Sep 29, 2015 | 09:05 am

Premature Celebration

The art of pre-event hype reached a new high—or was it low—with the "Ryder Cup Year to Go" celebration staged yesterday in Minneapolis. Opposing captains Davis Love III and Darren Clarke were trotted out to receive jerseys (all but inexplicably) from the five Minnesota sports teams as Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton and PGA of America President Derek Sprague exchanged platitudes while proclaiming this Ryder Cup Week, despite its being 365 days too early. The 41st biennial matches will take place at Hazeltine GC in Chaska, MN, September 26-October 2016.

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Sep 28, 2015 | 09:05 am

Trump On The Rocks

Donald Trump has something about walls. No, not just here but in Ireland, where he wants to build one at the Doonbeg Golf Resort that he bought last year. According to the Belfast Telegraph, the club, in County Clare on Ireland’s west coast, has asked permission to build a 1.8-mile wall of boulders—200,000 tons of them—that will stop the beach erosion along the 6th, 9th (shown above), and 10th holes. Politician that he is, Trump said he wants to invest $50 million in the resort, including more rooms, amenities, and a banquet hall, but won’t unless he’s allowed to build that wall. The resort noted that the boulders won’t be any higher than an existing fence and that similar walls have helped save the beaches at notable Irish courses Tralee, Waterville, and Lahinch. An environmental impact statement is in the works and hopes are the wall will begin going up next summer.

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Sep 25, 2015 | 06:21 am

Drive For Dough, Dough For Driving

GolfNow, the tee-time-reservation service, and Uber, the alternative to taxis and car ownership, have formed a digital partnership that will not only affect the future of golf, but can save you money right now. This weekend—September 25-27—the two companies are running a promotion that offers Uber riders a discount on golf as well as surprise gifts and the chance to win free golf for a year. Anyone who uses Uber this weekend will automatically receive a discount on the next round of golf as well as being entered in the free-golf giveaway. And anyone who uses the GolfNow option on Uber’s app will be eligible to win golf prize packages (except where prohibited). The promotion is in effect in Orange County, Calif., as well as 10 cities—Charlotte, Jacksonville, Los Angeles, Myrtle Beach, Orlando, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, San Diego, Tampa, and Tucson. Go to to get the app. And expect more news from the two companies—drives to your drives?—starting next year.

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Sep 24, 2015 | 08:29 am

Gimme Shelter

Lost in "Gimmegate" and the question of sportsmanship is basic Rule (2-4) of whether Suzann Peterssen could have retroactively given Alison Lee the putt on the 17th hole of the fourball match on Sunday morning in the Solheim Cup. According to Decision 2-4/3, the answer is no, at least not without Lee receiving a one-stroke penalty for lifting her ball without marking it. But in a show of sportsmanship, the Euros could have conceded the 18th hole resulting in a drawn match. Since most of all us play match play 99 percent of the time, it's worth reviewing the following:

•    A player may concede their opponent's next stroke at any time, provided the opponent's ball is at rest. The opponent is considered to have holed out with their next stroke, and the ball may be removed by either side.
•    A concession may not be declined or withdrawn under any circumstances.
•    In a four-ball or foursome, either partner may make the concession.
•    No-one else has the authority to make a concession (e.g., a caddie, team captain or spectator).
•    If a player makes a statement (note, not an action) that could reasonably have led their opponent to think their next stroke had been conceded, in equity (Rule 1-4), the opponent should replace their ball as near as possible to where it lay, without penalty.

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