Winter weather during Pebble Beach summer

By Associated PressJune 17, 2010, 12:30 am

2010 U.S. OpenPEBBLE BEACH, Calif. – Kristoffer Shane prides himself in looking good on the golf course. This week at the U.S. Open, it’s all about long pants and pullover sweaters for this Floridian who never needs anything remotely close to this much clothing when he plays back home.

Shane, a senior-to-be at Division II University of Tampa, is an alternate and qualifier who was still on site Wednesday with slim hopes of cracking a 156-player field that is set for the opening round Thursday. He would love to show off not only his game but also a few more of his new duds. He had to buy several warmer options to play at Pebble Beach.

“This is basically winter for us,” Shane joked at the practice range Wednesday morning, when he wore a favorite charcoal gray sweater for the first time since January with a crisp new pair of matching pinstripe pants. “I’m not used to golfing in sweaters. I brought a whole collection.”

Shane’s caddie and longtime buddy, Brandon Blake, sported one of the louder looks of the day: a sweater of thick horizontal stripes in purple, gray and baby blue to go with his khaki slacks.

“I have the best dressed caddie,” the 22-year-old Shane said with a chuckle before they headed to tee off for a practice round.

Several golfers wore long sleeve T-shirts underneath their polos.

Stylish summer outfits, large sunglasses and sunscreen are going by the wayside – make that seaside in these parts – this week on the Monterey Peninsula in favor of hoodies, windbreakers, fleece vests and even a few stocking caps. One fan walked through the gates sporting an argyle sweater to watch Wednesday’s rounds.

He was far from the only one prepared with an extra layer or two. A female supporter with one of the golfers Tuesday had on a beanie over her hat on a gray, breezy day.

“You look at and it says 65 and sunny and you get out here and it’s low 50s and cloudy and a little bit of breeze,” said Pebble veteran Mike Weir, who plays this course every year. “Any time you are by the coast, you’ve got to have a little luck of the draw. There are so many factors when you play close to the coast.”

This is such a different climate for a major played in mid-June. It was a sunny and warm, for here anyway, 59 degrees early Wednesday with a northwest wind at 6 mph and the chance of the high reaching 65. The rare sight of sun prompted a couple of course officials to slather sunblock on their faces and necks early in the day.

And this was expected to be one of the best days of the week. While Thursday could be mostly sunny with a high of 64, highs of 61 were in the forecast for Friday and Saturday and 62 for Sunday’s final round. The low was anywhere from 51-53 degrees.

That’s a far cry the scorching, steamy weather on the horizon for next year’s Open at Congressional Country Club in Maryland – or even at next month’s U.S. Women’s Open at Oakmont Country Club (Pa.), and any event played in New York or North Carolina for that matter. Yet last year at Bethpage, everybody had umbrellas for an Open that was pushed to an extra day because of all the rain.

At least at Pebble, the spectacular ocean views featuring sandy beaches, steep rock cliffs and the sound of waves crashing into the shore should provide a small distraction from the shivers along the expansive course.

It was Shane’s mother, Darcie, who researched the California coast and made sure her son – who lives at home – was prepared for anything.

“She’s a professional shopper,” Shane said.

These conditions have been an adjustment – and a nice change of pace from the heat and humidity at home.

“Down here we think of California as hot,” Darcie Shane said Wednesday from Ruskin, Fla., about 30 miles south of Tampa. “I was just watching our weather and the heat index was over 100 degrees at 10 o’clock in the morning. It’s a hot one. I told them to enjoy the cool weather. I like taking good care of Kris. I want him to be prepared. You know how young boys are, they don’t know about the weather.”

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Elway to play in U.S. Senior Open qualifier

By Golf Channel DigitalMay 23, 2018, 10:25 pm

Tony Romo is not the only ex-QB teeing it up against the pros.

Denver Broncos general manager and Hall of Fame quarterback John Elway will try to qualify for the U.S. Senior Open next week, according to the Denver Post.

And why not? The qualifier and the senior major will be held in Colorado Springs at the Broadmoor. Elway is scheduled to tee off May 28 at 12:10 p.m. ET. The top two finishers will earn a spot in the U.S. Senior Open, June 27 to July 1.

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Jutanugarn sisters: Different styles, similar results

By Associated PressMay 23, 2018, 10:20 pm

ANN ARBOR, Mich. - Ariya and Moriya Jutanugarn play golf and live life differently.

The sisters from Thailand do have the same goal in the LPGA, hoping their shot-to-shot focus leads to titles.

The Jutanugarns are two of six women with a shot at the Volvik Championship to become the circuit's first two-time winner this year. The first round begins Thursday at Travis Pointe Country Club, a course six winners are skipping to prepare elsewhere for next week's U.S. Women's Open at Shoal Creek in Alabama.

''Everybody has a chance to win every weekend,'' Moriya said. ''That's how hard it is on tour right now.''

Ariya competes with a grip-it-and-rip-it approach, usually hammering a 3-wood off the tee.

Moriya takes a more calculated approach, analyzing each shot patiently.

That's perhaps fitting because she's 16 months older than her sister.

''It's funny because when we think about something, it's always the different,'' she said. ''But we pretty much end up with the same idea.''

Off the course, they're also different.

