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USGA, PLAY9 Program

Fifth Year of Program to Feature Community Events Near USGA Championships

LIBERTY CORNER, N.J. (May 8, 2018) – As part of its ongoing efforts to grow the game within local golf communities, the United States Golf Association (USGA) today announced plans to celebrate the fifth year of its successful PLAY9TM program.

Since its debut in 2014, PLAY9 has focused on encouraging more people to play more golf, more often. The program aims to showcase the nine-hole round as an ideal solution for both avid golfers and newcomers alike to get out and play in a time-friendly and engaging way.

A player prepares to tee off during the Play9 Day at Skyway Golf Course in Jersey City, N.J. on Wednesday, July 29, 2015. (Copyright USGA/Steve Boyle)

This year, in collaboration with its Allied Golf Association network, the USGA will host and invite local communities to participate in dedicated regional PLAY9 days each month, beginning on May 9.  Golfers can find a golf course in their community that offers a nine-hole rate at usga.org/play9The course finder identifies nine-hole facilities as well as 18-hole golf courses that offer a nine-hole rate.

Community PLAY9 events will also be held in markets associated with the USGA’s championships, including Middle Island, N.Y. (near the site of the U.S. Open); Colorado Springs, Colo. (U.S. Senior Open); Wheaton, Ill. (U.S. Senior Women’s Open); Pebble Beach, Calif. (U.S. Amateur); and Charleston, S.C. (next year’s U.S. Women’s Open).

“The PLAY9 program offers a fun entry point into the game for newcomers while providing a way for golfers to balance their love of the game with their demanding schedules,” said Mike Davis, USGA CEO. “We have seen the impact to date and the awareness it has built around enjoying nine holes with friends and family. Together with our friends in golf, we’re finding new ways to welcome more golfers and support a positive future for the game.”

Since the program’s inception, PLAY9 has continued to positively impact golf communities and engage golfers nationwide:

  • Nearly 24 percent of golfers* reported that they participated in a PLAY9 program in 2017, a significant increase from 2015 (17 percent)
  • 54 percent of single digit handicappers reported that they participated in a PLAY9 program in 2017, up from 32 percent in 2015
  • 70 percent of golfers agree with the statement, “Nine-hole rounds are a great way to try golf”

“As all of our lives get busier, I’ve become a huge fan of the USGA’s PLAY9 initiative,” said Mark Button of the Texas Golf Association, which hosts a fun staff/community PLAY9 event each year. “Everyone here at the TGA feels the same. Getting out with some of our members to play nine holes on a summer afternoon is one of my favorite things to do. We had so much fun, and I look forward to doing it again soon.”

According to the National Golf Foundation, 88 percent of all public golf courses in America currently offer a nine-hole rate, averaging less than $30 per round. Nine-hole scores made up around 8 percent of all scores posted to the USGA GHIN system over the past four years (2014-2017), an increase from an average of 6 percent from 2010-2013.

The usga.org/play9 portal will serve as a convenient and dedicated destination for golfers, including opportunities to share stories and information on posting nine-hole scores.

The USGA will also continue to support the PLAY9 initiative and communicate its message with a broadcast public service announcement (PSA) that has already reached more than 180 million viewers nationwide.

* Random survey of 2,000 golfers in Fall 2017 (USGA Programmatic Tracker, conducted by Sports & Leisure Group)

About the USGA

The USGA celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf. Founded in 1894, we conduct many of golf’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open. With The R&A, we govern the sport via a global set of playing, equipment and amateur status rules. Our operating jurisdiction for these governance functions is the United States, its territories and Mexico. The USGA Handicap System is utilized in more than 40 countries and our Course Rating System covers 95 percent of the world’s golf courses, enabling all golfers to play on an equitable basis. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, New Jersey, is home to the Association’s Research and Test Center, where science and innovation are fueling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum, where we honor the game by curating the world’s most comprehensive archive of golf artifacts. To learn more, visit usga.org.

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Links at Perry Cabin: Pete Dye’s final act

Anthony Pioppi By Anthony Pioppi

Tue 24 Apr, 2018

When developer Richard Cohen hired Pete Dye to redesign a golf course that would become the Links at Perry Cabin, he knew he would be getting a course from the man many people consider the greatest golf architect in the post-Second World War era. What Cohen did not know he would be getting is a piece of history.

In late 2016, Dye, who was in his early 90s, first showed signs of Alzheimer’s disease, according to his son PB who was also involved in the Perry Cabin project. Pete’s condition declined rapidly and by the middle of 2017 he no longer had the mental faculties to work at Perry Cabin. By that point, however, he left an indelible influence on the layout having designed and made revisions to 15 holes as well as having input on the other three.

In late February of this year, the Pete Dye room at the Harbour Town Golf Links in Hilton Head, South Carolinas, was dedicated. The architectural timeline that is part of the display lists Perry Cabin as Dye’s final work.

Originally Dye refused the offer to come to St. Michaels, Maryland, on the state’s eastern shore, and convert the mundane existing layout into one of his own, saying he was in essence retired, but Cohen was not stymied by the rebuff. The original layout was the Martingham Country Club. Roy Dye, Pete’s brother, with Pete having a modicum of influence, designed it. The original developer of the project failed and neither Dye was paid for their work. A second owner completed the layout without the input of the Dyes. It opened in 1971 and years later was renamed Harbortowne Resort Country Club. Roy died in 1994.

As part of Cohen’s enticement to Pete, he not only paid him for the Perry Cabin work but also paid what he was owed for the Martingham design.

For the Perry Cabin layout, ponds were dug on the course to increase strategy as well as to mine material used to add elevation, movement and mounding. Nothing of the former design remains. “The only thing left from the other course is the dirt,” says PB. “It was flatter than day-old beer.”

