Keep Augusta Life Rolls On

By Michael FechterAugust 15, 2008, 4:00 pm
Some think that the Masters is the greatest golf event in the world. They are oh, so wrong.
 
Cmon, what's so great about $1.50 pimento cheese sandwiches on Wonder bread? I wouldn't give $1.50 for the entire known universe of pimento cheese.
 
Let me tell you about a tournament run at one of 'my' courses, the Malibu Country Club. Every July, for the past 10 years, the Malibu Country Club has hosted a tournament for Life Rolls On, a 501 c-3 charity to benefit young people with severe spinal cord injuries. Youd think that a spinal cord injury would be the end to surfing and biking and other activities that most of us take for granted. Life Rolls On is out to change that perception.
 
Allow me to paint a picture and perhaps the people in Augusta should listen for ways to improve this little April get-together.
 
Augusta has azaleas, seersucker suits, and iced tea infused with sugar. Conversely, Malibu is an event run by surfers, volunteers and the people of Malibu Country Club. And booze. Lordy, do they have the booze flowing.
 
If you want a tournament that has champagne and massages on the first tee for everyone ' Im talkin golfers, staff, volunteers and spectators ' then come to Malibu. I believe I even saw someone giving a massage to a mountain lion, which is an impressive, though ill-advised, way to commune with nature. Oh and there's a bubble gum blowing competition for every foursome, where the person that blows the biggest bubble wins an oversized bottle of champagne ' better than the crystal goblet you get for an eagle at Augusta.
 
And that's just the kickoff before you get to No. 18 with DJ 'Matter' spinning turntables of funk, electric and Latin on the cliff overlooking mountain canyons and the Pacific. I may be biased, but I believe the sunset over the Pacific is a whole lot prettier than those overflowing Port-A-Potties in the mud of Augusta National's parking lot.
 
On the 345-yard second hole, you have the option of hiring Vincent Ciurluini, a professional long driver to be your designated driver. For a mere $30 donation, you can play one of Vinnies shots off the tee. I witnessed Vinnie put tee shots within 25 feet of the hole for nearly every group. I couldn't do that from a greenside trap. If Corey Pavin knew about Vinnies services, he'd have more majors than Tiger.
 
On nearly every hole, there is an activity that could only come from the minds of Malibu Country Club and the people that run Life Rolls On.
 
From each foursome, whoever can hit a Wiffle ball the farthest wins L.A. Dodgers tickets. On another hole, whoever can hit a marshmallow the farthest with a hockey stick wins L.A. Kings tickets. On another hole, golfers hit balls from a special 'golf-adapted' wheelchair to help us understand what people with spinal cord injuries live with every day. Lets just say no able-bodied golfer hit a ball farther than they might with a lob wedge.
 
On one hole, there was a Tommy Bahama mojito bar with free mist fans for every golfer. On another hole the El Don Tequila girls used squirt guns to give away shots. Genius.
 
Malibu Country Club is a course you can play, with a cart, on any day of the year for well under $100. Man, the view during the drive to the club is worth more than that. Try getting on at Augusta. You cant even sit in the pro shop at Augusta National unless youre a member of a qualifying world domination society like Skull and Bones or the Bilderberg Group.
 
Man, what a day in Malibu. It almost made me embarrassed to be employed as the Ambassador of Fun. These people were having the most fun I have ever seen on a golf course and all I had to do was show up.
 
I'm telling you brother, you can keep Augusta, Ga., and Washington Road, with it's string of fried chicken joints. I prefer the string bikinis at Malibu.
 
Malibu C.C. looked like a casting party for 'Entourage.' There were more spokes-models running around than you would see at a Victoria's Secret New Years jam. Forget gorse and full force gales off the Firth of Death, Ill take tattered miniskirts. It's Malibu.
 
Heck, even my golf-hating girlfriend, Tia, loved it. I'm guessing it was the mojitos, champagne and Heinekens that kept her happy rather than my tee-totaling keen insights and wit. Oh who cares; it's Malibu, baby, and the worlds greatest golf tournament for a great cause.
 
Ill expect these changes at Augusta in 09.
 
To learn more about, Life Rolls On; its founder, former professional surfer Jesse Billauer; and how you might join in on next years fun at The Malibu Country Club just go to www.liferollson.org or www.malibucountryclub.net
 
Email your thoughts to Michael Fechter
 
Editor's note: Michael Fechter, orphan worker and humorist, has the best job in golf: he's paid to be the Ambassador of Fun for golf courses across America. His 'job' is to make the courses he represents across America more interesting, unique and fun. Enjoy his humorous series on getting back into the game as he struggles to get his game into the shape it was nearly 30 years ago when he won his only personal junior 'major,' the Al Esposito, on America's easiest muni with rounds of 71-71-75.
 
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    Storms halt Barbasol before Lincicome tees off

    By Associated PressJuly 20, 2018, 11:29 pm

    NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - Brittany Lincicome will have to wait until the weekend to resume her bid to make the cut in a PGA Tour event.

    Overnight storms delayed the start of the second round Friday in the Barbasol Championship, and an afternoon thunderstorm suspended competition for good. The round will resume Saturday morning with much of the field still to play.

    The second stoppage at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came 20 minutes before Lincicome's scheduled tee time.

    Lincicome was near the bottom of the field after opening with a 6-over 78 on Thursday. The first LPGA player since Michelle Wie in 2008 to start a PGA Tour event, she needs a huge rebound to join Babe Zaharias (1945) as the only female players to make the cut.

    Troy Merritt had the clubhouse lead at 15 under, following an opening 62 with a 67.

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    Third-round tee times for the 147th Open

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 9:05 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Eighteen major champions made the cut at The Open and will be playing the weekend at Carnoustie, including 60-year-old ageless wonder Bernhard Langer, and both major champs so far this year, Patrick Reed and Brooks Koepka.

