Dye Pleased with Revamped Ocean Course

By Golf Channel NewsroomOctober 16, 2003, 4:00 pm
KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. (AP) -- Famed golf architect Pete Dye remembers during the practice rounds for the 1991 Ryder Cup when his new Ocean Course got compliments galore from the pros.
 
The conditions were mild, the sun was shining and the competitors were hitting easy 7-irons into the par-3 17th. 'Raymond Floyd came up and told me, 'Pete, you've done a wonderful job,'' Dye said Thursday.
 
Then when the competition began, temperatures fell from the mid-70s to the 40s, the wind shifted direction from the milder southeast to the stronger northwest and the pros couldn't land a wood onto the treacherous par-3.
 
'I was trying to hide,' said Dye, on hand to talk about changes to the Ocean Course. The seaside layout will host the 50th World Cup event, part of the World Golf Championships, next month, where two-man teams from 24 nations will compete for the John Hopkins Cup.

Americans Jim Furyk and Justin Leonard will take on such stars as Australia's Stuart Appleby, Denmark's Thomas Bjorn and England's Justin Rose during play from Nov. 13-16.
 
The Japanese team of Shigeki Maruyama and Hidemichi Tanaka will try and defend the crown they won a year ago.
 
Padraig Harrington and Paul McGinley, representing Ireland, won the World Cup in 1997 when it last visited the Ocean Course. Harrington, a European star, says the victory made huge headlines in his homeland and made him rededicate himself to a successful golfing career.
 
The victory 'actually changed my perception of golf,' Harrington said by phone while vacationing overseas.
 
And Harrington can't wait to see what Dye -- known in the golf world for his difficult layouts like TPC Sawgrass and Harbour Town -- has done to the Ocean Course.
 
The most dramatic change for the casual viewer is moving the 18th green about 40 yards closer to the seaside. Approach shots will rise high into the ocean backdrop. Dye and his crew also reclaimed some of the original bunker and transition area lines that were lost through years of blowing sand on the coastal island.
 
One of Dye's favorite touches? Subtle changes to the 11th, a par 5 where few of the pros at the 1991 Ryder Cup or the 1997 World Cup tried to go for it in two. Dye gave players a better -- and more enticing -- angle to take a chance. But beware of a changed, deeper bunker on the right side of the hole. 'I don't think anybody can get out of it,' Dye said, chuckling.
 
Crews also installed a salt-tolerant grass - OC03 Paspalum - to greens. It's a stronger strain, Dye said, that allows greens to be cut to shorter, faster levels.
 
That can't be good news for those playing here next month.
 
Harrington says he, like golfers everywhere, watched 1991's famous 'War at the Shore' Ryder Cup and the 'spectacular disaster it was.'
 
American Mark Calcavecchia went off crying on the sand dunes following his singles match - and his team won. Bernhard Langer missed about a 5-footer on the 18th hole to give the Americans a victory.
 
Harrington didn't know what to expect when he and McGinley arrived for the World Cup six years later. The two played steady golf -- Harrington was 14 under and McGinley 15 under -- for the win.
 
The alternate shot, foursomes format will give golfers a sterner test on the Ocean Course this time, he said. 'We wouldn't get around it if we had to go from the tips and some bad weather came in,' Harrington said.
 
That's just what Dye wants to hear.
 
Copyright 2003 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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Watch: Full replays of The Open coverage

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 12:55 pm

NBC Sports and Golf Channel are showcasing nearly 50 hours of live coverage of the 147th Open. Missed anything? Well, you can catch up right here. Click on the links below for replays from Carnoustie, broken down into daily segments:

Friday, Day 2 (Times ET)

1:30-8:20AM (Watch): On a rainy Friday morning at Carnoustie, Rory McIlroy shot 69 to reach 4 under, while Zach Johnson fired a 67 for the early lead. Click here or on the image below to watch.


Thursday, Day 1 (Times ET)

Noon-4PM (Watch): Tiger Woods was up and down in the afternoon, as winds picked up a little and no one could catch Kevin Kisner. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the early marquee group: Woods, Russell Knox and Hideki Matsuyama.

1:30-8:25AM (Watch): Defending champion Jordan Spieth got off to a good start, while Kevin Kisner (66) set the early pace. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the early marquee group: Rickie Fowler, Jon Rahm and Chris Wood.

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Fleetwood, with his fancy umbrella, fires 65 on Day 2

By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 12:34 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Tommy Fleetwood looked like an Open rookie when he set out on Friday under gray skies and a cold, steady rain.

Because the Englishman doesn’t have an equipment sponsor he made a quick turn through the merchandise tent for an umbrella – but at least he didn’t have to pay for it.

“We stole it,” he laughed when asked about his Open-brand umbrella. “We got one given for free, actually. We didn't steal it. We don't always carry an umbrella. So it just so happens this week that we've got a nice Open Championship [umbrella]. It looked quite nice, the yellow and the course.”


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


It was Fleetwood’s only rookie move on Day 2 at Carnoustie, posting a flawless 65 to move into an early tie for second place at 5 under par.

Fleetwood holds the competitive course record at Carnoustie, a 9-under 63 he shot last fall during the European Tour’s Dunhill Links Championship, but given Friday’s conditions and the difficulty of this course during The Open, his 65 on Friday might have been better.

“It's not a course record, but it's pretty good,” said Fleetwood, who was stroke behind leader Zach Johnson. “If you went out, you wouldn't really fancy being 6 under out there. So I think that's a good indication of how good it was.”

It was a dramatic turnaround for Fleetwood on Friday. He said he struggled with his ball-striking, specifically his tee shots, on Day 1, but he was able to turn things around with an hour-long session on the range following his opening round.

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Tiger Tracker: 147th Open Championship

By Tiger TrackerJuly 20, 2018, 10:15 am

Following an even-par 71 in the first round of the 147th Open Championship, Tiger Woods looks to make a move on Day 2 at Carnoustie.


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McIlroy responds to Harmon's 'robot' criticism

By Mercer BaggsJuly 20, 2018, 6:53 am

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Rory McIlroy said during his pre-championship news conference that he wanted to play more "carefree" – citing Jon Rahm’s approach now and the way McIlroy played in his younger days.

McIlroy got off to a good start Thursday at Carnoustie, shooting 2-under 69, good for a share of eighth place.

But while McIlroy admits to wanting to be a little less structured on the course, he took offense to comments made by swing coach Butch Harmon during a Sky Sports telecast.

Said Harmon:

“Rory had this spell when he wasn’t putting good and hitting the ball good, and he got so wrapped up in how he was going to do it he forgot how to do it.


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


“He is one of the best players the game has ever seen. If he would just go back to being a kid and playing the way he won these championships and play your game, don’t have any fear or robotic thoughts. Just play golf. Just go do it.

“This is a young kid who’s still one of the best players in the world. He needs to understand that. Forget about your brand and your endorsement contracts. Forget about all that. Just go back to having fun playing golf. I still think he is one of the best in the world and can be No.1 again if he just lets himself do it.”

McIlroy, who has never worked with Harmon, responded to the comments when asked about them following his opening round.

“Look, I like Butch. Definitely, I would say I'm on the opposite end of the spectrum than someone that's mechanical and someone that's – you know, it's easy to make comments when you don't know what's happening,” McIlroy said. “I haven't spoken to Butch in a long time. He doesn't know what I'm working on in my swing. He doesn't know what's in my head. So it's easy to make comments and easy to speculate. But unless you actually know what's happening, I just really don't take any notice of it.”

McIlroy second round at The Open began at 2:52 a.m. ET.