Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Thor Guard Extends Partnership with Chicago District Golf Association

Severe Weather Prediction Technology to be Used at One Hundred Golf Courses

(SUNRISE, Fla.) – Thor Guard – the world’s only lightning and tornado prediction system – extends its partnership with the Chicago District Golf Association (CDGA) to deliver the most useful, sophisticated, timely, reliable and accurate advance warning for potential lightning and other adverse weather conditions to one of the oldest and largest golf associations in the United States.

The partnership will provide for the display of data from one hundred Chicago-based CDGA golf facilities with Thor Guard systems, reducing the potential dangers of severe weather by predicting lightning strikes eight to twenty minutes prior to potentially deadly lightning strikes. Thor Guard will also provide high definition radar imagery to all CDGA handicap kiosks at member clubs.

“Understanding weather conditions is a large part of an establishment’s daily operations,” says Bob Dugan, President of Thor Guard.  “As the meteorological-solutions pioneer, we’re excited to continue playing a vital role in protecting the safety of CDGA guest, staff, and their surrounding communities.”

Through a single sensor, hundreds of thousands of calculations monitor the necessary electrostatic field before a lightning strike can occur between the storm cell and the ground. Systems analyze the ongoing increase or decrease in intensity of this field to generate a prediction in an immediate area.

“At CDGA, we will always invest in proven technology that allows us to keep our members, staff and guests safe,” says Robert Markionni, Executive Director of CDGA. “The fact that 100 of our member clubs utilize Thor Guard is a great indication of their confidence, as well as ours, in the technology it provides when it comes to protecting golfers”.

As the longest-tenured company in the category globally, Thor Guard is present in 21 countries and has installed approximately 7,000 systems for golf courses, parks, schools and universities, cities and municipalities, air travel concerns, government agencies, mining and industrial companies, sporting events and broadcast media.

More information:, 954.835.0900.

Driving Better Recovery: Marc Pro Teams with Golf Legend David Leadbetter

David Leadbetter is committed to holistic methods of recovery and pain relief for professional and amateur golfers and has experienced the positive impact of the Marc Pro devices

(Huntington Beach, CA) - Marc Pro, creators of electronic muscle recovery and conditioning devices that maximize training, help prevent injury and deliver pain relief, announces a partnership with renowned golf coach, author and founder of the Leadbetter Academy, David Leadbetter.

David Leadbetter’s career in golf instruction started to take off in the mid-1980s. Since then, Leadbetter has coached 22 players to Major PGA Championship titles and over 100 individual worldwide victories, with 7 of those players holding the first place spot on the Official World Golf Ranking. He currently hosts his own satellite radio show, continues to author new publications, develops new training aids, and consistently delivers innovative and elite level instruction to players worldwide. To this day, Leadbetter continues to coach several of the top golfers on the PGA, LPGA, and European Tour.

For the average amateur golfer, regular pains or niggles can affect the golf game. As golfers play harder and get older, chronic pain can become more prevalent and tends to prevent people from playing their best game or hitting the green as frequently as they would want. David Leadbetter was introduced to the Marc Pro via David Donatucci, owner of the Institute of Performance, and several of his students. The day Leadbetter tried the Marc Pro, he was dealing with pain in his own finger, and was able to experience the positive effects of the Marc Pro for himself.

“It’s simple, the Marc Pro allows an individual to use the device and feel less pain,” said David Leadbetter. “Anyone from an amateur to pro golfer can decrease recovery time and get on the green more by using the Marc Pro.”

“Marc Pro is excited to work  with David Leadbetter,” said Marc Pro President and CEO, Ryan Heaney. “David understands the power of this easy to use device and recognizes its value in faster recovery because it allows so many players to stay in the game, and enjoy every stroke. Marc Pro fits so well with David’s holistic philosophy to help people feel better so they are more likely to play better.”

Marc Pro and Marc Pro Plus are available at and will be available on David Leadbetter’s personal website for sale.

Yuengling Brewery Named Official Beer of the Valley Forge Invitational

(POTTSTOWN, Pa.) — The Yuengling Brewery is fast approaching 190 years of family ownership and operation, with the sixth generation now playing a pivotal role in the leadership of the company. Its distribution footprint now spans 22 states and they remain the largest American owned brewery in the country. In spite of its growth, the Pottsville-based company has never forgotten its local roots.