There was also a third Dye involved in the design of Perry Cabin: Alice, Pete’s wife and PB’s mother. “She wouldn’t ride around with Pete. She’d ride around with PB,” says Cohen. “She didn’t want Pete hearing her criticisms and observations.” At some point, though, the three Dyes would sit down and talk over their ideas.

The time Cohen spent with Pete has left memories it is obvious he cherishes. “In the beginning he was so much fun,” says Cohen, the excitement evident in his voice. “He’d yell at me to stop the cart and he’d take notes as he was running up and down hills.”

According to Cohen, when Pete was on site the routine was always the same. Pete would work by himself in the morning, directing all his attention towards the green complexes, then break for lunch. Pete and Alice would eschew the fine cuisine of the Inn at Perry Cabin for sandwiches in the maintenance building with the construction crew (Pete always had egg salad). Cohen would join Pete for another tour of the course after that. “He’d tolerate me in the afternoon,” says Cohen, laughing.

What Pete Dye, with assistance from PB and Alice, created is unmistakably a course that will sit comfortably alongside Pete’s best-known works such as the Stadium course at TPC Sawgrass, Harbour Town and the Pete Dye Golf Club. The tried-and-true tenets that Dye saw in the designs of classic era architects such as Seth Raynor and the team of William Langford and Theodore Moreau that influenced his work are found from stem to stern at Perry Cabin.

There are multiple paths to play each hole. If a tee shot calls for a right-to-left ball flight you can be sure the next effort rewards a shot that turns left to right. It is the same with the par threes; the player who can move a golf ball in both directions will have the best chance of scoring well.

Throughout the 18 holes, successfully biting off or challenging hazards gives players a decided advantage over the more cautious golfer. The penalties for missing lines and targets, though, can be acute.

The greens are all Pete, but according to PB, the style deviates from his dad’s most recent work, which, as a result of higher green speeds, were flatter than his previous creations. For years, according to PB, on most of Pete’s putting surfaces the back edge sat a foot higher than the front edge. While that trait remained in the designs of the last few years, the tiers, hollows and humps that defined his early greens were left out, Pete saying they made for unfair situations on lightning-fast surfaces. “Dad got into flattening greens, but he went overboard,” says PB.

At Perry Cabin the movement has returned, in part because under Cohen’s guidance and understanding of his clientele, green speeds will not be ludicrous. It is after all a resort (there will also be a membership component). According to PB, he and his mom lobbied hard for the previous versions. “Mom and I worked on him,” PB says with a smile. According to PB, his dad went back to his formula of six flat, six medium and six lumpy greens.

Cohen says Pete took no input on that area of the design. “He went alone and talked to his guys. He really insisted on doing the greens himself,” recounts Cohen. ‘His guys’ were a group of equipment operators, including finish shapers, some who have been building Pete Dye golf courses for more than 30 years. It was PB who brought them on board. During construction Pete directly conveyed what he wanted to his trusted men. “I know it’s better for me to let him get with these guys,” said PB. “It’s his comfort zone.”

Much of the initial earthwork was performed by Cohen’s people, even though they had no experience in course construction. PB says his dad prefers working directly with clients and their firms rather than an outside contractor.

When Pete told Cohen that he should purchase additional land so the driving range could be converted to a new 18th hole, the owner obliged. The result – Pete Dye’s last original hole creation – is a testing par four that plays from 320-484 yards. It arcs left to right around a pond that separates it from the starting hole. Bunkers guard the left side of the hole, which ends at a three-tier green, the most entertaining and, invariably for some, the most maddening, on the layout.

Cohen did have two significant contributions to the design. First, he wanted mounding to block golfers’ views of the surrounding homes. Second, the green design at the par three seventh, a Biarritz, was Cohen’s request. An avowed Raynor fan, Cohen loves the ninth hole at the Course at Yale, Raynor’s best known Biarritz. While Pete Dye is also an admirer of Raynor’s work, he has never designed a Biarritz and seemingly did not approve of the Perry Cabin version. “Every time we’d come out on the green, he’d just shake his head and keep walking,” says PB with a smile, evidently proud of his creation no matter what his dad thinks.

For Cohen, the Perry Cabin Biarritz illustrates precisely what makes Dye a designer for all classes of players. The attributes found on the seventh are in abundance throughout Perry Cabin. From the back tees the hole plays 250 yards with a pond having to be flown to reach the green. As the tees get closer to the green they not only lessen the distance, but also require less of a water carry. The member tees play from 211 yards, almost the exact yardage as the Yale Biarritz. For golfers on the most forward tees, only the most egregious of misses will find the pond. The hole remains challenging though, no matter from where the tee ball is played.

The Perry Cabin complex, in addition to the course, includes a five-star inn, which has 80 rooms, the original building dating to 1816 (it was the site of the main wedding reception in the movie The Wedding Crashers). Cohen also purchased the hotel and cabins that were part of the original golf course facility, a two-mile drive from the inn. The entire property, now known as the Lodge at Perry Cabin, is being remodelled and is scheduled to open in 2019. It will accommodate 111 guests.

For those who tee it up on the Links of Perry Cabin, they might not know or care that it is a Pete Dye design, never mind that it is his final performance in a brilliant career that lasted more than a half of a century. What they will understand though, is that they experienced an easily walkable, exceedingly fun design that challenged and surprised them along the way. For his final act, would Pete Dye have created anything else?

GCA

Anthony Pioppi is a Connecticut-based golf writer and historian, as well as the executive director of the Seth Raynor Society. His most recent book, The Finest Nines, North America’s Best-Nine Hole Golf Courses, was published in February 2018. (Buy Pioppi’s book from Amazom)

Source: Links at Perry Cabin: Pete Dye’s final act

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John Daly to Defend PGA TOUR Champions Insperity Invitational with Vertical Groove Driver

Daly’s Success Prompts Increased Usage of Vertical Groove Driver on PGA TOUR Champions; Rocco Mediate, Kenny Perry, Doug Garwood, Tim Petrovic and Others in the Field will Tee it up with Innovative 

Jupiter, FL … May 3, 2018 … When John Daly captured the 2017 PGA TOUR Champions Insperity invitational, it marked his first professional victory since 2004. As the two-time major champion returns to Woodlands, TX this week to defend his title, Daly will once again be armed with his secret weapon… the Vertical Groove Driver.

