Golf Buzz

June 24, 2013 - 1:38am
Posted by:
John Holmes
john.holmes's picture
1973 Great Britain Ryder Cup team
Getty Images
Bernard Hunt, far right, captained the 1973 Great Britain Ryder Cup, which played the United States tight before finally succumbing.

Bernard Hunt, who made history as both a player and a captain for Great Britain and Ireland in the Ryder Cup, died over the weekend at age 83.

Hunt served as either a player or captain in every Ryder Cup but one between 1953 and 1969, including the 1957 match in which Britain famously upset the United States at Lindrick. He managed only a 6-16-6 overall record as a player, but was an impressive 4-3-3 in singles. 

Hunt didn't play a foursomes match in the 1957 Ryder Cup, but his 6&5 thumping of Doug Ford in singles helped propel Britain to a 7 1/2 - 4 1/2 victory – giving Britain the Ryder Cup for the first time since 1933. In 1963 Hunt and his brother Geoff became the first brothers to play on the same Ryder Cup team.

Hunt went on to serve as captain in the 1973 and 1975 Ryder Cups. The United States won in 1973, but for the first time the British squad was officially referred to as Great Britain-Ireland (even though Northern Irish players had played as far back as 1947 and Irish players had participated since 1953). Hunt's 1975 team was the last before the inclusion of players from continental Europe.

Hunt turned professional in 1946, and assembled a prominent career on the European circuit in the 1950s and 1960s. He won the Order of Merit in 1958, 1960 and 1965, compiling 30 victories. He was a founding member of the European Senior Tour in the early 1990s, even though he was in his early 60s at the time.

Hunt played out of Hartsbourne Country Club in southeast England, eventually following in his father John's footsteps as head professional there, and its 9-hole course is known as "the Hunt Course." He later became the first head professional at Foxhills Golf Club near London, where he served for 25 years. One of the courses there is named "the Bernard Hunt Course."

"Bernard Hunt was one of Britain's truly great champions and has been a steadfast ally to all of us involved in the growth of the European Tour," said European Tour Chief Executive George O'Grady. "He was enormously respected by all of his fellow players, as was evidenced when he was appointed Ryder Cup captain in 1973 and 1975 and captain of the PGA in 1966 and again from 1995 to 1997."

Hunt was born in Atherstone, Warwickshire, England, on Feb. 2, 1930. He is survived by his wife, Meg Hunt, and three children.

 

June 21, 2013 - 5:46pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
john.holmes's picture
Hank Haney and Tiger Woods
Getty Images
Hank Haney believes that winning majors will get even more difficult as Tiger Woods gets to Jack Nicklaus' all-time record.

In the wake of the U.S. Open, Tiger Woods' former coach Hank Haney believes Woods' persistent focus on breaking Jack Nicklaus' major record is wearing on him.

''Pressure affects everyone, even Tiger Woods, and the pressure at majors that Tiger puts on himself is a factor and always has been,'' Haney told Robert Lusetich over at FoxSports.com. ''Being the favorite in every major is a pressure that only Tiger faces. Trying to catch someone's record like Tiger is trying to do with Jack is a much different dynamic than when Jack was adding to his major win total.

''Tiger is having a real hard time winning the easiest major he is going to win – No. 15. No. 18 to tie Jack and 19 to beat Jack, those are going to be the hard ones,” Haney said. ''If he gets that far.''

Haney, who coached Woods for six years until they split in 2010, also believes that Woods is slacking off when it comes to getting ready for majors.

''For whatever reason, Tiger doesn't prepare for majors as hard as he could,'' he told Lusetich. ''He plays the course in a rushed way maybe once or twice before the tournament week, then in the tournament week Tiger has gotten into a routine of playing nine-hole practice rounds on some days.''

Haney also was critical of the evolution of Woods' game under current swing coach Sean Foley.

''Tiger's ball striking statistically isn't as good as it was,'' he said. ''His greens-in-regulation statistic was always No. 1 or near that with both Butch (Harmon) and I; now he is 35th or something like that.'' Woods' current GIR ranking is 39th.

''Always hitting to the center of the green and working the ball to the pins on the edges gives any player a clear statistical advantage to an appropriate pin,'' Haney said. ''Tiger used to do this better than anyone, but now it is almost like he is playing the same game as everyone else and just trying to execute it better.''

Neither Woods nor Foley has responded to Haney's comments. Woods' next chance to win a major is the British Open at Muirfield in mid-July.

How is your game coming along? Check out our Instruction section for help with every aspect of your game.

