NatPost Column: Ames Speaks His Mind

My column on Stephen Ames is one of my favourites in recent memory. Though he took a week to track down, Stephen was Stephen — interesting, candid,frustrating and fascinating. I’ll post some of the quotes that didn’t make the story later. I particularly like his comment later in the story about that “FedEx crap.”

Here’s a taste:

Stephen Ames is a bit of a conundrum.

He is a golfer who will dissect every minute element of his swing, yet yearns to spend more time with his wife and children. He will skip practice rounds at a golf tournament to work with his coach instead – and still win the event, as he did at last year’s Children’s Miracle Classic in Florida. (He will do the same before this year’s tournament, which runs next week). And at a time in his life when most on the PGA Tour see their games decline, Ames thinks he is poised to win a major.

It is typical Ames. The Calgary resident has always forged his own way, and spoken what is on his mind. It has garnered him the reputation as a loose cannon, but his steady play – this is the third year he has earned more than US$2-million – has placed him among golf’s most consistent performers. He has even been invited to play in Tiger Woods’ 16-player Chevron World Challenge the week before Christmas.

It has been a “productively steady” year, Ames says.

“I had good opportunities of winning and when I didn’t win I still held my own,” he says. “I didn’t fall apart completely. That is a good year.”

The full column is here.

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Robert Thompson

A bestselling author and award-winning columnist, Robert Thompson has been writing about business and sports, and particularly golf, for almost two decades. His reporting and commentary on golf has appeared in Golf Magazine, the Globe and Mail, T&L Golf and many other media outlets. Currently Robert is a columnist with Global Golf Post, golf analyst for Global News and Shaw Communications, and Senior Writer to ScoreGolf. The Going for the Green blog was launched in 2004.

6 CommentsLeave a comment

  • I like Ames…talented, not quiet and boring and a bit ‘kooky’ but in a good way. We all get so bored when a athlete starts saying nothing in interviews, making standard formulated quotes. Yet the moment someone is more honest we crush them.
    Look at the abuse thrown Ames way when he made a simple comment that he and others have a better chance beating tiger as he was spraying it a bit. It somehow was made out like the guy said ‘Tiger is so beatable now blah blah” not what he said.
    I also understand how people move from country to country and we are hesitatant to call him our own. When I saw Lennox Lewis who i went to highschool with in Kitchener, suddenly speaking with a british accent and announcing he was boxing for england..I went “huh???”.
    But Ames has set down roots in Calgary and with a guy from the islands willing to forgo the warm sunny south for our harsh climate..for so many years…c’mon guys…start to appreciate his quirky smile….outspoken attitude..and his love for Canada….there is no problem making Mikey 1st and Ames 2nd….but at least include him.

  • Good morning Robert.
    Just a quick note to let you know how much I enjoyed your article about Stephen Ames…It’s the kind of insight articles we need more of about our sports personalities as it gives a better understanding of their world. Based on your interview, when you get right down to it , it’s not much different than ours. Do I work late or have dinner with my family?
    I’ll be looking for more of your articles.
    Kind regards

  • It is too bad that spoiled golfer like Ames do not understand not to bite the hands that feeds. That Fed Ex crap is no different than the Buick crap or the Sony crap or the take your pick crap. In other words, it takes someone who is really spoiled and perhaps lacking both insight and appreciation to understand that sponsors put food on the table. It is also fashionable for journalists such as yourself to repeat the crap that comes out of Ames. It’s all crap I guess. By the way, thanks for pointing out the crap for us when you say that you particularly liked his Fed Ex crap comment. How unbecoming of Ames, and you for repeating it. Have some dignity. Golf was once a game for gentlemen who maintained some class and dignity, both of which are lacking in Ames and you. Your suggestion that he is fascinating is just childish. This guy is nothing more than a spoiled prima donna. I don’t find his comments fascinating. What I find disturbing is that he consistently finds reporters such as you who repeat his shit, um crap

  • Yi, hate to break it to you..on many golf forums…the true die hard golf fans…like me…consistently comment on the fedex… guessed it…crap. The whole design of it …with no excitement last few weeks…horrible.
    Just because you are a rich golfer..does not mean you have to shut your mouth and swallow…its an opinion.
    Take a look at the champions tour and their schwab set could be a leading money winner all yr and zap…lose the big winnings in the last tourney…vs fedex…where vijay just had to drag his grumpy butt around the course…you actually gave me another reason to like ames….he likened the anticlimatic fedex to crap…..just like all the forums do…..

  • Hey Sharks, there are other more elegant ways to say that a particular event needs some adjustments. The Fed Ex certainly needs some revision, but I wonder whether Ames gave back all the money he won as a result of the Fed Ex crap. He is nothing more than a privileged spoiled golfer, and RT really shows no class to repeat his crap comment. RT is actually being a child for embracing his comments. Ames is nothing more than a brat and RT the wanna be jock for repeating Ames comments.

  • Hey YI,

    Last time I looked, RT was a golf reporter. Aren’t journalists supposed to REPORT and quote their stories? I guess only a true gentleman like yourself can eloquently put into words what an abysmal state golf has declined into with guys like Ames and RT around! It’s refreshing to see a dignified and classy guy like yourself using the words “crap” and “shit” in there proper context.

    RT…no matter how many haters you have, they all still love your column because they can’ t seem to stop reading it!! Hahahaha.

    If you guys hate RT and his moronic commentary so much…why do you still read it and respond to it no less!!??

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