PING G400 Driver

By Leonard Finkel

 

PING’s fastest and most forgiving driver to date highlights the new G400 Series. This power-packed driver is available for custom fitting at Club Champion locations now.

Multi-material construction includes a cast Ti 8-1-1 body, forged T9S+ face, high-density tungsten back weight and a lightweight aluminum/thermoplastic adjustable hosel. A unique forging and patented heat-treatment process of the face powers a thinner, hotter impact area that is precision machined to elevate ball speed across the entire face for 16% more flexing. When paired with its aerodynamic properties, it results in ball-speed gains of nearly 2 mph. Making the face 6% thinner and 9% lighter than its predecessor, extra weight was placed strategically to tighten dispersion even further through a higher MOI. The forged face was also instrumental in producing the powerful feel this driver delivers.

According to PING, the G400 driver’s high-density tungsten back weight and Dragonfly Technology help bring the combined MOI (heel/toe and high/low) over 9,000-gram cm2 for the first time and position the CG lower and farther back than any current driver on the market – making it the most forgiving driver in golf. The Dragonfly crown extends to the skirt section on the sole, providing additional weight savings. A streamlined shaping harmonizes with new turbulators and Vortec Technology to reduce drag by 40% mid-downswing and 15% overall to deliver added clubhead speed.

“The G400 driver is a prime example of how our engineering team looks at every single detail of a club to ensure we are optimizing each design variable so golfers can improve performance,” said John A. Solheim, PING Chairman & CEO. “In this case, we’ve gone slightly smaller in volume (445cc) to improve aerodynamics for faster clubhead speeds while actually raising the MOI higher than any previous PING driver. This commitment to performance enabled impressive distance gains and tighter dispersion, the ultimate driving combination. We’ve also engineered an incredibly pleasing sound in the driver through computer simulation that will turn heads on the tee box when golfers get it in their hands. It even has a shaft that changes color at address to improve the player’s focus.”

Dispersion is a performance measurement that reveals just how consistent your distance and accuracy results will be on the golf course. PING encourages all golfers to get fit and look closely at their dispersion, not just their few best shots on a launch monitor. That will ensure that golfers find the fairway more often and their scores and handicaps will go down. In PING testing, the G400 outperformed the leading drivers in the marketplace, especially when comparing dispersion patterns.

Three head options are available to match a G400 driver to a golfer’s desired ball flight. The standard version is engineered to fit most golfers. The SFT (Straight Flight) is designed to correct a left-to-right ball flight (for right-handed golfers) and features heel-side tungsten weighting and a lighter swing weight to help square the face at impact. The LST (Low Spin) version positions the tungsten weight closer to the face to reduce spin approximately 300 rpm for a more penetrating ball flight. Loft options available are 9⁰ & 10.5⁰ (std.), 8.5⁰ & 10⁰ (LST), 10⁰ & 12⁰ (SFT). Loft adjustability is up to +-1⁰.

Extensive research and computer simulation coupled with music theory allowed engineers to fine-tune frequencies to produce a deeper, more muted sound. One tour professional compared it to “The satisfaction of puring a persimmon driver with the modern technology of the G400.”

PING’s tour staff, including Lee Westwood, Tyrrell Hatton, David Lingmerth and Daniel Summerhays, has been quick to switch to the new G400 driver with more than 70 currently in play around the world. Solheim added, “The players immediately loved the look of the driver and became enamored with the powerful sound and feel. At the end of the week, the statistics proved that both the longest and most accurate players off the tee at the U.S. Open relied on a G400 driver.”

 

 

 

Leonard Finkel is the author of The Secrets to the Game of Golf & Life and former editor in chief of Golf Journeys Magazine. His work has been featured in almost 200 publications including Golf Magazine, Golf Digest, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Golf Illustrated, Golf Tips and Player Magazine. He has written more than a dozen cover stories for Golf Today Magazine. He has written extensively about golf and travel and has added poker to his writing repertoire. Finkel also works as a marketing and public relations consultant. His specialty niche is writing advertorial copy. Prior to his career in golf, Finkel owned a chain of retail stores and a consulting and import company based in Asia. He attended the University of Utah.

Dave Pelz Schools at Grand Traverse Resort and Spa

By Leonard Finkel

Here’s a secret on how to lower your scores.

Short game. Short game. Short game.

There is – and always has been – a positive correlation between the short game and your golf score.

The Dave Pelz Scoring Game School, currently running at the distinguished Grand Traverse Resort and Spa, focuses on the short game and how that can help any golfer achieve the desired results on the golf course – better scores and the sheer enjoyment that goes with breaking scoring barriers.

The Dave Pelz Scoring Game School is for golfers of all levels. The lessons come in all sizes and shapes – private, group and exclusive customized instruction. Every offering can be customized to your specific needs. It’s the perfect opportunity for corporate groups and informal “buddy” trips to brush up on the scoring game.

Custom sessions are booming in popularity. The success rate is telling and, on the corporate side, the components of a corporate retreat and bonding opportunity make the sessions especially appealing for businesses.

