Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Cowboys and Redskins

Alright so you were expecting golf news? Well Tuesday night turned into a shootout but not between the Skins and Boys it called a shootout in golf when playing less than 18 holes and using a special format in this case "Shamble". It's not important what a shamble is just how the teams were comprised. There were 5 teams made up of a Pro (that's me), a celebrity, a local news media and a military person. Dave Feldman from Fox 5 sports, Keenan McCardle (wide receiver formerly of the Redskins and Capt. Scott an Airforce pilot who had 2 tours in Iraq and an 8 handicap which would make most tour pros pause and take notice. Our team played four holes finishing on #18 for the sake of the 30 or so patrons who were enjoying themselves in the VIP tent located right next to the green. There weren't too many highlites to recount except for the 3 minutes on tv last night when they(Dave Feldman) showed a few shots from our group and introduced me as his Pro and the D.O.G at Woodmore which was good!
Wednesday proved to be a 3 hour practice day while a huge pro-am was being contested so other then beating some balls and making small talk with some of the pros I met last year, this day was in the books. Can't wait to get this party started! Don't forget the Golf Channel.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Calm before the storm

Practice, practice and more practice at least that is what was on Tuesday's schedule. I played 18 holes with Brendan Post today during what will likely be the coolest part of the day. It was far and away the most relaxed I've been during a practice round for a PGA event which was probably why the golf ball was traveling in the right direction. The putter, for some reason is a little shaky so Wednesday will be spent on the practice green getting used to tournament speeds. The other 358 days of the year are spent on slower speeds. Not to worry though I'm a quick study. In other news the tee times are out and I'm starting for the second year in a row on #10 at 9:00 am. On Friday it will be on #1 at 2:10 pm. Most likely I won't get any air time since the telecast only begins at 1:00 pm although if the round is taking longer than usual like last year they could get us on our last hole which will be #9. The t.v. towers are on the back nine holes #10-18 and of course #9 which is where the stationary broadcast booth will be located. It should be a beautiful sight as the broadcasters are overlooking the lake on #9. Remember if anyone needs tix for the event please email me. Tonight by the way, I'm involved in a celebrity shootout where I will be paired with a news media member, a celebrity of some kind and an armed forces person. Not sure what the format will be but most likely a photo shoot opportunity...I will fill you in tomorrow with the details and results, DL

Monday, June 1, 2009

Pro-Am Day

Starting a bit early today but not as early as my fellow staff members who most likely have been at Woodmore since 5:00 am. There is a Pro-Am today beginning at 10:00 am with approximately 80 golfers(mostly sponsor related people) and one Pro for each of the twenty teams. For the pros it's also used as a practice round as most of these guys are seeing this course for the first time. After the tournament we have a junior clinic from4-6:00 pm. where a few of the "name" players and some of our local pros will do a little instruction for about 60-80 kids. For most of these juniors this will mark the first time they have ever seen a golf club so this will require a bit more patience and safety measures.
I found the Golf Channel's live telecast schedule beginning on Thursday and Friday at 1:00 pm so set your dvr's! The golf course has never looked better which was echoed by a couple of the PGA tour officials I played with on Sunday night, Tommy Sheridan and Tom Hearn who birdied two of the first four holes and picked up a bunch of "skins" a.k.a. cash...These guys are on the road about 30 some weeks every year and see all kinds of courses but still think we have one of the best out there, that's a huge compliment for us and also our golf course superintendent Brandon Collins. If you have an opportunity to watch any of this you won't be disappointed and hopefully you'll have a chance to me making a few birdies! Stay tuned, DL

Friday, May 29, 2009

Melwood Prince George's Count Open 09

Hey everybody! Welcome to the Nationwide edition of this blog. As you may or may not know, I qualified this year by shooting a 71 at Woodmore on May 8th to grasp one of two spots available to PGA Professionals in our Mid-Atlantic Section. It was helpful to have a plan "B" with a sponsor's exemption to fall back on but that really was even more motivation to make it on my own. It's been a rough couple of weeks as I lost my step-father to Leukemia on May 6th at the age of 83. Roger will be missed dearly and will be memorialized this Saturday the 30th in his home town of Hershey, Pa. In honor of Roger Ingold I was able to get Callaway to put his initials on a new staff bag I will put into play for the week ensuring his presence every step of the way.

Ok, so the table is set for next week. There is some unfinished business to attend to as last year's debacle shooting 89! yes 89! the first day lead to a great turn around of 72 on the second day and obviously missed the weekend cut by a bundle. I'm setting the bar a little higher this year and not looking to just make the cut, oh no, I really want to make some noise and get the crowds roaring like Augusta, well sort of like Augusta. I doubt we will have the kind of patrons they bring to the Masters in April but with the Golf Channel's presence this year maybe they will draw a few more people. Monday I'm playing in one of the Pro-Ams being held that week so that will serve as a practice round, not that I need to see the course any more but definitely need the reps. Tuesday will be another practice round this time with a fellow PGA member and the other gentleman who shot 71, Brendon Post. Wednesday will most likely be a day of rest or maybe just short game stuff. I hope everyone has a chance to come out and watch the action and see this great golf course as I'm looking for a fast start and big finish! "I'm all in." DL

