Club. It marked his lowest career round on the PGA Tour, and it gave him a one-shot lead heading to the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Cook is the only player within two shots of Rahm who has won already on Tour.

Round of the day: Rahm got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under, and he made it around La Quinta without dropping a shot. The 62 bettered his previous career low on Tour by two shots and it included an eagle on the par-5 fifth hole to go along with eight birdies.

Best of the rest: Cook was a winner earlier this season at the RSM Classic, and he's now in the mix for trophy No. 2 following a 9-under 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Like Rahm, he opened with a seven-hole stretch at 6 under and turned in a scorecard without a bogey. He'll now head to the more difficult Stadium Course for his second round.

Biggest disappointment: Patrick Reed blitzed the three-course rotation in Palm Springs en route to his first career Tour title back in 2014, but he's unlikely to repeat that feat after opening with a 2-over 74 on the Nicklaus Tournament course. Reed made only one birdie against three bogeys and was one of only 32 players in the 156-man field who failed to break par in the opening round.

Main storyline heading into Friday: Rahm deserves the spotlight, as he entered the week as one of the event's headliners and did nothing to lose that billing in the opening round. But the pack of contenders is sure to keep pace, while players like Phil Mickelson (-2) will look to put up a low score in order to build some momentum heading into the weekend.

Shot of the day: Wesley Bryan's 7-under 65 on the Nicklaus Tournament course was helped in large part by an eagle on the par-4 10th, where he holed a 54-degree wedge from 112 yards away. Bryan went on to birdie the next hole amid a five-hole stretch of 5 under play.

Quote of the day: "Shot 10 under par. There's not much more I can ask for." - Rahm

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Recent winner Cook contending at CareerBuilder

By Will GrayJanuary 18, 2018, 11:45 pm

Patton Kizzire is currently the only two-time PGA Tour winner this season, but Austin Cook hopes to join him this week at the CareerBuilder Challenge.

Cook won for the first time in November at the RSM Classic, a victory that catapaulted him from the Web.com Tour graduate category into an entirely new echelon. Cook notched a pair of top-25 finishes over the last two weeks in Hawaii, and he's again in the mix after an opening 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course left him one shot behind Jon Rahm.

"Today was great," Cook told reporters. "The conditions were perfect, but I always loved desert golf and I was just hitting the ball well and seeing good lines on the greens and hitting good putts."

Cook got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under highlighted by an eagle on the par-5 fourth hole. He briefly entertained the notion of a sub-60 round after birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 before closing with six pars and a birdie.


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Cook was a relative unknown before his victory at Sea Island earlier this season, but now with the flexibility and confidence afforded by a win he hopes to build on his burgeoning momentum this week in California.

"That was a big, proud moment for myself, knowing that I can finish a tournament," Cook said. "I think it was one of those things that I've proven to myself that now I can do it, and it just meant the world to me."

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Photo: Fleetwood's phone cover is picture of Bjorn

By Jason CrookJanuary 18, 2018, 11:40 pm

There's phone covers and then there are Phone Covers.

Paul Casey has himself a Phone Cover, showing off the protective case that features a picture of his wife at last year's U.S. Open.

Now, it appears, Tommy Fleetwood has joined the movement.

Fleetwood, last year's season-long Race to Dubai winner, has a phone cover with a picture of Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn on it. And not even a current Thomas Bjorn. This is a young Bjorn. A hair-having Bjorn.

@tommyfleetwood_1

A post shared by Alex Noren (@alexnoren1) on

The 26-year-old is a virtual lock for this year's European Ryder Cup team, but just in case, he's carrying around a phone with a picture of the team captain attached to the back of it.

It's a bold strategy, Cotton. Let's see if it pays off for him.