Golf Buzz

August 2, 2012 - 1:48pm
Posted by:
John Kim
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Chambers Bay
Chambers Bay is one of my favorites - but isn't even on some top 100 lists. What gives?

Everybody should keep lists. They just make life easier, don't they? From grocery lists to to-do to bucket lists, they just keep our eye on the ball.  And in golf, what's more important than keeping your eye on the ball?

So back to lists. There are numerous golf lists out there on "best places to play." Seriously, google it.  We even have them on PGA.com (lists created by YOU - "A Quick Nine" that has detailed places from Northern California to South Florida, Phoenix to New Englad.) And dozens and dozens of other media sources have their lists too.

So which is the best?  In reality - all of them. Or...none of the them. The most important thing is to have one, and use it accordingly to keep focused on a goal. I promise you it makes your golf plans more interesting and rewarding. But don't try to jump from list to list to come up with a hybrid "best of".  Just as beauty is defined by the eye of the beholder, such is a golf course and a golf experience. Seems like we forget about that too often. Any course that makes a legit list is legit. I have never stepped on a course, billed as a "top course" that I didn't find to be worthy. Remember these lists are subjective.  Some courses work very hard to try and improve their standing on some of these listings. Others do not care at all. I have a nice pegboard list of "Top 100" courses on my office at home.  I have 19 of them checked off. I now plan my golf trips around them, hoping to get a few more coveted pegs in place. But what makes the list I use better than yours? Not a thing. 

So here's some of the latest and greatest lists of course rankings. Choose at your own discretion. 

http://www.golfdigest.com/golf-courses/2011-05/100-greatest-golf-courses

http://www.golf.com/courses-and-travel/general-top-courses

http://golfweek.com/news/2012/mar/12/golfweeks-best-courses-state-state/

http://pga.com/topic/golf-courses/quick-nine

 

 

August 2, 2012 - 1:42pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
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The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island
Getty Images
Forbes praises the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island for its efforts to protect its seaside dunes from erosion and capture water for use in irrigation.

The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island is hosting next week's PGA Championship, and it's also being singled out for its environmental stewardship. As much of the the United States suffers through a summer of record-breaking heat and drought, Forbes has named the Ocean Course as America’s most eco-friendly course.

"Along the shores of Kiawah Island, S.C. (30 minutes from Charleston), you'll find the Five-Star Sanctuary resort and five championship golf courses -- all classified as Audubon Cooperative Sanctuaries for their conservation efforts. What you won't see is the 14 miles of drains and pipes under the Ocean Course that collect all of the water that falls onto the green and the cart paths -- picking up 300,000 gallons of fresh water a day (half of the water used to irrigate the course)," Forbes wrote. "Course designer Pete Dye created more than 22 acres of freshwater wetlands within the golf course, restored close to 80 acres of saltwater marshlands and planted native grasses to help preserve the dunes against erosion."

To read more, and see what other courses made the list, click here. And, of course, to check out the official coverage of the 2012 PGA Championship, click here.

August 2, 2012 - 11:36am
john.kim's picture

Are you on Instagram? Look for us "pgacom" and get all the latest images from some of the great golf venues we visit! Visit Instagram on your mobile device and under the "Find Friends" menu - type in pgacom.

And be sure to share some of your great photos with us! Tag your shots #pgachamp on Twitter and Instagram for us to find - we'll share some of the best ones next week! 

August 1, 2012 - 1:29pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
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Steve Flesch
Getty Images
Steve Flesch believes that long putters don't eliminate mistakes.

One of my favorite parts about covering big tournaments is the chance to talk golf with the people who are playing the game at the highest level. The next best thing to being there might be to "listen in" to some of these conversations on social media, and recently there was a fascinating exchange on Twitter between PGA Tour veterans Steve Flesch and Bob Estes regarding one of the big equipment issues of the day.

Here’s a recap of their discussion:

Flesch to Estes: Don't waste time with this long putter nonsense, by which Ernie [Els] and Adam [Scott] were nearly last in putting [at the British Open], look at the ball. The real issue

Estes to Flesch: True, but would Ernie & Adam have finished 1 & 2 without the long or belly putter? They obviously thought it helped them. But you're right! The ball got away from the ruling bodies, as did the size of driver heads.

Flesch to Estes: From a guy who has used every type, length, and method of putting, I believe that belly and long don't eliminate mistakes.

Estes to Flesch: No method is foolproof. What matters is, does anchoring the putter make you a better putter than you would be otherwise?

Flesch to Estes: agree entirely, but anchoring doesn't appear to help so much that it needs to be banned.

Estes to Flesch: How can you say that when 3 of last 4 majors have been won with belly putters. They don't putt that way 2 putt worse!

If you’d like to follow these guys on Twitter, Flesch is at @Steve_Flesch and Estes is at @BobEstesPGA.

And, of course, you can follow PGA.com at @PGA_com

August 1, 2012 - 1:23pm
Posted by:
John Kim
john.kim's picture
Special Olympics PSA
Courtesy The Special Olympics
A powerful new Public Service Announcement from the Special Olympics highlights some of the benefits of golf

As the Olympics are in full swing and you're enjoying the greatest athletes go 'faster, higher, stronger' - there are other athletes who may do an even better job of defining "winning." A friend sent me this link the other day and it truly touched everyone that watched. Think you should too.

Watch the video here.

August 1, 2012 - 1:03pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
john.holmes's picture

Congrats to the U.S. women's gymnastics team for bringing home the Olympic gold medal in the team competition on Tuesday. Gymnasts' athleticism is always impressive, and I am especially amazed at the things they can do on the balance beam without falling off and killing themselves, or at least breaking an ankle. The difficulty of performing all those moves on the beam really came into focus for me when someone pointed out that the beam is 4 inches across while a golf hole is 4 1/4 inches across.

So remember that the next time you’re putting – as small as the cup looks, at least you’re just trying to roll a ball into it, not execute a double-reverse cartwheel with a twist.

Golf doesn’t seem quite so hard now, does it?