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WEST COAST SWING:
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/ CALIFORNIA GOLF + TRAVEL MAGAZINE /
Publisher’s Note History of West Coast Swing courses
In the News What’s happening in golf
The West Coast Swing Tiger, Phil lead the old guard
Wishbone Brawl Charity Event “The Goat” hosts a throwback match
Golf & Travel: California Our Golden State journey continues
Inside the Gates Friendly Hills Country Club
18 JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2018 VOLUME 22, ISSUE 1 INSIDE THE GATES: FRIENDLY HIILLS CC • INSTRUCTION: DAVE PELZ BUNKER TIPS
Honma Gallery at Roger Dunn Santa Ana superstore opens Honma showcase
Instruction: Dave Pelz Use your regular swing in the sand
Instruction: John Burckle Stop your slice with a bowed left wrist
TIGER TIME IN CALIFORNIA
USGA Regional Alliance NCGA, SCGA partner with USGA
The Philosophy of Golf Epicurus and eliminating fear on the course
WEST COAST SWING: WISHBONE BRAWL:
A VINTAGE GATHERING AT THE GOAT GEAR UP FOR 2018
On the cover: Tiger Woods at Sherwood Country Club Photo: Michael Weinstein
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THE WEST COAST SWING:
A Brief History of Three Classic Courses Torrey Pines Golf Course — Farmers Insurance Open Before it was a world-class golf facility, the land that would become Torrey Pines Golf Course was Camp Callen, an anti-aircraft replacement training center during World War II. In exchange for an occupational permit to use the lower portion of the park, the military, according to the City of San Diego, had to guarantee that no part of the park would be damaged and that it would be kept open to the public. After the war, the camp was closed and its buildings were torn down and used for lumber to build housing for veterans. It was around this time that golf course architect William P. Bell “began envisioning the design of a wind and sea swept golf course that would afford golfers both rugged play and breathtaking surroundings.” Toward that end, a special election was held in 1956 that resulted in roughly 100 acres being set aside for the construction of a public golf course. After Bell’s death in 1953, his son, William F. Bell, realized his father’s vision by overseeing the completion of the North and South courses, which have hosted some of the most exciting finishes in PGA history, including Johnny Miller out-dueling Jack Nicklaus to win the 1982 San Diego Open by one stroke and Tiger Woods’ battle with Rocco Mediate to clinch the 2008 U.S. Open in a sudden-death playoff. Pebble Beach Golf Links – AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am Shortly after it was completed in 1919, major changes were made to Pebble Beach Golf Links. The California Golf Association, which didn’t accept the course as a site for its amateur championship, felt that the 345-yard par-4 18th hole was too easy. With this in mind, course owner Samuel F.B. Morse hired Arthur Vincent, who lengthened the course to 6,200 yards, changed five greens, and moved the 18th tee to its current location near the 17th. More changes took place in preparation for the 1929 U.S. Amateur Championship, when H. Chandler Egan re-shaped and re-bunkered each green, moved the 1st tee to create today’s dog-legged opening hole, reconfigured the 10th, added length to the 2nd, 9th and 14th, and moved the 16th
green to a natural depression behind a grove of trees, extending the hole more than 100 yards. Sixty years later, Pebble Beach Golf Links unveiled a new 5th hole designed by Jack Nicklaus, which was placed on a parcel of prime oceanfront land that Pebble Beach Company had wanted to re-acquire for 80 years. Then, under direction of Arnold Palmer, preparations were made for the 2010 U.S. Open: four greens and 16 bunkers were rebuilt, altered or installed; 11 tees were enhanced; six holes saw the addition or adjustment of trees (including Cypress); and the total length of the course was extended to 7,040 yards. Riviera Country Club — Genesis Open In 1922, Los Angeles Athletic Club Vice-President Frank Garbutt began a search for the site upon which the Riviera Country Club would be built. To purchase the land from an oil millionaire, a syndicate was formed with final negotiations for the deal taking nearly three years to complete. Though initially unimpressed by “the barren site in the Santa Monica Canyon,” golf architect George C. Thomas Jr., who had recently completed the design and construction of the Bel-Air Country Club, agreed to design a course for Riviera, with the condition that he be allowed to hire William P. Bell as the construction supervisor. After 18 months of construction, Riviera opened on June 24, 1927, with George Thomas hitting the inaugural drive off the first tee. Because of its championship design and ability to accommodate large crowds, Riviera was selected to host the 4th Annual Los Angeles Open in 1929. Some highlights of the tournament over the years include: Sam Snead birdieing the 18th on the final day to defeat Byron Nelson in 1945 by one stroke, Ben Hogan winning both the US Open and L.A. Open at Riviera in 1948, causing many to call the Club “Hogan’s Alley” and Tom Watson defeating Johnny Miller in 1982 in one of the greatest comeback victories in tournament history. Enjoy your walk,
California Golf + Travel Publisher Eric Woods Editor Mark Spinn Art Director Long Tran Associate Editors Mike Stubbs, Suzy Evans, Ed Travis Senior Writers Jim Dover, Tom LaMarre, Feisal Patel Contributors Ian Leggatt, Ed Vyeda, Leonard Finkel, Tom Stankowski, Ken Lane, Chris Lynch, Ryan Noll Photographers Michael Weinstein, Tom Neas, Mark Susson Travel Editor Larry Feldman Equipment Editor Scott Kramer, Ed Travis Wine + Golf John Finney, Dan Weldy Contributing Instructors Eric Lohman, Kris Moe, Perry Parker, Ted Norby, Scott Heyn, John Ortega, John Burckle Accounting Jep Pickett
California Golf + Travel is published by Golf Lab Media LLC 1224 Village Way, Ste. D, Santa Ana CA 92705 Phone: (714) 542-4653 website: www.CalGolfNews.com California Golf + Travel is published bimonthly and distributed to California golf courses, country clubs, practice facilities, golf retailers, hotels, and resorts Entire contents of this publication is copyrighted Golf Lab Media LLC 2015, all rights reserved and may not be reproduced in any manner in whole or in part without the written permission from the publisher. For subscriptions, go to calgolfnews.com and sign up online or send your name, address, phone number, and $20 to Golf Lab Media at the Above address. For advertising opportunities and editorial information: Please call (714) 542-4653 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org
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IN THE NEWS
SERGIO MIXES GREEN JACKET WITH CALLAWAY GEAR
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Hoylake, England. The 56-year-old Crosby, a native of Hillsborough, Calif. and now residing in Jupiter, Fla., is the son of legendary entertainer Bing Crosby and was a member of victorious U.S. teams in the 1983 Walker Cup and the 1982 World Amateur Team Championship. PHOTO MIC HAEL WEINSTEIN
featuring three SCGA members defeated Great Britain and Ireland, 19-7. Speaking of the Walker Cup: Nathaniel Crosby, the 1981 U.S. Amateur champion, was selected captain of the United States team for the 2019 Walker Cup Match against Great Britain and Ireland at Royal Liverpool Golf Club in PHOTO C OURTESY C ALL AWAY GOLF
allaway Golf of Carlsbad announced that reigning Masters champion Sergio Garcia of Spain has signed with the company. The 37-year-old Garcia, who has won 30 times in his professional career, will play Callaway woods, irons and wedges, plus an Odyssey putter and a Callaway Chrome Soft ball. “I’m really excited to switch to Callaway,” Garcia said in a statement. “After testing different brands I realized Callaway’s technology and innovation will help me maximize my game and perform to the best of my ability.” Xander Schauffele of San Diego, the 2017 PGA Tour Rookie of the Year, also signed with Callaway. The 24-year-old Schauffele captured the Greenbrier Classic and the Tour Championship last year. LACC gives back … big time: The Los Angeles Country Club made a historic donation of $250,000 to the Southern California Golf Association’s Junior Foundation. It is one of the largest donations in SCGA history and the largest gift from a member club. “This extremely generous donation promises to help dramatically expand access to youth golf programs across Southern California,” said Kevin Gigax, SCGA Junior’s executive director. “These funds will make a tremendous, longlasting impact on our operations and our ability to bring golf, education and life skills to young people who would otherwise not have those opportunities.” LACC generated the funds by hosting the 2017 Walker Cup, in which the United States team
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Tiger Woods victory in the Northeast Amateur, where he held off Shintaro Ban of San Jose and Theo Humphrey by two strokes at Wannamoisett Country Club in Rhode Island. Way beyond middlin’: Stewart Hagestad earned AmateurGolf.com’s 2017 Mid-Amateur Player of the Year award, which is based on a PHO TO MICHAEL WEINSTEIN
PHOTO C OURTESY SCGA