The world’s only Vertical Groove Driver enjoyed an impressive debut season on the PGA TOUR Champions, finishing 2017 ranked #1 in Driving Distance (Daly) and #2 in Driving Accuracy, thanks to Rocco Mediate.  Professional golfers on the PGA TOUR Champions continue to take notice, as usage of both the Vertical Groove Driver and the new Vertical Groove 3-Wood increases each week.  In addition to Daly and Mediate, Kenny Perry – who won the 2017 US Senior Open with the Vertical Groove Driver in his bag – Tim Petrovic, Doug Garwood and a number of others professionals in the field this week will have the innovative driver in their bag. 

To complement the drivers in the field, former major champion Mark Calcavecchia will have the recently introduced Vertical Groove 3-wood in his arsenal.

“The Vertical Groove Driver delivers increased distance and better accuracy, and the performance of the product continues to be validated at the highest level — TOUR success,” said Rubin Hanan, COO & Managing Partner, Vertical Groove Golf.  “Last year we were the #3 driver played on the PGA TOUR Champions, and with more than 10 professionals competing with the driver this season, we continue to raise the bar.”

The 450cc Vertical Groove Driver, which is available in both right and left handed models, is offered in 8, 9.5, 10.5 and 12 degree lofts (right) and 9.5 and 10.5 degree lofts (left), while featuring a full range of Aldila premium grade, tour-proven aftermarket NV2K series shafts as standard.  The available flexes include: 45 gram L (Ladies), 50 gram A (Senior), 55 gram R (Regular), 65 gram S (Stiff) and 65 gram X (Extra-stiff).   At a length of 45.5 inches, the Vertical Groove Driver provides an optimum launch angle while maximizing carry distance and ball speed for many players. It is equipped with Golf Pride Tour Velvet grips in standard, midsize and oversize models.  Alternative shaft options from Fujikura, Mitsubishi and Aldila will also be available. Suggested retail price of the Vertical Groove Driver is $399.99.

More information on the Vertical Groove Driver is available at www.vertgolf.com or via social media profiles on Facebook and YouTube at Vertical Groove Golf, and @vertgolf on Twitter.

 

Vertical Groove Golf, LLC

Vertical Groove Golf, LLC is the golf industry’s newest original equipment manufacturer, and the first company to bring to market a golf club with vertical grooves on the club face. Backed by extensive testing from the leading independent testing facility in golf, Vertical Groove Technology is proven to deliver better accuracy and greater distance. Guided by a leadership team comprised of accomplished business executives, and complemented by veteran golf equipment design and marketing experts, the Company’s HQ/Manufacturing facility is based in Jupiter, FL. For more information on Vertical Groove Golf, please visit www.vertgolf.com.

###

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The Golf Ball Guy by Thegolfballguy - 3w ago
The Introduction

In the golf equipment industry, there’s no shortage of ideas to improve the golfing experience for us players.

Enter George Moore. In the fall of 2015, George invented a pocket golf tee holder that simplifies tee selection while, at the same time, protecting us from the business ends of our tees. He calls his invention the SafeTees Pouch.

The Story

George Moore, inventor and president of SafeTees Pouch, Inc.

The idea for the pouch struck George as he was getting ready to tee off on the 14th hole at a course near Franklin, WV.  He was playing well and was eager to tee off, so he quickly reached into a pocket for his ball and a tee. That’s when it happened. His right ring finger found the sharp point of a tee. As he pulled out his hand, with the tee still imbedded in his bleeding finger, he thought, “There must be something …”

That evening, he combed the Internet for something that’s convenient to use while also protecting fingers, as well as legs and pants pockets. There was nothing.

So he did some rough drawings of what he thought would work, and the pocket golf tee pouch was born.

His next challenge: Making a pouch.

The drawing resembled the old-fashioned, yet effective, pocket protector that holds pens and pencils in a shirt pocket, so he searched the Internet for manufacturers of pocket protectors. That led him to a company in Illinois, and the next day, he contacted the company president and told him about his pouch. The two joined forces and over the next six months developed seven progressively sophisticated pouches leading to the finished product.

George formed SafeTees Pouch, Inc., and the first SafeTees pouches rolled off the production line in October 2016. He acquired a patent, developed a business plan and marketing materials, and, in January 2018, introduced the SafeTees Pouch to the golfing world at the PGA Merchandising Show in Orlando.

The SafeTees Pouch

The SafeTees Pouch

The pouch, 3”x3½”, is made of a special high-tech vinyl and accepts five tees up to 3¼” long.

It’s so sleek that golfers don’t even know it’s in the pocket. As they approach a tee box, they pull out the pouch, select the tee that best matches conditions, return the pouch to the pocket and swing away. They then reverse the procedure as they exit the tee box. It’s a seamless transition and an easily acquired habit.

George notes that custom color imprinting (corporate names, logos, etc.) is also available, so it’s ideal for golf tournament sponsors who are looking for low-cost multiple exposures of their brand.  

A Gift

The SafeTees Pouch also is the perfect gift. Golfers have balls, tees, towels, etc., but they may not have a pocket golf tee protector. The price makes it an affordable holiday or birthday gift for golfing buddies. And shipping is free.

TheGolfBallGuy and the SafeTees Pouch

At TheGolfBallGuy.com, we are constantly on the lookout for products and services that we believe will help golfers improve on and off the course, and the SafeTees Pouch is one such product.

We are happy to welcome George Moore and his awesome SafeTees Pouch as the latest sponsor of TheGolfBallGuy.com.

