Golf Buzz

October 25, 2013 - 9:15pm
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John Holmes
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Jose Maria Olazabal at the Prince of Asturias Awards
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Jose Maria Olazabal received the 2013 Prince of Asturias Award for Sports in front of an audience that includes the Spanish Royal Family on Friday in Oviedo, Spain.

The accolades for Europe's 2012 Ryder Cup victory just keep coming to the victors. The latest: On Friday, winning captain Jose Maria Olazabal received the 2013 Prince of Asturias Award for Sports, Spain's most prestigious sports award.

Describing Olazabal as "one of the greatest golfers in history," the award jury pointed to Olazabal's two Masters wins and four Ryder Cups, "a competition in which he also demonstrated his leadership ability when captaining the European team to an epic comeback in 2012."

Olazabal, 47, is the first golfer to win the prestigious award since his friend and hero Seve Ballesteros received it in 1989. Olazabal got his award – in total, eight were presented in fields ranging from science to literature – from Crown Prince Felipe in a ceremony in the northern city of Oviedo.

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''It's very difficult even to get nominated for the award, so I never thought I'd win it, to be honest,'' Olazabal said. ''Without question this is the most prestigious award I've ever received, so it's a real honor. I don't feel like I deserve it necessarily, but it's very nice to receive it. I didn't expect to win it, but now that I have I couldn't be happier. I've always tried to conduct myself in the right way both on and off the course, and hopefully this is recognition of that.''

The Sports Award is bestowed upon the individual, group or institution whose lives are not only examples to others, but who have also reached new heights in mankind's struggle for excellence, and who have contributed by their efforts to perfecting, nurturing, promoting and disseminating sport. 

And if you're wondering why Olazabal is only now receiving this award when the Ryder Cup was last year, it's because the annual honorees are announced each summer – so the 2012 winners were chosen before the Ryder Cup.

Here's a video interview feature with Olazabal:

October 25, 2013 - 11:39am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Tin Cup
Tin Cup
Tin Cup golf ball stencils make your golf ball easily identifiable.

Whether you're a high-handicapper, or a perennial contender in the club championship, one common denominator should be this: you should mark your golf ball so that it's easily identifiable and leaves no question as to whose it is.

That's where a company called Tin Cup comes in.

Tin Cup makes -- well, "Tin Cups" -- that fit around your golf ball and serve as a ball-marking stencil. There are more than 130 existing designs offered by Tin Cup, including college logos, shamrocks, flags, animals and more. 

And, if you don't see one that sticks out to you, Tin Cup can even customize a design (think initials, tournament logo, course logo, etc.).

If you're a mustache kind of person, November -- or "Movember" -- is right around the corner. Tin Cup offers a 'stache design so that you can stencil a mustache on your golf ball.

Tin Cup ball marking stencils retail for $19.95. You can purchase a Tin Cup package for $30, which includes a leather pouch, Sharpie marker, clip and poker chip. Customized Tin Cup stencils with up to six characters cost $75, while a logo or your own design run at $125.

Select marks can also be used as alignment/game improvement tools. Tin Cups are 100 percent Made-in-the-USA and the stainless steel cup construction carries a lifetime guarantee.

To learn more, visit You can also find Tin Cup on Facebook and on Twitter, @TinCupMarker.

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

October 25, 2013 - 11:34am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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You hit a great approach shot that comes up just short, just long, or just wide of the green. No problem, you think, I'll get up and down from there and save my par.

But, as you get up to your golf ball, you notice it's not pretty. You have a lousy lie and suddenly you're hoping to just scramble for a bogey.

That doesn't have to be the case.

In today's golf tip, PGA Professional Quinn Griffing demonstrates how to best get your ball out of a bad lie near the green.

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

October 25, 2013 - 10:54am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Imperial Headwear
Imperial Headwear's new building for its designers in Bourbon, Mo., will be known as The Incubator.

You've heard of a "think tank" -- a place to gather and come up with great new ideas. Well, the people at Imperial Headwear have taken that a step further with the opening of "The Incubator" at the company's corporate headquarters in Bourbon, Mo.

So, what exactly is "The Incubator?"