Once more into the fray: Tiger Woods announced on Twitter that he will play for the first time this year in the Farmers Insurance Open on Jan. 25-28 at Torrey Pines Golf Course in La Jolla. He’s also set to play in the Genesis Open Feb. 15-18 at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, which is operated by Woods’ event management company, TGR Live, and benefits the Tiger Woods Foundation. The 42-year-old Woods has won a record seven titles in the Farmers and also captured the 2008 U.S. Open, the last of his 14 major titles, in an epic 19-hole playoff over Rocco Mediate at Torrey Pines. Woods wrote on Twitter: “Excited to start my season off in SoCal at @ FarmersInsOpen and @genesisopen.” A pair of aces: Eight year-old Anthony Chung of Alhambra made two holes in one during the Southern California Golf Association Junior Golf Foundation’s Fall League Tournament at Don Knabe Golf Course in Norwalk. Chung, who plays out of Los Amigos Golf Course in Downey, aced the third hole from 75 yards and holed his tee shot form 100 yards at No. 6 in the par-3, nine-hole event. Chung posted a score of 28 and tied for second in the Grammar School Division behind Dylan Brack, who finished at 24. A pair of accolades: Collin Morikawa of La Canada Flintridge is AmateurGolf.com’s 2017 California Player of the Year for the second straight time. The 20-year-old Morikawa, a junior at Cal, captured the award by finishing first in a point system based on major national and state amateur events throughout the year. The highlight of Morikawa’s season was his
PH O T O M ICH A E L W E IN ST E IN
IN THE NEWS
Anthony Chung 12
point system in major amateurs over the course of the year. The 26-year-old Hagestad, from Newport Beach and USC, actually began his run in September of 2016, when he captured the U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship in Elverson, Pa. That earned him a spot in the 2017 Masters in April at Augusta National, where he not only became the first Mid-Amateur champion to make the cut, but finished as low amateur in a tie for 26th. Winning: Pavan Sagoo of England won twice in two months on one of golf’s hallowed regions, the Monterey Peninsula. In January, Sagoo, a senior at St. Mary’s College in Moraga, captured the second McClure Cup by four strokes at Bayonet-Blackhorse Golf Course in Seaside. That follows Sagoo’s December victory at the AmateurGolf.com Christmas Classic at Del Monte Golf Course in Monterey. Yealimi Noh of Concord closed with a 5-under-par 67 to win the Joanne Winter Arizona Silver Belle Championship by three strokes over Elizabeth Wang of San Marino on the South Course at Talking Stick Golf Club in Scottsdale, Ariz. Noh, a 16-year-old junior at Carondelet High who also won the 2017 AJGA Girls Championship, carded seven birdies in the final round and recorded a score of 65-7067—202, 14 under. Jamie Cheatham of Rancho Santa Fe won the AmateurGolf.com La Costa Classic by two strokes over Josh McCollum of Upland on the Legends Course at La Costa Resort and Spa in Carlsbad. Cheatham, a sophomore at Cal, posted a score of 72-69—141, 3-under-par, while McCollum was second at 71-72—143, followed by Clay Seeber of Newport Beach at 74-17—145.
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/ WEST COAST SWING /
40-SOMETHINGS PHIL, TIGER LOOK TO RECAPTURE WINNING WAYS ON THE WEST COAST SWING By Tom LaMarre he West Coast Swing’s present will meet its storied past this year. Over the last 20 years, the average age of winners in the California and Arizona events is over 30, including the two greatest players to come out of the Golden State—Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, the undisputed “King of the West Coast Swing.” However, the young guns have taken over the PGA Tour and last year the average age of the winners of the first seven events on the schedule, including the first two in Hawaii, was 25.1. Justin Thomas, 24 at the time, captured the two events in Hawaii, and
was followed by Hudson Swafford (29) in the CareerBuilder Challenge at PGA West, Jon Rahm (22) of Spain in the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines, Hideki Matsuyama (24) in the Waste Management Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale, Jordan Spieth (23) in the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am and Dustin Johnson (32) in the Genesis Open at Riviera. However, no matter who wins the California and Arizona tournaments this year, much of the talk will be about the 42-year-old Woods and the 47-yearold Mickelson because of who they are. Woods, at worst the second-best golfer of all-time behind Jack Nicklaus,
will begin his latest comeback in the Farmers on Jan. 25-28 at Torrey Pines, where he has won eight times, including the last of his 14 major titles in the 2008 U.S. Open. Then he will tee it up on Feb. 15-18 in the Genesis Open at Riviera, where he first played in a PGA Tour event when he was 16. Surprisingly, he has never won on the George C. Thomas course in Pacific Palisades, and last played there in 2006. “I’m very excited to be back at Riviera,” said Woods, who showed flashes of his old form with a new swing as he tied for ninth in his Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas last month.
PHOTO MICHAEL WEINSTEIN
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/ WEST COAST SWING /
Tiger Woods “I haven’t played at Riviera in a tournament in a very long time. To be able to play in an event that I used to come to as an amateur, as a junior and now as the tournament host, that is on one of the most historic sites in all of golf, it’s a dream come true.” The Genesis Open is now operated by Woods’ event management company, TGR Live, and benefits the Tiger Woods Foundation. His best results in the Los Angelesarea event were second in 1998, when he lost in a playoff to Billy Mayfair at Valencia Country Club the only time
the tournament was not played at Riviera, and a tie for second behind Ernie Els the next year. “I still am and always will be a huge Tiger Woods fan,” Thomas said after playing alongside Woods in the Bahamas. “It was really cool to see him having that much fun and grinding it out and playing well. “If he stays healthy, I really do think he’ll have a great year.” Mickelson, who was an All-American at Arizona State, has claimed 19 of his 42 PGA Tour victories in California and Arizona, but hasn’t won since the 2013
Open Championship at Muirfield to capture a third leg of the Career Grand Slam. Among those West Coast titles are four at Pebble Beach, three at Torrey Pines, three in Tucson, three in Phoenix, two at La Costa, two in the California desert in the old Bob Hope Classic and two at Riviera. Mickelson’s last victory in his two favorite states came in the 2013 Waste Management Phoenix Open, although he nearly tied Mark O’Meara’s record of five wins at Pebble Beach before finishing one stroke behind winner Vaughn Taylor two years ago. Lefty gets another chance to tie O’Meara’s record Feb. 8-11 at this year’s AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, played on three of the Monterey Peninsula’s most heralded courses: Pebble Beach Golf Links, Spyglass Hill Golf Course, and Monterey Peninsula Country Club Shore. The Pro-Am features 156 professionals paired with 156 amateurs for the first three rounds, with the low 25 teams plus ties advancing to the final round of the pro-am part of the event. As always, the amateurs include a number of movie and television stars, prominent business leaders, and family members of the professionals. The ProAm format dates back to founding host Bing Crosby’s National ProfessionalAmateur event in 1937, held in Rancho Santa Fe in southern California, and the “Crosby Clambake” has continued to thrive since moving to its current home of the Monterey Peninsula in 1947. The Crosby name was dropped from the tournament after the 1985 event, with AT&T becoming the title sponsor in 1986. Mickelson ran hot-and-cold last season, but was a driving force as the United States captured the Ryder Cup early in October before tying for third in the Safeway Open at Silverado a week later. “Iron play is back, distance control, putting,” said Mickelson, who has won four titles at Pebble Beach, three in Phoenix, three at Torrey Pines, three in Tucson and two at Riviera. “The game has just come back. My focus is better. I am staying present, focused and hitting the shots. I’m going to win. It’s a matter of time.” That time might come on the West Coast.
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/ WISHBONE BRAWL CHARITY EVENT /
PHOTO GEOFF CUNNINGHAM
Who will get the bigger half of the Wishbone? Left to right – Partners Dean Wilson and Xander Schauffele vs Chris Riley and Charley Hoffman
FOR A CAUSE VINTAGE CLUBS, TOUR PROS, AND RAISING $20,000 FOR MEDICAL RESEARCH MAKE FOR A GREAT DAY AT THE GOAT By Tristan O’Shea n an idyllic Saturday morning after Thanksgiving, as the sun made its way through the towering trees of Goat Hill Park in Oceanside, Calif., the inaugural Wishbone Brawl came and went like a rogue wave – appearing suddenly and impacting with tremendous force. This modern match involving current tour players using vintage clubs to play a mini municipal in the spirit of a meaningful cause hit with so much force, it left everyone involved feeling as though there isn’t just hope for the game of golf, there’s hope for mankind. “It has already exceeded my expectations,” says Dean Wilson, the former tour pro and two-time Goat Hill Park club champion, as he watched the caravan of gallery members park their cars and scamper toward the practice area.