    Twenty-four-year-old Gavin Green will be first off solo Saturday at 4:15 a.m. ET. Reed and Rhys Enoch will follow along 10 minutes later.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, both at even par for the tournament, six shots behind leaders Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner, are in consecutive groups. Mickelson is playing with Austin Cook at 8:05 a.m. and Woods is with South Africa’s Shaun Norris at 8:15 a.m.

    Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler, both three shots off the lead, are also in consecutive groups. Fowler is at 10 a.m. with Thorbjorn Olesen and Spieth is 10 minutes later with Kevin Chappell. Rory McIlroy, looking to win his first major since the 2014 PGA Championship, is at 10:40 a.m. with Xander Schauffele. McIlroy is two shots behind.

    Johnson and Kisner are last off at 11 a.m.

    4:15AM ET: Gavin Green

    4:25AM ET: Rhys Enoch, Patrick Reed

    4:35AM ET: Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Justin Rose

    4:45AM ET: Yusaku Miyazato, Tyrrell Hatton

    4:55AM ET: Ross Fisher, Keegan Bradley

    5:05AM ET: Ryan Fox, Jason Dufner

    5:15AM ET: Bryson DeChambeau, Henrik Stenson

    5:25AM ET: Tom Lewis, Sam Locke (a)

    5:35AM ET: Paul Casey, Chris Wood

    5:45AM ET: Bernhard Langer, Rafa Cabrera Bello

    6:00AM ET: Paul Dunne, Brett Rumford

    6:10AM ET: Masahiro Kawamura, Shubhankar Sharma

    6:20AM ET: Cameron Smith, Brendan Steele

    6:30AM ET: Marc Leishman, Lee Westwood

    6:40AM ET: Byeong Hun An, Kevin Na

    6:50AM ET: Julian Suri, Adam Hadwin

    7:00AM ET: Gary Woodland, Si-Woo Kim

    7:10AM ET: Yuta Ikeda, Satoshi Kodaira

    7:20AM ET: Marcus Kinhult, Thomas Pieters

    7:30AM ET: Beau Hossler, Haotong Li

    7:45AM ET: Cameron Davis, Sean Crocker

    7:55AM ET: Louis Oosthuizen, Stewart Cink

    8:05AM ET: Phil Mickeslon, Austin Cook

    8:15AM ET: Tiger Woods, Shaun Norris

    8:25AM ET: Lucas Herbert, Michael Kim

    8:35AM ET: Jason Day, Francesco Molinari

    8:45AM ET: Sung Kang, Webb Simpson

    8:55AM ET: Patrick Cantlay, Eddie Pepperell

    9:05AM ET: Matthew Southgate, Brooks Koepka

    9:15AM ET: Kyle Stanley, Adam Scott

    9:30AM ET: Charley Hoffman, Alex Noren

    9:40AM ET: Ryan Moore, Brandon Stone

    9:50AM ET: Luke List, Danny Willett

    10:00AM ET: Thorbjorn Olesen, Rickie Fowler

    10:10AM ET: Jordan Spieth, Kevin Chappell

    10:20AM ET: Zander Lombard, Tony Finau

    10:30AM ET: Matt Kuchar, Erik Van Rooyen

    10:40AM ET: Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele

    10:50AM ET: Pat Perez, Tommy Fleetwood

    11:00AM ET: Kevin Kisner, Zach Johnson

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    Facial hair Fowler's new good-luck charm

    By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 8:12 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Before, during and after the Fourth of July, Rickie Fowler missed a few appointments with his razor.

    He arrived in the United Kingdom for last week’s Scottish Open still unshaved and he tied for sixth place. Fowler, like most golfers, can give in to superstition, so he's decided to keep the caveman look going for this week’s Open Championship.

    “There could be some variations,” he smiled following his round on Friday at Carnoustie.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    At this rate, he may never shave again. Fowler followed an opening 70 with a 69 on Friday to move into a tie for 11th place, just three strokes off the lead.

    Fowler also has some friendly competition in the beard department, with his roommate this week Justin Thomas also going for the rugged look.

    “I think he kind of followed my lead in a way. I think he ended up at home, and he had a little bit of scruff going. It's just fun,” Fowler said. “We mess around with it. Obviously, not taking it too seriously. But like I said, ended up playing halfway decent last week, so I couldn't really shave it off going into this week.”

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    Spieth (67) rebounds from tough Round 1 finish

    By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 7:55 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Guess whose putter is starting to heat up again at a major?

    Even with a few wayward shots Friday at Carnoustie, Jordan Spieth made a significant climb up the leaderboard in the second round, firing a 4-under 67 to move just three shots off the lead.

    Spieth showed his trademark grit in bouncing back from a rough finish Thursday, when he mis-clubbed on the 15th hole, leading to a double bogey, and ended up playing the last four holes in 4 over.

    “I don’t know if I actually regrouped,” he said. “It more kind of fires me up a little.”


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    Spieth missed more than half of his fairways in the second round, but he was able to play his approach shots from the proper side of the hole. Sure, he “stole a few,” particularly with unlikely birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 after errant drives, but he took advantage and put himself in position to defend his claret jug.

    Spieth needed only 25 putts in the second round, and he credited a post-round adjustment Thursday for the improvement. The tweak allows his arms to do more of the work in his stroke, and he said he felt more confident on the greens.

    “It’s come a long way in the last few months, no doubt,” he said.

    More than anything, Spieth was relieved not to have to play “cut-line golf” on Friday, like he’s done each start since his spirited run at the Masters.

    “I know that my swing isn’t exactly where I want it to be; it’s nowhere near where it was at Birkdale,” he said. “But the short game is on point, and the swing is working in the right direction to get the confidence back.”