“We love groups because you get every kind of golfer and they all go about learning differently,” said Pelz, the short game guru and author who is the go-to guy for many of the game’s best players.

“In a group dynamic, we can actually let our hair down, tell more stories and make the game and improvement relatable to the whole group. We customize corporate sessions based on how large and how ‘serious’ the attendees are about the game. It’s all custom. In our schools, our three-day program maintains a 4 to 1 student to teacher ratio so we can work hard and stay focused on seriously improving peoples’ games, so a school of 8 or even 12 is great. In the one-day program, that ratio is 6 to 1 so we can see more people.”

Private sessions are available for small, medium or large groups, from four to 20 players. The lessons can be integrated into meetings, become incentives for corporate guests, a part of gaming trips, bachelor parties or wedding groups on destination weddings, groups from individual clubs form Michigan, Illinois and Ohio.

“If we can get you putting better, and hitting your chips, pitches, wedge and sand shots closer to the hole, you’re going to start to really love this game. There’s nothing more fun than playing your best,” Pelz said.

The summertime Pelz Scoring Game School is based at Grand Traverse Resort and Spa’s year-round Golf Academy, with PGA Professional Mark Hill as the Academy’s Director of Instruction

For more information on the Dave Pelz Scoring Game School, go to pelzgolf.com. For more information on Grand Traverse Resort and Spa, go to grandtraverseresort.com.

 

 

 

Leonard Finkel is the author of The Secrets to the Game of Golf & Life and former editor in chief of Golf Journeys Magazine. His work has been featured in almost 200 publications including Golf Magazine, Golf Digest, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Golf Illustrated, Golf Tips and Player Magazine. He has written more than a dozen cover stories for Golf Today Magazine. He has written extensively about golf and travel and has added poker to his writing repertoire. Finkel also works as a marketing and public relations consultant. His specialty niche is writing advertorial copy. Prior to his career in golf, Finkel owned a chain of retail stores and a consulting and import company based in Asia. He attended the University of Utah.

Shielding Your Lap From Tablet Radiation

By Scott Kramer

Just recently I realized I’ve used my five-year-old iPad 3 maybe twice in the past year. And when I told some of my friends, they shared similar claims about no longer using their iPads.

I hardly bring mine out anymore because of three main reasons. The first is that my Samsung Note 5 phone is plenty large enough to accomplish most things I used to use my iPad for — including writing articles, reading the newspaper and watching short videos. And the phone isn’t restricted to WiFi, like my iPad. Plus it’s just always conveniently with me.

The second reason is that when I do want to watch a TV show or movie on a handheld screen in bed, I often just fold my laptop convertible into tablet mode. The screen is 15 inches — as opposed to the iPad’s 9.7-inch display. And like my phone, the laptop is often nearby.

Reason three is that to protect my iPad, I bought a really nice leather, zippered portfolio case for it about three years ago. That way, I can take it to meetings and on road trips with me, without having to worry about dropping it or having to pack a laptop with me. But because it’s inside this nice portfolio, it always seems like a production to pull the iPad out to read an e-book or watch movies in bed. I have to unzip the portfolio, re-orient the included notepad and pen compartment, set up the included velcro iPad stand and then awkwardly balance the case on my lap.

Yet when I took the iPad on a recent business trip with me, I became nostalgic for using the tablet. It’s a lot lighter than my laptop, for watching movies. And the screen is larger than my phone’s, for reading books. But it’s that portfolio I couldn’t get past.

Which is why I just got a new iPad cover from SafeSleeve. I’ve used — and written a Forbes.com column about — SafeSleeve’s iPhone wallet case before. And until my iPhone died about six months ago, I loved using the case. The premise behind it is that it significantly reduces harmful radiation risks by shielding those rays from your body. After I posted a Forbes.com column on the iPhone case in 2015, I received several letters from scientists around the globe discounting the SafeSleeve’s marketing claims. I’m not sure who is right, but you know what? I loved using the case — regardless of if it made the phone safer to use or not. It’s just a well-thought-out design.

So I have high hopes for the company’s new universal tablet and iPad-specific cases, which operate on the same anti-radiation premise. To be honest, I never gave much thought to if the iPad emitted radiation — primarily because I never hold mine up to my head like I would a phone. But if the SafeSleeve reduces electromagnetic radiation from reaching my lap by 99 percent as it promises, fantastic. If not, well then I still have a new case that secures the iPad, protects the screen well, lets me easily swivel between landscape and portrait mode, and is comfortable to hold. Best of all, I think switching to this will result in me using my iPad often again. And when I go on a work trip, I can always resort to the leather portfolio. But I have a sneaking suspicion I’ll probably just keep it in the SafeSleeve from now on.