“They’re filing in at 8:30 a.m. for an 11 a.m. tee time. It doesn’t get much better than this.” But it did. And getting back to the “rogue-ness” of this particular wave, the Wishbone Brawl was a rarity because hundreds of people no longer get to see four relevant tour pros wearing shorts and flip-flops while playing persimmon woods, void of grandstands, ropes and “Quiet!” signs. It was unpredictable and appeared suddenly because the idea only had a month to marinate. On a mid-October afternoon, Wilson pitched his friend John Ashworth on the idea of “an event” involving tour players on Thanksgiving weekend at Goat Hill Park. “I was all in,” says Ashworth, “but to be honest, when Dean said that, I didn’t think the idea was going any-
where.” (laughs) “And then, like a day later, Charley Hoffman was in. It looked like Mike Weir was in. At which point, I said, ‘Jesus, we might have to start working on this!’ ” Ashworth co-founded Linksoul, a golf and lifestyle apparel company based in Oceanside, and it was Ashworth in 2013 who led the locals into a golf frenzy when they dramatically saved Goat Hill Park from becoming a billionaire’s brand new set of soccer fields. Having spearheaded the protest, Ashworth is now the name on a 30-year lease to manage “The Goat,” and when Wilson’s idea intersected with Ashworth’s momentum at the muni, no one could’ve predicted the scale and soulful outcome. The Brawl itself included Wilson, who teamed up with Xander Schauffele, the PGA Tour’s rookie of the year, a season that included two wins, one of which was the Tour Championship. They played in an 18-hole best-ball match against Hoffman, who was coming off a season on the PGA Tour that included seven top-5 finishes, a top 10 at the U.S. Open and a win at the Presidents Cup. He teamed up with Chris Riley, the golf coach at the University of San Diego, who has a win on tour (2002 Reno-Tahoe Open), a Walker Cup (1995) and a Ryder Cup (2004) on his resume. The trophy was a big wishbone, but more importantly, the cause was Raegan Donovan, the five-year-old daughter of Ryan Donovan, the golf coach at San Diego State, which is Schauffele’s alma mater. Raegan has been battling Rett Syndrome, a rare neurological disorder, and although she seems to have won the war, the Donovans have been left with hefty hospital bills.
PHOTO GEOFF CUNNINGHAM PHOTO GEOFF CUNNINGHAM
Everyone is tracking Xander’s approach to Oz, the Par 3 9th
Matt Ginella getting a sound bite from Erik Anders Lang
PHOTO GEOFF CUNNINGHAM
/ WISHBONE BRAWL CHARITY EVENT /
A lot of fun and laughter during this inaugural Wishbone Brawl
The Honorable Professor Peter Beames was the Referee for the match
PHOTO GEOFF CUNNINGHAM
Tickets to the Brawl were $25 for adults, kids were free. There were food trucks, drink stands, music and a range clinic, which was hosted by Golf Channel’s Matt Ginella, a Linksoul ambassador and longtime supporter of all things Goat Hill Park. “The Goat, and all that happens here, is what golf is all about,” said Ginella. “And today is yet another day I walk away proud to be a small part of something special at such a unique short course.” Ginella was joined on the mic by Erik Anders Lang of Scratch TV’s Adventures in Golf, who said he felt like Michael J. Fox in “Back to the Future.” “It was as if I had been transported to a different time,” said Lang, “but I was still wearing current clothes.” There were cameras, microphones and drones, and the referee of this particular feel-good adventure in golf was Peter Beames, a swing savant who once played professionally, gave lessons to Gary Player and who now roams The Goat like Gandalf the Grey, spreading wisdom to kids about how to hit fairways and greens and how to avoid the deep bunkers of life. “A day like today shows you the sort of people who are out there on the PGA Tour,” says Beames, who wore a tie, jacket and an umpire wrap on his left arm and played the part to perfection. “That they’d give up their time to come play in something like this, it’s fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. I think we should applaud them.” And applaud they did. From tees to greens, all 18 of them, the foursome was surrounded by support and smiles, none bigger than what were on the faces of the four caddies, all whom are members of Goat Hill Park’s junior caddie academy.
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/ WISHBONE BRAWL CHARITY EVENT /
The Guys having fun giving a putting clinic
John Ashworth taking out the flag on #5 and sharing a laugh with Chris Riley
PHOTO GEOFF CUNNINGHAM
“It seemed like everyone from Oceanside came out to watch,” says Wilson. “It was so positive. It was a good thing for the community. Especially good for the Goat community.” Also especially good was the team of Wilson/ Schauffele, who, at the 4,454-yard par-65 venue, both shot gross scores of 59, which included a combined 15 birdies and a team score of 53. Schauffele, who opened the back nine with four birdies in five holes, enjoyed the Linksoul persimmon woods so much, he kicked around the idea of using the 3-wood as his 5-wood when he gets back out on tour. “They look and feel so sweet,” said Schauffele, 24. “I had hit a persimmon wood once before, but it was a long time ago.” In the grand scheme of things, the outcome of the match seemed insignificant, but for the record, Wilson/ Schauffele closed out team Hoffman/Riley on the 14th hole (5&4) after Schauffele drove the 253-yard par 4, which played uphill, into the wind, with an elevated green. Hats were off, followed closely by handshakes, and then on to a four-hole press for $100 per man, which was halved. But what went to the Donovans as a result of the basic concept of “locals helping locals” was almost $20,000. “It was so special,” said Ashworth. “All the guys and caddies were great. It was organic, had a home-spun feel and it has changed the way we think about future events at The Goat. And it all happened so fast.” Therein lies the rub of a rogue wave, and thus, the tremendous force that was the first of many Wishbone Brawls at Goat Hill Park.
PHOTO GEOFF CUNNINGHAM
The gallery was treated to a special day of shotmaking and socializing
Bay, One ares Ocean art aurant tional dig om awns sh and lunch,
GOLF & TRAVEL
REGIONS By Matt McKay Our year-end issue to close 2017 featured a look at some of the top destinations and things to do all over the Golden State. And we barely scratched the surface. It’s a big state, folks, and there’s just so much to see and do, we decided to top off the tank and head out again in search of more California gems for golf, lodging, eats, entertainment, and just good old-fashioned tourism. Some you may know, but some you won’t … and we think you should. No need to thank us; that’s what we’re here for. So let’s hit the road.
