Golf Buzz

Paul Casey (seated), Sergio Garcia, Luke Donald and Matteo Manassero
Paul Casey (seated), Sergio Garcia, Luke Donald and Matteo Manassero prepared to put the pedal to the metal in their golf carts at Abu Dhabi.
Abu Dhabi isn't just the home of the Abi Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship. The tiny emirate also hosts a Formula 1 auto race every year. And while Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy were busy twirling their golf clubs earlier this week, four of Europe's finest players took to the race track – for a golf cart race.
 
First off, Luke Donald, Sergio Garcia, Paul Casey and Matteo Manassero each took a qualifying lap to set the grid for the big race. After that came the main event – a one-lap sprint (and I'm using the word ''sprint'' very loosely) in their carts around the Yas Marina Circuit.
 
Who do you think wins? Manassero, a native of the land of Ferrari? Garcia, the countryman of multiple F1 champion Fernando Alonso? Casey or Donald, followers of the great British racing tradition of Stirling Moss, Nigel Mansell and Lewis Hamilton?
 
Here's the video. Find out for yourself!:
 
 
January 16, 2014 - 7:24am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Nike Golf
YouTube
The new Nike Golf commercial is a journey through time, focusing on those who fear golf innovation.

Nike is no stranger to making fantastic golf commercials. The company's latest effort is no exception.

In an effort to describe and amplify the innovation behind the new Nike VRS Covert 2.0 driver, Nike takes viewer into a time machine. The spot playfully takes a jab at those who are afraid to try new technology and reject advancements.

READ: Nike introduces new VRS Covert 2.0 drivers

For instance, there's this exchange on the first tee at the beginning of the commercial, when a young man prepares to hit his opening drive with the new VRS Covert 2.0 driver:

He addresses the ball and an older man with dated clothes and an even more dated driver chirps, "Ohhh... You look just like Tiger with that new Covert. The last real innovation was titanium."

And it goes on, through time, with old-timers mocking the latest, most technologically advanced equipment.

You can watch the commercial here:

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.

 

January 15, 2014 - 11:57pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
john.holmes's picture
Will Wilcox golf glove
Srixon Golf via Twitter
Do you ever have trouble keeping your swing thoughts front-of-mind while you're out on the course? I know I do.
 
You know who doesn't? PGA Tour player Will Wilcox doesn't. That's because he jots them down on his glove, as seen in this photo tweeted by Srixon Golf on Wednesday from the Humana Challenge out in Palm Springs, Calif.
 
If you can't make out his writing, here’s what it says on his glove:
 
--''Straight legs'' (above the Srixon logo in the photo)
--''Soft hands'' (to the right of the logo)
--'Tall smooth'' (also right of the logo)
 
The last one, below the logo, says ''Sft right arm.'' I'm presuming that means ''soft'' right arm, but I have to admit that's not a thought I've ever had. That's probably one of the many reasons why Wilcox is playing professional golf and I'm sitting here writing about it. But now that it's in my head, I'll have to try it.
 
Here's the original tweet:
 
 
January 15, 2014 - 3:03pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Sun Mountain Three 5
Sun Mountain
Sun Mountain's completely redesigned Three 5 carry bag for 2014.

Sun Mountain's top-selling Three 5 carry bag is new, improved and completely redesigned for 2014.

This year, the Three 5 uses the new, patent-pending Auto-FitTM Dual Strap System which is easy to get on and off, easy to adjust and works well as a single strap for short carries.
The Three 5 was designed with carrying your bag in mind and weighs just four pounds. Three 5 is in golf shops now with a retail price of $189.

RELATED: Sun Mountain offers new ClubGlider Golf Travel Bag for 2014

The new-for-2014 Auto-Fit Dual Strap System joins other popular features of the Three 5. These features include Sun Mountain's patented built-in top handle that offers a convenient spot to grab when picking the bag up and setting it down, and a cart-friendly bottom with leg retention system for those rounds that you ride.

Three 5 has a 9.5" top with four, full-length club dividers. The bag has six pockets including a full-length clothing pocket, velour-lined valuables pocket, and a beverage pouch. Three 5 also features a new lift-assist handle built into the lower spine pocket.

For the south-paws there is a left-handed Three 5 available in black only and there is a women's version of the Three 5 available with Sun Mountain’s E-Z Fit Dual Strap System.