 

 

Scott Kramer is veteran, Southern California-based writer primarily versed in golf and personal technology. Studying Computer Sciences in college, and then working as a programmer/software engineer for about a decade, triggered my passion for today’s high-end, high-tech gadgets. I can’t help myself whenever I see any kind of cool new personal technology. I feel compelled to further check it out and see what it’s all about. And even if I have no use for it personally, I’m always thinking who it might best suit. There are exciting new innovations emerging daily that are shaping the future and simplifying life. And I hope to be your eyes to that world, through the words of this column.

Antigua Summer 2017 Men’s Golf Collection

By Leonard Finkel

 

The men’s Antigua Summer 2017 Golf Performance collection is an inspiration of color, with a vibrant palette that’s a fresh follow-up to the Spring ’17 full-performance range. It incorporates six fresh designs that are great additions to any golfer’s wardrobe.

 

Antigua’s design team blended color-on-color with these stand-out styles. By complementing colors and incorporating them into solid heather effects, yarn dye stripes, prints and outerwear, they achieved eye-catching results.

 

The collection begins with a tonal double knit jacquard self-collar polo that’s conceptualized to mimic the effect that’s created by knitting heather yarns into a solid fabric. Style Hologram gives the illusion of light and dark contrasting shades by using varying yarn sizes that independently absorb solid dye with unique variances. When the different yarns are double-knit into a digital jacquard design and the fabric is piece-dyed, the result is a truly refined polo.

 

Style Drive employs a richly dominant color stripe with no pattern uniformity set against a white background. An engineered contrasting pop accent stripe brightens the pattern. Blending a high-filament count jersey and spandex, the hand, drape and fit are very comfortable.

 

Revive — named for its reinvention of the traditional two-color narrow rugby stripe pattern. This flat knit polo suggests traditional styling, while the stripe and its bold color use fit in with current trends. The fabric is a proprietary pique construction of high-count filament yarns in a designated denier, with the inclusion of spandex for ultimate stretch and comfort.

 

Vista, a half-zip pullover, it is constructed from a double-knit jacquard heather twill fabric, requiring minimal style detailing. Styled as a raglan for fluid movement, the simplicity of dyed-to-match filament cover stitched seams over white seam taping compliments the fabric’s twill effect in a perfect accent.

 

 

 

 

Leonard Finkel is the author of The Secrets to the Game of Golf & Life and former editor in chief of Golf Journeys Magazine. His work has been featured in almost 200 publications including Golf Magazine, Golf Digest, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Golf Illustrated, Golf Tips and Player Magazine. He has written more than a dozen cover stories for Golf Today Magazine. He has written extensively about golf and travel and has added poker to his writing repertoire. Finkel also works as a marketing and public relations consultant. His specialty niche is writing advertorial copy. Prior to his career in golf, Finkel owned a chain of retail stores and a consulting and import company based in Asia. He attended the University of Utah.

10 Players to Watch: 146th Open Championship

By Tom LaMarre – Courtesy The Sports Xchange

  1. Jon Rahm, Spain — When Rahm came out of Arizona State last year, Phil Mickelson said he already was one of the best players in the world, and it turns out Lefty was right. The rookie has won on both major tours this season, capturing the Farmers Insurance Open by three strokes at Torrey Pines in January and the Irish Open by six shots in his last start two weeks ago. Rahm has finished in the top 10 in seven events on the PGA Tour this season, losing to top-ranked Dustin Johnson in the final of the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play and finishing second in the Dean & DeLuca Invitational. He has climbed to fifth in the FedExCup Rankings and No. 7 in the Official World Golf Rankings. He also tied for 10th in the Open de France and is third in the Race to Dubai standings on the European Tour. Rahm’s victory at Portstewart in Northern Ireland showed that he can play links courses, even though he only tied for 59th at Royal Troon in his first Open Championship a year ago.

 

  1. Jordan Spieth, United States — Wanting to get an early start on his links preparation ahead of the 146th Open Championship this week at Royal Birkdale, Spieth passed on the John Deere Classic, which he won for his first PGA Tour victory in 2013 and again two years later. He will be playing for the first time since he claimed his 10th victory on the circuit three weeks ago in the Travelers Championship after winning the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in February. Spieth is fourth in the FedExCup standings and also No. 3 in the world, in what is close to an absolutely monster season, as he also tied for second in the Dean & DeLuca Invitational and was third in the SBS Tournament of Champions and the Sony Open in Hawaii. The two-time major champion is making his fifth start in the Open Championship and his best result was a tie for fourth in 2015 at St. Andrews after he won the Masters and U.S. Open earlier in the season.

 

  1. Dustin Johnson, United States — The top-ranked player in the world and FedExCup points leader has not cracked the top 10 since being forced to withdraw on the eve of the Masters because of a back injury. He tied for 13th in the AT&T Byron Nelson before missing the cut in the Memorial Tournament and the U.S. Open at Erin Hills. Johnson was a cumulative 12-over-par in those last two events and could be rusty when he gets to Royal Birkdale after taking a month off. Before that, he was proving he is the best player in the world with six top-10 results, including victories in the Genesis Open, the WGC-Mexico Championship and the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play. Johnson, whose only major title came in the 2016 U.S. Open at Oakmont, is making his ninth straight appearance in the Open Championship and he has finished in the top 10 three times, including a tie for second in 2011, when he was one shot behind eventual winner Darren Clarke before driving out of bounds on the 14th hole at Royal St. Georges.