 

 

 

 
June 21, 2013 - 8:15am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Justin Rose, Tiger Woods, Mark Steinberg, golf
Twitter
Mark Steinberg, longtime agent of Tiger Woods, will now represent Justin Rose as well.
Tim Rosaforte, a Senior Writer at Golf World and Golf Digest, as well as an insider for Golf Channel and NBC, is reporting that U.S. Open Champion Justin Rose is headed to Excel Sports Management -- specifically Mark Steinberg, who represents Tiger Woods.
 
Rosaforte tweeted the news on Thursday:
 
"@McIlroyRory isn't only top European star making management change. Sources confirm @JustinRose99 moving to TW's agent, Mark Steinberg."
June 20, 2013 - 10:29pm
Posted by:
John Kim
john.kim's picture
Tee It Forward
The PGA of America
Golfers will enjoy better scores, have more fun and play faster with TEE IT FORWARD
As many of you may know, this weekend (June 22-23) has been designated TEE IT FORWARD Weekend. Several of golf's leading voices are encouraging all golfers to take part by moving up one set of tees during their weekend round. 
 
TEE IT FORWARD is an initiative backed by the PGA of America and the United States Golf Association to make the game easier, more enjoyable and to speed up play.  Everything you need to know about TEE IT FORWARD, you can learn at its official page here or on our special PGA.com TEE IT FORWARD page.
 
So why would anyone argue with more accurate approach shots, faster rounds and most importantly, more fun?
 
The obvious answer - ego. Hey, we're golfers. We love a challenge. We love to compete. We want to beat our playing partners, beat this course, beat this particular hole. We want to test ourselves at the highest level - do it like the pros. Somehow, this is diminished if you play from a set up?
 
No way. The world's best are hitting short irons into greens - why aren't you?
 
In truth, most golfers would probably continue to play golf if they did not TEE IT FORWARD. But the numbers and the testimonials are definitive that most golfers would play more and enjoy golf more if gave this option a try. And really, that's all the golf world is asking - just give it a try.
 
TEE IT FORWARD is not an indictment of your golf skills. (It may be an indictment of the skills in the group ahead of you, but they need to speed up anyways.) No, for you, it's about giving you the best chance to enjoy the shots and the situations you relish the most. 
 
The 8-iron approach hit to a gimme distance. The curling birdie putt that drops in on the last rotation. The chance to go for the par-5 in two. These are the shots that make golf fun. These are the shots you brag about at the 19th hole. These are the shots you remember for a lifetime. Think about your favorite moments in golf. Very few of them involve hitting from out of the woods or laying four in a bunker.
 
There is no reason for a golfer to heed my plea. What do I know, right?  Actually, I'm following the advice from a couple of golfers that probably know a little something about good shots, good scores and enjoying the game.
 
"Golf is a game that should be fun to play, but many golfers make it far too hard by playing from distances that don't match up to their abilities." - Jack Nicklaus
 
"I've played with enough amateur golfers to know one thing - most play from a set of tees that just makes the game too hard." - Tom Watson
 
Both golf icons have signed on to be ambassadors of TEE IT FORWARD.  If two legends, with 26 major championships between them, are advocating it as good for MY game...I'm going to listen. Here's hoping you give it a try this weekend as well.
 
June 20, 2013 - 7:41am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
GolfLogix, app, golf, smartphone, instruction, GPS
GolfLogix
The GolfLogix app is available on more than 60 smartphone models.
Are you looking for an alternative to an expensive GPS device for your golf game without sacrificing key features?
 
GolfLogix has just the thing for you. Instead of carrying around an extra device and remembering to charge it before you head to the golf course, you can simply download the GolfLogix App to your smartphone.
 
The GolfLogix App is free and easily downloaded to more than 60 smartphone models for 32,000 golf courses worldwide. It provides accurate distances to points throughout the hole, yardage-book quality imagery, scorekeeping, logged club tracking to produce a mapped history of every hole and aerial flyovers just like you see on TV.
 
As GolfLogix explains on its website, there are two levels of membership:
 
The Free Club Membership and the $19.99 Annual Champion Membership.
 
The free GolfLogix Club Membership includes GPS yardage to the Green Center, yardage book quality aerial imagery of each hole, score & stat tracking, 4 player scorecard and storage of all your rounds in the Member Clubhouse at GolfLogix.com. These features are available to use on 30,000+ mapped golf courses.
 