Friday, August 8, 2008

"Major" Disappointment

The round was a big disappointment not the adventure though...Wish I could describe this course to you but I couldn't do it justice on the toughness (bite) it has. For the golfers out there reading along you know how a bounce one way or another can make or break you. On this course both landing areas and the greens have humps and bumps to navigate. Not only are you trying to get the correct yardage to the pin or aim at a certain distant marker off the tee but you also need to take into account how the fairway slopes or how the green will receive your shot. Very humbling this game we play and it is just a game for us. I saw a lot of very good players struggle with the conditions today as you probably noticed on the Internet or even the tv.
I"ll try to sum this all up by saying this; golf as we know and play it is simply advancing the ball to the target or flag stick. Professional golf is played slightly different. In professional majors it's played even more differently in that the target is RARELY the flag. You are constantly aiming away from it almost literally on every shot. When you've played the game long enough you are brainwashed to take dead aim at the flag hoping to hole every shot! Ok I promised myself not to complain or make excuses only trying to vent a little.
I would like to say this about J.J. Henry, a Ryder Cup participant in '06 by the way, he's 10 days away from having a second child. Playing in a major is stressful enough but being on the bubble to make the cut while watching a playing partner struggle like me I think would put me on TILT. No, he takes time out to give me a little pep talk after the first nine today. I was coming off a horrendous 3-putt on #1 our 10th hole of the day. As we walked to our tee shots on #2 he saw my disappointment and let me know how different tournament golf will be for me in the future. To paraphrase a bit he described the difficulty of playing in his first major leading to his regular tour events success. Make sense? Kind of like learning to drive in a car without 3rd gear (hey it was my big sister's Mustang). every car after that was a piece of pie. Can't wait for my next tournament.
Hi lights would be the up and down on the 7th today in front of a good size crowd (sandie)for par. An up and down from 105 yards (playing almost 115) in front of another gallery for par. An up and down from very deep rough on the 2nd hole for par (putt was from 12 feet). An up and down on 16 from behind the green for par. Are you getting the gist of my round today? Nerves are shot, gonna rest up from an early tee time.
BTW- Len Shapiro's article in today's post was outstanding although I probably needed to keep my observation of V. Taylor to myself. Go Boys!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Round # 1 or What happened was...

Already in the books and sad to say it probably could only have been three shots better if I had made a two footer on 16 and a three foot slider on 18 after an 1:25 minute weather delay. The third shot I chalked up to a 3 putt bogey to start the day. As you noticed when following the live scoring it was an up and down day. For some unknown reason I've lost confidence in my driver and only my driver. What once was the reason I got to this holy place, I now have to tell my self to just let loose and when I do it goes forever. What looked to be a very good shot suddenly found it's way into trouble. Evidence of this can be found early on the second hole when my 240 yard hybrid out of the primary rough miraculously soared just below the Metlife blimp hovering above, landed just in front of the green and ran 38 (the depth of the green) yards over and down into a shaved "catch all" behind the green. The third hole played 203 into a slight wind. After watching N. Thompson (71) balloon his tee shot into the front bunker we decided to hit a 4 iron. I hit what looked like a Sportcenter highlite only to watch helplessly as it ran through the green and lodged itself up against the primary rough. Now it's resting on the "courtesy cut" up against the primary (4.5") exactly 3 feet off the green about 20 feet from the hole. The higher rough behind my ball mad the lob wedge jump into the middle of the ball other wise known as a skull and it raced by the hole onto the courtesy cut on the opposite side. Two putts later and a bogey on the card.
Highlites: I know this will be hard to believe but my short game was outstanding in so many ways. I believe I got up and down for par or bogey at least three times and because I missed a two footer on 17 it would have been four times. I had a putt on 13 which is a par three from about 40-45 feet. The difficulty for this putt wasn't the length but the direction it needed to be played (cue the circus music). The first half was a L-R curler slightly downhill and to the crest of a hill where it made a right turn down more slope. I finally got a reaction from the crowd as it came to a stop a mere three inches from the hole. And then proceeded to out drive Thompson on the next hole 345 yards to 340. That was not a typo...
Lo-lights included missed putts and bad driving that even a policeman should have pulled me over for. But the biggest letdown was the missed 2-footer on 17 that was left after an all-world chip shot aimed 20 feet left of the hole because it had nestled into deep greenside rough. Oh and not making any birdies.
One last note worth mentioning during the weather delay. I'm sitting in the player's lounge minding my own business when Vijay asks Tommy Armour III why the PGA changed the course from one day to the next. Basically the whole week the greens were running about 10 or so on the stimp meter which means they were average speed for these greens. Well, the weather dried out the greens and they cut them without watering and today they were easily 12 or so. Oh yea and made of concrete! This from Vijay S. Guess these guys complain just like the rest of us.
A quick shout out to P. Moylan for making the trip to MI. Thanks for the support! Day 2 will be one to remember- DL

Pregame warmup-Thursday

Betcha didn't expect this early edition? Yeah not ready to do anything just yet so I thought I would give a few shout outs before this whole thing is over...but it really won't be over not as long as I have anything to do with it, hmmmm. So without further delay, the man responsible for me looking my best Mr. George Clayton (a.k.a Onetime) as his business states. I have received too many compliments to count on the slacks Monday-Wednesday and today's will be the navy blue pair with a white pin stripe and topped off with a Callaway Golf white shirt. Of course the shoes are FJ tour classics that have a navy blue and red saddle with a white base. Hope the cameras find me! Got to thank the Donnelly family for getting me a practice round last month. For those who don't know, Tim and Dennis are members at Woodmore and their cousin Terry is a member at Oakland Hills who gave great insight on the course that day.
I have to mention Chris and Cathy Doerrer who made the trek from Kohler, Wisconsin to be here and take Sheri off my hands Wednesday as they played the TPC Michigan course (27 holes). I want to mention I have 10 family members that arrived last night eager to see what the heck Uncle Dave is up to here in Bloomfield Hills. Not sure mom has a grasp on the situation here but that will soon change when she sees the "patrons" as they say in Augusta.
Alrighty then it's time to suit up cya on the links! Fairways and greens!