 

  1. Hideki Matsuyama, Japan — Following his runner-up finish behind Brooks Koepka in the U.S. Open last month at Erin Hills, his fifth finish in the top two this season on the PGA Tour, Matsuyama is ranked No. 2 in the world and also is second in the FedExCup point standings, behind Dustin Johnson in both. His world ranking is the highest ever for a player from Japan. He has victories in the WGC-HSBC Champions and the Waste Management Phoenix Open this season, and his other second-place finishes came in the CIMB Classic and the SBS Tournament of Champions. This will be his fifth appearance in the Open Championship and his best result was a tie for sixth in 2013 at Muirfield. Matsuyama just missed another top-10 major finish in April when he tied for 11th in the Masters, and last year he tied for fourth in the PGA Championship at Baltusrol and tied for seventh at Augusta National, giving him six top-10 results in the Grand Slam events since 2013.

 

  1. Sergio Garcia, Spain — The Masters champion has rested since finishing one shot behind Andres Romero of Argentina in a tie for second in the BMW International Open in Germany last month, and should be fresh as he tries to claim the second major title of his season and career this week in the Open Championship. Garcia, No. 5 in the world, also won the Omega Dubai Desert Classic early this year and ranks second in the European Tour’s Race to Dubai point standings behind Tommy Fleetwood of England. The Spaniard is making his 20th consecutive start in the Open and had some heart-breaking finishing, losing to Padraig Harrington in a playoff in 2007 at Carnoustie and tying for second, two strokes behind Rory McIlroy in 2014 at Royal Liverpool. Garcia also tied for fifth three times, last year at Royal Troon, in 2006 at Royal Liverpool and in 2005 at St. Andrews. He has a total of 10 finishes in the top 10 in the third major of the season.

 

  1. Justin Rose, England — Even though he has won 18 times as a pro, including the 2013 U.S. Open at Merion, Rose is remembered almost as much for his last shot as an amateur, when he chipped in for a birdie on the 18th hole at Royal Birkdale to finish in a tie for fourth in the 1998 Open Championship. That remains his best result in the third major of the year and he could manage only a tie for 70th when the tournament returned to the Southport, England, links course in 2008, posting an ugly 82 in the third round. In fact, Rose’s only other top-10 result in 15 appearances in the Open was a tie for sixth two years ago at St. Andrews. The 2016 Olympic gold medalist has not won on the PGA Tour since the 2015 Zurich Classic of New Orleans, although he came close earlier this year when he lost in a playoff to Sergio Garcia in the Masters and also finished second at the Sony Open in Hawaii. Rose tied for fourth two weeks ago in the Irish Open.

 

  1. Rory McIlroy, Northern Ireland — Although he remains No. 4 in the world, McIlroy has struggled recently with missed cuts in three of his last four starts, including the U.S. Open at Erin Hills, the Irish Open of which he is the host, and the Scottish Open last week. He has missed time because of a rib injury this year, but what he needs right now is a quick fix with the putter, as he has struggled mightily on the greens while trying several models lately. McIlroy has not won since he wrapped up the FedExCup by taking the Tour Championship last September, but he started this season with three consecutive top-10 finishes and also tied for seventh in the Masters. McIlroy, a four-time major champion, is making his ninth start in the Open and he claimed the Claret Jug by two strokes over Rickie Fowler and Sergio Garcia in 2014 at Royal Liverpool. He also tied for third in 2010 at St. Andrews and tied for sixth last year at Royal Troon.

 

  1. Henrik Stenson, Sweden — The Big Swede defends his title this week in the Open Championship at Royal Birkdale, having become the first Swedish man to win a major golf title when he outplayed Phil Mickelson down the stretch at Royal Troon. Stenson birdied four of the last five holes to shoot a bogey-free 8-under-par 63, the 29th time a player has posted that record score in the Grand Slam events. He finished at 20-under, tying the lowest score in relation to par in a major set by Jason Day in the 2015 PGA Championship. Stenson is playing in the Open this week for the 13th time, and his best previous finish was second in 2013, three shots behind Mickelson at Muirfield. He likes Royal Birkdale, having tied for third there in 2008, and also tied for third in 2010 at St. Andrews. Stenson is No. 7 in the world, with his best results this season a tie for second in the WGC-HSBC Champions, a tie for seventh in the Valspar Championship and a tie for 10th last month in the BMW International Open.

