The Open is a celebration of all things golf. We think the R&A should add a few new prizes to the Open prize-giving to spice things up...
It's been a slow morning in the media centre so we decided to brainstorm a few ideas for new awards at the Open prize-giving. Here's the blueprint we plan to submit to the R&A...
1 Longest Drive
Picture the scene, the tournament has finished, Peter Dawson is standing in front of 40,000 fans and millions on the TV… “The winner of the longest drive and biggest hitter of the year is…” Magic.
2 R&A Fair Play Award
If the footballing authorities can offer a European place for fair play, so can the R&A. Call a penalty shot on yourself for a minor infraction and get presented with a glass nibbles platter.
Here are the 3 rules broken most often:
3 Mystery partner
Once play is finished, all the players names go into a hat. Peter Dawson draws them back out in two’s. The lowest combined total wins a West End dinner and theatre experience for two.
4 Nearest The Pin
No golf tournament is complete without it, including the Open. We suggest a £50 voucher to be redeemed in the pro shop would suffice.
5 Straightest Drive
We all know players for whom the longest drive is but a distant dream. Enter the straightest drive competition. Draw a chalk line down the middle of the fairway and mark the position of the closest ball. Tiger Woods need not apply.
6 Wooden Spoon
You came last, don’t worry – you can hang around until the prize giving on Sunday and pick up the wooden spoon.
7 Lawrence of Arabia Award
With the Old Course home to some of the world’s deepest bunkers, it seems fitting to congratulate the player with the most sand shots. A bucket and spade, and maybe a Hamlet cigar, would seem appropriate.
With one spot in the 2016 Open field up for grabs, all the players names are placed into a Tombola. The winners is… Terry Pilkadaris.
9 Crowd Catch
We’ve seen it at the cricket, now for the golf. If a player’s ball comes towards you, instead of ducking, go for the catch and win honorary membership of the R&A and the opportunity to draw up a new rule of golf.
In his current role, Neil is responsible for testing drivers and golf balls. Having been a part of the Golf Monthly team for over 15 years and playing off a handicap of 3, he has the experience to compare performance between models, brands and generations. For 2022 he thinks the main trend in drivers is: "In a word, consistency. Whilst all the brands are talking about ball speed (and the new drivers are certainly long), my biggest finding has been how much more consistent the ball flights are. Mishits don't seem to be causing the same level of drop-off or increase in the spin numbers. This means that more shots seem to be flying the way you want them to!" As far as golf balls are concerned the biggest development is in the, "three piece, non-Tour, urethane-covered section. For regular golfers, these models offer superb performance at both ends of the bag without denting your wallet quite as much as the premium Tour-played options."
Originally working with the best coaches in the UK to produce instruction content, he is now the brand's Digital Editor and covers everything from Tour player interviews to gear reviews. In his time at Golf Monthly, he has covered equipment launches that date back well over a decade. He clearly remembers the launch of the Callaway and Nike square drivers as well as the white TaylorMade driver families, such as the RocketBallz! If you take a look at the Golf Monthly YouTube channel, you'll see his equipment videos dating back over a decade! He has also conducted 'What's In The Bag' interviews with many of the game's best players like Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson and Jon Rahm. Over the years, Neil has tested a vast array of products in each category and at drastically different price-points.
Neil is currently playing: Driver: TaylorMade Stealth Plus Fairway Wood: Titleist TSi2 Hybrid: Titleist TS3 Irons (4-9): Mizuno JPX 919 Forged Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 46˚, 50˚, 54˚, 60˚ Putter: Odyssey Triple Track Ten Ball: Titleist Pro V1X
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