The 22-year-old Ariya appears careful and guarded when having conversations with people she doesn't know well. The 23-year-old Moriya, meanwhile, enjoys engaging in interesting discussions with those who cross her path.

Their mother, Narumon, was with her daughters Wednesday and the three of them always stay together as a family. They don't cook during tournament weeks and opt to eat out, searching for good places like the sushi restaurant they've discovered near Travis Pointe.

Their father, Somboon, does not watch them play in person. They sisters say he has retired from owning a golf shop in Thailand.

''He doesn't travel anymore,'' Moriya Jutanugarn said.

Even if he is relegating to watching from the other side of the world, Somboon Jutanugarn must be proud of the way his daughters are playing.

Ariya became the first Thai winner in LPGA history in 2016, the same year she went on to win the inaugural Volvik Championship. She earned her eighth career victory last week in Virginia and is one of two players, along with Brooke Henderson, to have LPGA victories this year and the previous two years.

Moriya won for the first time in six years on the circuit last month in Los Angeles, joining Annika and Charlotta Sorenstam as the two pairs of sisters to have LPGA victories.

On the money list, Ariya is No. 1 and her sister is third.

In terms of playing regularly, no one is ahead of them.

Ariya is the only LPGA player to start and make the cut in all 12 events this year. Moriya Jutanugarn has also appeared in each tournament this year and failed to make the cut only once.

Instead of working in breaks to practice without competing or simply relax, they have entered every tournament so far and shrug their shoulders at the feat.

''It's not that bad, like 10 week in a row,'' Moriya said.

The LPGA is hosting an event about five miles from Michigan Stadium for a third straight year and hopes to keep coming back even though it doesn't have a title sponsor secured for 2019. LPGA Commissioner Mike Whan told reporters he's confident Ann Arbor will be a long-term home for the circuit.

''I can't tell you the specifics about how we're going to do that,'' Whan acknowledged.

LPGA and tournament officials are hosting some prospective sponsors this week, trying to persuade them to put their name on the tournament.

Volvik, which makes golf balls, is preparing to scale back its support of the tournament.

''We're coming back,'' said Don Shin, president of Volvik USA. ''We just don't know in what capacity.''

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Wise: 'No hard feelings' over Nelson missed kiss

By Will GrayMay 23, 2018, 10:18 pm

Aaron Wise left the AT&T Byron Nelson with his first PGA Tour trophy and a seven-figure paycheck. But lost in the shuffle of closing out his breakthrough victory in near-darkness was his failed attempt for a celebratory kiss with his girlfriend on the 18th green.

Wise appeared to go in for a peck after his family joined him on the putting surface, but instead he and his girlfriend simply laughed and hugged. After the moment gained a bit of online notoriety, Wise told reporters at the Fort Worth Invitational that the young couple simply laughed it off.

"Yeah, I have been giving her some s--- about that," Wise said. "A lot has been made about it. It's really nothing. Like I was saying, she was just so excited to surprise me. I was kind of ruining the surprise a little bit that she was shocked, and she didn't even see me going in for the kiss."

At age 21, Wise is now one of the youngest winners on Tour. He explained that while both his girlfriend and mother flew in to watch the final round at Trinity Forest Golf Club, where he shared the 54-hole lead and eventually won by three shots, he took some of the surprise out of their arrival in true millennial fashion - by looking up his girlfriend's location earlier in the day.

Still getting used to his newfound status on Tour, Wise downplayed any controversy surrounding the kiss that wasn't.

"No hard feelings at all," Wise said. "We love each other a ton and we're great. It was a funny moment that I think we'll always be able to look back at, but that's all it really was."

Mmm Visuals / Lancaster Country Club

Giving back: Chun creates education fund at site of Open win

By Randall MellMay 23, 2018, 8:04 pm

South Korea’s In Gee Chun is investing in American youth.

Chun broke through on the largest stage in women’s golf, winning the U.S. Women’s Open three years ago, and she’s making sure Lancaster, Pa., continues to share in what that brought her.

Chun is preparing for next week’s U.S. Women’s Open at Shoal Creek outside Birmingham, Ala., but she made a special stop this week. She returned to the site of her breakthrough in Pennsylvania on Tuesday and Wednesday, launching the In Gee Chun Lancaster Country Club Education Fund. She announced Tuesday that she’s donating $10,000 to seed the fund. She’s expected to raise more than $20,000 for the cause in a fundraising dinner at the club Wednesday evening. The fund will annually award scholarships to Lancaster youth applicants, including Lancaster Country Club caddies and children of club employees.

“I’m excited to be back here,” said Chun, who put on a junior clinic during her stay and also played an outing with club members. “Winning the U.S. Women’s Open here in Lancaster gave me the opportunity to play on the LPGA and make one of my dreams come true.”

Chun also supports a fund in her name at Korea University, where she graduated, a fund for various “social responsibility” projects and for the educational needs of the youth who create them.

“Education is very important to me,” Chun said. “I would like to help others reach their goals.”

Chun made donations to the Lancaster General Health Foundation in 2015 and ’16 and to Pennsylvania’s J. Wood Platt Caddie Scholarship Trust last year. Lancaster Country Club officials estimate she has now made donations in excess of $40,000 to the community.

“We are grateful In Gee’s made such a wonderful connection to our community and club,” said Rory Connaughton, a member of Lancaster Country Club’s board of governors. “She’s a special person.”