Good morning, sports fans. We’re glad to see you all made it through the coverage gap unscathed this weekend.
In today’s newsletter…
- High winds and firm greens forced some real golf to break out on the final day at Pebble Beach.
- An up-and-coming star and a returning-to-form veteran emerge victorious at the Vic Open.
That was beachin’
Blustery winds, firm conditions, and tucked pins made for entertaining golf at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am on Sunday. In the end, Nick Taylor took out every thwomp in his path and captured his second career PGA Tour victory. Results
Amateur partners, slow play, and CBS aside, Sunday at Pebble was excellent TV. Yes, expanding some greens and reducing years of build-up on the bunker edges could open up more interesting pin positions, but Pebble Beach is still world-class, and it proved as much yesterday. Players had to choose wisely when to be aggressive, bounce shots into greens, and play away from pins to get it close. Let’s hope we see more of the same this coming week at Riviera.
The new Woo
On the other side of the globe, 21-year-old phenom Min Woo Lee got his first career European Tour victory at the ISPS Handa Vic Open. The long-hitting Aussie shot four rounds of 68 or better to earn the two-shot victory.
Lee is a star in the making. He led the Euro Tour in driving distance last year and has an impeccable short game. His elder sister Minjee Lee is a world top-10 player on the women’s side, and both appear destined for great things.
AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am—other notes
- Phil Mickelson shot a final-round 74 to drop to solo third. Lefty threatened the lead early in the round but made four bogeys and a double in his last 11 holes.
- Mr. Sunday Kevin Streelman made just two bogeys in his final 18 on the way to a runner-up finish and the pro-am title with his partner, “9-handicapper” Larry Fitzgerald.
- Two former world No. 1s who have struggled recently found some form on the Monterey Peninsula. Jason Day (46th in the world before this week) faltered to a 75 on Sunday—did he run out of balloons?—but had enough of a cushion for a solo fourth, and Jordan Spieth (55th) fired a 67, the low round of the day, for a backdoor top 10.
ISPS Handa Vic Open—other notes
- Men’s Results
- Women’s Results
- Hee Young Park emerged from a three-woman playoff to win the ladies’ side of the Vic Open. Park had not won on the LPGA Tour in seven years.
- According to Mike Clayton, So Yeon Ryu donated half of her runner-up check to Australian brushfire relief.
Mito Pereira won the Country Club de Bogota Championship on the Korn Ferry Tour by making two eagles during his final round, including a championship-clinching one on the 72nd hole. Leaderboard
The success of the Vic Open format prompted eloquent reflections on gender inequality in golf from tour pros Meghan MacLaren and Geoff Ogilvy. Both played in this year’s event and came out with a renewed determination to break down the mindset that has led to the disparities between the men’s and women’s games.
Who doesn’t love a bit of millennial-baiting? Acushnet is targeting its new golf-ball brand Union Green at a type of golfer we’re pretty sure exists only in a middle-aged marketing director’s fever dream about what Instagram probably is. Full Story from MyGolfSpy
The Must-Sees of Public Golf Architecture in America
Ravisloe Country Club (Homewood, Illinois)
The best option for public golf in the Chicago area is this former country club south of the city. Credited to Donald Ross, Ravisloe also saw work from William Watson, Langford & Moreau, and most recently David Esler, who did a restoration in the early 2000s. The front nine meanders along flat ground, breaking convention with back-to-back par 5s (Nos. 2 and 3) and par 3s (Nos. 6 and 7). On the back nine, you’ll see the property’s more dramatic land and a spectacular stretch from 11-17. Unfortunately, in spite of Ravisloe’s popularity, the management is pushing the course in the wrong direction, planting more trees and allowing greens to shrink. It’s sad to see a great course moving away from the best version of itself for no particular reason.
Insider tip: If you’re visiting from out of town and in the city, there’s no need to rent a car. Like most of Chicago’s oldest courses, Ravisloe is located directly on a Metra line. If you call ahead, the folks at the course will pick you up from the train—or you can just walk, as the Homewood stop is a mere short par 4 from the clubhouse. -Andy Johnson
The Latest from The Fried Egg
The Fried Egg Podcast: Superintendent Series – Episode 4: Edric Funk and Matthew Wharton
At the GCSAA Golf Industry Show in Orlando, Andy recorded a live episode with The Toro Company’s Edric Funk (@EdricFunk) and Carolina Golf Club superintendent Matthew Wharton (@CGCGreenkeeper). The trio discussed the process behind innovation, the role of #TurfTwitter, the future of labor in the turfgrass industry, and the advent of robotics and automation in greenkeeping. Big thanks to our sponsor Toro for making the Superintendent Series possible. Listen on iTunes, Stitcher, and Spotify.
The Shotgun Start: Pebble winds, balloons, Yoshi shells, “Bombs,” and the new Union Green
This freewheeling Monday episode jumps to-and-fro on a variety of topics from an eventful weekend in golf. We begin with Sunday at Pebble Beach, where some firm conditions and high winds created a highly entertaining challenge for the final pairing of Nick Taylor and Phil Mickelson. We get into the teeny greens of Pebble and, setting aside architectural quibbles, praise the chaotic watch it created on Sunday. The 12th hole is also put under the fairness microscope. A Dump in the Cup is awarded to one player who got blown out to sea when he needed the points. We also discuss Jason Day’s balloon therapy getting lots of publicity, his vomitous putting, Larry Fitz’s potential sandbagging, and the backboarding ways of Lawrence the Cable Guy *and* Commissioner Jay Monahan. We then somehow end up on a lengthy diversion ranting about the new Union Green golf ball model. In news, we hit on some of the OWGR movements, including Jordan Spieth sneaking into the next WGC. We wrap with some thoughts about inane rollback arguments and Webb Simpson’s opinion on how to make golf hard again. Listen on iTunes, Stitcher, and Spotify.
Studies show that the Monterey Peninsula has the highest number of quarter-zip sweatshirts per capita this side of the PGA Show (source: us). Don’t get left out. Make the B. Draddy Caves pullover your go-to on and off the course. Get yours today!