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The Golf Ball Guy by Thegolfballguy - 3w ago
The Introduction

In the golf equipment industry there has always been someone somewhere with an idea to help players improve their golfing experience and back in the fall of 2015, George Moore, now president of SafeTees Pouch Inc., had one of those ‘ideas.’ The SafeTees Pouch, a pocket protector for golfers.

The Story

George Moore, president of SafeTees Pouch Inc., and inventor of the SafeTees Pouch

Standing on the 14th tee box on a course in West Virginia George reached into his front pants pocket and caught his finger the sharp point of a loose tee. As his finger bleed, he thought to himself, “There must be something…” George combed the Internet for a product made to protect the fingers from golf tees in one’s pocket but found nothing.

Knowing he needed a pouch of some sort that would accommodate several tees of various lengths, a pocket protector for the golfer. George, with a rough sketch in hand, returned to the Internet to search for “pocket protector.” 

That search led him to the Erell Manufacturing Co., Elk Grove Village, IL., first known U.S. manufacturer of pocket protectors. The next day George made contact with Randy Silton, the third generation president of Erell, and told him about the golf tee pocket protector concept.

The two worked together on a number of prototype designs and the first SafeTees Pouches rolled off the production line in October 2016.

The SafeTees Pouch

The SafeTees Pouch

The pouch is made in the USA of top quality soft clear vinyl and fits comfortably in the front pocket. It holds five golf tees up to 3 ¼” long making it easy to find the right tee for your next drive.  

The SafeTees Pouch organizes and holds your tees safely in your pocket, keeping the sharp points from stabbing your digits as you reach in for a golf ball.  The pouch also prevents the tees from punching holes in your leg and in the pockets of those $80 golf pants.

Custom imprinting is available on the SafeTees Pouch, making it idea for tournament swag and company promotions.

 A Gift

The SafeTees Pouch is the perfect gift idea for golfers because, they have balls, tees, and towels but they don’t have a pocket protector for golf tees. The price makes it affordable gift for those who have a group of golfers to buy for and shipping is free.

TheGolfBallGuy and the SafeTees Pouch

At TheGolfBallGuy.com, we are continuously on the lookout for products and services that we believe will help golfers improve on and off the golf course and the SafeTees Pouch is one such product.

We are happy to welcome Mr. George Moore and his awesome SafeTees Pouch as the latest sponsor of TheGolfBallGuy.com.

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USGA Accepts Nearly 1,600 Entries for 73rd U.S. Women’s Open Championship

11 Past U.S. Women’s Open champions set to compete

LIBERTY CORNER, N.J. (April 27, 2018) – The United States Golf Association (USGA) has accepted 1,592 entries for the 73rd U.S. Women’s Open Championship, which will be conducted May 31-June 3, 2018, at Shoal Creek in Alabama. It will be the first U.S. Women’s Open contested in Alabama, and it’s just the third time in its history that the U.S. Women’s Open will be played prior to the U.S. Open.

This marks the fifth consecutive year the U.S. Women’s Open has received more than 1,500 entries. The 2015 championship at Lancaster (Pa.) Country Club holds the entry record with 1,873. Eleven U.S. Women’s Open champions are among the 93 players who are currently fully exempt into the championship.

 

“We are excited to see such a strong group of entrants from around the world for the 73rd U.S. Women’s Open Championship,” said Shannon Rouillard, championship director. “To host Alabama’s first U.S. Women’s Open is a historic moment for the USGA and the state of Alabama, and to have such a strong field represented in the championship is fitting.”

 

The USGA accepted entries for the 73rd U.S. Women’s Open from golfers in 46 states, 11 entrants from Alabama among them, as well as the District of Columbia and a total of 54 countries.

 

To be eligible for the U.S. Women’s Open, a player must have a Handicap Index® not exceeding 2.4, or be a professional. Sectional qualifying will be conducted over 36 holes between May 2-17. Qualifying will be held at 21 sites in the United States, as well as four international sites: one each in England, Japan, the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of Korea.

 

Sung Hyun Park, of Korea, who won the 2017 U.S. Women’s Open at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J., is one of 11 fully exempt U.S. Women’s Open champions. Park is joined by Brittany Lang (2016), In Gee Chun (2015), Michelle Wie (2014), Inbee Park (2013, 2008), Na Yeon Choi (2012), So Yeon Ryu (2011), Paula Creamer (2010), Eun-Hee Ji (2009), Cristie Kerr (2007) and Karrie Webb (2001, 2000).

 

This will be the third USGA championship conducted at Shoal Creek. In 1986, Stewart “Buddy” Alexander won the U.S. Amateur Championship, defeating Chris Kite, 5 and 3, in the final. In 2008, Cameron Peck captured the U.S. Junior Amateur, and his 10-and-8 victory over Evan Beck stands as the largest winning margin in Junior Amateur championship-match history.

 

The championship’s youngest entrant is 11-year-old Avery Zweig, of McKinney, Texas. She will attempt to qualify at the sectional qualifying site in Westminster, Colo., on May 14. Laura Baugh is the championship’s oldest entrant at age 62. She will attempt to qualify at the sectional qualifying site in New Smyrna Beach, Fla., on May 4.

 

Catriona Matthew, a 48-year-old professional from Scotland, was the first to apply when entries opened on March 7. The final entry came from Tori Peers, a 22-year-old amateur, of Grand Island, Neb., who filed 27 minutes before the 5 p.m. EDT deadline on April 25.

 

Players still have several opportunities to gain a full exemption into the U.S. Women’s Open. The winner of any LPGA co-sponsored events prior to the start of the U.S. Women’s Open, including this weekend’s inaugural LPGA Mediheal Championship in Daly City, Calif., will earn exemptions into the championship field. Additionally, any player in the top 50 point leaders and ties from the Rolex Rankings as of May 27 not already exempt will be added to the field.

 

More information about the U.S. Women’s Open, including a variety of ticket options, is available at uswomensopen.com.

