Golf Buzz

Donald Trump
Photo by Montana Pritchard/The PGA of America
Chairman and President of The Trump Organization, Donald Trump, speaks during the Leadership Session of the 98th PGA Annual Meeting at The JW Marriott in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA, on Friday, November 21, 2014.

You'd think of all the courses Donald Trump plays and has access to play, his "bucket list" course would be a little more obscure. But after giving it some thought, he revealed an answer that would be on the golf bucket lists of your average golf-playing citizen: The Old Course at St. Andrews.

This was among his answers to five rapid-fire questions we asked Trump in a one-on-one interview at the PGA 2014 Annual Meeting Friday in Indianapolis, where he was keynote speaker.

PHOTOS: PGA 2014 Annual Meeting

Another question? Name your five holes-in-one. Trump had initially named one as his most memorable shot during a lively and humorous 1.5-hour keynote address. It was the 158-yard 12th hole at Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point, which Trump aced with an 8-iron. And to the delight of the crowd, he made sure to note he had a "massive plaque" installed.

The others: Two at Westchester Country Club, one at Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach and one at Pebble Beach in the AT&T Pebble  Beach National Pro-Am, an ace on the 12th in a foursome that included Payne Stewart. If you're interested, there's a good retelling of this 1993 ace in a 2011 New York Times piece. The caddie, Robert Lytle, tells the story:

“So Donald wants to hit a 6-iron and (Paul) Goydos wants him to hit 6-iron and I want him to hit 5-iron. So we’re going back and forth and finally I said to him: ‘O.K., Donald, I’ll tell you what, you hit the 5-iron and if I’m wrong you don’t have to pay me. If I’m right, you pay me double.’ He looked at me and said, ‘You sure?’ ”And I said, ‘Yeah, I’m sure.’ I was sure, but I was thinking maybe he’d hit it too hard and try to prove me wrong. But he hit it perfect. Two bounces and it went in the hole.”

Trump's favorite club in his bag? "My Putter. Definitely." By the way, it's a Scotty Cameron, if you're curious, and it's the same putter he's used for years. Least favorite: Anything to do with chipping.

READ: Your golf bucket list

Best piece of golf instruction: "Don't take it to seriously. I see some people that are so uptight they can't take a club back. Just remember it's just not that important and maybe you'll play better."

And finally, Trump named his projections for players to win majors in 2015, and his list was, well, safe. But in Trump fashion, it was also supersized. "We have four majors, but I would say five guys." Who? Henrik Stenson, Rory McIlroy, Phil Mickelson, Justin Rose and of course Tiger Woods.

"I think Tiger is a unique athlete and a great guy. I think Tiger is going to win a major next year."




November 21, 2014 - 12:11pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Rory McIlroy
In the second round of the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai on Friday, this 3-wood shot from the middle of the fairway didn't go exactly as planned for Rory McIlroy. As you can see, there's a lot of turf behind that golf ball.

So here's the situation: You've just hit a perfect drive right down the pipe on a long par 5. You get to the ball, sitting beautifully in the fairway, and decide you're going to take a crack at going for it in two.

You take the headcover off the 3-wood, address the ball, take the club back and then... Oh no. Your club hits the turf eight inches behind the ball and you chunk it big time. You feel like an idiot.

Guess what? That even happens to the world's best player sometimes (never as often as it happens to you or me though).

RELATED: Angry golfer needs a towel... and a hug | Shane Lowry makes a hole-in-one

That's right -- in Friday's second round of the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, no less than Rory McIlroy hit that dreaded chunk 3-wood while he was sitting pretty in the fairway.

Here it is since we understand you need to see it to believe it:

The difference between you, me and Rory? He still parred the hole and managed to shoot a 2-under 70 that sends him to the weekend two shots behind leader Henrik Stenson.


Oh, and here's how McIlroy explained the shot to reporters after the round: "It was a fat, low, duck-hook runner that was not intentional."

Great sense of humor.

November 21, 2014 - 10:28am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
It's been said that golf is 90 percent mental -- which is why it's surprising that more people don't lose their mind like this guy when things go wrong.

Golf is a game for ladies and gentlemen.

However, we'd all be lying if we didn't come clean and admit how much fun it is to see a meltdown on the course sometimes -- so long as no one gets hurt. Of course, it's not so funny if we're the one melting down.

But a fellow playing partner? It just doesn't get any funnier, does it?

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In that spirit, we think we may have found the golf course meltdown to end all golf course meltdowns.

Below is a video posted to Facebook by a Swedish guy named Patrik Vesterlund. It captures an incredible scene on a golf course in Sweden where another man absolutely loses his mind after a shot doesn't exactly play out the way he envisioned.

Check it out:


Loose translation: "What happens when a golf shot doesn't go as planned."

Wow. Tens from all the judges! That said, this was staged, right? Had to be playing it up for the camera.

This video was apparently posted in March, but resurfaced this week.

h/t Golf News Net 

November 21, 2014 - 8:43am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Shane Lowry
Ireland's Shane Lowry, playing alongside Rory McIlroy, hit a perfect 7-iron from 183 yards in the DP World Tour Championship on Friday for his first career ace as a professional.