That’s why Yuengling responded quickly to the sponsorship opportunity when professional golf returned to nearby Montgomery County. Yuengling will be the Official Beer Sponsor of the new Valley Forge Invitational at Raven’s Claw Golf Club in Montgomery County, a golf-rich suburb of Philadelphia. The women’s professional golf event begins Thursday, May 24 through Saturday, May 26, one of three new events on the Symetra Tour schedule in 2018.

In addition, a “Meet the Players” party will take place on Tuesday, May 22, with a festive Pro-Am event following on May 23, which will allow local businesses to entertain their top customers and prospects alongside future LPGA Tour stars.

Several sponsors have already signed on to bring the Valley Forge Invitational to southeast Pennsylvania including the Valley Forge Tourism & Convention Board, Yamaha, The SunnyBrook Ballroom and Pottstown Hospital.

“The new Valley Forge Invitational will be instrumental for women’s golf and our sports scene for the greater Philadelphia area,” said Yuengling’s Chief Operating Officer, David Casinelli. “The Yuengling Brewery is happy to be a supporter of this week-long celebration, and we look forward to a long and successful run for this prestigious event in our community.”

The Yuengling Beer Tent will be the first thing visitors see when they arrive at Raven’s Claw Golf Club during tournament week. The large tent will take a prominent place in a portion of the parking lot, right next to the first tee. All of the most popular Yuengling brands – Yuengling Lager, Yuengling Light Lager, Black & Tan and Chesterfield Ale – will be available for purchase in the Yuengling Beer Tent.

In addition, Sessano’s Café of Raven’s Claw GC will operate a sandwich station in the beer tent -- featuring a number of items, including their award-winning Italian roast pork sandwiches.

The final festive ingredient in the beer tent will be a day-long variety of music – both live and recorded.

“We want the beer tent to be the start of the party each morning, and the end of the party each evening,” said Raven’s Claw owner Bob Davis. “Our motto for the week is that the Valley Forge Invitational is a professional golf tournament, wrapped inside a community festival. We have a lot of other festive things planned for the week.”

Many additional sponsor partners will add to the scene at Raven’s Claw GC. Another partner for the Valley Forge Invitational is the Pottstown Area Health & Wellness Foundation.

“The Foundation is excited to welcome the LPGA Symetra Tour to Pottstown,” said Howard Brown, the Program Officer for Schools, Active Learning & Community Development with Pottstown Area Health & Wellness Foundation. “The Valley Forge Invitational not only aligns with our mission of motivating people to adopt healthy lifestyles, but will also benefit local nonprofit organizations.”

Local charities, as designated by the foundation, that serve the people of Pottstown and residents in seven public school districts within a 10-mile radius of the borough, will be the beneficiary of the funds raised during the tournament.

“Montgomery County is home to some of the best golf courses in the country,” said Dr. Val Arkoosh, Chairman for the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners. “We are thrilled to welcome this talented group of women athletes to our county, and I wish them the best of luck on the Tour.”

With the backing of these dedicated companies, the momentum for the first-ever Valley Forge Invitational continues to build.

“Having an event of this caliber will have a hugely positive economic impact on Montgomery County and the region,” said President and CEO of the Valley Forge Tourism & Convention Board, Mike Bowman. “Besides highlighting women’s professional golf, the Tour spotlights Raven’s Claw, and the more than 50 other great public courses and private clubs that we have in Montco.”

Since it opened in 2005, Raven’s Claw Golf Club has been a consistent selection on the list of “Pennsylvania’s Top 10 Daily Fee” courses, as selected by Golfweek.

The Valley Forge Invitational will mark the first professional golf event played on the challenging Ed Shearon-designed course, and the first time the Symetra Tour has played a tournament in the Keystone State since 2011.

“Working with the Valley Forge Tourism board has made our welcome to the greater Philadelphia area a fantastic one,” said Mike Nichols, Chief Business Officer for the Symetra Tour. “We hope to build off the great list of sponsors that have already joined in supporting this professional women’s sporting event. We also look forward to adding new corporations that share the vision of further developing the next generation of LPGA Tour standouts.”

This season, 21 events make up the calendar for the official qualifying tour of the LPGA. The top-10 players on the season-ending Race for the Card money list will be awarded LPGA membership for 2019.

For more information about the Valley Forge Invitational, visit

Global Value Commerce Launches U-try, Golf’s First Exclusively Online Club Trial Program

(RALEIGH, NC) – Global Value Commerce (GVC) – owner and operator of the world’s largest e-commerce platform for new and pre-owned golf gear – has launched U-try, the golf industry’s first exclusively online club trial program at

Golfers across America are testing new drivers and fairway woods from Callaway, Cleveland, Cobra, TaylorMade and Titleist. They simply select up to two clubs on and ships the clubs for a $25 trial fee per item. Within 14 days, customers either keep the club(s) and pay the current list price – less the trial fee – or return them with a prepaid shipping label. Hybrids, iron sets and additional brands will be offered by late spring.

