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Home Daily Golf Briefs Daily Pulse for May 10, 2017



Web Street Golf Daily Pulse
VOLUME 7, NUMBER 92                                                         
Wednesday, May 10, 2017

ANY IDEA WHO SAID THIS?"I've got them to save me a lot of three years' worth of golf balls, so at least I've got a golf ball that I like and that I know that I can play well with."

BRAIN TEASER: During last year’s second round, this player aced the 17th hole at TPC Sawgrass using a pitching wedge from 147 yards. Who did it?

LET THE GOOD TIMES CONTINUE TO ROLL! The PGA TOUR and FedEx Corp. announced a 10-year extension of the FedExCup season-long competition on the PGA TOUR. “We are proud to extend our historic sponsorship of the FedExCup, which has dramatically changed the PGA TOUR,” said Patrick Fitzgerald, senior vice president, Integrated Marketing and Communications for FedEx. “The FedExCup is the ultimate prize on the PGA TOUR, and the season-long competition has delivered some of the most exciting finishes in recent memory.”

“I was involved in running this tournament back in 2009 and 2010,” PGA TOUR Commissioner Jay Monahan said. “The numbers doubled essentially in that time frame, which is very impressive. Last year we generated eight and a half million dollars for charities through this tournament. We think on the early returns that will continue to grow. We have been in business together for over 30 years and obviously launched the Cup, announced it in 2005, launched it in 2007, and to know that it's secured through 2027 is a great statement about our players and a great statement about our TOUR.”

SO SHALL IT BE SAID, SO SHALL IT BE DONE: TaylorMade Golf Company announced it has inked a deal with Rory McIlroy. Starting this week, the former world #1 will play a 2017 M2 driver and fairway metals, P750 Tour Proto (3,4) irons along with “Rors Proto” (5-9) irons, milled grind wedges and a TP5x golf ball.

“I said, I needed to address a few issues after Augusta. I alluded to the fact that I wasn't really happy with the golf ball I was playing and I needed to do something,” said McIlroy. “I felt like I struggled in the wind. So I sort of went back to the drawing board and tested for about 10 days pretty extensively after Augusta, worked with a lot of different things, but I worked with the TaylorMade guys one day and started just on TrackMan on the range and saw stuff with the golf ball, that new TP5x ball that they have, and I thought, wow, this is what I need, this is exactly the thing that I've been struggling with, and this is, I feel, is what I need. And then over the over the course of the next few days, I tested different combinations, a lot of different stuff, and I came to the conclusion that that was the best way forward for me to try and improve, try and win more, try to get back to world No. 1, try to win more Majors. So I'm really excited about that,” he added. “I've been on TOUR 10 years, and it's very rare that you get really excited about your equipment, but I am. I feel like it's a new chapter in my life with a lot of stuff going on, but I really feel with the new equipment, as well, it's hopefully going to take me to that next level.” Reports have already surface pegging the new relationship at $100 million over 10 years. Over the coming weeks, TaylorMade will be working closely with McIlroy to find a putter model for him.

WHAT TOOK SO LONG?  Nike has announced the Air Jordan 13 Golf shoe, inspired by none other than Jordan himself. Drawing further inspiration from the Air Jordan XIII basketball shoe, the Air Jordan 13 golf shoe shares many of the same elements, the company said. In 1997, Tinker Hatfield fashioned the AJ13 hoop shoe outsole after a cat’s paw, to provide MJ with great articulation and court traction. Offered in two colorways: White/University Red and White/Black, it is available starting May 18 on Nike+ and May 19th on and at select retail partners. The MSRP is $200.

TIME FOR 9? With a broader focus on golf at the local level, the USGA rolled out plans in support of the PLAY9 program. Launched in 2014, PLAY9 has been educating and rallying golfers and non-golfers around the nine-hole round as an important, yet simple solution that addresses busy lifestyles, often cited as a barrier to the game’s participation. 

In 2017, the USGA will be working closely with state and regional golf associations and courses throughout the United States that will host and promote local PLAY9 Days between May and October. “For someone like me, PLAY9 is a great opportunity to include my wife and kids for a fun and quick day out on the golf course”, said Troy Andrew, CEO and executive director of the Washington State Golf Association. “It’s great to see the USGA’s energy behind this program reminding people that being busy doesn’t mean that there’s no time for golf.” 