Shasta Cascade EAT OUT CHART ROOM Located right on the charming Crescent Bay, The Chart Room specializes in sea food. One might assume that a restaurant that shares such a close relationship to the Pacific Ocean would deliver in this regard, and the Chart Room delivers. It’s a bustling family restaurant with a casual atmosphere, featuring national flags draped from the ceiling. The locals dig the clam chowder, but other delights from the sea include the Seafood Combo, Prawns and Shrimp, Oysters and Shrimp, and Fish and Chips. It’s open all day with a breakfast, lunch, dinner, and of course, a kid’s menu. 130 Anchor Way Crescent City, CA 95531 ccchartroom.com (707) 464-5993
STAY: HIGHLANDS RANCH RESORT Here’s the deal; why spend the entire day hiking, snowshoeing, or cross-country skiing at one of the world’s most scenic spots, Lassen Volcanic National Park, and retire to a dome tent or bone-chilling cabin when you could come home to one of the warm, sexy, snuggly accommodations at Highlands Ranch Resort? All seven accommodations are new and firstclass, and four are free-standing love dens designed with two in mind. Chef-prepared breakfasts and an on-site bar might temp you to enjoy the great outdoors by looking at it from your cabin windows. But if you decide to venture out, the park is 10 minutes away, and the hotel will send you off with lunch, wine, and cheese. 130 Club Drive Crescent City, CA 95531 email@example.com delnortegolf.com Tel: (707) 458-3214
North Coast GET OUT: LASSEN VOLCANIC NATIONAL PARK So you love winter? Really love winter? Like, you have all the outdoor stuff, including the minus-40 sleeping bags, the heavy gloves, snow-proof boots, and snow shoes? You might be just the hearty soul that’s ready to take on the Lassen Volcanic National Park during the winter months. The main road through the park is closed between the northern outpost, the Loomis Plaza and Ranger Station, and the Kohm Yah-mah-nee Visitor Center in the park’s southeast corner, during the winter months. But both stations are open sporadically year-round, and serve as the jumping-off point for some of the nation’s best snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. Keep in mind it’s the real world, not Six Flags, so don’t fool around when it comes to prep. Check the park’s newsletter at the address above, it’s full of valuable planning information and tempting outdoor activities. P.O. Box 100 Mineral, CA 96063-0100 https://www.nps.gov/lavo/learn/news/upload/Winter-2017-2018-Web.pdf (530) 595-4480
PLAY DEL NORTE GOLF COURSE Is it the best course in California? No. Is it the best course in Northern California? No. Is it a delightful throwback to what was in the world of golf? Yes. Is it surrounded by all the natural wonders its little corner of Northwest California offers? Yes. It’s Del Norte Golf Club, nine holes and 18 tees stretching to just over 6,100 yards. It’s sweet enough to delight the traveling golfer, the Crescent City locals, or a golfer on a hiking trip that just can’t resist pulling out the Sunday bag for a quick nine. 130 Club Drive Crescent City, CA 95531 firstname.lastname@example.org delnortegolf.com Tel: (707) 458-3214
EAT OUT: SUGAR PINE CAFE Another trip back into golf’s yester-year. The home of the first Bing Crosby tournament, Old Brockaway may be the most storied, most famous nine-hole course in the country. From the original Crosby tournament, to frequent visits from the Rat Pack, Old Brockaway was once the, and the only place to play golf in the Tahoe area. Measuring around 3,400 yards with two par-5s, it’s a legitimate challenge featuring skinny fairways narrowed by towering pines, with peek-a-boo sightings of the ancient lake itself. Unlike many nine-hole courses, Old Brockaway offers a full-length driving range, located by the 9th hole behind the Safeway.
5038 Highway 140 Mariposa, CA 95338 www.sugarpinecafe.com (209) 742-7793
RIVER ROCK INN The oldest hotel in the town of Mariposa, the River Rock Inn is a shockingly civilized base camp in the heart of the town known as the gateway to Yosemite National Park. The inn consists of eight updated and well-appointed motel rooms, all of which feature free parking and cable TV on flat-screen televisions. Each room is decorated in an original style, wi-fi is available throughout, and there’s also an on-site bar and a restaurant that draws rave reviews for its food. The hotel owners actively provide the same food it serves guests to firefighters whenever or wherever they may be active in the area. Address: 4993 7th St. Mariposa, CA 95338 www.riverrockinnmariposa.us (209) 966-5793
High Sierra PLAY
OLD BROCKAWAY GOLF COURSE Another trip back into golf’s yester-year. The home of the first Bing Crosby tournament, Old Brockaway may be the most storied, most famous nine-hole course in the country. From the original Crosby tournament, to frequent visits from the Rat Pack, Old Brockaway was once the, and the only place to play golf in the Tahoe area. Measuring around 3,400 yards with two par-5s, it’s a legitimate challenge featuring skinny fairways narrowed by towering pines, with peek-a-boo sightings of the ancient lake itself. Unlike many nine-hole courses, Old Brockaway offers a full-length driving range, located by the 9th hole behind the Safeway.
YOSEMITE NATIONAL PARK One of the Western United States’ most magnificent landscapes, Yosemite features rock formations such as El Capitan and Half-Dome that are literally part of American folklore. High season for visitors is the summer, but those hearty and adventurous enough to take it on in winter are in for a treat, as the park displays its version of a winter wonderland. The park’s Tioga Road (California Route 120) is closed throughout the winter months, but the Glacier Point/Badger Pass Road is plowed to the Yosemite Ski & Snowboard Area (formerly Badger Pass Ski Area) from mid-December though early April, where visitors may indulge in snowboarding and both downhill and cross-country skiing. If you’re the type to take on this type of adventure, you’re likely familiar with tire chains; review the installation procedures before heading out, because they’re often required on park roads.
400 Brassie Avenue Tahoe Vista, CA 96143 email@example.com (530) 546-9909
PO Box 577 Yosemite National Park, CA 95389 www.nps.gov/yose/index.htm (209) 372-0200
GOLF & TRAVEL
PLAY HALF MOON BAY GOLF LINKS There are other Bay Area golf courses - really famous ones - that spring to mind when golfers consider taking on a links course on the Northern California coast. It’s understandable, but insiders know there’s another game in town - or at very least on the other side of the peninsula. Half Moon Bay offers 36 holes of golf, and the small matter of the Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay looming behind the 18th green. The “new” course is the Ocean Course, opened in 1997 and designed by Arthur Hills, a links layout that runs golfers right along the cliffs high above the Pacific Ocean, and bagpipers play each evening as the sun sets. The “old” course is the Old Course, which also offers a par-72 championship challenge, but features a completely different atmosphere, replacing the open, breezy, ocean-y surroundings of the Ocean course with a sequestered, forested feel. 2 Miramontes Point Rd. Half Moon Bay, CA 94019 www.halfmoonbaygolf.com (650) 532-9409
PHOTO: OCEAN PARK MOTEL/CHESTER ROWELL
San Francisco Bay Area
STAY: OCEAN PARK MOTEL Staying at the Ocean Park Motel is, on one hand, sad. Sad that more of the architectural diamonds the United States produced during the art deco age no longer exist. On the other hand, the fact that the Ocean Park Motel still exists, meticulously kept-up and true to its 1937 roots, is a genuine delight. Located in the Sunset District, the adorable structure is a block from the San Francisco Zoo, and two blocks from the Great Highway and Ocean Beach. What makes the property even more of a delight is its prices; in a city known for its outrageous costs, the most expensive rate at Ocean Park is $230 for an in-season two bedroom. Queen rooms are available for as little as $115. Oh yeah - it’s dog-friendly, too! 2690 46th Ave San Francisco, CA 94116 www.oceanparkmotel.com (415) 566-7020
Central Valley PLAY RIVERSIDE GOLF COURSE If you’ve grown tired of too-frequent visits to Tom Fazio’s sprawling green and bunker complexes, or you’re weary hoisting yourself out of Tom Lehman/John Fought bunkers, take that trip to Fresno and try out Riverside Golf Course. Riverside is an unmolested William P. “Billy” Bell design, a perfect example of what Bell was famous for. While the course has never been remodeled, the greens’ subsoil has been brought up to current USGA standards. Built in 1939 as a Works Progress Administration project for the city of Fresno - part of the reason it’s known as the “Big Muni” - it’s literally the golf course built by the public, for the public, and priced for the public. 7492 North Riverside Dr. Fresno, CA 93722 www.playriverside.com (559) 275-5900
STAY: UNIVERSITY PLAZA WATERFRONT HOTEL Is this really Stockton? Yep, and you’ll be able to tell by your final bill. The University Plaza has all the shiny perks of a new, modern hotel without the Bay Area prices. In fact, one can stay in the hotel’s Presidential Suite for the price of a single night in a “deluxe” room in San Francisco - you might be able to save enough money on your University Plaza hotel room to rent a limo to the San Francisco International Airport 86 miles away. Of course, most who use the hotel will be there for just a couple of days for a convention, and the hotel can handle events up to 400 attendees. Others will be there for only a night as they’re “just passin’ through.” If that’s the case, it’s right off I-5. 110 West Fremont Street Stockton, CA 95202 www.universityplazawaterfronthotel.com (209) 944-1140
GOLF & TRAVEL
Los Angeles County PLAY
PLAY MONARCH DUNES GOLF CLUB What’s the most underrated golf course in California? We think the Old Course at Monarch Dunes, a Pascuzzo and Pate design in Nipomo, is a strong candidate. First, the conditions: we’ve sampled the course twice; the first time, the course was blanketed in fog, and drives disappeared into a wall of gray soup. The visuals were amazing and unforgettable. The second time, the sun was blazing warmly, and the course seemed to shine in reaction to the brilliant light. Put those sights and sounds together with the beautifully-presented course that seems to unfold naturally as it flows through the sand dunes and seaside features, and it’s hard to resist being overcome with golf satisfaction. The facility boosted up its profile and portfolio two years after its 2006 opening by adding the “Challenge Course,” a 1,750-yard, 12-hole par 3 course, featuring architectural bones reminiscent of the Old Course.
