Ensure Classic at Rock Barn CC & Spa - Hickory, NC

Posted by Mark on October 4th, 2010

Ensure Classic at Rock Barn CC & Spa – Hickory, NC

Heading west on I-40 from Cary, NC John Mellencamp’s “Small Town” droned in my head. Hickory, NC is the smallest town supporting a Champions Tour event but the gallery lining the fairways is deeper than L.A., New York, Chicago or any other metropolitan tournament. The fans are supportive, appreciative, and cordial and have more fun during their tournament week than any other tour stop. Driving into town signs are everywhere, “Welcome Champions Tour Players and Caddies.”

Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf

Posted by Mark on April 29th, 2010

Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf

Whispers, the first tee starter, greets every player and announces to the crowd, “Let’s give them a sweet Savannah welcome” and everyone does just that all week. Savannah opens its arms, homes and restaurants, the hospitality is unbelievable and the Liberty Mutual Legends of golf has been coming here since 2003. Doug Tewell was the defending that year and it was nice to be back together, the golf wasn’t very good but the reminiscing was fun.

Champions Tour Cap Cana Championship

Posted by Mark on March 30th, 2010

Punta Cana- Cap Cana Championship

The Dominican Republic sports numerous challenging golf courses including Pete Dye’s incomparable Teeth of the Dog and the Champions Tour has been coming to Punta Cana for the last four years. Jack Nicklaus designed a challenging tract with eight holes directly touching the stunning blue Caribbean waters and a layout weaving around ancient underwater ocean formations. The first and second tees are perched on limestone cliffs, once submerged but now overlooking the Cap Cana Oceanside resort, the Caribbean, and on a clear night the lights from Puerto Rico.

Masters Memories

Posted by Mark on April 6th, 2009

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My first year on tour, 1988, I went to the Mississippi Masters in Hattiesburg, MS instead of the real deal. I picked up Mike Nicolette in the Waffle House parking lot, spent the days caddying and watching the Masters telecast whenever possible. The caddies would gather at the motel bar, watch the tube, and share Augusta stories. Nobody wanted to be in Hattiesburg; everyone’s heart was at Augusta National. Next year, I’d be there, hopefully.

Fred Couples and Micah

Posted by Mark on March 3rd, 2009

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My favorite afternoon on tour, bar none………hope you enjoy it also.

Some guys are just naturally nice guys. They don’t try anything special, they just go about being nice without forcing it down your throat. It’s just the way they are, I guess. Freddie “Boom-Boom” Couples is probably the statistical leader in this category. My first encounter with him was at a little bar in Orlando. I was visiting my brother in the mid-eighties, we were out for the evening and in walked Freddie. It was just a little local neighborhood place and Fred was by himself. He ordered a Coke, joined us and chatted for awhile. When he left my brother said he’d be one of the next superstars so I began following his career.

Pro Am Experiences - You Gotta Love’em (I’ll update them frequently

Posted by Mark on January 28th, 2009

During last week’s Bob Hope Chrysler Classic I was thinking about some memorable pro am experiences. Every week we have a scheduled pro am on Wednesday (Wednesday and Thursday Champions Tour), and there are three or four week long celebrity pro ams each year. I’ve been on the tee box with Presidents, movie stars, Hall of Fame sports legends, corporate CEO’s from every industry, and “Joe Hacker”. To be honest, I’m not sure where the best stories come from. I’m going to tell a few, you let me know your favorites.

First Tee with President Ford

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