When becoming a free Club Member, you will also get two free rounds to try all of the Champion Member features. After completion of the two free Champion Member rounds you will have the option to upgrade and "Become a Champion Member" or "Continue as a Club Member."
 
The annual Champion membership features are valued at over $39.95, but you can join today for only $19.99. Champion Members get all of the Club Member features listed above as well as precise GPS measurements to the front, center and back of the green, pin positions, distance to all hazards and layups, target distances to any point on the imagery, hole flyovers, patented club tracking and plotting, view of your club ranges on top of the hole imagery, calorie counter, and digital yardage book notes that you can place and store on each hole. No other distance measuring device or app can match the feature set, pricing and high-quality standards of GolfLogix.
 
To learn more about GolfLogix, visit www.golflogix.com.
 
You can also find GolfLogix on Facebook and on Twitter, @GolfLogix.
 
Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tj_auclair.
 
 
June 19, 2013 - 2:25pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Mantis, golf
Mantis Golf
The Mantis Golf putter isn't just unique in style; it's also unique in function.
Have you ever heard anyone say, "You know, I just make too many putts?”
 
Yeah, we didn't think so. Thanks to a new company called, "Mantis Golf," you might find yourself making a lot more putts.
 
Michael Dill and Chris Maher, longtime business associates, friends and golf partners, got tired of their putting woes and decided to devise a plan with the hopes of correcting the problem.
 
Dill wondered if there was a way to draw a golfer's eye away from the putter and instead focus it on the golf ball during the putting stroke. As subliminal as it is, your eyes actually do follow the putter during a stroke instead of focusing in on the golf ball. If you think about, it makes sense -- isn't it natural for your eyes to instinctively follow a moving object instead of a stationary one?
 
Dill and Maher's goal was to try and subtly, but significantly shift attention from the putter to the ball. With that, Mantis Golf was formed in 2012.
 
The current Mantis offering -- and there are more models to come -- is a green mallet putter. However, unlike the white putter heads that have been all the rage in recent years and brilliant from a marketing standpoint, the green Mantis putter actually has a functional benefit.
 
"We did some testing and developed a product that could reduce visual distraction, or random eye movement during a putting stroke," said Maher, who serves as the CEO of Mantis Golf. "With a matte green finish, the putter is less distinct. It blends in with the green almost like camouflage. My background is in advertising and marketing. Taylormade's strategy was brilliant to go to white clubs from both a branding and marketing standpoint. Whenever Dustin Johnson is on TV, you know he's hitting a Taylormade club because it's white. Like Taylormade or the Cobra AMP line, we have a distinctive golf club. But, it's distinctive beyond branding. It provides a functional measure, which is why we have a patent. We have a utility patent because our product is tied to a functional benefit. We have quantification around that."
 
The design of the Mantis putter -- a color to match the putting surface; a matte finish to reduce reflection; and minimal alignment markings -- serve the purpose of minimalizing the visual impact of the putter during a putting stroke.
 
"It's improved my putting," Maher said. "I can't give it credit for anything else. Of course I have a Mantis in my bag and the more I putt with it, the more I like it. The Polyurethane insert gets the ball rolling more quickly. If I put it in your hands, your eyes won't move. You won't notice the putter over time. People tell us at demos, 'I lose the putter on the backstroke.' That's because their eyes didn't move. When you don't have to think about your eyes moving, you're able to create a more consistent stroke."
 
At the end of the day, Mantis Golf isn't just creating a unique, cool-looking putter. It's creating a putter that will improve your game. 
 
In fact, Maher is so convinced the putter will benefit your game that he and Dill offer a 30-day, 100 percent satisfaction guarantee. If you're not satisfied with your putter within that 30-day period, you can send it back for a no-questions-asked, full refund.
 
"We realize it takes a little while to get used to a new putter and that's why we have our 30-day, 100 percent satisfaction guarantee," Maher said. 
 
Based on looks alone, Maher said, people are drawn to the Mantis putter. 
 
"When people see it, it causes them to want to try it," he said. "They say, 'let me roll a couple of putts.' It's a great feeling putter, so we get a positive response to that. A number of people that I play golf with now have a Mantis putter in their bag, which is fantastic. Anyone who plays golf knows that they're not going to buy a putter unless they truly think it's going to benefit their game."
 
The Mantis putter -- which conforms to USGA Rules -- is available for $159.99 at www.mantisgolfco.com
 
You can also visit Mantis Golf on Facebook, or follow Mantis Golf on Twitter, @Mantis_Golf.
 
Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tj_auclair.