RANCHO PARK GOLF COURSE Come on, really. If you love golf, it doesn’t matter if you’re a member at the snootiest club in Southern California, or play a majority of your rounds at an “upscale” daily fee course, there’s nothing like the feeling of playing at a fully-outfitted, big city-owned municipal course. Los Angeles is fortunate to have Rancho Park, a 6,600-yard, par 71 course opened in 1949 and designed by William Johnson and William P. “Billy” Bell. While the period-example golf course is the main attraction, Rancho Park has the goods to keep you all day, including a coffee shop and full-sized driving range with covered hitting spaces. It’s stationed in a densely-populated area of West L.A., so gather up a foursome of friends and prepare to take it as it comes. 10460 W. Pico Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90064 www.golf.lacity.org/cdp_rancho.htm (310) 838-7373
1606 Trilogy Parkway Nipomo, CA 93444 www.monarchdunes.com (805) 343-9459
STAY: SPYGLASS INN When you picture a coastal California hotel in your mind, it might be the Spyglass Inn. Completely renovated in 2015, the hotel is low-slung and ranch-y, accented with pastels and pristine grounds, with rooms perched above the beach, giving the Ocean View rooms an unlimited Pacific Ocean view. Some rooms offer fireplaces, and for those that don’t, there are fire pits scattered throughout the property. The Spyglass Inn Restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and is well-known by locals and regulars for its food, ambience, and views. 2705 Spyglass Drive, Pismo Beach, CA 93449 www.spyglassinn.com 1-800-824-2612 805-773-4855 firstname.lastname@example.org
EAT OUT PINK’S Ever had bunches of people tell you how a movie was so brilliant, then when you see the movie, your expectations are so great, it’s easy to be disappointed? Well, we know you’ve probably heard of Pink’s Hollywood hot dog stand before, maybe more than once. But it’s our job to recommend what we think is wonderful, so let us add to the stand’s legend with this assurance - if you love hot dogs, there is no way you will be disappointed. For if there is a link, ingredient, or condiment you’ve ever wanted in combination - and a ton you’ve never considered - Pink’s has you covered. By the way - if you want to do Pink’s like an Angelino, keep that line moving and be READY TO ORDER when it’s your turn. You’ll be in line for 20 minutes, so you’ll have plenty of time to peruse the easy-to-read menu. Order. Move. Next please. 709 N. La Brea Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90038 www.pinkshollywood.com (323) 931-4223
HOME OF THE SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA PGA
FEATURES • GPS Carts • 2 Championship Golf Courses • Come experience the Symetra Tour IOA Championship
Anytime Monday through Sunday Expires February 28th, 2018 Practice balls included
36211 Champions Dr, Beaumont, CA 92223 | (951) 845-0014 | www.tukwetcanyon.com
GOLF & TRAVEL
Orange County STAY:
PLAY BLACK GOLD GOLF CLUB Black Gold is a par 72 Arthur Hills design that stretches to over 6,700 yards as it snakes through Orange County’s golden canyons, occasionally offering dramatic vistas of the coastal cities to its west. Built in 2000, during what some call “The Tiger Boom,” Black Gold is the perfect example of what owners and developers did back then - they assessed the public golf situation around them, then built a public facility offering upscale amenities that were previously only available to private club members and resort guests. Along with the course, attention was paid to practice, dining, convention, and wedding facilities in order to maximize its interaction with the surrounding communities, and there’s very few private functions the 20,000-square foot clubhouse can’t handle.
THE RESORT AT PELICAN HILL Did you read those words, “Newport Coast?” Did you immediately begin to relax and feel pampered? Don’t waste that frame of mind go ahead and book a Pelican Hill vacation. A sprawling Tuscan-style resort, every appointment and every detail has been addressed, from the stunning guest rooms, bungalows, and villas, to the amazing Coliseum Pool, perfectly round and 136 feet in diameter. There are six restaurants/cafes on campus, Crystal Cove for beach access, the Spa at Pelican Hill, and the Shops at Pelican Hill. Oh yeah - if you can pry yourself away from the Coliseum Pool, there are two 18-hole golf courses designed by Tom Fazio you might want to check out. The North Course essentially plays along the coastline, while the South Course plays “inland” by contrast, a forested, parkland play with peek-a-boo ocean views. 22701 S Pelican Hill Rd. Newport Coast, CA 92657 www.pelicanhill.com (855) 315-8214
1 Black Gold Dr. Yorba Linda, CA 92886 714.961.0060 blackgoldgolf.com
Inland Empire STAY:
THE MISSION INN HOTEL AND SPA Think you’ve already stayed in the Inland Empire’s nicest hotel? But you say you haven’t stayed at The Mission Inn Hotel and Spa? Check it out and see if you don’t revise your opinion. The great American humorist Will Rogers said of the Mission Inn: “It is the most unique hotel in America. It’s a monastery, a museum, a fine hotel, a home, a boardinghouse, a mission, an art gallery and an aviator’s shrine. It combines the best features of all of the above. If you are ever in any part of California, don’t miss the famous Mission Inn of Riverside.” We’re not going to pretend we can describe it better than that.
OAK VALLEY GOLF CLUB Put on a blindfold. Take a cart ride out to any of Oak Valley’s fairways. Remove the blindfold. You’ll swear you’re standing on one of Southern California’s best golf courses. And who’s to say you’re wrong? Were it not for the surrounding mountains, you might think you’re in the Texas Hill Country. This 7,100-yard, par 72 Schmidt-Curley design utilizes the hilly, scrubby land to create a real gem; many claim it’s the best in the Inland Empire. Green fees are remarkably reasonable for a course of such quality, and the location in Beaumont - where it competes with at least three other facilities for Beaumont, Banning, and Calimesa golfers - means it’s rarely crowded, so pace of play is usually brisk.
3649 Mission Avenue Riverside CA 92501 http://www.missioninn.com (951) 784-0300
1888 Golf Club Drive Beaumont, CA 92223 www.oakvalleygolf.com 951-769-7200
YORBA LINDA CITY CHAMPIONSHIP Saturday & SUNDAY | March 10-11, 2018
- black gold golf club PRESENTED BY
GREEN FEES CART FEES RANGE BALLS TEE PRIZES Snacks / beverages BBQ BUFFET (SUNDAY) PRIZES & AWARDS - AMATEUR GOLFERS ONLY USGA Handicap Index Required Registration & Additional Info:
Black Gold Golf Club 1 Black Gold Dr. Yorba Linda, CA 92886 (714) 961-0060 BlackGoldGolf.com
GOLF & TRAVEL
San Diego County
GET OUT: KIA CLASSIC (LPGA TOUR) On the pillars that secure the gate at Bonita Golf Course is a sign that The Kia Classic has become one of the top stops on the LPGA tour for two - no, make it three - very big reasons. One is the setting, at the Four Seasons Aviara in sensational Carlsbad. Two is the golf course, an Arnold Palmer design which always seems to produce a worthy champion. Three, it’s the last event on the LPGA Tour schedule before the tour’s first major, the ANA Inspiration, conducted the following week in Rancho Mirage. That means it’s the last chance for pros who aren’t already qualified to sneak into the ANA field in the nick of time. For more information, including tickets, visit http://www.kiaclassic.com. Aviara Golf Club 7447 Batiquitos Dr. Carlsbad, CA 92011 www.kiaclassic.com (760) 603-6900
Deserts PLAY HAWK’S LANDING AT BLUE SKIES Imagine, if you will, a golf course where you could play 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, or 18 holes … then make the trip to Hawk’s Landing at Blue Skies and see how close your imagination is to reality. With pace of play one of the biggest issues in growing the game of golf, Hawk’s Landing has actually put into practice an idea most have only considered to this point: route a golf course that gives players the option of playing something other than nine or 18 holes. The current owners of the course took over the bones of an old country club, and massaged it into a course with four three-hole loops and a full-sized driving range, allowing players to basically play as many holes as they want - or don’t want. 55100 Martinez Trl. Yucca Valley, CA 92284 www.hawkslandinggolf.com 760-365-0033
STAY: HOTEL DEL CORONADO If you made a list of the 10 Grand Dames of the United States’ hotel industry, the Hotel Del Coronado would have to be included. Built in 1888 to be “the talk of the Western World,” “the Del” occupies a spot on Coronado Island just off the coast from San Diego, which means one thing right away - the views of the city will be second-to-none. The hotel is a character in and of itself, with its trademark red roof, wood construction, and assorted tales of hauntings. And while the hotel has been updated to include all the amenities one might desire in the early part of the 21st century, it’s the hotel’s charm and amazing public spaces (the Rotunda or Lobby, the Crown Room, the Ballroom, etc.), along with its top-class beach, that help visitors justify the room rate. 1500 Orange Ave. Coronado, CA 92118 www.hoteldel.com (619) 435-6611 (619) 435-6611
GET OUT: PAPPY & HARRIET’S PIONEERTOWN PALACE A real testimony to the beauty of taking in live music at Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace in Pioneertown (named after the Sons of the Pioneers), just north of Yucca Valley, is that many of the top shows coming up in the next couple of months are sold out. It’s an authentic roadhouse and former biker bar set in a town which consists mostly of the bar, a handful of ranchettes, and Main St., an old yet well-preserved movie and TV set from the 40s and 50s. Leon Russell, Sir Paul McCartney, and Robert Plant are among the legends that have performed at Pappy & Harriet’s. The roadhouse also presents an Open Mike Night nearly every Monday, and the Sunday Band performs, appropriately, every Sunday. By the way - out in back of the roadhouse, they’ve got some bungalows - actually, it’s a handful of spartan hotel rooms at the Pioneertown Motel, a great place to go down slow after a live show. 53688 Pioneertown Rd. Pioneertown, CA 92268 www.pappyandharriets.com (760) 365-5956
THE BEST VALUE IN PUBLIC GOLF FOR THE LOS ANGELES AREA!