 

  1. Rickie Fowler, United States — With four top-10 finishes in his last five starts on both sides of the Atlantic, Fowler might finally be ready to capture his first major championship. After tying for second in the Memorial Tournament, he tied for fifth in the U.S. Open at Erin Hills and tied for third in the Quicken Loans National. Then he headed for the United Kingdom, where he tied for ninth in the Scottish Open, which he won two years ago. The 10th-ranked Fowler will tee it up in the Open Championship for the eighth time, with his best finish a tie for second in 2014 Royal Liverpool. That was part of his brilliant run in the majors that year, as he also tied for fifth in the Masters, tied for second in the U.S. Open at Pinehurst No. 2 and tied for third in the PGA Championship at Valhalla. Fowler, who tied for 11th in the Masters this year, has seven top-10 results in the majors in his career and it’s time to win one.

 

  1. Adam Scott, Australia — It’s hard to believe that Scott has only one major title, becoming the only Aussie to win the Masters in 2013 when he beat Angel Cabrera of Argentina with a birdie on the second playoff hole. It’s just that he’s had so many chances, particularly when he had a four-stroke lead with four holes to play in the 2012 Open Championship at Royal Lytham and St. Annes. But closed with four straight bogeys and allowed Ernie Els to take the title by one shot with a birdie on the final hole. That’s one of his Scott’s five top-10 results in the Open and he has a total of 16 in the majors. Once the top-ranked player in the world, he has slipped to No. 15, but was on a good run this season with a tie for ninth in the Masters, a tie for sixth in the Players Championship and a tie for 10th in the St. Jude Classic before missing the cut in the U.S. Open last month at Erin Hills.

 

Tom LaMarre has been a sportswriter and copy editor for more than 50 years, including 15 years with the Oakland Tribune and 22 with the Los Angeles Times. He was the Tribune’s beat writer for the Oakland Raiders for seven seasons in the 1970s, highlighted by their 32-14 victory over the Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl XI at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, and collaborated on a book, Winning Offensive Football, with quarterback Ken Stabler. He also covered the Oakland Athletics when they won three consecutive World Series during the 1970s and the Golden State Warriors when they won the NBA championship in the 1974-75 season. With the Times, he wrote columns on golf, football and skiing. These days, he is the Golf Editor for The Sports Xchange. LaMarre graduated from Skyline High in Oakland and attended the University of San Francisco.

AHEAD Spring-Summer Headwear Collections

By Leonard Finkel

AHEAD’s 2018 spring-summer headwear collection features new performance fabrics and styles, fashion items inspired by hot industry trends and an array of options with alternative graphics and ornamentation techniques. The new headwear offerings for both the AHEAD and Kate Lord brands will debut at the 2017 PGA Fashion & Demo Experience, Aug. 14-16, in Las Vegas.

Triggered by the past success with its GrafixWeld technology on its apparel brands, AHEAD will now offer the smooth, techy ornamentation technique on select headwear. All GrafixWeld logos are made to order, and color coordinated to every item.

“Decoration continues to be first and foremost for us as our creative ornamentation techniques continue to set us apart from our competition,” said Chuck Lord, Chief Creative Officer, AHEAD. “This season is no different as we bring our proprietary GrafixWeld technique to our headwear, and continue to offer selections with unmatched attention to detail.”

A new space dye tech hat that ties back to AHEAD’s apparel for spring and summer will be available for men and women alike. With a space dye front and sphere tech back and visor, the mid-fit hat debuts in three color combinations for men and four for women.

New for men is a trendy performance mesh back cap, a structured classic fit option that boasts an aegis tech front and a birds eye mesh back and under-visor. Seven color combinations include brand-new colors on the men’s side -cowboy blue and cobalt and grey/white camo.

The popular men’s Ballmarker cap has received a performance update and includes a convenient rubber magnet on the visor’s right side. It will be available in white, red, cowboy blue, and graphite, another new men’s color being introduced for spring-summer ’18.

Lord said the Kate Lord offerings for Spring-Summer ’8 “Are as robust as ever.” He pointed to the new Ladies’ Knit with Pom (three colors: white, heather, charcoal) that capitalizes on the fur pom trend, plus a wide selection of visors that tie in perfectly with the new Kate Lord’s Essentials offerings. Vibrant colors such as dahlia, persimmon, surf and freesia provide a diverse color palate that will appeal to everyone both on course and off. www.Aheadweb.com.

 

 

 

 

Leonard Finkel is the author of The Secrets to the Game of Golf & Life and former editor in chief of Golf Journeys Magazine. His work has been featured in almost 200 publications including Golf Magazine, Golf Digest, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Golf Illustrated, Golf Tips and Player Magazine. He has written more than a dozen cover stories for Golf Today Magazine. He has written extensively about golf and travel and has added poker to his writing repertoire. Finkel also works as a marketing and public relations consultant. His specialty niche is writing advertorial copy. Prior to his career in golf, Finkel owned a chain of retail stores and a consulting and import company based in Asia. He attended the University of Utah.

Arccos Launches Golf Technology Trade Up Program

By Leonard Finkel

Arccos launched a Trade Up Program, which allows U.S. residents to exchange their unused or out-of-date golf technology for credits toward the purchase of Arccos 360 Pperformance tracking system.

Arccos’ website offers participants a seamless method for redeeming their old hardware, which will be independently inspected and certified, after which a credit will be issued for purchases on the Arccos site.

