LUKE LIST finished his round with a share of the lead in the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines but had to wait nearly two hours before re-emerging onto the South Course to claim his first career PGA Tour win after 206 career starts, edging out Will Zalatoris in a playoff.
Torrey Pines Gliderport, used by the gliding and paragliding enthusiasts of San Diego, is situated about 1000 ft from the 12th green of the South Course. With consistent easterly winds, high cliffs and year-round sunshine, the area is ideal for San Diego’s adopted sport. The Gliderport was officially opened in 1930 and soon afterwards Charles Lindbergh made the first-ever sailplane flight over the cliffs.
Last year paragliders had uninterrupted views of the action at the U.S. Open. Apparently the best view of the course is obtained by jumping off the cliff. Will Zalatoris probably felt like finding out.
LIV GOLF INVESTMENTS, a start-up company of which Greg Norman is CEO, is committing more than $200 million over the next decade to a new 10-tournament series, which will be added to the Asian Tour schedule, with a minimum tournament purse of $1million.
Sky Sports and BT Sport are currently jostling for the UK broadcasting rights to the series, which will take place across Asia, the Middle East and Europe. Greg Norman says: “This is only the beginning,” amid rumours that he will head a new Saudi-funded breakaway golf league.
Although players have been threatened with a ban from the PGA Tour should they defect, it’s rumoured Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka, Phil Mickelson and Justin Rose have received offers of $30 to $50million to compete in individual and team events..
Greg Norman told interviewers: “All players are independent, they can play where they want, so something has got to give. We’re not ruling out some kind of legal battle.” Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, which helped bankroll the takeover of Newcastle United, is the majority shareholder in LGI, and is chaired by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is suspected of ordering the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Not exactly a first rate testimonial.
BEFORE THE HSBC Championship, Rory McIlroy, Collin Morikawa and Tyrrell Hatton were given a near-impossible Hero Challenge – to hit a one-yard wide fairway on the drag strip at Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, home of Formula 1’s season-ending race.
After some hours of driver slamming and swearing, in which the players landed some of their balls on the fairway but saw them bounce off again, a laughing McIlroy recommended Hatton, who was tearing his hair out, to an anger-management course, although Hatton was actually the first to make his ball hit the fairway and stay on it.
In another Hero Challenge last year Ian Poulter and Tyrrell Hatton had to try and make a hole-in-one with just 50 balls each (they didn’t) and a live TopGolf Spectacular was held in Dubai with a “fun, interactive and exciting format.” We await “Strictly Come Golfing!”
GOLF MONTHLY REVIEW says of Callaway’s latest offering: “One of four new drivers, the draw bias ST Max D inspires plenty of confidence behind the ball. For pure forgiveness the standard ST Max might be the best option, but the ST Max D delivers the excellent ball speeds we’ve become accustomed to in this range whilst also launching higher, which will appeal to golfers who need more assistance getting the ball in the air off the tee.
Up against the TaylorMade Stealth HD and Cobra LTDx Max Callaway’s Rogue ST Max and Max D stack up impressively, and in our opinion are the best drivers for high-handicappers.” It’s all the same to me, at around £500 I won’t be buying one anyway.
McIlroy has apparently put Taylor Made’s Stealth driver and two of the Stealth woods in his bag. Unfortunately, if he keeps playing like he did in the last round at Dubai he’ll find himself in the same boat as Bob Hope who said “Srixon pay me not to use their balls.”
Until next time; Happy golfing.
Contact Mick for regripping and repairs. 638 859 475.