A complimentary Arccos Driver unit will be sent with each U-try driver beginning in early March. The small sensor attaches to the grip-end of the club, pairs with a free app for iOS or Android smartphones and automatically records distance, accuracy and more for each drive. Arccos Driver is an easy and unbiased way to compare performance of different clubs.

“Buying golf equipment is a significant investment and our goal at GVC has always been to provide players of all skill levels a helpful avenue to find the clubs that best suit their games,” says Ed Byman, CEO of GVC. “With U-try we’ve created a risk-free opportunity for our customers to spend time with new clubs and determine what is right for them.”

U-try promotes men’s and women’s clubs with various shaft flex and clubhead loft options. A deep inventory of new and legacy driver and fairway wood models from top equipment manufacturers are warehoused by GVC for immediate delivery.

Taking a page from major online and brick-and-mortar retailers with try-and-buy programs in apparel, jewelry, art, home décor and other categories, GVC has again innovated in golf.  It was the first to introduce an exclusive online marketplace in golf for pre-owned golf clubs in 2001, adding new gear to its menu soon thereafter.

More information:, 866.843.0262.

Pine Needles to Host 2022 U.S. Women's Open

North Carolina course will become the first to host the championship four times

(LIBERTY CORNER, N.J.) -  Pine Needles Lodge & Golf Club in Southern Pines, N.C., has been selected by the USGA as the host site for the 77th U.S. Women’s Open in 2022. The championship, considered the ultimate test in women’s golf, will be held June 2-5.

The 2022 U.S. Women’s Open will be the seventh USGA championship and record fourth U.S. Women’s Open contested at Pine Needles, which is also set to host the 2nd U.S. Senior Women’s Open in 2019. The USGA was last at Pine Needles for the 2007 U.S. Women’s Open, when Cristie Kerr won the first of her two majors with a two-stroke victory over Lorena Ochoa and Angela Park.

“We are thrilled to bring another U.S. Women’s Open to one of the most respected courses in the United States,” said Stuart Francis, USGA Championship Committee chairman. “Three great USGA champions have conquered the ultimate test in women’s golf at Pine Needles, and we look forward to adding the 77th U.S. Women’s Open champion to that illustrious list.”

In addition to Kerr’s victory in 2007, Pine Needles also played host to the 2001 U.S. Women’s Open, won by Karrie Webb, and the 1996 U.S. Women’s Open, won by Annika Sorenstam.

“Pine Needles is, if not my favorite U.S. Women’s Open venue, it’s in the top three,” said Webb, whose 2001 victory was her second straight Women’s Open title. “Pine Needles [in 1996] was my very first U.S. Open I ever played in, and then when we went back in 2001, I was so excited to be there as a defending champion. Obviously, it was a special week where I played fantastic golf at a tremendous golf course. I’ll always have special memories of Pine Needles.”

Designed by Donald Ross and opened in 1928, Pine Needles was renovated in 2004 by John Fought, who oversaw the restoration of greens and bunkers to their original forms with the aid of vintage aerial photos. In the summer of 2016, Kyle Franz was brought in to assist with a green rebuilding and bunker restoration project that aimed to maximize hole locations. The club, which was owned by women’s golf advocate, renowned instructor and LPGA Tour charter member Peggy Kirk Bell from 1953 until her death in 2016, also hosted the 1989 U.S. Girls’ Junior and 1991 U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur championships.

“To host the most prestigious event in women’s golf for the fourth time speaks to our longstanding relationship with the USGA, and we’re honored they accepted our invitation to host the Women’s Open in 2022,” said Kelly Miller, president and CEO of Pine Needles. “The Donald Ross-designed course has already crowned three memorable Women’s Open champions, and we’re confident it will again be a welcoming yet challenging host for the world’s best players. I can only imagine how happy Mrs. Bell would have been to host another Women’s Open.”

Bell is largely credited with being the driving force behind Pine Needles hosting its first three U.S. Women’s Opens.

This will be the 34th USGA championship contested in North Carolina, which most recently hosted the 2017 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship at Pinehurst Resort & Country Club, in the Village of Pinehurst. Upcoming USGA championships in the Tar Heel State include the 2018 U.S. Mid-Amateur at Charlotte Country Club, the 2019 U.S. Senior Women’s Open, the 2019 U.S. Amateur at Pinehurst and the 2019 U.S. Senior Amateur at Old Chatham Golf Club. Pinehurst No. 2 will also host the 2024 U.S. Open.

