Happy fall, ladies and gentlemen! Football is here, the hoodies are out, and the Ryder Cup is approaching. Before we talk golf… is Texas back?
Phone works both ways, Steve
Hear ye, hear ye! The honorable foreigner Billy Horschel crossed the Atlantic and summited the highest peak of the European Tour. Two shots back at the start of the final round, Horschel shot a bogey-free 65 on Sunday to win the BMW PGA Championship. He had four birdies over his final eight holes, and he closed out the tournament with a brilliant up-and-down from 91 yards on the 72nd. It was an impressive performance, but we were a little disappointed that Ponte Vedra’s town crier didn’t dedicate his victory to the “Strategic Alliance.” Results
Joking aside, massive props to Billy Horschel. The 34-year-old now has seven professional wins, which include two FedEx Cup playoff events, a WGC, and the BMW PGA—quite the résumé.
On a less celebratory note, this is the second time Horschel has won a big event immediately after missing out on a Ryder Cup team. In 2014, he took home the top prize in the FedEx Cup, but U.S. captain Tom Watson had already assembled his squad. This incident led to the “Horschel rule,” which rescheduled the final Ryder Cup picks for after the Tour Championship.
After his victory yesterday, Horschel said he didn’t receive a call from Steve Stricker before the captain announced his picks last Wednesday. “In my mind, I thought I would at least get [a call],” Horschel said. “So there was a little more added motivation after that.” Maybe the guy just performs best when he feels left out?
Get in the spirit
Whether you need to celebrate like Billy Horschel because you just won or you need to wallow like Billy Horschel because you were left off the Ryder Cup team AGAIN, Journeyman Distillery is here to help!
Located in Three Oaks, Michigan, Journeyman Distillery teams up with local farmers to create high-quality, certified-organic spirits. Journeyman’s award-winning lineup includes bourbon, rye, whiskey, rum, and brandy. Plus, they’re golf nuts. Founder Bill Welter even built a public putting green, Welter’s Folly, behind their distillery!
Journeyman spirits can be found in 25 states right now, and within the next year they will be in 41 states. Visit Journeyman’s Find Your Spirit page to locate the distributor closest to you, and if you’re in Michigan, swing by Three Oaks and check out the facility for yourself. The distillery is hosting two upcoming events: the World’s Best Putter competition on October 9 and the Barrel Aged Brew Fest on October 16.
Squad’s all here
As if Billy Horschel’s club tosses weren’t exciting enough, the European Ryder Cup team was finalized on Sunday at Wentworth Club.
Automatic qualifying for Team Europe is a bit complicated because there are two points lists, but this Golf Monthly article does a good job explaining where things stood at the BMW PGA. With his T-20 finish, Bernd Wiesberger effectively knocked Shane Lowry out of an automatic spot. Lowry needed a T-8 to get back in, but a late double bogey ended his bid.
So that left Padraig Harrington with three picks and four prized veterans—Sergio García, Ian Poulter, Justin Rose, and Shane Lowry—to choose from. Rose, who has had only one top five this season, ended up the odd man out, despite a T-6 showing at Wentworth.
The Must-Sees of Public Golf Architecture in America
Silvies Valley Ranch Retreat and Links—Craddock/Hankins (Seneca, Oregon)
Understandably, much of the press around Silvies Valley Ranch has focused on reversibility. (Also, goat caddies.) Like the Loop at Forest Dunes, Silvies plays in opposite directions on alternate days. In order to make this reversible concept work on a hilly Eastern Oregon site, architect Dan Hixson built 27 greens, giving each of the 18-hole courses—clockwise is “Craddock,” counterclockwise is “Hankins”—a few unique hole corridors to go along with the shared ones. It’s an ingenious piece of routing. But what really impressed me about Silvies was its smart, no-frills presentation. The cart paths are dirt, and they hold up just fine. The turf is firm and has a pale hue that blends in with the surrounding high-desert flora, and the bunkers are genuinely rough-hewn, not fashionably lacy. The golf course lets the land be the star, and the land, hovering delicately between desert and forest, is more than capable of carrying the show.
Insider tip: Are you into sourdough? Jeff Campbell, bar manager and brother of the resort’s owner, has a starter, and he’s happy to send you home with some. -Garrett Morrison
Photo credit: Garrett Morrison
Tony Finau seems to have had one hell of a birthday celebration this past weekend. Soon to be 32 years old, he will be the second oldest player behind Dustin Johnson on the U.S. Ryder Cup team.
David Toms beat Dicky Pride in a playoff to win the Ascension Charity Classic. Could you imagine a more perfect PGA Tour Champions sentence than that? Results
The Latest from The Fried Egg
Shotgun Start: No one has ever ‘waited all day for Sunday night’
This Sunday episode was recorded during halftime of the Bears-Rams game and begins with some questions about Andy Dalton, specifically, “why?” There’s also a critique about the theme song for Sunday Night Football and a few comments about the Browns’ loss. Then Brendan and Andy get to the Intercontinental Baton Boy, who left the comforts of the moat, went across the Atlantic, and won the European Tour’s “flagship” event. They discuss whether he *actually* deserved a call from Steve Stricker and whether he should be mad about that. Regardless, it was motivation for some sterling play and baton work in front of the English fans, who he certainly tried to play to. Then they discuss the messy European Ryder Cup process, with the constant fluctuations, the Westy-Lowry drama, and the Rose “snub.” There’s also the matter of another interested party tweeting and liking tweets suggesting a displeased camp. David Toms is also given a quick shoutout for his win on the Champs Tour. Listen on iTunes, Stitcher, and Spotify.