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"The Incubator is a brand new space we built for Imperial designers and CSR's to dedicate themselves to servicing our customers," said David Shaffer, Director of Marketing at Imperial. "We gave it this name because it's a place where we will brainstorm ideas, develop concepts and process orders. Everything Imperial does will start here."

Paramount Apparel International acquired Imperial in late 2012. The Incubator office in Bourbon, along with two nearby manufacturing plants are the new home to Imperial Headwear, which previously called Denver, Colo. home.

"This is another step in our commitment to servicing the golf industry," said Mark Rubenstein, Chairman & CEO of Paramount Apparel International. "We wanted to devote our attention and resources to making sure we take care of our customers, and the Incubator is a place for our people to do just that."

To learn more about Imperial, click here.

You can also find Imperial on Twitter, @ImperialHats, on Facebook and on Instagram.

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

October 24, 2013 - 7:17pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
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Lydia Ko
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Lydia Ko worked the register as part of her participation in the rollout of the new iPhones in New Zealand.

Lydia Ko turned pro earlier this week, but golf's latest child prodigy didn't race right out to the course. Instead, in typical teenage form, she stayed up past midnight last night to get a new iPhone 5S as soon as they went on sale in Auckland, New Zealand.

Ko, though, didn't have to wait in line for her new phone. Instead, she joined New Zealand Telecom to help launch the new phones. She even sold the first iPhone 5 to customer Dion Zhang, who had waited in line for much of the day to get it.

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And when she wasn't behind the register, Ko ''treated customers to an informal Q&A session on all things technology and her recent YouTube announcement on going pro,'' according to a report on, New Zealand's national broadcaster. ''She also gave a number of customers a run for their money in friendly games of interactive golf and indoor putting. ''

"The iPhone launch is always an exciting time and we were especially excited to have Lydia come along to the event and spend the evening with us,” said Telecom Retail Chief Executive Chris Quin. "She is a great ambassador for how extraordinary Kiwis are using technology to do great things, in their own way – like using social media to make a global announcement about her golfing career." 

And speaking of her big announcement about going pro, be sure you check out the amazing video she released to mark the occasion. It is a lot of fun.



October 24, 2013 - 6:39pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
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Don Padgett II and Mike Davis
Pinehurst Resort
Pinehurst President and COO Don Padgett (l) and the USGA's Mike Davis will collaborate on the U.S. Open next summer, before Padgett retires next fall.

All eyes will be on the Pinehurst Resort and Country Club in 2014 as the world-famous North Carolina golf facility hosts both the men's and women's U.S. Opens in back-to-back weeks next summer. That unprecedented double-header also will serve as something of a grand farewell party for Pinehurst President and COO Don Padgett II, who recently announced that he'll retire next fall.

Padgett – a longtime PGA Professional and the son of former PGA of America President Don Padgett – will be succeeded by Tom Pashley, who is currently Pinehurst's executive vice president.

In addition to his duties at Pinehurst, Padgett serves as the general chairman of both the U.S. Open and U.S. Women's Open. After his retirement, he will remain at the resort in an emeritus capacity.

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''With the upcoming U.S. Opens and exciting plans for the growth of our membership, I felt this was the right time to begin the transition for the future leadership of Pinehurst,'' Padgett said in a statement.

Padgett was named president at Pinehurst in 2004 after a 25-year career with ClubCorp, moving to North Carolina after serving as general manager of Firestone Country Club in Akron, Ohio. Pinehurst hosted the 2005 U.S. Open soon after his arrival, and he oversaw the major renovation of the famed No. 2 Course by Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw that will be in the spotlight during the U.S. Open.

Among his many honors and accolades, Padgett has been inducted into both the Ohio and Indiana Golf Halls of Fame, and received the PGA's 1993 Bill Strausbaugh Award for excellence in club relations. He graduated from Indiana University with a B.A. in marketing, and played on the PGA Tour from 1972-1974. His competitive accomplishments include the Indiana State Open Champion in 1972 and 1975; Ohio Open Champion in 1988; and Northern Ohio PGA Section Champion in 1981, 1984, 1987 and 1994. He was a member of the U.S. PGA Cup teams in 1976, 1981, 1982 and 1984.