 

The following 93 golfers are fully exempt into the 2018 U.S. Women’s Open (as of April 27):

Marina AlexMegan KhangHaru Nomura
Brittany AltomareSei Young KimAnna Nordqvist
Ashleigh BuhaiJihyun KimSu-Hyun Oh
Pei-Yun ChienHyojoo KimRyann O’Toole
Chella ChoiIn-Kyung KimJane Park
Hye-Jin ChoiKatherine KirkInbee Park
Na Yeon ChoiJinyoung KoSung Hyun Park
a-Kelsey ChuggLydia KoPornanong Phatlum
In Gee ChunJessica KordaSo Yeon Ryu
Carlota CigandaNelly KordaMadelene Sagstrom
Cydney ClantonOlafia KristinsdottirLizette Salas
Jacqui ConcolinoCandie KungSupamas Sangchan
Paula CreamerBrittany Langa-Sophia Schubert
Austin ErnstSaranporn LangkulgasettrinAlena Sharp
Jodi Ewart ShadoffNicole Broch Larsena-Erica Shepherd
Shanshan FengMinjee LeeJenny Shin
Sandra Gal GonzalezJeongeun LeeSarah Jane Smith
Laura EscallonJeongeun6 LeeJennifer Song
Georgia HallMi Hyang LeeKlara Spilkova
Nasa HataokaMirim LeeAngela Stanford
Brooke HendersonMinyoung LeeAi Suzuki
Wei-Ling HsuSolar LeeLexi Thompson
Charley HullStacy LewisAyako Uehara
Mi Jung HurBrittany Lincicomea-Albane Valenzuela
Karine IcherPernilla LindbergAnne Van Dam
Eun Hee JiGaby LopezKarrie Webb
Ariya JutanugarnTeresa LuMichelle Wie
Moriya JutanugarnMo MartinJing Yan
Danielle KangCaroline MassonAmy Yang
Kim KaufmanAlly McDonaldAngel Yin
Cristie KerrAzahara MunozSun Young Yoo

Bold – U.S. Women’s Open champion   

a – amateur

 

About the USGA

The USGA celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf. Founded in 1894, we conduct many of golf’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open. With The R&A, we govern the sport via a global set of playing, equipment and amateur status rules. Our operating jurisdiction for these governance functions is the United States, its territories and Mexico. The USGA Handicap System is utilized in more than 40 countries and our Course Rating System covers 95 percent of the world’s golf courses, enabling all golfers to play on an equitable basis. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, New Jersey, is home to the Association’s Research and Test Center, where science and innovation are fueling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum, where we honor the game by curating the world’s most comprehensive archive of golf artifacts. To learn more, visit usga.org.