Upcoming U.S. Women’s Open Championships will be contested May 31-June 3, 2018, at Shoal Creek (Ala.); May 30-June 2, 2019, at the Country Club of Charleston (S.C.); June 4-7, 2020, at Champions Golf Club in Houston, Texas; June 3-6, 2021, at The Olympic Club in San Francisco, Calif.; and June 1-4, 2023, at Pebble Beach (Calif.) Golf Links in Pebble Beach.

The U.S. Women’s Open is one of 14 national championships conducted annually by the USGA. It is open to professional female golfers and amateur females with a Handicap Index® not exceeding 2.4. The championship was first conducted in 1946 and its winners include Babe Didrikson Zaharias, Betsy Rawls, Mickey Wright, Hollis Stacy, Annika Sorenstam, Se Ri Pak, Juli Inkster, Cristie Kerr and Inbee Park.

To learn more, visit

Vokey SM7 Raw Wedges Now Available Through WedgeWorks on

(FAIRHAVEN, Mass.) – The most played wedge model on the PGA Tour, new Titleist Vokey Design SM7 wedges are now available in the tour's preferred finish: Raw.

Beginning Feb. 28 through WedgeWorks on, Vokey SM7 Raw will be available in every SM7 RH loft, bounce and grind combination. (Vokey SM7 offers the game’s most complete selection of lofts, bounces and grinds, with 23 different combinations.) The six most popular LH loft, bounce and grind options (50.08 F, 52.08 F, 54.10 S, 56.10 S, 58.08 M, 60.08 M) are also available.

Jordan Spieth – who put four new SM7 models immediately in play (46.10 F, 52.08 F, 56.10 S, 60.04 L) – is among the long list of tour players gaming Raw wedges. Justin Thomas, Adam Scott, Brian Harman, Charley Hoffman, Patrick Cantlay, Webb Simpson and Russell Henley also prefer the Raw finish.

NEW PROPRIETARY RAW HEAT TREATMENT: New to SM7 Raw is a proprietary heat treatment process that dramatically increases the durability of the grooves. This is the first time a heat treatment has been applied to a Vokey Raw wedge. Historically, Raw wedges have worn at a much faster rate than finished models. Bob and his team continue to innovate in both performance and process technologies to produce best-in-class, maximum spin.

NEW TOE ENGRAVINGS: Additionally, for the first time SM7 Raw can be customized with any of the WedgeWorks toe engravings. This includes the traditional tour saw that appears on in-line SM7 wedges, as well as the BV Custom, BV Clover, BV Wings or BV Fleur-de-lis logos.

MASTER CRAFTSMAN BOB VOKEY ON RAW FINISH: “Raw means there is no additional finish applied to the wedge, which is made of 8620 carbon steel. It has what I like to call a satin appearance that will start to rust after some use. On tour, the Raw heads give us the flexibility to grind wedges based on a player’s needs. But guys just love the look of that raw steel – some players like it even more as it rusts, kind of like a trusty hammer or another tool. These are their scoring tools.”

Many tour pros have also commented on the Raw finish reducing glare that might reflect off the wedge on bright days.

SM7 PERFORMANCE & TECHNOLOGY: Improving in all three areas of wedge performance, Vokey SM7 wedges provide all golfers the opportunity for a better, more confident short game through the following key advancements:
- Shot Versatility: The fastest way to a better short game is through a wedge fitting. Developed through his collaboration with the world’s best shot makers, Bob’s six tour-proven sole grinds – F, S, M, K, L and the new D grind – allow golfers of all skill levels to be precisely fit for their swing type, shot making style and course conditions.
- Distance & Trajectory Control: Finely tuned Progressive Center of Gravity locations improve trajectory and distance control while creating the best-feeling Vokey wedges to date.
- Spin Milled Grooves: 100% inspected Spin Milled grooves cut at even tighter tolerances deliver more spin (up to 100rpm more spin on average). Nothing spins like a Vokey.

#1 WEDGE ON TOUR: Just two weeks following their November debut at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, Vokey SM7 wedges became the most played wedge model on the PGA Tour, with 123 SM7’s in play at The RSM Classic. SM7 has remained the #1 model in play each successive week, with the total of SM6 models at this week’s Honda Classic reaching 167.

