Tons of stories on the Masters this week, as one would expect. Few of them offer much insight. For example, Andrew Carter at the Orlando Sentinel points out that Augusta is a place “few people actually see.” Of course that ignores the throngs that come to the event every year, or the millions who watch it on TV. I guess it is all in the phrasing.
San Francisco golf writer Art Spander’s piece is worth a read though. Essentially a column looking back at the four decades he’s covered the Masters, he notes the 1966 Masters was one of the most interesting for him with Ben Hogan shooting a 66 in the third round.
There’s a fascinating account of Woods’ win 10 years ago in the Washington Post. Worth a read just for Woods’ take on his father’s role in his first win:
“I guess for me, personally, now that my father is no longer here, I know how important that hug was to me on the last hole,” Woods said two weeks ago. “You know, the year before, he had a heart attack at the Tour Championship, and he ended up having heart surgery again. He had complications. I was in Florida and flew straight back, and he was actually dead for a while. . . . He used to tell the story that: ‘Yeah, I saw this warm light, I was kind of headed toward it. I said hey, you know what, I grew up in Kansas, so let me go back the other way.’
“And when he went back the other way, all of a sudden he heard the [medical monitors] beeping and he came back. He just always used to say, ‘I’m not ready for the place yet.’ So he went down to Augusta the week of the Masters against his doctor’s orders. He wasn’t supposed to travel. . . . I had been playing pretty well up until that point. But I get there and I can’t putt a lick — the worst speeds, the worst lines.”
The NY Times has a story on local boy Charles Howell. Chuck says he hasn’t had much luck against Tiger when the two hook up at Isleworth for a practice round.
Since moving to Orlando, Fla., after turning professional, Howell has seen Woodss tenacity on the golf course and in the gym. In head-to-head practice matches at Isleworth Country Club in Orlando, where they are members, Howell has never beaten him.
Doesn’t give me a lot of hope for Howell heading into the first round….