EXPERIENCE THE BEAUTY, SPECTACULAR VIEWS, MAJESTIC FORESTS, AND VARIED LANDSCAPE JOIN THE 2018 CANYON CLUB! ONLY $39 PER MONTH INCLUDES: • 1 Free Round of Golf per month to use anytime • Free Birthday Round - to use 1 week before or 1 week after your Birthday • Discounted Green Fees that include cart rental • Plus more! Ask our staff for the details www.debellgolf.com | 818.845.0022 1500 East Walnut Ave. Burbank, CA
HOME OF 2013 TEACHER OF THE YEAR
ZACH ALLEN PGA SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA SECTION PGA
COURTESY FRIENDLY HILLS COUNTRY CLUB
/ INSIDE THE GATES /
Challenging History CELEBRATING ITS 50TH ANNIVERSARY, FRIENDLY HILLS COUNTRY CLUB PRESERVES THE ORIGINAL HERALDED LAYOUT OF JIMMY HINES
riendly Hills Country Club in the hills above Whittier has been recognized as one of the finest tests of golf in the San Gabriel Valley from the day it opened in 1968. And newcomers who will play the intriguing layout this year as it celebrates its 50th anniversary will be faced with virtually the same challenges that golf course architect Jimmy Hines gave those golfers who played it on opening day. Hines’ masterpiece, virtually unchanged, features dramatic elevation changes, creative switchbacks, huge sloping greens and bunkering shapes that include design features that were ahead of their time. “Jimmy played in several Masters, and was also on the Ryder Cup team,
and not a lot of people know that,” Jay Prestella, head pro at Friendly Hills, told Fore Magazine. “And I think his architecture is influenced a little bit by Augusta National. You can see it in the type of greens he put in here.” About the only noticeable change to the course from that first day was the expansion of the unique island tee on the first hole, although there have been a few other minor tweaks here and there that only regulars at the course might notice. However, on the drawing board is a full bunker renovation being overseen by architect Casey O’Callaghan. The biggest changes from the club’s beginning were construction of the classic Contemporary California clubhouse in 1974 and the near-doubling
of that structure in 1987. The original 1968 clubhouse remains in use, housing club offices. Hines’ classic course plays to a par of 70 over 6,412 yards from the back tees, with a 136 slope and 71.5 rating. For recreational golfers, it’s very playable at 6,112 from the white tees and 5,645 from the reds. “It’s the longest 6,400 yards you’ll ever play,” Prestella said. The course grabs the golfer’s attention from the start with that island first tee and the opening hole is one of two par-5s on the course, measuring 567 yards uphill from the tips. The bunkers on the right can be in play off the tee, but beware of the creek on the left. Use one more club on the approach to the elevated green and try
COURTESY FRIENDLY HILLS COUNTRY CLUB
COURTESY FRIENDLY HILLS COUNTRY CLUB COURTESY FRIENDLY HILLS COUNTRY CLUB
COURTESY FRIENDLY HILLS COUNTRY CLUB
to stay below the hole. The par-4 4th, rated No. 1 on the card, plays 458 yards from the blues downhill to a well-bunkered green, often into the wind, but this hole is a treat on clear days with Catalina Island visible in the distance. No. 8 is a picturesque downhill par-3 at 173 yards from the back to a green surrounded by trees and six bunkers. One less club usually is the play, although check the wind before deciding and you might wind up with a birdie opportunity. The 15th hole is the shortest of the two par-5s, playing 499 yards from the blues, but the tee shot is fairly tight with trees on the right, and water comes into play on the second shot on the right and front of the green. The prudent play is to lay up on the second shot and play for birdie with an accurate approach to a two-tiered green that slopes severely from back to front. The 393-yard 18th hole provides a dramatic finish, with a bunker down the left side of a fairway that slopes from the right toward a lake further down on the left. Go too far to the right and a tall tree stands in the path to a green protected by water on the left and behind. Time has not changed the golf experience on this gorgeous property once owned by Pio Pico, California governor in the mid-1800s, and Friendly Hills Country Club is easily accessible from anywhere in Southern California from the 57, 91, 605, 60 and 5 freeways. And itâ€™s just as friendly as it was 50 years ago.
EQUIPMENT: HONMA GALLERY AT ROGER DUNN
EXPERIENCE HONMA AT Santa Ana superstore location opens ROGER DUNN Honma Gallery Store O
ne of golf’s most prestigious club brands, Honma Golf, has opened a Gallery Store in the Roger Dunn Golf Shops Santa Ana, Calif. 60,000 square-foot superstore. The Gallery gives everyone the opportunity to see and test Honma’s club lines, and even have a fitting by onsite technicians. You are in for an interactive experience where Honma’s TOUR WORLD, BERES and Be ZEAL brands are on display, but best of all, everyone can try them in the 500-square foot Gallery that includes a dedicated hitting bay. It’s your chance to experience why Japan-based Honma has been one of the leading golf club manufacturers since its founding in 1959. The Roger Dunn Golf Shops superstore carries a huge inventory of clubs, balls and accessories at prices matching any in the market, but, best of all, in addition to being the place for everything golf, the customer service makes you want to come back. One of the drivers you can “test drive” in the Gallery is the visually appealing BERES S-06 made to Honma’s exceptional standard of craftsmanship for the performance every golfer wants. The
titanium club head has the Key Groove Technology found only on the Honma driver which emphasizes the curve of the club face towards the toe and heel and helps to maintain ball speed if the impact happens to be off center. This also makes the sweet spot larger and that translates into more forgiveness and perhaps best of all a lot more confidence … you just know you’re going to hit a good drive. The stock shaft in the BERES S-06 is special as well. It is the ARMRQ X made with a 10-axis carbon fiber wrap for a softer center to give a lighter, stronger and more forgiving performance. Put all this together with a light weight grip and the BERES S-06 has a total weight of only 280 grams, giving those with slower swing speeds the chance for better contact, added ball speed and more distance. The Gallery, though a niche concept relatively new to golf, has been described as having a little Las Vegas in it, being cool-looking and high-tech with displays to best show the Honma products. The merger of club fitting and the retail experience in a different way gives golfers a unique opportunity. Other major brands may have stand-alone displays but The Gallery by itself is a great reason to visit the Roger Dunn Santa Ana superstore to experience Honma.
WHERE LEGENDS PLAY.
Expected to appear.