In support of the program, the USGA will utilize as the hub for all PLAY9 content. The site features a course finder that identifies nine-hole facilities as well as 18-hole golf courses that offer nine-hole playing options.  “The USGA is proud to support PLAY9 and encourage everyone from newcomers to lapsed golfers to go out and play the game,” said Mike Davis, USGA executive director/CEO. ”We are thrilled to see that participation for nine-hole golf is on the rise and we remain committed to programs focused on allowing golfers to play in less time and fit golf into their busy schedules.” 

FUN FACTS: The best scoring average (8 rounds minimum) at TPC Sawgrass belongs to Justin Thomas with 70.13. Japan’s Hideki Matsuyama is next best with 70.33.

Only two albatrosses have been recorded in the history of THE PLAYERS, and they came in back-to-back rounds. In 2007, Hunter Mahan made a 2 at the par-5 11th hole in the second round before Peter Lonard duplicated the feat at the second hole in the third round.

There have been five wire-to-wire winners in PLAYERS history: Al Geiberger (1975), Greg Norman (1994), Steve Elkington (1997), Hal Sutton (2000) and Jason Day (2016).

Tiger Woods (2001, 2013), Davis Love III (2003, 1992), Steve Elkington (1991, 1997), Hal Sutton (1983, 2000), Fred Couples (1984, 1996) and Jack Nicklaus (1974, 1976 and 1978) are the only players with multiple wins at THE PLAYERS Championship.

No player has ever successfully defended their title at THE PLAYERS Championship; with Nick Price’s fifth-place effort in 1994 the best finish for a defending champion. Jason Day will attempt to improve on a record that currently belongs to fellow countryman Adam Scott. The champion in 2004 was the last PLAYERS champion to post a top-10 finish (T8) while attempting to successfully defend his title.

The 36-hole cut has been below par just twice in the last 20 PLAYERS Championships – 2-under 142 in 2010 and again last year.

Adam Scott won THE PLAYERS in 2004 at 23 years, 8 months, 12 days, to become the youngest champion. The very next year, Fred Funk, at 48 years, 9 months and 14 days, became the oldest to win the tournament.

The only players who have captured their first win at THE PLAYERS Championship were Craig Perks (2002) and Tim Clark (2010). Other than Jack Nicklaus, who won THE PLAYERS in its inaugural year in 1974, only Hal Sutton (1983) and Craig Perks (2002) have won the event in their first appearance.


COULD TRUMP COME BACK? This week’s Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., marks the end to the PGA Tour’s 2017 “Florida Swing.” The one big name missing from this year was Trump National Doral Miami, which had hosted a Tour event of some kind in mid-March for more than 50 years. We all know – or at least think we know – the reason for the move. But to hear Trump National Doral General Manager of Golf Darrin Helfrick tell it, nobody at the resort missed the event too much. “We made more money because we didn’t have it,’’ Helfrick said. READ MORE>>>

BACK TO THE DAY JOB: Retired Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo's bid to reach the U.S. Open golf championship ended in a local qualifier on Monday outside Dallas in Aledo, Texas. Romo shot a three-over-par 75 at Split Rail Links & Golf Club and was not one of the seven qualifiers who finished two-under or better to advance to the sectional from a field of 115 hopefuls. READ MORE>>>

IRISH EYES ARE SMILING: Five years after suffering terrible injuries in a farm accident, an enterprising Irishman has reinvented himself and created a state of the art training aid that can help you play better golf — the ProFitStick. A flexible pole that can be used with other resistance products, it’s the brainchild of entrepreneur and inventor Richard Weldon whose Aim2Golf start up plans to bring more Irish innovations to the market over the next few years, including a putting aid and a massage roller. READ MORE>>>

ANSWERS: "I've got them to save me a lot of three years' worth of golf balls, so at least I've got a golf ball that I like and that I know that I can play well with."--Rory McIlroy in August of 2016 at the Barclays after Nike Golf announced it was exiting the hard goods business. He won the 2016 Deutsche Bank and TOUR Championships with a Nike ball after making the statement but has been winless in 2017 so far.

During last year’s second round, Willy Wilcox aced the 17th hole at TPC Sawgrass using a pitching wedge from 147 yards. It was the seventh ace at No. 17 in tournament history and the first in 6,300 attempts by any player. There have been 219 regulation play tee shots on the 17th hole since the last ace recorded by Willy Wilcox. Before Wilcox, the last player to make a hole-in-one on No. 17 was Miguel Angel Jimenez in round one in 2002.