Additionally, Sun Mountain has licensing agreements with nearly 50 of the nation's top colleges and universities and is offering a College-Licensed Three 5 with school colors and logos. The college-licensed Three 5 features a 9", four-way top with full-length dividers, six pockets including full-length clothing pocket, beverage pouch and velour-lined valuables pouch, cart-friendly bottom and Sun Mountain’s X-Strap Dual Strap System. Retail price is $199.

For more information, visit www.sunmountain.com.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.

 

January 15, 2014 - 2:18pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy
Getty Images
Just when you think this picture couldn't be topped, wait until you see the video.

See that picture above of Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy having a grand old time twirling golf clubs like batons from a promotional event in Abu Dhabi ahead of this week's European Tour event?

A little awkward, right? Well, not as awkward as the video that's surfaced today taken by writer Bernie McGuire (h/t Geoff Shackelford).

Check it out:

Kudos to Mickelson and McIlroy for being good sports about this whole exhibition. Everything about it is hilarious -- Phil and Rory trying to find some rhythm with the foot tapping, the weird music in the background, the girls waving their heads back and forth like they're in a trance, etc.

If the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship is even 1/4 as entertaining as this video, it's going to be a fantastic week.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.
 

 

January 15, 2014 - 12:15pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Keegan Bradley
Getty Images
After a nice long break from the PGA Tour, Keegan Bradley resumes his 2014 season this week at the Humana Challenge.

The PGA Tour is on the U.S. mainland for the first time this calendar year for this week's Humana Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation at PGA West in La Quinta, Calif.

As we've often seen in the California desert, it's like playing golf in a dome. What do we mean by that? Typically, conditions are absolutely perfect. Couple that with the best players in the world attacking the courses and that means one thing -- you're going to see birdies and eagles in bunches.

Since this tournament is a pro-am for the first three days, the cut doesn't come until after 54 holes, when each competitor has played each of the three courses: PGA West Palmer, PGA West Nicklaus, and La Quinta Country Club.

SCORES: Follow the Humana Challenge all week with PGA.com's leaderboard

Brian Gay is the defending champion. He defeated Charles Howell III and David Lingmerth in a playoff after the trio all recorded 72-hole totals of 25-under 263.

We can't state this enough -- birdies are a must in this tournament. With that, here are five players you'll want to keep an eye on:

5. Charley Hoffman
Best finish in 2013:
Tie for third in the Valero Texas Open
Reason to watch: Why do I like Hoffman? He's gotten it done here before, winning the tournament in 2007, along with top-10 showings in 2008 and 2010. In 2013, Hoffman was ranked 11th in the Tour's birdie average stat at 3.92. Birdies are going to drop for Hoffman, especially in ideal scoring situations.

4. Keegan Bradley
Best finish in 2013:
Second at the HP Byron Nelson Championship & WGC-Bridgestone Invitational
Reason to watch: This will be Bradley's first start on the PGA Tour since the beginning of November when he tied for 11th at the WGC-HSBC Champions. Sure, he might have a little rust that needs to be shaken off, but at the same time, Bradley is one of those players who's always itching for competition. He can make buckets full of birdies and that will serve him well at PGA West.

3. Brian Gay
Best finish in 2013:
Won the Humana Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation
Reason to watch: Well, for starters, how about a little respect for the defending champ? Plus, I'm not sure there's a player on Tour who has played more in this new wraparound season than Gay thus far. There have been eight events played in the new season and Gay has played in seven of them. Unlike a lot of guys, there's not much rust for him to scrape off. Over those seven starts, Gay's lone missed cut came in the first event he played -- the Frys.com Open in October.

2. Harris English
Best finish in 2013:
Won the FedEx St. Jude Classic (also won the OHL Classic at Mayakoba in November, part of the 2014 schedule)
Reason to watch: English has made six starts in the new season. Three of those were top 10s, highlighted by his win in Mexico and last week's fourth-place finish at the Sony Open in Hawaii. I'm riding the hot hand here.

1. Brandt Snedeker
Best finish in 2013:
Won the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am and the RBC-Canadian Open
Reason to watch: It feels strange to write this about a guy who is a six-time PGA Tour winner, won the 2012 FedExCup and finished third in the 2013 FedExCup, but I'm going to write it here about Snedeker -- I'm still waiting for him to have a monster year. A monster year is defined by winning a major. This guy contends almost every time he tees it up. I think 2014 -- if he can stay injury-free -- is going to be huge for Snedeker (yes, bigger than a FedExCup victory). That starts this week at PGA West.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.