March 7â€“11, 2018
NEWPORT BEACH COUNTRY CLUB
Toshiba Classic...where legacies continue. For tickets, visit: ToshibaClassic.com or local Roger Dunn Golf Shops
UPDATE YOUR GEAR AND GAME FOR
2018 BY ED TRAVIS or golfers, winter can be a “hot-stove league” with talk about all the new club introductions and which ones look like something we want to check out. Here at California Golf+Travel, we’re golf enthusiasts who, just like our readers, are discussing the same topics and asking the same questions. So here are several of the latest clubs we like and think are worth investigating further:
Callaway Golf Rogue Driver, $500: A whole new Callaway family called Rogue has been announced, and we especially like the Rogue driver, which builds on the success of last year’s Epic model. The titanium bars behind the face are hourglass shaped, saving 25% of the weight, and, combined with their new X Face VFT—a variable thickness design— helps to preserve ball speed when impact is not exactly in the center. Rogue comes in three choices: the standard, a draw model and Sub Zero low spin configuration. Cleveland Golf Launcher HB Driver, $300: Cleveland took a long look at the golf equipment market and concluded club prices continued to go up, but club performance wasn’t keeping pace. The result was their new Launcher line and the Launcher HB driver is especially worth looking at. It doesn’t sport an adjustable hosel (so the hosel can be ultra-lightweight) but there is a newly designed crown, a cup face construction, and fins on the sole that flex at impact to help provide added ball speed. Companion Launcher HB fairway woods ($220) and Launcher HB hybrids ($200) are available. Honma Golf Beres IS-06:The wide sole flange of the L-Cup face of the new IS-06 irons from Honma is a new design that increases ball trajectory and has three slots to promote additional flexing of the face at impact. The long irons have similar shapes and head size to hybrids which makes them very easy to hit. The company says each head of the IS-06 family is hand crafted with a premium look not found usually in cavity back irons. See full story at HonmaGolfUSA.com.
TaylorMade Golf M3 and M4 Drivers: The M3 ($499) replaces the M1 with an improved Y-shaped track in which the two weights slide to adjust ball flight bias. The big news is both the M3 and M4 ($429, taking over from the M2) have a “Twist Face” or variable thickness and loft design that is a marked improvement on the old-fashioned bulge and roll. The face is slightly closed at the bottom near the heel and open a little at the high toe area so that impacts low on the heel slice less and those high towards the toe hook less.
Titleist 718 AP3 Irons, $1,299 8-iron set: The hollowblade AP3s are billed as a “player’s distance iron” midway between the game-improvement 718 AP1s and the player’s model 718 AP2s. AP3s have an unsupported L-face with tungsten weights (an average of 84.9 grams per head) placed low towards the sole and in the toe of the long and mid irons. This helps produce higher ball speed across the face and off-center hit performance similar to a gameimprovement iron. Tour Edge Golf CBX Fairway Wood, $250: Known for their fairway woods and hybrids, the newest from Tour Edge offers some interesting features. The beta titanium cup face is thinner and stronger and brazed to the steel body, giving more distance with a higher trajectory and lower spin. Part of the sole is a carbon composite allowing the center of mass to be moved closer to the face in this new longer and wider head. When ball impact is off-center, the variable thickness face helps to preserve ball speed.
EVERYONE’S FASHION It used to be staying warm, dry and comfortable on the course could be a challenge, but apparel makers continue to make that easy – and fashionable – with lots of new items and choices in color and style. Here are a few we like and are sure you will also:
Adicross Bounce Golf Shoes, $120: Adidas knows athletic shoes and the Bounce has a die-cut EVA midsole that is both comfortable and gives great stability as you swing. The textile upper is breathable and lightweight plus very durable. The Adiwear outsole has their Puremotion flexibility design with 181 lugs giving a green-friendly grip in any weather. G/Fore USA Longwing Gallivanter, $225: Stylish, comfortable and worn by the 2017 United States Walker Cup Team in a classic brogue make this shoe an attractive choice. The shoe is washable, anti-microbial and the sock liner is a triple density foam for lots of cushioning. The pebble grain leather upper is both good looking and waterproof matched with a lightweight sole which has a traction-efficient cleat placement.
Linksoul Long-Sleeve Coast Highway Polo, $88: Players who wore and liked the classic LS101 short sleeve polo will love this long-sleeve companion. Made with the same Supima cotton, it’s still machine washable. The contemporary 4-button placket fit has all the comfort and function we like and, as Linksoul says, “As dependable as its sibling, this is ‘favorite shirt’ material.” Available in four basic colors: white, blue, black and burgundy.
Nexbelt Pitch Black, $89.99: The Pitch Black belt is the latest from Nexbelt. There is a choice of eight textured colors with contrasting stitching: storm grey, smoke grey, white, red, navy, tobacco brown and cognac brown and each has a matte black buckle. Not only does this one look great on the course but it doubles as a dress or casual belt. Made of soft leather, each has the famous Nexbelt ratchet closure.
TravisMathew Senora Jacket, $134.95: “It’s what’s on the inside that counts,” says TravisMathew and the expressive print on the mesh lining of the Senora jacket matches that of their Squid Roe polo and creates lots of possibilities. Made of a polyester/Spandex blend cationic fabric for a “heathered” look, this jacket is ideal on or off the course. Puma Ignite PWRADAPT, $170: Real comfort construction with a mesh bootie replacing the usual tongue that gives an all around fit and support. High stress areas of the upper have an ultra-thin TPU frame to increase stability throughout the swing. The midsole has Puma’s IGNITE Foam which gives both stable cushioning and energy return. The new PWRADAPT sole system has 3-dimensional traction with added cushioning for ultimate performance and comfort. All this and a two-year waterproof guarantee.
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Practice With Great Feedback. 11
The Dave Pelz Putting Tutor
- Set Up Perfectly - Refine Your Stroke 10
- Improve Your GreenReading
pelzgolf.com JAN/FEB 2018
USE THIS EASY (FAMILIAR) SWING FOR BETTER SAND SHOTS
By Dave Pelz ave you heard people say you have to make a choppy V-shaped swing to hit a good sand shot? Don’t do it. Let me tell you an easier and more reliable way. Pros use the same swing in the sand as they do out of grass. Picture a shot sitting up in light rough. Take your 60-degree lob wedge and position the ball directly in the center of your stance. You want the club to hit the ball, then make a divot. The bottom
of your swing arc, as you move your weight forward in the swing, is just ahead of the center of your stance. I want to contact the ball first and fly it about 50 yards from this light-rough lie, so I take the club back to the Nine O’ Clock position (backswing stops parallel to the ground) and make a smooth swing to a full finish. Positioning the ball in the center of my stance has allowed me to catch the ball clean so it flies reliable distance.
DAVE PELZ is golf’s foremost authority on the short game and putting. In his four decades of teaching, 10 of his professional students have won a total of 20 majors. Golf Digest called Pelz, author of eight instructional books and producer of 150 30-minute instructional shows on Golf Channel, one of “Golf’s 25 Most Influential Figures of the 20th Century.” Each year, Pelz’s schools in Florida, California, Georgia, Texas, Colorado, New York, Michigan and Ireland help thousands of golfers improve their scores. Visit www.pelzgolf.com for more information.
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Now, let’s move into the sand and take the same set up position. This time, you’ll flare your front toe and position the ball in your stance so it is even with the heel of your lead foot. This is a forward ball position. Now, rotate the club face open so the club doesn’t dig when you impact the sand. You’re now ready to make the same swing in the sand as you did from light rough. The exact same swing, but you’re hitting the sand first this time instead of the ball. Remember, from that lie in light rough, the ball flew 50 yards. This time, we’re getting about a 10 yard sand with the same Nine O’ Clock position and smooth acceleration to a full finish. You don’t need a special, complicated swing in the sand. If you just practice putting the ball forward and opening the club face, you can use that same reliable lob-wedge swing you use from light rough. Try this shot. Practice it a little bit and you’ll see your sand shots flying right toward the hole.
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CURE YOUR SLICE WITH A BOWED LEFT WRIST 1 By John Burckle
ost amateur golfers always seem to hit the ball right or have a left to right ball flight (for the right-handed player). This is caused by an open club face. The key is to learn what is an open, square, or a closed club face. We call this club face recognition. If you’ve been watching golf on TV lately, then you probably noticed or heard commentators talk about a “bowed left wrist” or “shut club face” that some of the top young players in the world, such as Dustin Johnson, Zach Johnson or Jon Rahm, utilize. They all have a bowed wrist or closed club faces in their swings. If you can learn some of these positions and feels, you will learn to cure that slice. In this photo of Dustin Johnson (Image 1), notice how his left wrist is bowed at the top of his backswing. This bowed wrist position closes his club face. Most amateurs are in the opposite position at this point. Because of his bowed wrist, or closed club face, Dustin won’t have to do much with his hands to square the club at impact. If your club face happens to be open at the top of your backswing, you’ll have to make a big effort to rotate the club face square at impact in a very short time which most amateurs seem to struggle doing.
