Good Karma or Pure Stupidity?

Qualifying for the PGA tour can be a very rigorous, difficult, and long process that many try achieve and only a few actually do. 43 year old Tour journeyman JP Hayes was playing in the a second-stage qualifier at Deerwood Country Club in Kingwood, Texas last week when he disqualified himself from the tournament which means, he will not get his Tour Card this year.

JP realized that he had used a different type of ball in the middle of his round which calls for a 2 stroke penalty. He informed the rules judge and his round of 72 was increased to a 74. Since golf does not have referees or umpires, the players are supposed to police them selves. At the end of the day, a 2 stroke penalty was not a huge deal and a chance to still earn his tour card was still achievable. Continue reading Good Karma or Pure Stupidity?

Spotlight: Pete Dye

Pete Dye is already known around the world as one of, if not the best golf course architect/designer in the history of the game, and on Monday, November 10, 2008, he was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in the Lifetime Achievement category.

Paul B. “Pete” Dye was born on December 29th, 1925 in Urbana, Ohio. He was a successful amateur golfer in the State of Indiana. In 1950, he married Alice Dye, a course designer and amateur champion. Continue reading Spotlight: Pete Dye

Mickelson going International???

Check all the major Golf News websites and you’ll see that the big news over the past week is that Phil Mickelson is considering joining the European Tour. For the world’s #2 ranked golfer, this could be a major career move and something that seems to be motivated by 3 key factors:

The MONEY — I know, I know. Phil probably has enough put together from career earnings, sponsorships, and so on, but we’d be naïve to think that the modern Golf Tournament is played solely for the thrill of winning. Just realize that this weekend tournament in China, the HSBC Championship, has a $5 purse. Later in the year, the first annual Dubai World Championship will provide $10 million in prize money. Those are pretty silly numbers for someone just gripping and ripping a golf ball for a weekend.

The SPONSORS — Callaway, KPMG, Exxon Mobil, etc. etc. etc. — all have enormous business in the United States, but they are also major players internationally. There is no doubt that these companies view the international market as a key vehicle for growth and want to take advantage of any opportunity for expansion. As long as they’re making a push for the business, I imagine that Phil will be happy to abide.

The MARKET — Opportunity to for International growth of the game of golf — Playing and promoting the game of golf around the globe has been vital to the growth of the European Tour in recent years. Couple that with that fact that, without Tiger’s presence on tour, the door has opened for many European rising stars to stake claim in the Majors. Plus, a stronger international presence will only aid the efforts to have the game of golf recognized by the International Olympic Committee, something that many pro golfers have been pushing for since this summers’ Olympic games.

All-in-all, it would be a shame to lose Mickelson’s presence at numerous PGA events, but I can’t fault the guy for trying to expand his game and international experience. I mean, if I had the opportunity to travel the world on a more regular basis, I sure as hell wouldn’t pass on it.

What are your thoughts?