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Jan 19, 2017 | 08:44 am

European Tour To Experiment With Music on the Driving Range

New European Tour head Keith Pelley has never shied away from unconventional initiatives to help bring more buzz to his Tour. In his short time as the man in charge of the European Tour, he has allowed players to wear shorts in practice rounds and on pro-am days, conducted an under-the-lights shootout - complete with pyrotechnics - at last year’s British Masters, and later this year, is debuting a match play event featuring 6 hole matches.

You can now add music on the driving range to that list.

Beginning this week, the Tour will be experimenting with music being played on the driving range and along the walk to the first tee.

"We're in the entertainment business," European Tour chief executive Keith Pelley told The Associated Press outside the clubhouse at Abu Dhabi Golf Club on Wednesday. "As long as you are always conscious of the integrity and protection of the game's magic. But you are always looking to improve your product, in any business that you run."

Pelley plans on having music on the range at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth in May, as well as at other events in the European Tour's newly minted Rolex Series.

While it is early, it seems to be popular with many of the top golfers at this week’s event. Dustin Johnson, Henrik Stenson, and Thongchai Jaidee were just a few of the golfers that expressed their enjoyment with the music on the range.

The question now is, if it ends up being a success over in Europe, will music on the driving range become a regular thing at PGA Tour stops? Only time will tell.

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Jan 18, 2017 | 09:05 am

No More Golf Balls from Costco?

Reports from mygolfspy.com have said that Costco is ending production of its Kirkland Signature Golf Ball that took the market by storm over the last few months. For those that have followed the story, you’ll know that the $15/dozen balls made a large media buzz before selling out on the Costco website. Independent ball testers found that the inexpensive held its own – and even exceeded – against more expensive rivals.

The new report states that Costco had purchased and rebranded overruns from a company called Nassau Golf. Nassau sells its own balls in Europe, and is named on the USGA conforming list as the manufacturer of the Kirkland Signature. With Costco selling out of the overrun supply, My Golf Spy is reporting that Nassau has no intention to sell more of its balls to Costco, which is passing them on to consumers near wholesale cost, therefore undercutting Nassau’s own sales in Europe. Unless Costco was to find a different manufacturer to make its golf balls, we may never see them back on the shelves.

Were you able to try out the Kirkland Signature Ball while they were in stock? Let us know in the comments below!

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Jan 17, 2017 | 08:54 am

Rory To Miss Time With Rib Injury

Yesterday, Rory Mcllroy announced that he would have to withdraw from the Abu Dhabi Championship and would miss time with a stress fracture in one of his ribs.

While many of you may be saying, “Ok, so he’s missing an event in Abu Dhabi that’s just another pay day” the injury could leave Rory’s appearance in the season’s first major in doubt.

The Masters will be held this year April 6-9. That’s a little less than three months away. According to sportsmd.com, the recovery time can range anywhere from 8 weeks to 6 months, depending on the severity of the injury. In addition, there is usually a 4-6 week time period where no weightlifting or heavy lifting in the upper body can take place.

Naturally, Rory was none too pleased to have to announce his withdrawal and subsequent time off.

"To be forced to miss this week through injury is really quite annoying to be perfectly honest, but I am sure the tournament will be a huge success and I hope everyone involved has a great week,” Rory said in a statement. “In situations like this you simply have to listen to the experts, and the team I have consulted have all advised me to rest until my rib has fully recovered.”

Whether Rory will be able to compete at Augusta is one thing, another is what type of shape and condition will his game be in. No matter what, not ideal for the Northern Irishman who is looking to complete the career grand slam with a Green Jacket.

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Jan 16, 2017 | 09:46 am

#59Watch Was On Full Display Last Week

Shooting a sub 60 round in professional golf is like throwing a perfect game in baseball, it’s rare, and doing so will put you on a short list with elite company. This past weekend though, we were on #59watch every day, with two adding their names to the list and two more coming agonizingly close.

First, the two who actually shot the number. Justin Thomas started the week off with a 59 on Thursday in the opening round of the Sony Open in Hawaii at Waialae Country Club. After holing out for eagle on his first hole of the day, Thomas added eight birdies, a bogey, and another eagle to shoot 59 on the number. In shooting that number, Thomas became the youngest player to shoot a 59 in professional golf history.

"It was the first time I’ve had a putt for 59," Thomas said, "and I was like, well, who knows if this is gonna happen again, so I might as well try to knock it in." 

On Friday, Woody Austin shot a 59 in the opening round of the Diamond Resorts Invitational in Orlando. Because the tournament was a Stableford scoring event, Austin didn’t even know until after he walked off the 18th green that he had even shot a 59. Austin recorded 10 birdies and an eagle and even had a shot for 58 but missed the green at 18 and got up and down for the par and 59.

"I didn't know it was a par-71 so when I walked off the last green I thought I shot 60," Austin said. "Everybody goes, 'No, it's a par-71.' So, ah, cool."

The weekend brought two more 59 scares, with both golfers falling short of the mark on the final holes. On Saturday, back in Hawaii, Kevin Kisner, who needed an eagle on his final hole just to make the cut, burned the edge on his eagle putt on 9 (he started on 10) and settled for a 60. On Sunday, Chez Reavie played his first 9 holes in 7-under and the 59 watch was well in play. He played his final 9 in just 2-under, finishing the day with a 61. 

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