“Almost every golfer has obsolete gadgets sitting around their house or out in their garage,” says Tom Williams, SVP of Sales and Marketing at Arccos. “If they’ve got a few of these, they can easily earn enough credits to cover the entire purchase price of our award-winning system.”

Recently named “Best Game Analyzer” in the 2017 Golf Digest Editor’s Choice Awards, the Arccos 360 connected golf system automatically records every shot a golfer takes. It then analyzes the data in real time, helping golfers shoot lower scores by making smarter, data-driven decisions on the course.

In January 2017, Arccos announced a technology partnership with Microsoft, through which the companies are developing artificial intelligence technologies that use advanced analytics to help golfers play their best. The first product from this collaboration, Arccos Caddie, launched in May. It leverages the power of the Microsoft Azure cloud and the Arccos dataset, which includes more than 75 million shots, 368 million geo-tagged course mapping features on 40,000+ courses and highly accurate, real-time weather data. It shows a player their optimal path – and alternatives – on any hole in the world, and the likely outcome when pursuing each strategy. arccoscaddie.com.

 

 

Leonard Finkel is the author of The Secrets to the Game of Golf & Life and former editor in chief of Golf Journeys Magazine. His work has been featured in almost 200 publications including Golf Magazine, Golf Digest, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Golf Illustrated, Golf Tips and Player Magazine. He has written more than a dozen cover stories for Golf Today Magazine. He has written extensively about golf and travel and has added poker to his writing repertoire. Finkel also works as a marketing and public relations consultant. His specialty niche is writing advertorial copy. Prior to his career in golf, Finkel owned a chain of retail stores and a consulting and import company based in Asia. He attended the University of Utah.

Streamsong Summer Classic

By Leonard Finkel

Streamsong Resort, an award-winning luxury golf resort in central Florida, announced its first annual Streamsong Summer Classic. This four-ball championship, designed for teams of two, will take place on August 12-14 on two of Golf Digest’s “Top 75 Public Courses in Florida,” Streamsong Red (No. 1) and Streamsong Blue (No. 3).

“We look forward to hosting this inaugural event at Streamsong,” said Scott Wilson, director of golf. “It will be a friendly and competitive weekend, and the format will encourage camaraderie among teams as guests navigate the challenges of both courses. After hosting the USGA Women’s Four-Ball Championship in 2016, it will be exciting to bring this team format back to Streamsong.”

The Streamsong Summer Classic Package includes a two-night stay in Streamsong’s Lakeside Lodge, a welcome reception/pairing party, 36 holes of golf (including cart) on Streamsong’s award-winning courses, and an awards ceremony.

The package price starts at $328 per person double occupancy and $429 per person single occupancy. For booking and more information call (866) 379-8262 or visit streamsongresort.com.

 

Leonard Finkel is the author of The Secrets to the Game of Golf & Life and former editor in chief of Golf Journeys Magazine. His work has been featured in almost 200 publications including Golf Magazine, Golf Digest, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Golf Illustrated, Golf Tips and Player Magazine. He has written more than a dozen cover stories for Golf Today Magazine. He has written extensively about golf and travel and has added poker to his writing repertoire. Finkel also works as a marketing and public relations consultant. His specialty niche is writing advertorial copy. Prior to his career in golf, Finkel owned a chain of retail stores and a consulting and import company based in Asia. He attended the University of Utah.