Ireland's Shane Lowry, a two-time European Tour winner, snagged his first hole-in-one as a professional in Dubai on Friday.

Lowry hit a 7-iron on the par-3 183-yard 13th hole at Jumeriah Golf Estate in the second round of the European Tour's season-ending DP World Tour Championship.

Check it out:

You've got to love it when you ask the ball to, "be right," and it's just perfect.

Through two rounds, Lowry 7 under and is just three shots off Henrik Stenson's lead. 

PGA Junior League
PGA of America
Programs like the PGA Junior League are often attractive to Generation X parents, who want to provide their children with opportunity and include them in the sport.

INDIANAPOLIS – A strong understanding of exactly how each generation was introduced to both life and golf, then applying that to how courses, PGA Professionals and the entire industry talks to those people will help grow the game.

That was the key message from Anna Liotta, who spoke to a large group of PGA Professionals at the PGA 2014 Annual Meeting in Indianapolis Thursday.

Liotta is one of 19 children and grew up in a household of six generations. Her passion for the sport is evident in the name of her dog – “Golfing.” As a child, she dug up golf balls from the frozen dirt of a driving range.

MORE: Find a golf program in your area | What are your rules on the 'gimme' | Comprehensive golf terms and glossary

Liotta outlined four key -- and familiar -- generations, but defined how those generations came to golf and what they typically want from the sport. The result: Try to find out “what makes each generation tick, and what are we doing on the golf course that’s pushing them away.”

Interim PGA President Derek Sprague said Liotta’s perspective on this generational disconnect can help PGA Professionals lure people to the game. “We need to translate,” Sprague said simply.

The Traditionalists, born 1927-1945
A familiar player in his or her 60s and 70s, and entered the game in hard times, so golf was a privilege, a “huge accomplishment,” Liotta said. The golf leaders – such as Arnold Palmer – were legends. And those legends were emulated. They have strong feelings about the tradition of the sport.

Baby Boomers, born 1946-1964
A huge part of the population and golf population, estimated at 80 million born. Liotta calls this group incredibly competitive, based on what they faced in the workplace with so many peers. Golf matched their life well. “They could schmooze and make business contacts,” she said. Golf was status and golf was access. “Baby Boomers weren’t just good,” she added. “They were great.” Liotta cited Jack Nicklaus and Nancy Lopez as player examples. Another interesting thought: This group doesn’t like words that make them sound old. So this group likely is intent on staying competitive on the course.

Generation Xers, born 1965-1977
Now in their late 30s and 40s, this was the first wave of kids of Baby Boomers and Liotta says that shaped their entry to the game as well. Their parents were busier, and they weren’t introduced in the same way to the sport. More generally, this generation was subject to divorced parents and fending for themselves after school, Liotta said. Because of that, they look for ways to include their families when they play golf. They want their children to be seen, heard on the course – and programs like First Tee and PGA Junior League golf are crucial to this group, she said. Players in this generation – Tiger Woods, for example – started enjoying rock-star status.

Millennials, born 1978-1999
A group larger than the Gen Xers at 76 million, this generation is represented by players such as Rory McIlroy and Michelle Wie. They are global athletes (see this Rory example), and they share everything (see this Wie example). Liotta said these players are sometimes “mulligans”, a later generation of kids to Boomer parents, shaping their outlook and access. Because the parents were further along in their careers, and maybe had the benefits of a first crack at parenting, they are far more involved. On the golf course, this is a group that wants to be seen as athletes, and they want inclusion because they want to share all experiences with everybody. Also competitive, and perhaps because of its size, Liotta calls this group a hot target for the growth of the game.

November 20, 2014 - 10:19am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Justin Rose
After seeing Rory McIlroy's incredible leg workout on Wednesday, Justin Rose decided to share his own leg workout with the world -- to tease McIlroy.

Friends like to give each other a hard time. It's what being friends is all about, isn't it?

Well, top golfers who are also great friends are no exception. The only difference is that when they bust chops, it's out there for the whole world to see thanks to social media.

In some cases, a player will post something and it seems he's almost begging a friend to call him out.

That's precisely what happened yesterday.

My colleague, John Holmes, blogged last night about world No. 1 Rory McIlroy lifting a ridiculous amount of weight. You can see Rory's initial tweet here:

Very impressive and a nice inside look for fans on just how committed McIlroy is to fine-tuning his body off the course.

That said, it was only a matter of time before a friend chimed in to bust chops.

Enter Justin Rose, who posted his own leg workout to Instagram taking a playful jab at McIlroy (and probably envious of McIlroy's lifting ability):


@rorymcilroy I'll see your 400lbs and raise you 10! #Poker #GoBigOrGoHome

A photo posted by Justin Rose (@justinprose99) on

Love the note on Rose's post too: "@rorymcilroy I'll see your 400lbs and raise you 10! #Poker #GoBigOrGoHome" 

Great stuff.