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Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson commit to THE PLAYERS Championship 2018
Two past champions of THE PLAYERS have 79 and 43 PGA TOUR victories, respectively;
this week marks the final chance for players to qualify via the top-50 in the Official World Golf Ranking
PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. – THE PLAYERS Championship announced today that Tiger Woods, the 2001 and 2013 champion of THE PLAYERS, and Phil Mickelson, the 2007 champion, have committed to play in the 2018 tournament, contested at THE PLAYERS Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass, May 8-13, 2018. Woods and Mickelson have a combined 122 PGA TOUR wins and are No. 50 and No. 4 in the FedExCup standings, respectively.
Woods, who is in search of his first PGA TOUR victory since the 2013 World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational, is the only player in golf history to win THE PLAYERS, the TOUR Championship, the FedExCup and all four major championships. Woods was unable to defend his 2013 title at THE PLAYERS due to a back surgery, but returned in 2015 and finished T69, his most recent start at TPC Sawgrass. This year, he earned a spot in the best field in golf due to the five-year exemption that exists for past champions of the event.
Mickelson recently earned his 43rd PGA TOUR win at the WGC-Mexico Championship in a playoff against reigning FedExCup champion Justin Thomas, 23 years his junior.  As Mickelson looks to become the seventh player to win THE PLAYERS more than once, he is also in search of his first multiple-win season on TOUR since 2013.
Players not otherwise exempt who are inside the top-50 of the Official World Golf Ranking as of Monday, April 30, will qualify for THE PLAYERS. The final opportunity to qualify for THE PLAYERS would involve either winning the Wells Fargo Championship or moving into the top-10 in the FedExCup standings.
Tiger Woods
After undergoing back surgery in April 2017, the only two-time FedExCup champ (2007, 2009) made his first official TOUR start of the 2017-18 season at the 2018 Farmers Insurance Open and made his first cut on TOUR in two years en route to a T23 finish. Since then, Woods has made five other starts on TOUR, missing only one cut (Genesis Open) and then posting the following finishes in his next four starts: 12/The Honda Classic; T2/Valspar Championship; T5/Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard; T32/Masters Tournament.
Woods is one of six two-time winners of THE PLAYERS (Jack Nicklaus has won the championship three times), where he owns 16 made cuts in 17 starts, including one runner-up (2000) and three additional top 10s. He also ranks second behind only Sergio Garcia in career money earned at THE PLAYERS ($4,421,241.90), and his 13 consecutive made cuts at THE PLAYERS is the second-most in tournament history, behind only Sergio Garcia and Brad Faxon, who each own 14 straight made cuts.  Should Woods win THE PLAYERS this year, he would join Jack Nicklaus as the only three-time winners of the event (1974, 1976, 1978), and he would also notch his 80th TOUR victory, bringing him within two of Sam Snead for most wins on the PGA TOUR.
Here’s a closer look back at Woods’ two wins at THE PLAYERS:
2001
A 25-year-old Tiger Woods entered THE PLAYERS fresh off a victory at the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard, where he posted four under-par rounds to edge Phil Mickelson by a stroke. Woods shot a first-round 72 to sit T37, then fired rounds of 69-66-67 for a 14-under 274 total, beating Vijay Singh by one stroke.
Woods started off birdie-eagle in the final round (which finished on Monday) to take the lead from Jerry Kelly which he never relinquished, but his 2001 victory is perhaps most remembered for his birdie putt on the 17th hole on Saturday. Woods hit a 60-foot putt that rode two tiers and broke three times before falling, with NBC’s Gary Koch repeating the now famous phrase “Better than most,” as the ball tracked toward the hole. It’s one of the most iconic shots ever witnessed at THE PLAYERS and a moment that will forever be remembered in golf history.
With Woods victorious at THE PLAYERS, he became one of only three champions who have won the week immediately preceding their victory at THE PLAYERS. Woods went on to win the Masters Tournament in his next start on TOUR, making him the first player to hold all four professional major titles at once. Woods would also go on to win his third of five straight Player of the Year titles and a third consecutive money title at the conclusion of the 2001 season.
“It is special, to be able to win a championship like this, on an extremely demanding golf course, with probably the best field assembled in all of golf — all of golf for the entire year,” Woods said after his 2001 win. “It is extremely rewarding to do that. Not only that, to be able to play down the stretch against Jerry and Vijay, two guys that played extremely hard this week. And obviously, I’m just very fortunate enough to come out on top.”
Click here for Woods’ 2001 past champion page on THEPLAYERS.com.
2013
Five years ago, Tiger Woods held a share of the lead heading into the final round of THE PLAYERS, thanks to opening rounds of 67-67-71. This marked the first time Woods had held a lead/co-lead after rounds one, two or three at the tournament. Heading into THE PLAYERS, Woods was playing incredible golf—his previous three finishes were: Won/WGC-Mexico Championship; Won/Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard; T4/Masters Tournament.
Woods was tied with fellow past champion of THE PLAYERS, Sergio Garcia, with just two holes remaining in Sunday’s final round. Playing in the penultimate group, Woods made par on the 17th hole, while Garcia, playing in the final group, watched on. Garcia proceeded to hit two shots into the water on the 17th en route to a quadruple bogey, while Woods striped a drive on the 18thhole to set up another par and his second title at THE PLAYERS.
With his win, Woods joined Jack Nicklaus, Steve Elkington, Hal Sutton, Fred Couples and Davis Love III as multiple winners of the event. His victory at TPC Sawgrass became his fourth of the 2013 season, the earliest he had achieved the feat in a season. Woods would go on to record his fifth win of the season at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, which marked his 79th career victory, and would finish the season No. 2 in the FedExCup standings.
Click here for Woods’ 2013 past champion page on THEPLAYERS.com.
Phil Mickelson
THE PLAYERS 2007 champion will be making his 25th start at TPC Sawgrass this year, where he has recorded 16 made cuts, eight top-25 finishes and three top-10 finishes and ranks fifth in all-time career earnings at THE PLAYERS ($2,900,485.65). His T41 finish in 2017 snapped a string of four consecutive missed cuts in the tournament; however, Mickelson made 11 consecutive cuts at THE PLAYERS from 2001-2012, which is tied for sixth-most consecutive cuts made in event history.
His victory at the 2018 WGC-Mexico Championship snapped a 96-event winless drought (since the 2013 Open Championship) on the PGA TOUR and moved the lefty from No. 17 to No. 3 in the FedExCup standings (he is now No. 4). Mickelson’s best season-ending ranking in the FedExCup standings was No. 2 in 2009; he finished No. 34 last season.
In 11 starts this season, Mickelson has made 10 cuts and has notched five top-10 finishes: T3/Safeway Open; T5/Waste Management Phoenix Open; T2/AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am; T6/Genesis Open; Won/WGC-Mexico Championship.
Mickelson won THE PLAYERS in its inaugural showing in May, overcoming a one-stroke deficit to 54-hole leader Sean O’Hair and posting rounds of 67-72-69-69—277 to finish two strokes ahead of Sergio Garcia, who would go on to win THE PLAYERS the following year. It took the then-36-year-old Mickelson 14 starts at THE PLAYERS before his first victory – the most before a win of anyone except Tom Kite and Fred Funk, who both needed 15 starts at THE PLAYERS before their first win. He also owns the three-best finishes ever by a left-handed player at THE PLAYERS – 1 in 2007, T3 in 2004, T8 in 1998.
“I think as I look back on my career after I stop playing, I think I’ll look back on this tournament victory in the same light as the majors,” Mickelson said after his 2007 win.
Click here to view Mickelson’s 2007 past champion page on THEPLAYERS.com.
Volunteering at THE PLAYERS is a unique avenue for not only golf fans, but also for those looking to support an event that gives millions of dollars back to the community and to become a part of the team that works tirelessly to make the tournament a showcase of excellence. For those interested in applying to be a volunteer at THE PLAYERS this year, please visit THEPLAYERSvolunteers.com.
THE PLAYERS returns to TPC Sawgrass May 8-13, 2018.  More information about THE PLAYERS is available at THEPLAYERS.com. Ticket information can also be found at THEPLAYERS.com/tickets.
About THE PLAYERS Championship
THE PLAYERS Championship annually combines the best field in golf with the world-class venue that is THE PLAYERS Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass. Grant Thornton LLP, Optum and Morgan Stanley are the exclusive Proud Partners of THE PLAYERS. Proceeds from THE PLAYERS benefit Northeast Florida charities and have totaled more than $92 million since the event moved to Ponte Vedra Beach in 1977, including a record $8.7 million generated in 2017. In April 2011, THE PLAYERS announced a new charitable focus, committing to generate $50 million for youth-related charities over 10 years. For more on THE PLAYERS and the surrounding area, visit THEPLAYERS.com or floridashistoriccoast.com.
About Grant Thornton LLP
Founded in Chicago in 1924, Grant Thornton LLP (Grant Thornton) is the U.S. member firm of Grant Thornton International Ltd, one of the world’s leading organizations of independent audit, tax and advisory firms. Grant Thornton, which has revenues in excess of $1.7 billion and operates 59 offices, works with a broad range of dynamic publicly and privately held companies, government agencies, financial institutions, and civic and religious organizations.
“Grant Thornton” refers to Grant Thornton LLP, the U.S. member firm of Grant Thornton International Ltd (GTIL). GTIL and the member firms are not a worldwide partnership. Services are delivered by the member firms. GTIL and its member firms are not agents of, and do not obligate, one another and are not liable for one another’s acts or omissions. Please see grantthornton.com for further details.
About Optum
Optum is a leading information and technology-enabled health services business dedicated to helping make the health system work better for everyone. With more than 135,000 people worldwide, Optum delivers intelligent, integrated solutions that help to modernize the health system and improve overall population health. Optum is part of UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:UNH).
About Morgan Stanley
Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) is a leading global financial services firm providing investment
banking, securities, wealth management and investment management services. With offices in more than 42 countries, the Firm’s employees serve clients worldwide including corporations, governments, institutions and individuals. For more information about Morgan Stanley, please visit www.morganstanley.com.
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USGA Accepts More Than 9,000 U.S. Open Entries
for Seventh Consecutive Year