10 Players to Watch: John Deere Classic

By Tom LaMarre – Courtesy The Sports Xchange

  1. Daniel Berger, United States — The 2015 PGA Tour Rookie of the Year is having a breakthrough season, with his second PGA Tour victory in the FedEx St. Jude Classic last month and runner-up finishes in the Travelers Championship in his last outing and in the WGC-HSBC Champions among his five top-10 results. Berger, 24, is ninth in the FedEx Cup standings and has climbed to No. 20 in the Official World Golf Ranking, but would be even higher had he not lost to his buddy Jordan Spieth in a playoff at the Travelers. He is making his debut in the John Deere Classic and will be on the jet tournament officials hired on Sunday night to take those who stay and play to the United Kingdom for his second appearance in the Open Championship next week at Royal Birkdale in England. Berger figures to enjoy TPC Deere Run because both of his victories came on TPC courses in the St. Jude at TPC Southwind, and he has finished in the top five the last two years in the Travelers at TPC River Highlands.
  1. Danny Lee, New Zealand — Another younger player (26) enjoying a big season, Lee has been on a big run since late May with a tie for fifth in the AT&T Byron Nelson, solo sixth in the Dean & DeLuca Invitational, a tie for third in the Travelers Championship and a tie for ninth last week in the Greenbrier Classic. That surge came after he missed the cuts in four consecutive starts, in addition to withdrawing from the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am. There was speculation that Lee might be suffering from an injury, but he claimed the only thing hurting was his game and he has finished in the top 25 eight times since. He is making his fifth start in the John Deere Classic, and after missing the cut in two of his first three appearances, he opened with 68-68 in 2015 before playing the weekend in 62-67 to finish in a tie for third, one stroke out of the playoff in which Jordan Spieth beat Tom Gillis.
  1. Brian Harman, United States — Playing perhaps the best golf in his career, having claimed his second PGA Tour victory in the Wells Fargo Championship and held the 54-hole lead in the U.S. Open at Erin Hills before finishing in a tie for second behind Brooks Koepka, Harman will try to keep it going in the John Deere Classic. And that might not be too difficult since he recorded his first win on the circuit at TPC Deere Run in 2014, when he opened with an 8-under-par 63 and led much of the way before holding off Zach Johnson by one stroke. Harman, who is 11th in the FedExCup rstandings and 26th in the world, is making his sixth appearance in the tournament and had a chance to win the first time in 2012, when he opened 65-65-69 before finishing with a 73 to slide from third to a tie for 19th. Harman tied for 24th in his title defense two years ago, but shot 71-70 — 141 to miss the cut for the second time in the tournament last year.
  1. Kyle Stanley, United States — Coming off a playoff victory over Charles Howell III in the Quicken Loans National in his last start two weeks ago, Stanley has risen to fifth in the FedExCup standings and 24th in the world. He has posted four other top-10 finishes on the PGA Tour this season, including a tie for fourth in the Players Championship despite stumbling to a 3-over-par 75 in the final round, and a tie for sixth last month in the Memorial Tournament. Stanley, whose only other PGA Tour victory came in the 2012 Waste Management Phoenix Open, doesn’t figure to wait that long to find the winner’s circle again. He has nine results in the top 25 this season and ranks fifth on the circuit with a scoring average of 69.7, in part because of his ball-striking. Stanley is 17th in driving accuracy at 68.34 percent and second in hitting greens in regulation at 71.83 percent. His best result in seven appearances in the John Deere Classic was second in 2011, one stroke behind Steve Stricker.
  1. Ryan Moore, United States — Coming off a five-week rest because of a strained tendon in his left shoulder, Moore will defend the John Deere Classic title he won last year by two strokes over Ben Martin. He played the last 46 holes without a bogey at TPC Deere Run and held off Martin down the stretch with eight straight pars to close with a 4-under-par 67. This is Moore’s ninth start at TPC Deere Run, and he also tied for seventh in 2014 and tied for eighth two years earlier. His scoring average over the last 20 rounds in the tournament is a sterling 67.20. His victory in the tournament last year was his fifth on the PGA Tour, but he missed the cut in two of his last three starts this year while being slowed by the injury. Moore played well before that with seven results in the top 25, including a tie for third in the SBS Tournament of Champions and a tie for ninth in the Masters, where he was in the hunt before closing with a 74.
  1. Kevin Kisner, United States — Even though he has cooled off since claiming his second PGA Tour title in the Dean & DeLuca Invitational and tying for sixth in the Memorial Tournament the following week in April, Kisner has six top-10 finishes this season and is eighth in the FedExCup standings. He finished second six times on the PGA Tour since winning the 2015 RSM Classic, including the Arnold Palmer Invitational this year, and often puts his name high on the leaderboard, with 10 results in the top 25 in 19 tournaments this season. Kisner is making his fifth appearance in the John Deere Classic and after missing the cut in his first two starts in 2011 and 2012, he tied for 20th in 2014 and tied for 14th the following year before skipping the event last year. He was a cumulative 21-under-par over eight rounds in those last two events, but simply didn’t go low enough on TPC Deere Run.
  1. Charley Hoffman, United States — Even though he has been unable to nail down the fifth victory of his career on the PGA Tour this season, Hoffman has come close, tying for second in the Arnold Palmer Invitational, tying for third two weeks ago in the Travelers Championship and tying for fourth in the Genesis Open. He has finished in the top 10 in each of his last two outings, also finishing solo eighth in the U.S. Open at Erin Hills last month. Hoffman, whose last victory came in the 2016 Valero Texas Open, also led the Masters in April after opening with a 7-under-par 65, and was in the hunt most of the way at Augusta National before shooting 74 in the final round to finish in a tie for 22nd. He is making his seventh start in the John Deere Classic and recorded his only top-10 result in 2010, when he opened and closed with 6-under-par 65s, to wind up in a tie for seventh.
  1. Zach Johnson, United States — The John Deere Classic is one of Johnson’s favorite tournaments on the PGA Tour, as he claimed the title in 2012 for one of his 12 victories on the circuit, in addition to finishing second in 2009, 2013 and 2014, and third in 2011 and 2015. He closed with a 6-under-par 65 and then beat Troy Matteson with a birdie on the second playoff hole five years ago, but in his title defense Jordan Spieth beat him with a par on the fifth extra hole. Zach is making his 16th consecutive appearance at TPC Deere Run and is a total of 153-under in the tournament. However, he will need some of that old magic this week because he is laboring through a season in which he has only two top-10 results and four top-25 finishes in 16 tournaments, the best a tie for sixth in the Sony Open in Hawaii and a tie for ninth in the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.
  1. Steve Stricker, United States — The 50-year-old Stricker and Davis Love III, 53, have shown recently that the old guys still have enough to stick with the young guns, at least for a while. Stricker’s best result on the PGA Tour this season was a tie for seventh in the Dean & DeLuca Invitational, but he also tied for 16th in both the Masters and the U.S. Open last month at Erin Hills. Stricker, a Wisconsin native who grew up not far from TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Ill. and played golf at the University of Illinois, will be the crowd favorite as he plays in the John Deere Classic for the 19th time. He has 12 victories on the PGA Tour and three of them came in succession in this tournament, from 2009-11. He also tied for seventh in 1997, tied for fourth in 2004, tied for fifth in 2012 and tied for 10th the following year. Stricker made the cut every year but one, shooting 70-74 — 144 to miss by two strokes in 2003.
  1. Nick Taylor, Canada — Although he is not as well know as fellow Canadians Adam Hadwin and Graham DeLaet, Taylor is making at least as much noise these days on the PGA Tour. He tied for eighth in the Wells Fargo Championship, tied for ninth in the AT&T Byron Nelson, playing the weekend in 66-65, and also tied for ninth in the Greenbrier Classic last week, when he was among the leaders all the way after he opened with a 6-under-par 64. Taylor’s only pro victory came in the 2014 Sanderson Farms Championship on the PGA Tour, beating Boo Weekley and Jason Bohn by two strokes, and he had a stellar amateur career that included wins in the Canadian Amateur Championship and the Canadian Junior Championship. If he is going to keep his run going this week in the John Deere Classic, he will have to figure out TPC Deere Run, where he shot 75-72 — 147 to miss the cut in 2015 and also missed the weekend last year at 69-76 — 145.

