Golf Hat in the Ring
Mr. Barr, what are your qualifications? Do you even have a party affiliation?
Im about as qualified as any other candidate. There are a lot of them out there now; I was waiting for a bus the other day when a guy in line behind me declared. Filled up CNN for a solid half hour. Anyway, Im a member of the GOP.
You mean the Grand Old Party? Youre a Republican?
No, I mean the Golf, Our Priority party. We believe that a nation based on the basic principles of fair play and meritocracy found in golf will excel on the world stage.
What would you do, if elected?
Well, first weve got to change some basic laws. Item One: Leaf blowers.
Did you say leaf blowers?
I did, and you would have heard me better if it werent for that yahoo with a leaf blower out there. Dang things make too much noise, and all they do is redistribute the gunk elsewhere. Theyre all over golf courses, firing up in your backswing and making life generally loud. Under my administration, theyll be outlawed. Welcome to the world of rakes, people. A strong country can move the tines.
And thats another thing. Once I get done outlawing one-word questions, well make failure to rake bunkers a federal felony. Leave a footprint and youll be making tracks in the dust in the yard at Leavenworth. And tennis will be the only thing on the prison T.V, and you wont be able to turn it off. Leave a ball mark on the green unfixed, and you have to watch bowling.
Isnt that cruel and unusual punishment?
Thats a constitutional question best left to the Supreme Handicapping Committee.
You mean the Supreme Court.
Not after Im elected. That august body will handle tournament and stroke-distribution matters, as well as executing the sentence for sandbagging.
And what will that be?
Having your eyes locked open and reading only whatever Oprah tells you.
Have you considered any possible nominations for members of your cabinet?
Sure have. Paul Azinger will be Secretary of Cup Defense. Lee Trevino will be Minister of Mirth. Larry Nelson will be in charge of the military. Tom Watson will be my pick to head up the Department of Ballstriking. I also want him to have a special advisory role in the Department of Integrity and Never Giving Up.
Id like to make Lorena Ochoa my chief scrappiness advisor. Padraig Harrington will be head of the new Department of Perspective; no one had a better smile on his face greeting his son on the last green of the Open Championship a moment after he felt like he had lead in the pit of his stomach. The Rules staffs at the USGA, PGA Tour and R&A will become the Joint Chiefs of Relief.
There are a lot more people Ill call on, but for now, lets move on. Yes, over there in the pink plaid.
Will there be golf fashion crimes?
No; were taking a lenient stand on that. Too many people want to see Ian Poulter play in this country. Besides, Darren Clarkes investment in shoes has direct links to the pillars of the Italian economy. Gotta be a responsible world citizen
How about taxation?
Well, interest on loans for golf vacation homes would be deductible for sure. There would be a tax credit for greens fees, especially for people who live in big cities and have a hard time getting to play.
Golf needs to be part of our national curriculum, at all ages. We can be just as productive starting work at 10 a.m., after a lesson or some short game practice. Think outside the box, America.
Come clean, Mr. Barr. Isnt this just one of those Pat Paulsen style joke candidacies that used to distract us from the more serious contenders back in the Sixties and Seventies?
Depends how much money I can raise. Whats your handicap, by the way?
Email your thoughts to Adam Barr
Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish
NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.
Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.
The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.
Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.
The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.
Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him
It was a collision watched by millions of fans on television, and one that came at a pivotal juncture as Tiger Woods sought to win The Open. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.
Hauck was among dozens of fans situated along the left side of the 11th hole during the final round at Carnoustie as the pairing of Woods and Francesco Molinari hit their approach shots. After 10 holes of nearly flawless golf, Woods missed the fairway off the tee and then pulled his iron well left of the target.
The ball made square contact with Hauck, who hours later tweeted a video showing the entire sequence - even as he continued to record after Woods' shot sent him tumbling to the ground:
The bounce initially appeared fortuitous for Woods, as his ball bounded away from thicker rough and back toward the green. But an ambitious flop shot came up short, and he eventually made a double bogey to go from leading by a shot to trailing by one. He ultimately shot an even-par 71, tying for sixth two shots behind Molinari.
For his efforts as a human shield, Hauck received a signed glove and a handshake from Woods - not to mention a firsthand video account that will be sure to spark plenty of conversations in the coming years.
Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter
After breaking through for his first career major, Francesco Molinari now has a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, a 10-year exemption in Europe and has solidified his standing as one of the best players in the world.
But not too long ago, the 35-year-old Italian was apparently thinking about life after golf.
Shortly after Molinari rolled in a final birdie putt to close out a two-shot victory at The Open, fellow Tour player Wesley Bryan tweeted a picture of a note that he wrote after the two played together during the third round of the WGC-HSBC Champions in China in October. In it, Bryan shared Molinari's plans to retire as early as 2020 to hang out at cafes and "become a Twitter troll":
Molinari is active on the social media platform, with more than 5,600 tweets sent out to nearly 150,000 followers since joining in 2010. But after lifting the claret jug at Carnoustie, it appears one of the few downsides of Molinari's victory is that the golf world won't get to see the veteran turn into a caffeinated, well-read troll anytime soon.
Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose
CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Sometimes a course just fits a player’s eye. They can’t really describe why, but more often than not it leads to solid finishes.
Francesco Molinari’s relationship with Carnoustie isn’t like that.
The Italian played his first major at Carnoustie, widely considered the toughest of all The Open venues, in 2007, and his first impression hasn’t really changed.
“There was nothing comforting about it,” he said on Sunday following a final-round 69 that lifted him to a two-stroke victory.
In fact, following that first exposure to the Angus coast brute, Molinari has tried to avoid Carnoustie, largely skipping the Dunhill Links Championship, one of the European Tour’s marquee events, throughout his career.
“To be completely honest, it's one of the reasons why I didn't play the Dunhill Links in the last few years, because I got beaten up around here a few times in the past,” he said. “I didn't particularly enjoy that feeling. It's a really tough course. You can try and play smart golf, but some shots, you just have to hit it straight. There's no way around it. You can't really hide.”
Molinari’s relative dislike for the layout makes his performance this week even more impressive considering he played his last 37 holes bogey-free.
“To play the weekend bogey-free, it's unthinkable, to be honest. So very proud of today,” he said.