Open Diary Renton and Pizza

By Tom AbbottJuly 22, 2007, 4:00 pm
Editors Note: Tom Abbott is the host of Golf Central UK. He will be filing a daily diary from Carnoustie, Scotland, providing you with a feel for what is going on outside the ropes at the 136th Open Championship.
 
The lobby of the Carnoustie Golf Course Hotel was bustling at about 9:30 a.m. on Saturday morning as our executive producer and I were busy trying to secure a room for a very special interview.
 
Players were wandering past on their way to the airport, golf bags and luggage were lying around and there we were feverishly speaking with the Hotel manager. One of the players departing Carnoustie was Phil Mickelson. Amy and the worlds No. 2 golfer got into a very ordinary rental car and drove-off. Phil was just one of the players who missed the cut and therefore checked-out of the hotel early, meaning rooms were left empty. With his very impressive powers of negotiation, Jeff, our executive producer, managed to secure one.
 
Our special shoot was an interview with Renton Laidlaw. It was such a great pleasure to interview Renton, a man whos been so involved with this great game. You can see the interview next Saturday on 'Golf Central Primetime.' He talks about his health and his return to the GOLF CHANNEL; about Gary Player; the modern game and the future of the European Tour. It's very interesting stuff. Im sure youll enjoy listening to his knowledge and opinions in that soft Scottish tone.
 
The room in which we interviewed Renton was on the second floor of the hotel looking out over the 18th green and first tee. We were very tempted to keep the key but sadly we had to return it to the front desk; still we did feel like royalty for a short while.
 
Our troubles with golf carts seem to continue, aside from a certain person, who will remain nameless, forgetting to charge them overnight. Our runner, Nathan, was dispatched into Carnoustie's town-center to pick-up some pizzas for the crew. We almost didnt get the pizza when Steve Sands couldnt understand the thick Scottish accent of the girl taking the orders and I had to step-in and act as translator, saving the day.
 
Our crew deprived of their pizza, would not be a pretty sight. Nathan then sped-off towards the center of town in one of the carts; however, once outside the safety of the compound and onto the public roads a golf cart is not the preferred mode of transport. The Carnoustie police were not too amused and poor Nathan had to park his cart and walk to retrieve the pizza. Still it eventually arrived in our trailer and everyone was happy.
 
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    Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

    By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

    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.

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    Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him

    By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:07 am

    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.

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    Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter

    By Will GrayJuly 22, 2018, 9:35 pm

    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.

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    Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose

    By Rex HoggardJuly 22, 2018, 9:17 pm

    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.


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    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.