Aug 12, 2014 | 11:14 am

Robin Williams, RIP

The world lost a genius with the death of Robin Williams. Many golfers might not appreciate his take on how the game was invented—and if you’re offended by salty language, don’t listen—but this video shows better than any obituaries or appreciations can why we loved him and will miss his incredible talent.

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Aug 11, 2014 | 06:38 am

Backing Up The British

If you watch the British Open, you may have noticed that while the PGA Tour is well represented, not every player from the Tour makes the trip. In years past, they’ve had another event to play in that same week, but that tournament wasn’t held in 2014. Now, according to Golf Channel and WSFA, a TV station in Montgomery, Alabama, that slot will be filled again. Alabama’s Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail will be the site of the new event, probably the Grand National course in Opelika (above). The title sponsor has not yet been named, but may be announced today. From 2011-13, the Sanderson Farms Championship was held the same week at the British, but this year it moves to November opposite the WGC-HSBC Champions in China. The new event will be the first time the PGA Tour has been in Alabama since 1990, when the PGA Championship was held at Shoal Creek.

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Aug 08, 2014 | 09:26 am

A Little Help

We usually don't run much instruction here at LINKS, but since you read the magazine and our website you probably play golf, which means you can use some help, just like the rest of us. Which is why we were interested in the findings of Tom Stickney II, a leading teacher. As he wrote on the website GolfWRX, he recently attended a corporate outing with other top teachers and they got to talking about their profession. Much of what they discussed was about their business, but there were some interesting observations that amateurs like us can learn from, including:

  • No amount of practice can overcome a bad attitude on the golf course. It will eventually catch up with you.
  • At the highest levels of proficiency, sometimes “letting go” on the putting green can take a player from struggling to putting well, instantly.
  • Everyone should get at least a basic club fitting that includes: club length, lie, shaft flex, grip size and set make up based on their ability level.
  • Most players need a 60-degree wedge in their bag.
  • Most players have the wrong bounce on their wedges.
  • Low-spin drivers cannot make up for improper angles of attack or poor impact points.
  • Practicing on the golf course is a must after obtaining the “feel” you want on the range.
  • The most effective practice comes in short bursts, not overly long sessions.
  • Most people forget that golf is supposed to be FUN! Relax and enjoy it!
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Aug 07, 2014 | 06:12 am

Date Changer

Whether you are for or against golf returning to the Olympics in two years, it’s already having an impact on tournament schedules. The PGA of America has confirmed that the 2016 PGA Championship, to be held at Baltusrol Golf Club in New Jersey (above), will be moved up a week to July 28–31. “We think an end of July date in that part of the country and the major metropolitan area just outside of New York makes a lot of sense,” said Pete Bevacqua, PGA of America CEO. “Less people are on vacation, more people are in town, and we think it will work out as a real benefit to the 2016 PGA Championship.” Sounds good, but it wouldn’t have happened without the Olympics, which take place August 5–21 in Brazil. The change also means there is just one week, rather than two, between that season’s last two majors. While players will likely moan about the condensed 2016 schedule—only 47 days separate the beginning of the U.S. Open at Oakmont Country Club and the end of the PGA Championship, not to mention a Ryder Cup the following month at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Minnesota—diehard golf fans should be rejoicing.

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