Multiple winners Tiger Woods and Ernie Els are among 12 past champions exempt
for the 118th championship at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club

LIBERTY CORNER, N.J. (April 26, 2018) – The United States Golf Association (USGA) has accepted a total of 9,049 entries for the 2018 U.S. Open Championship at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club in Southampton, N.Y. The U.S. Open will be held on Long Island for the 10th time on June 14-17.

The number of entries is the eighth-highest behind the record of 10,127 accepted for the 2014 U.S. Open at Pinehurst Resort & Country Club’s Course No. 2. Among this year’s total are 54 players, including 12 past champions, who are fully exempt into the field (see list below).

The USGA accepted entries for the 118th U.S. Open from golfers in all 50 states, including 408 from New York, as well as the District of Columbia and 80 foreign countries.

“The continued worldwide interest in competing in the U.S. Open Championship, golf’s ultimate test, remains significant,” said Stuart Francis, USGA Championship Committee chairman. “We look forward to conducting local and sectional qualifying and to hosting the U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club, one of the five founding members of the USGA, for the fifth time.”

Brooks Koepka, the 2017 champion, and 11 other champions are fully exempt from having to qualify for the championship. They are: Ernie Els (1994, 1997), Jim Furyk (2003), Lucas Glover (2009), Dustin Johnson (2016), Martin Kaymer (2014), Graeme McDowell (2010), Rory McIlroy (2011), Justin Rose (2013), Webb Simpson (2012), Jordan Spieth (2015) and Tiger Woods (2000, 2002, 2008).

To be eligible, a player must have a Handicap Index® not exceeding 1.4, or be a professional. Local qualifying, which will be played over 18 holes at 111 sites in the United States and one in Canada, will take place between April 30-May 17.

Sectional qualifying, played over 36 holes, will be conducted on Monday, May 21, in Japan; and on Monday, June 4, in England and at 10 sites in the United States, ranging from New Jersey to California. This will be the 14th year with two international qualifiers, which were established in 2005.

Shinnecock Hills Golf Club is the lone club to have hosted the U.S. Open in three different centuries. In 1896, James Foulis won the second U.S. Open with a three-stroke victory over Horace Rawlins. Raymond Floyd (1986) and Corey Pavin (1995) were U.S. Open champions in the 20th century. Retief Goosen held off Phil Mickelson to win his second U.S. Open in 2004.

For the eighth consecutive year, only online entries were accepted. The USGA received 515 entries on the last day applications were accepted (April 25), including 115 applications in the final hour. Drew Caudill, a 32-year-old professional from Mount Vernon, Ohio, submitted his entry just 23 seconds before the deadline of 5 p.m. EDT. Kyle Nakazaki, a 38-year-old professional from Manhattan Beach, Calif., was the first entrant when entries opened on March 7.

The number of fully exempt players will increase with the inclusion of the top 60 point leaders and ties from the Official World Golf Ranking®, as of May 21 and June 11. The winners of The Players Championship (May 10-13) and European Tour BMW PGA Championship (May 24-27) will also earn exemptions.

In 2018, the USGA accepted more than 9,000 entries for the U.S. Open for the 10th time overall and the seventh consecutive year. The 9,882 entries accepted for the 2015 championship at Chambers Bay in University Place, Wash., is the second-most behind the 2014 championship at Pinehurst No. 2. The USGA accepted 9,877 entries for the 2016 U.S. Open at Oakmont (Pa.) Country Club, and 9,860 for the 2013 U.S. Open at Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pa. The 9,000-mark was reached for the first time in 2005, when 9,048 entries were accepted for the championship at Pinehurst No. 2.

More information about the 2018 U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills, including local and sectional qualifying, is available at www.usopen.com.

The list of the 54 golfers who are fully exempt into the 2018 U.S. Open (as of April 25):

Daniel BergerMatt Kuchar
Patrick CantlayMarc Leishman
Paul CaseyHideki Matsuyama
Kevin ChappellGraeme McDowell
Jason DayRory McIlroy
Jason DufnerPhil Mickelson
a-Harry EllisTrey Mullinax
Ernie Elsa-Matt Parziale
Tony FinauPat Perez
Tommy FleetwoodKenny Perry
Rickie FowlerJon Rahm
Jim Furyka-Doc Redman
Sergio GarciaPatrick Reed
a-Doug GhimJustin Rose
Lucas GloverXander Schauffele
a-Noah GoodwinWebb Simpson
Bill HaasBrandt Snedeker
Adam HadwinJordan Spieth
Brian HarmanKyle Stanley
Russell HenleyHenrik Stenson
Charley HoffmanJustin Thomas
Dustin JohnsonJhonattan Vegas
Zach JohnsonJimmy Walker
Martin KaymerBubba Watson
Si Woo KimDanny Willett
Kevin KisnerGary Woodland
Brooks KoepkaTiger Woods

Bold – U.S. Open champion      a-amateur

About the USGA

The USGA celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf. Founded in 1894, we conduct many of golf’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open. With The R&A, we govern the sport via a global set of playing, equipment and amateur status rules. Our operating jurisdiction for these governance functions is the United States, its territories and Mexico. The USGA Handicap System is utilized in more than 40 countries and our Course Rating System covers 95 percent of the world’s golf courses, enabling all golfers to play on an equitable basis. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, New Jersey, is home to the Association’s Research and Test Center, where science and innovation are fueling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum, where we honor the game by curating the world’s most comprehensive archive of golf artifacts. To learn more, visit usga.org.