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ERIC WOODS – Founder 30-years teaching experience 2-Time Canadian Tour Order of Merit Champion (’93-’94) South American Tour Order of Merit Champion (’92) Canadian Tour Low Stroke Average (’94) International Tour member: Asian, Australian, Canadian, South American, South African JOHN BURCKLE – Director of Instruction 25 years teaching experience 80 Professional Wins 6x Golden State Tour Order of Merit Champion Asian Tour member (’84-’86)
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2 If you can learn to bow your wrist like Dustin at the top of your backswing and maintain that feel on the downswing as he does here in Image 2 (notice how his left wrist and club face are parallel to each other), you will have a much easier time returning the club face to square at impact. You don’t have to get to the extreme wrist position Dustin obtains in his swing. The key is to feel what it’s like to close the club face with your wrists at the top of the backswing, then maintain that feel as your arms and body unwind towards the ball, thus educating your hands and feeling the difference between an open and closed club face. This is not something new – players such as Lee Trevino and Tom Lehman made great careers playing with the same bowed left wrist positions.
JOHN BURCKLE has 27 years of professional playing experience, including the PGA Tour, Nationwide Tour, Asian Tour and local mini tour events. He has 17 years of teaching experience with students ranging from PGA Tour players to beginners, and runs his JB Golf lesson programs out of the Golf Lab in Santa Ana. Contact John at email@example.com.
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USGA REGIONAL ALLIANCES
NCGA, SCGA JOIN NEW USGA REGIONAL ALLIANCE USGA CREATED ALLIANCE TO SUPPORT, STIMULATE GRASSROOT GOLF PROGRAMS
ifty-nine regional golf associations have entered into a new relationship with the United States Golf Association to enhance the golfer experience at the state and local levels in the United States, the USGA announced in January. Among those regional associations are the Northern California Golf Association (NCGA) and Southern California Golf Association (SCGA). The NCGA, headquartered in Pebble Beach, has served the golfers of Northern California since 1901. After more than a century of service, the NCGA remains dedicated to making golf more affordable and accessible than ever, while running one of the strongest tournament schedules in the country. More than 150,000 members, from San Luis Obispo to the Oregon and Nevada borders, enjoy all that the NCGA has to offer. Learn more about the NCGA at www.ncga.org. The SCGA, headquartered in Studio City, was founded in 1899 and is one of the largest regional associations in the country, with more than 150,000 members in more than 1,200 course and affiliate member clubs. The SCGA is devoted to providing golfers with the best experience possible. Its primary goal is to enhance the enjoyment of the game for those who actively live the golf lifestyle or have just learned to swing a club. Learn more about the SCGA at www.scga.org. These Allied Golf Associations (AGAs), including the NCGA and SCGA, supported by the USGA’s five existing regional affairs offices, will administer the USGA Handicap and Course Rating Systems within defined geographic areas across the country. In addition, they will serve as the community’s primary resource for USGA services such as championship qualifiers, governance, golf facility support and programs that help grow and improve the long-term health of the game. “Regional golf associations are a vital part of the golf community and the USGA,” said Mike Davis, USGA CEO. “As the game moves forward into the future, we feel this formalized new alliance of working together on grassroots programs will improve how we serve golfers and providing a healthy foundation from which the entire golf community can grow.”
Newly recognized AGAs were identified through a nearly year-long discovery process that encouraged collaboration among existing golf organizations within each state and region, sharing best practices and leveraging programs that have made a positive impact. The resulting relationship will enable AGAs to provide a variety of competitive playing opportunities that engage more golfers of all levels within their region. The AGAs will also serve as local experts for education on topics such as modernizing golf’s rules, the new World Handicap System and related governance functions. Each AGA will also have direct access to USGA research, funding for programs such as USGA P.J. Boatwright Internships, data and technology, additional expertise to better serve the health of golf facilities and support of national grow-the-game initiatives including PLAY9. One of the alliance’s most significant benefits to golfers will be the centralized computation of USGA Handicap Indexes in the United States to improve efficiency, consistency and governance oversight. The move to a more modernized, digital platform will also empower Allied Golf Associations to more deeply engage golfers within their community through rich, real-time player data. An AGA Council has been formed to share information, help ongoing service delivery and provide continuous feedback directly to the USGA to better serve golfers and golf clubs. The 12-member council consists of AGA executive directors who will represent regions and markets throughout the United States. The alliance marks the latest step by the USGA to more deeply engage the local and regional golf community. It complements the USGA’s existing presence in all five major golf regions in the United States – Northeast, Great Lakes, Southeast, Central and West – where dedicated Regional Affairs directors currently serve in residence. In addition to its five Regional Affairs directors, the USGA also supports golf clubs and facilities through the USGA Green Section, providing agronomic expertise through 13 regional offices.
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THE PHILOSOPHY OF GOLF
ON EPICURUS AND GETTING OVER YOUR FEARS ON THE COURSE By Suzy Evans, J.D., Ph.D.
he ancient Greek philosopher Epicurus believed that it’s a waste of time to fear your own death. In fact, he believed that once you get over this fear, you will live more intensely and increase your chances of achieving happiness and living a good life. The same idea can be applied on the course. Maybe you’ve felt anxious when you’re setting up for a big shot, and, suddenly, you become self-conscious, tentative or afraid that you’re going to hit a terrible shot. So what happens? Your fear of failure causes you to tense up, which negatively affects the integrity and trajectory of your swing and — yep! — you slice or shank it, exactly what you were afraid was going to happen. Some people might call this a self-fulfilling prophecy. But Epicurus would tell us that once we get over our fears, our mind will free itself up and we will feel more calm and relaxed, which will increase our chances of consistently hitting solid shots. But how, exactly, is this done? Epicurus tells us that philosophy can help because he believed that philosophy can help us change our lives. Or, to be more precise, change the way we choose to live our life — and choose to play the game. Do you want to be consumed by anxiety, frustrations, and fears? Or do you want to feel happy, laid back, and relaxed? The choice is yours. William James, the most prominent American psychologist of the nineteenth century, believed that the practical manifestations of this idea — the doctrine of Free Will — was “the most important finding of the first halfcentury of University research into the workings of the mind.” That is, people pretty much become what they think about themselves. Coaching legend John Wooden, who led his UCLA teams to nine NCAA men’s basketball championships, expressed the same idea. Winners and losers, he said, are self-determined. And noted sports psychologist Dr. Bob Rotella agrees: “Free will,” he says, “means we can, in a real sense, control our own lives. On the golf course, it means that a player can choose to think about his ball flying true to the pin, or veering into the woods.”
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And Epicurus would say the same thing. In life and on the links, we can choose to be calm, confident, and relaxed or we can choose to be anxious, frustrated, and uptight. Consider Dustin Johnson. Whether collapsing under pressure on major tournament Sundays or coolly clinching his first major at the U.S. Open at Oakmont, he always appears to be calm and relaxed, like he’s playing a casual match with friends instead of a highstakes, PGA tournament. That was the same case when he came roaring back at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. In the toughest conditions at Firestone in nearly a decade, he made it look easy when he closed with a 4-under 66 and rallied from a three-shot deficit against Jason Day to clinch the title. Looking characteristically calm and relaxed, he said that his U.S. Open win felt like getting “a huge monkey” off his back, which allowed him to play more carefree — and fear free — than ever before. “I’m definitely a little more relaxed out there on the golf course, especially coming down the stretch,” he said. “Today I felt I was in a really good place — really calm, collected, just focusing on what I was doing. Just playing golf.” Johnson’s mental state that day represents Epicureanism at its highest and finest level of play. In other words, once you get over your fears on the course, you will feel more calm, collected, and relaxed, which will help you increase your chances of consistently hitting solid shots. Or at least that’s what Epicurus would say. So, here’s a quick tip courtesy of Epicurus: the next time you hit a bad shot, allow yourself to think about it for three seconds and then purge that bad memory from your mind. Erase it. DELETE IT. Then, as you set up on your next swing, think about the greatest shot you’ve ever hit and how it felt. By replacing negative thoughts with positive memories, you will feel more calm and relaxed, which will help you increase your chances of living well and playing well — and that, as Epicurus would say, is the whole point of philosophy and the whole point of the game. And there you have it: Epicurus and golf.
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Published on Mar 14, 2018