 

Tom LaMarre has been a sportswriter and copy editor for more than 50 years, including 15 years with the Oakland Tribune and 22 with the Los Angeles Times. He was the Tribune’s beat writer for the Oakland Raiders for seven seasons in the 1970s, highlighted by their 32-14 victory over the Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl XI at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, and collaborated on a book, Winning Offensive Football, with quarterback Ken Stabler. He also covered the Oakland Athletics when they won three consecutive World Series during the 1970s and the Golden State Warriors when they won the NBA championship in the 1974-75 season. With the Times, he wrote columns on golf, football and skiing. These days, he is the Golf Editor for The Sports Xchange. LaMarre graduated from Skyline High in Oakland and attended the University of San Francisco.

PUMA Golf  Autumn Winter 2017 Collection

By Leonard Finkel

PUMA Golf introduced its new Autumn Winter 2017 collection showcasing new, sophisticated graphics, an evolved color palate and elevated technical elements designed to enhance on-course performance and deliver a fashion statement. The line features men’s, women’s and junior apparel, accessories and footwear.

 

PUMA Golf’s AW‘17 Collection introduces Evoknit in an assortment of apparel and accessory pieces for men and women. Evoknit is a knitted design that utilizes body mapped ventilation, strategically placed rib panels and seamless engineering for unrestricted range of motion. The moisture-wicking fabric provides extreme comfort and breathability.

 

The collection also features PWRWARM Extreme, an efficient synthetic insulation that utilizes Primaloft Gold insulation and microfibers to trap body heat and repel water, creating a warmer microclimate even in the wettest, coldest weather. Primaloft Gold mimics the softness and packability of down and has the highest warmth to weight ratio of any insulation fiber. It’s compressible, breathable and offers superior water repellency to keep you dry, warm and comfortable in extreme conditions.

 

The assortment features a revamped men’s bottoms collection. PUMA’s designers set out to make a more fashion-forward golf pant, rejecting the typical shiny fabric and loose-ish fit.  The new pants and shorts offer excellent moisture management, improved fit, curved stretch waistband featuring PWRSTRETCH for comfort and mechanical stretch for maximum range of motion. All are available in both a tailored and performance fit.

 

Look for PUMA Golf staffers including Rickie Fowler, Lexi Thompson, Bryson DeChambeau, Ben Crane, Graham DeLaet, Jonas Blixt and Jesper Parnevik to showcase the footwear, apparel and accessories from the Autumn Winter ’17 collection on Tour through the remainder of the year.  Available at http://www.cobragolf.com/pumagolf/collections/aw17 and select retailers.

 

 

Leonard Finkel is the author of The Secrets to the Game of Golf & Life and former editor in chief of Golf Journeys Magazine. His work has been featured in almost 200 publications including Golf Magazine, Golf Digest, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Golf Illustrated, Golf Tips and Player Magazine. He has written more than a dozen cover stories for Golf Today Magazine. He has written extensively about golf and travel and has added poker to his writing repertoire. Finkel also works as a marketing and public relations consultant. His specialty niche is writing advertorial copy. Prior to his career in golf, Finkel owned a chain of retail stores and a consulting and import company based in Asia. He attended the University of Utah.

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