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USGA and PGA of America Team Up to
Preserve Golf History

Hundreds of Rare Materials Find a Home at the USGA Museum

LIBERTY CORNER, N.J. (April 25, 2018) – An important collection of historic golf material, including rare books, periodicals, travelogues, diaries, political and legal documents dating to the 1500s, has found a new home at the USGA Golf Museum, thanks to a continuing working relationship with the PGA of America. 

The Colonel R. Otto Probst Library, managed by the PGA of America for more than 40 years, has merged with the USGA’s extensive library collection, in a collaborative effort that enhances the world’s largest and most comprehensive golf library open to the public.

The Probst Library was developed by South Bend, Indiana-based golf collector Colonel R. Otto Probst, whose passion for the game was kindled in the early 1920s with the acquisition of his first golf artifact. Topics explored through the wide-ranging collection include golf instruction, golf club histories, architecture, equipment, fiction, women in golf, travel, humor, literature and poetry. Several pieces explore Scottish history and its relationship to golf.

“The Probst Collection adds depth and richness to the USGA’s library, providing incredible insight into the game’s cultural and historic evolution,” said Rand Jerris, USGA senior managing director of Public Services. “We are grateful to Colonel Probst and the PGA for cultivating this treasure trove of information, which we can immediately share with fans who love and play the game worldwide.”

Probst (1896-1986) began his collection in 1923 and went on to acquire numerous items from renowned collectors through his life, including Cecil Hopkinson and C.B. Clapcott. In 1938, Justice Earle F. Tilley, a USGA Museum Committee member, endowed his golf library to Probst .

A 31-year veteran of the U.S. Army, Probst’s passion for golf was documented in a 1943 article in Golfdom magazine. “At Camp Croft there are several well-known golfers, ranked by Lt. Col. R. Otto Probst, known in golf as owner of the golf library that before the war was generally rated the largest in the U.S.,” the story recounted.

“The PGA of America views this partnership with the USGA as a groundbreaking moment in the preservation of more than the printed word of golf,” said PGA Historian Bob Denney. “It also extends Otto Probst’s dream – that future generations of golf aficionados and researchers worldwide may discover the rich history of the game. The USGA Golf Museum is now the undisputed epicenter of golf literature.”
 

The more than 800 rare books and 1,400 periodicals from the Probst Collection are among the most important materials added to the USGA Library’s significant collection. Among the prized rare elements of the collection is “The Goff,” written in three editions by Scottish law clerk Thomas Mathison between 1743 and 1793, which is recognized by historians as the first publication dedicated solely to golf.

Other significant materials include:

  • Publications from Scotland, India, France, Japan, Germany, Italy, Austria, Netherlands, Australia and South Africa
  • Unique mentions of the game of golf spanning 20th-century literature, including books by Agatha Christie and Ian Fleming
  • Golf club histories, including Royal Blackheath Golf Club, the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, and the Royal Burgess Golfing Society of Edinburgh
  • Biographies of famous individuals who played golf in its infancy, including Mary Stuart and Captain John Porteous
  • Golf instruction books by Harry Vardon, J.H. Taylor, James Braid, Chick Evans, Horace Hutchison, Robert Forgan, Jerome Travers, Willie Park, Bernard Darwin and Bob Jones, among others
  • An exceptional copy of H.B. Farnie’s “The Golfer’s Manual” with six watercolors by Thomas Hodge
  • James Arbuckle’s rare poem “Glotta,” one of the earliest important contributions to literature on golf
  • A rare copy of Webster Glynes’ “The Maiden: A Golfing Epic”
  • Second and third editions of George Fullerton Carnegie’s “Golfiana”

Photo shows R. Otto Probst. (Copyright Unknown/Courtesy USGA Archives)
Handwriting on back of photo reads: “Donated by H.B. Martin. October 1935. R. Otto Probst South Bend”

Today, the USGA Library is the world’s foremost repository for the game’s history. Books and periodicals in more than 20 languages cover all aspects of the game. Other areas of collecting include sheet music, dissertations, scrapbooks and over 30,000 scorecards from golf clubs worldwide. The Library also contains the personal papers of some of the game’s greatest personalities (including Bob Jones and Walter Travis) and is home to the USGA/PGA African-American Archive of Golf History. The complete library catalog, containing more than 70,000 volumes, can be accessed online at usga.org or in person.

The USGA Golf Museum is open to the public 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Eastern time, Monday through Friday. Researchers can request an appointment to view the library by calling 908-234-2300 or by emailing library@usga.org.

About the USGA

The USGA celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf. Founded in 1894, we conduct many of golf’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open. With The R&A, we govern the sport via a global set of playing, equipment and amateur status rules. Our operating jurisdiction for these governance functions is the United States, its territories and Mexico. The USGA Handicap System is utilized in more than 40 countries and our Course Rating System covers 95 percent of the world’s golf courses, enabling all golfers to play on an equitable basis. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, New Jersey, is home to the Association’s Research and Test Center, where science and innovation are fueling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum, where we honor the game by curating the world’s most comprehensive archive of golf artifacts. To learn more, visit usga.org.

About the PGA of America

The PGA of America represents the very best in golf. For more information about the PGA of America, visit PGA.org, follow @PGA on Twitter and find us on Facebook.

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