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Sep 16, 2013 | 10:25 AM

Teed Off In Cuba

If you were thinking of using golf as an excuse to visit Cuba—or were simply looking forward to checking out some exciting-sounding new courses planned for the island—you can put away the suitcases, at least for now. According to the Miami Herald, none of the highly touted golf projects in Cuba has begun construction. And one of the companies vying to build is suing—and this will take a little explaining—the PGA of America. According to the newspaper, 360 Vox Corp., a Canadian firm, is claiming it lost more than $25 million because the PGA of America persuaded PGA Ltd., based in Britain, to cancel the deal that would have given the developer the British group’s endorsement. 360 Vox says the PGA of America caved to criticism from political groups in Washington, which view the deal as a way of getting around American trade sanctions. It’s more than a little complicated, but one thing is clear: Golf’s return to Cuba, and foreign golfers with it, is off to a slow start.

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Sep 13, 2013 | 06:59 AM

Long-Ball Paul

It’s been a long, busy week filled with somber memories and worries around the world, so The Buzz wanted to end it on a lighter note. We recently stumbled across this video of tour pro Paul Casey at the 2011 Telus Skins Game in Alberta, Canada, where he tried to throw a golf ball onto the green of a par-three hole from 132 yards away. Easy, you say? Think about it. An NFL quarterback can toss a football 50 or 60 yards and this is more than twice that, granted with a much smaller object. But still: 132 yards? That’s deeper than the left-centerfield wall in most major-league ballparks. It’s also worth noting that Casey was sidelined for most of 2012 by a shoulder injury that he said he sustained while snowboarding. Perhaps this hefty heave was a contributing factor because he certainly doesn’t leave anything in the bag.

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Sep 12, 2013 | 11:11 AM

The Dyes (Still) Have It

Pete and Alice Dye are both well into their 80s, but do you think they put their feet up to relax this summer? Not a chance. The peripatetic couple, who spend their summers in Carmel, Ind. outside Indianapolis, have nearly completed a renovation of Gulf Stream Golf Club near their winter home in Delray Beach, Fla. With advances in equipment, the bunkers on the club’s 1923 Donald Ross-designed layout were out of position and were penalizing higher handicappers. “We have high respect for Mr. Ross’s work, and try to do what he would do were he alive today,” says Alice. Pete is also updating The Golf Club in New Albany, Ohio, a course virtually untouched since he built it in the mid-1960’s; and is revising The Keswick Club in Charlottesville, Va. (above). When they’re not busy with course design work, both Dyes routinely shoot well below their ages. If golf is a prescription for long life, the Dyes are living proof.

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Sep 11, 2013 | 10:17 AM

A Really Green Jacket

Horton Smith's green jacket that The Buzz told you about last week sold this past weekend for $682,229—the highest price ever for a piece of golf memorabilia. (The final bid was actually $593,243 with the rest, almost $90,000, going to Green Jacket Auctions as a commission.) There were about seven serious bidders who really drove up the price in the final few hours on Saturday. Company co-owner Bob Zafian was on the phone with the two elderly brothers, who inherited the jacket from their mother who was married to Smith's brother, giving them regular updates on the enormous bids that jumped almost $400,000 on Saturday. "One of the brothers said he had to double his heart medicine," says Zafian with a chuckle. "They were very surprised. I was, too. We were hoping for perhaps $300,000." And to think that the brothers reportedly tried to give it to Augusta National 15 years ago in exchange for some badges to the Masters.

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