December 1, 2016 - 11:58am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
animal encounters
Twitter
Part of playing golf means you're going to run into some wildlife out on the course occasionally. Here are nine of our favorite animal encounters in 2016.

Getting out on the golf course for four hours. Ahhh. There's nothing better, am I right?

The perfectly manicured fairways and greens, the smell of freshly cut grass, the trees, the serenity, the... OH MY GOSH! LOOK OUT! IT'S A GATOR!

Wait, what? Yes. Along with all the beauty that comes with lovely golf courses, there are those moments out there where you're going to inevitably run into some wildlife. Maybe it's a coyote, a fox, a gator, who knows?

RELATED: Rule for when animals obstruct your golf shot

What we do know is that these are nine of the best animal encounters on the golf course in 2016...

9. Gators fight on course in Tampa Bay area. Back in March, two alligators at the municipal Bobby Jones Golf Club in Sarasota, Fla., unleashed their fury on one another. One brave golfer, Barbara Mossop, figured it was worth capturing on video.

We can only assume that Gator 1 was infuriated after missing a short putt he felt Gator 2 should have conceded. We get it.

8. 20 Mongoose run onto the green at European Tour's Nedbank Golf Challenge on the Race to Dubai. I don't know about you, but when I flip on the Golf Channel and see a tournament being played in South Africa, I'm almost more excited about the exotic animals that might appear on the screen than I am about the golf. Like this from November.

7. The capybaras at the Olympic Golf Course in Rio. Remember those mini monsters? They looked like part dog/part beaver/part PLEASE STAY AWAY FROM ME. They were everywhere on the course. It was wild.

6. Komodo Dragon at the CIMB Classic in Malaysia in October. One of the images that pops up when you look up a Komodo Dragon on Wikipedia is that of the giant lizard feeding on "a water buffalo carcass." Yep. You can get directly off my golf course, Komodo Dragon!

5. Bear cubs play with flag stick in Canada. Bear cubs are so cute... until you remember that when you see them, it means Mama Bear isn't far behind. Based on this video, it looks like Mama Bear isn't a fan of slow play either, prompting her cubs to move along and get off the green. This happened in September at Waterton Lakes Golf Course in southern Alberta.

4. Spider monkeys in Mayakoba at the OHL Classic in November. Love this video. Just spider monkey who is clearly a big golf fan, trying to get a great vantage point of the action in Mexico.

 

Come at me, bro.

A video posted by PGA TOUR (@pgatour) on

3. A cobra on the course in Taiwan. If I came across a cobra on a golf course, I'd be out of there faster than you could say, "Pro V1" -- I certainly wouldn't be throwing one at it.

2. Baboons. At the same event that brought us mongoose earlier in this list, we also got to see some baboons.

1. A python at the HSBC-Champions in China. Not a huge snake guy here. I can admit it. Luckily for the players in the field, this freak was removed from the course.

Bonus...

And let us not forget that snake that scared the bejesus out of Smylie Kaufman during a pro-am in Las Vegas recently... you know, even if it was fake.

Top 9 animal encounters on the golf course in 2016
December 1, 2016 - 10:18am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Jarrod Lyle
@GolfChannel on Twitter
During the first round of the Australian PGA on Thursday, Jarrod Lyle aced the par-3 fifth hole.

It's the season of giving and if you're a golf fan in the U.S., you've no doubt been happy to receive a healthy dose of late-night golf from beautiful Australia on television these last few weeks.

This week, the Australian PGA Championship is being contested at RACV Royal Pines Resort in Gold Coast, Queensland.

That's where, during Thursday's first round, Jarrod Lyle aced the par-3 fifth hole.

Check it out:

Lyle, a two-time winner in separate bouts against acute myeloid leukemia, is no stranger to making holes in one in competition. He also snagged one in 2011 during the Waste Management Open at the wildly popular, par-3 16th at TPC Scottsdale:

 

Jarrod Lyle scores ace in first round of Australian PGA
November 30, 2016 - 5:37pm
Daniel.McDonald's picture
November 30, 2016 - 2:42pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Tiger Woods
USA Today Sports Images
It's not often we get excited about an exhibition event in late-November/early-December, but this is definitely one of those weeks.

If we're being completely honest with one another, there's no a whole lot in the world of professional golf to really, truly get excited about in late November-early December, right?

Well, that's a little different this year... actually, a lot different. Outside of majors -- and Ryder Cup, of course -- this might be the most anticipated tournament of the year, even though it's "unofficial..." and it has to do with the highest ranked player in the world -- No. 898 to be exact -- who we'll get to in a minute.

But here are the five reasons we're so excited for this week's Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas.

RELATED: What should we expect from Tiger this week? | Hero World Challenge tee times

5. Twelve competitors from the 2016 Ryder Cup make up two-thirds of the field. For the USA, Rickie Fowler, Brandt Snedeker, Jimmy Walker, J.B. Holmes, Zach Johnson, Matt Kuchar, Jordan Spieth, Patrick Reed, Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka are all teeing it up, while Europeans Henrik Stenson and Bahamas resident, Justin Rose, are also on hand.

4. Jordan Spieth could be halfway to a monster 2017 season. What does that mean? Well, Spieth is fresh off a win in the Australian Open. Last time he did that was in 2014. In his next start -- the Hero World Challenge -- Spieth won again. That set the stage for an incredible 2015 season in which he won the Masters and U.S. Open, tied for fourth at the Open Championship and was runner-up at the PGA Championship (to go along with three other wins in regular PGA Tour events). Can he bottle up the magic again?

3. Ryder Cup teammates Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka are paired together for the first 36 holes. Or, in other words, to of the longest hitters in the game today. There aren't going to be a lot of divots from where these guys will be hitting their approach shots.

2. The field features three of 2016's four major champions. U.S. Open winner Dustin Johnson is there. Henrik Stenson, the Open Champion is there (no truth to the rumor he travled to the Bahamas via jet ski with the Claret Jug). And PGA Champion Jimmy Walker is there. Masters winner Danny Willett is the only grand slam winner not in the field.

And if you needed just one more reason to be excited...

1. For the first time in 15 months, TIGER WOODS IS BACK, BABY! That's right. The No. 898th-ranked player in the field is teeing it up. The level of excitement for Tiger's return this week is so high that people were actually live-tweeting his pro-am round on Wednesday. Injury setbacks aside, this will be the first time we see Tiger play 72 holes golf since a T10 in his last PGA Tour start at the Wyndham Championship in August 2015.  

5 reasons to be excited for this week's Hero World Challenge
November 30, 2016 - 2:27pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Branden Grace
@europeantour on Instagram
Is there anything more fun during a boring practice round than watching pro golfers take a crack at skipping their golf ball across a water hazard?

South Africa's Branden Grace has made some noise the last two years in major championships, racking up top-5 finishes in four of the last eight he's played, most notably a third-place showing at the 2015 PGA Championship (which he followed with a T4 this year).

On Wednesday, the seven-time European Tour winner made noise at the Leopard Creek CC in Malelane, South Africa ahead of this week's Alfred Dunhill Championship, with this skip shot over the water:

What's left? About 5 feet? Not bad at all.

BUT... we will see your 5 feet skipping it across the water, Branden, and raise you this water-skipping ace from Vijay Singh on the 16th hole at Augusta National during a practice round in 2009:

Wow. 

Branden Grace skips ball over water to within 5 feet of hole