Golf has been played at Carnoustie Golf Links since the early 16th century, and within that time it has earned a reputation as one of the world’s most challenging links courses. Carnoustie had previously hosted The Open on seven occasions, before committing to be the host venue of The 147th Open this year.
With a stellar field and many of golfs top players in contention on final round Sunday, one players consistency was the key to capturing the event. Francesco Molinari of Italy did not card a single bogey Saturday or Sunday at the Open. He finished with one of the greatest performances in Open history, recording a final-round 69 in difficult conditions to win the Claret Jug by two shots over Justin Rose, Rory McIlroy and Xander Schauffele.
"I knew it was going to be tough," said Molinari. "I knew everyone was going to struggle a little bit and I could use it to my advantage."
The winds at Carnoustie had the leaderboard swirling all day around its eventual champion. Molinari entered the day three shots out of the lead following a 5-under 66. But his nine pars in a row on the front nine weren't getting much attention as birdies and bogeys and doubles happened all around him. At one point, six players were tied for the lead at 6 under. Molinari, though, continued with his steady round, hitting a safe tee shot down the right side of the 18th fairway and stuffed his wedge inside Tiger Woods to birdie the final hole and slam the door. Paired with Phil Mickelson in the final round of the 2013 Open at Muirfield, it was now his turn.
"To look at the names on that Claret Jug," said Molinari." It's the best golfers in history, and to be on there, it's incredible. From someone like me coming from Italy, not really a major golfing country, it's been an incredible journey."
After more than a century the highly anticipated, long overdue return of golf in the 2016 summer Olympics is finally here. 112 long years later, it is officially an Olympic sport again. Before today golf was last played in the Olympics in St. Louis in the year 1904.
The games will be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, over the course of the next couple of weeks at the newly built, 7,132 yard Olympic Golf Course (Portuguese: Campo Olimpico de Golfe). This entirely new links style venue was constructed solely to host the 2016 golf games and was built within the Marapendi Natural Reserve in the Barra da Tijuca zone of Rio.
The format for the event will be 120 competitors (60 men and women from 41 nations) that play two separate 72-hole individual stroke play events under the official rules of golf. In the event of a tie for any of the first three positions, a three-hole playoff will determine the medal winners.
The men’s competition will be played August 11-14 and the women’s event will follow on August 17-20. All of the coverage will be live on the Golf Channel beginning at 6:00 a.m. each day.
According to Teddy Greenstein, author of a Los Angeles Times featured article on the 2016 Summer Olympics, the top U.S. prospects could be any of the four Americans – Bubba Watson, Rickie Fowler, Patrick Reed or Matt Kuchar. However, that the absence of top players such as Jason Day, Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth and Rory McIlroy may make people question golf’s Olympic return and could possibly hurt ratings.
Regardless of the player field it will surely be a fascinating and historic event to witness. If watching Olympic Golf this week inspires you at all to get out there and play check out some of the deals and discounts on our site! Go Team USA!
The 2016 LPGA LOTTE Championship presented by Hershey begins this week as it returns to beautiful Ko Olina Golf Club for the fifth consecutive year. The event will be held from April 13th – 16th, with coverage beginning on the Golf Channel on Wednesday from 7:00 – 11:00 p.m. Admission tickets will be sold at the Main Gate during Tournament Week with a $10 daily admission or a week-long “Season Ticket” for $25.00. Admission will be free for spectators attending Sunday- Tuesday, April 10-12, for the Qualifying Tournament, Practice Round and Pro-Am. Children 16 and under will also be admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult and active duty and retired military service members will be admitted free with an official military ID.
Who could forget last year’s remarkably phenomenal finish as Sei Young Kim and at the time world number one Inbee Park battled out for the win? To recap, on Ko Olina’s signature and very challenging 18th hole rookie S.Y. Kim drove her tee shot into the water and followed it up by hitting her approach to the left fringe, which put her in a position where she had to hole out her chip for par to have any chance at the title. She made her greenside shot look effortless as it trickled into the hole resulting in an overall tie with Inbee Park which forced the two to a playoff as they headed back to #18 tee. Both ladies hit great drives down the middle of the fairway, and, S.Y. Kim being away managed to hit a flawless approach from 154 yards and hole out for eagle to win the 2015 LOTTE.
The Prominent 18th Hole
Hawaii’s very own Michelle Wie will also be returning after somewhat of a rough start to her 2016 season with her best finish thus far being a T25 at the Coates Golf Championship back in February. The crowd will no doubt be cheering her on this week though in hopes that she’s able to replicate her play as she did in 2014 when she bested the field with 14-under-par to win at her home course.
Sunday, April 10th (Free Admission)
8:00 a.m. Qualifying Tournament
1:00 p.m. Sunday Pro-Am
Monday, April 11th (Free Admission)
All Day: Professional Practice Round
4:30 p.m. HTA Ladies First Golf Clinic (Practice Range)
Tuesday, April 12th (Free Admission)
All Day: Official Pro-Am
Wednesday, April 13th
7:00 a.m. First Round
Thursday, April 14th
7:00 a.m. Second Round
Friday, April 15th
8:00 a.m. Third Round
Saturday, April 16th
8:00 a.m. Final Round
So be sure to come out and watch your favorite LPGA Player next week and while you're there don't forget to stop by Ko Olina's newly renovated clubhouse and check out all the incredible LOTTE merchandise they have to offer!
The Kauai Golf Challenge Special is comprised of not only three of my personal favorite courses but which also happen to be three of the most beautiful courses in all of Hawaii. If you are a visitor to the island of Kauai for the first time then the Kauai Golf Challenge is a must.
Starting at the North Shore of the island, Princeville Makai is ranked in the top 50 Resort Courses by Golfweek. This magnificent course has beautiful vistas of Bali Hai and the famous crescent shaped Hanalei Bay. It was also rated in the Top 5 for public golf courses in Hawaii by Golf Magazine in 2014. You don’t want to miss playing at this fabulous golf course!
Next is gorgeous Hokuala, or formerly known as Kauai Lagoons, one of the World’s Most Beautiful Golf Courses according to MSN Travel and ranked #8 in “Best-Of-State” rankings by Golf Magazine in 2014. The Ocean Course at Hokuala is known for having the longest continuous stretch of ocean holes in all of Hawaii, so be sure and come prepared with enough battery life and storage in your phone as you’ll want to take plenty of pictures while on this enchanting landscape.
Possibly the most well-known of the three and home to the PGA Grand Slam of Golf from 1994-2006, Poipu Bay Golf Club is always in immaculate shape. With its links style traditional set up, spectacular vistas and varying trade winds Poipu was recognized as top 15 Resort Golf Courses in Hawaii, according to Golf Magazine in 2014. You may remember watching Phil Mickelson play here as he breezed through the final stretch of holes which parallel the Pacific Ocean atop 150-foot cliffs and set the course record 59 to win the 2004 PGA Grand Slam which still holds true to this day.