AVAILABILITY & CUSTOMIZATION: SM7 Raw wedges are available beginning Feb. 28 on, starting at $195 (which includes 10 character stamping, custom shaft bands and BV Wings grip). For additional items and some custom shafts, additional charges may apply.


NBC Sports Group Kicks off Five Weeks of Exclusive PGA TOUR Coverage

Nineteen of Top-20 in World at HSBC Women’s World Championship in Singapore, with Live Coverage on Golf Channel Wednesday-Saturday

(ORLANDO, Fla.) – This week NBC Sports Group kicks off its five-week stretch of exclusive PGA TOUR coverage leading up to the Masters, with more than 20 hours of live coverage at the WGC-Mexico Championship airing across Golf Channel and NBC. The 65-man field features 45 of the top-50 in the world, including Dustin Johnson, Jon Rahm, Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth and Justin Rose.

The LPGA Tour features an equally strong field this week, with 19 of the top-20 in the world taking part in the HSBC Women’s World Championship in Singapore. Inbee Park is set to defend her 2017 title, with live coverage airing Wednesday-Saturday (overnight) on Golf Channel.

The PGA TOUR Champions are in Arizona for the Cologuard Classic, where Tom Lehman will defend.

The European Tour is in South Africa for the Tshwane Open, with Danny Willett headlining the field.

WGC-Mexico Championship
Dates: March 1-4
Venue: Chapultepec Golf Club, Mexico City, Mexico

Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern)
Thursday 2-7 p.m. (Live) / 8 p.m.-Midnight (Replay)
Friday 2-7 p.m. (Live) / 9 p.m.-Midnight (Replay)
Saturday Noon-3 p.m. (Live) / 8-10:30 p.m. (Replay)
Sunday Noon-2 p.m. (Live) / 8 p.m.-1 a.m. (Replay)

Tournament Airtimes on NBC (Eastern)
Saturday 3-6 p.m. (Live)
Sunday 2-6 p.m. (Live)

Golf Central Pre and Post Round Coverage on Golf Channel (Eastern):
Thursday 1:30-2 p.m. / 7-8 p.m. (Live)
Friday 1:30-2 p.m. (Live)
Saturday 11 a.m.-Noon / 7-8 p.m. (Live)
Sunday 11 a.m.-Noon / 7-8 p.m. (Live)

Broadcast Notes:
NBC Sports kicks off five week stretch: This week, NBC Sports Group begins a stretch of five consecutive weeks of exclusive PGA TOUR tournament coverage, comprised of six events, leading up to the Masters (April 5-8).

Strong field: The 65-man field features 45 of the top-50 players in the world, including six of the top seven.

Johnson defends: Dustin Johnson finished one stroke ahead of Tommy Fleetwood to earn his 14th PGA TOUR win.

Headlining the field: Dustin Johnson, Jon Rahm, Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth, Justin Rose, Rickie Fowler, Brooks Koepka, Tommy Fleetwood, Sergio Garcia and Alex Noren.

NBC Sports Broadcast Team
- Play by Play: Steve Sands (Golf Channel) / Dan Hicks (NBC)
- Analyst: David Duval / Peter Jacobsen
- Tower: Gary Koch / David Feherty
- On-Course: Roger Maltbie / Notah Begay / Jim “Bones” Mackay
- Interviews: Todd Lewis (Golf Channel) / Steve Sands (NBC)

HSBC Women’s World Championship
Dates: March 1-4
Venue: Sentosa Golf Club (New Tanjong Course), Sentosa Island, Singapore

Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern)
Wednesday 10:30 p.m.-2:30 a.m. (Live, overnight)
Thursday Midnight-2:30 a.m. (Live, overnight)
Friday Midnight-2:30 a.m. (Live, overnight)
Saturday 10:30 p.m.-2:30 a.m. (Live, overnight)

Broadcast Notes:
Elite field features 19 of top-20 in world: The field this week includes each of the players currently ranked in the top-20 in the Rolex Rankings, with the only exception being Stacy Lewis.

Park defends: Inbee Park finished one shot ahead of Ariya Jutanugarn to claim her 18th LPGA win.

Headlining the field: Shanshan Feng, Lexi Thompson, Sung Hyun Park, So Yeon Ryu, Anna Nordqvist, I.K. Kim, Ariya Jutanugarn, In Gee Chun, Cristie Kerr, Lydia Ko and Jessica Korda.

Cologuard Classic
Dates: March 2-4
Venue: Omni Tucson National Resort (Catalina Course), Tucson, Ariz.

Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern)
Friday 7-9 p.m. (Tape delay) / 5-7 p.m. (Streaming on Golf Channel Digital)
Saturday 4:30-7 p.m. (Live)
Sunday 4:30-7 p.m. (Live)

Broadcast Notes:
Lehman defends: Tom Lehman finished one stroke clear of Steve Stricker to earn his 10th PGA TOUR Champions victory.

Headlining the field: Bernhard Langer, Steve Stricker, Colin Montgomerie, David Toms, Kevin Sutherland, Jose Maria Olazabal, Vijay Singh, Tom Lehman, Jerry Kelly and John Daly.

Golf Channel Broadcast Team
- Play by Play: Bob Papa
- Analyst: Lanny Wadkins
- Tower: John Mahaffey
- On-Course: John Cook / Arron Oberholser

Tshwane Open
Dates: March 1-4
Venue: Pretoria Country Club, Waterkloof, South Africa

Tournament Airtimes on Golf Channel (Eastern)
Thursday 5:30-7:30 a.m. (Tape delay) / 7:30-10:30 a.m. (Live)
Friday 5:30-7:30 a.m. (Tape delay) / 7:30-10:30 a.m. (Live)
Saturday 5-9:30 a.m. (Live)
Sunday 5-9:30 a.m. (Live)

Broadcast Notes:
Headlining the field: Danny Willett, Julian Suri, Darren Fichardt, George Coetzee, Thomas Aiken, Richard Sterne, Haydn Porteous, David Howell, Raphael Jacquelin and Chase Koepka.
Golf Channel Broadcast Team
- Play by Play: Dominik Holyer
- Analyst: Denis Hutchinson / Jay Townsend
- On-Course: Julian Tutt

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

NextLinks Earns Raves from Golf Industry at PGA Merchandise Show

(Santa Ana, Calif.) – One of the golf industry’s hottest trends is the effort to grow participation through fun-based accessibility at non-traditional venues. NextLinks announced its presence as a key player in the “alternate golf experience” arena by showcasing its groundbreaking indoor golf technology and business concepts at the recent PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando, Fla.

The NextLinks golf experience is driven by proprietary software that seamlessly blends golf simulator play with realistic short game shots and putting on expertly-designed putting greens. Using patent-pending Pinpoint Spotlight Technology, each player’s position in the simulator game is tracked. The golfer then plays and putts out from a spot designated by a colored laser mark displayed on or near the green. The dynamic “Spotlight” system not only allows seasoned golfers a more realistic, immersive golfing experience, it also guides beginners and non-golfers through a variety of more fun-based games and lessons.

The first NextLinks venue in Santa Ana, Calif. - complete with a simulator, synthetic putting green and space to entertain - is the “living” prototype founder and CEO Dave Shultz is using to inspire developers, hotel and casino owners and even golf course operators (NextLinks installation is underway at Indian Wells Golf Resort) to bring this unique golfing experience into a variety of high-traffic entertainment venues. Click on the above link to see a video of how the concept works.

Golfers know a winning concept when they see it and Shultz and his team spent their three days at the PGA Show explaining their vision to attract new players to the game while giving avid golfers an engaging and authentic golf experience. “It excited people in the golf industry to see a scalable concept that’s completely unintimidating and fun for beginners and yet super-engaging for serious golfer,” Shultz says.

Golf Digest tabbed NextLinks on its list of “Cool Stuff We Saw at the PGA Show” while writer Erik Matuszewski concluded, “NextLinks has solved the (golf simulator putting) problem with a true-to-golf gaming experience.”

In an industry hungry for paths to sustainable growth, the NextLinks model of adding “realistic indoor golf” into a variety of entertainment venues hit home with industry insiders. “When people saw the Spotlights making fun shapes on the green, like dartboards and cornhole boards, it was easy to see how we’re getting non-golfers hooked,” Shultz says. “A beginning golfer can go to a NextLinks-powered venue and learn the game from the hole out. Nobody’s scared of a making a three-foot putt then graduating to a six-foot putt just like nobody’s scared to go bowling. Before you know it, indoor games are producing real golfers. It’s exciting to witness.”

After the PGA Show, Midwest Golfing named NextLinks “A Golf Company Ready to Make a Large Impact.” Senior Editor Glen Turk says “Dave Shultz and NextLinks may have just created the next TopGolf phenomenon. Millennials, take note. This was made with you in mind.”

NextLinks recently entered a joint venture with the Dynamic Entertainment Group, parent company to UltraStar Multi-tainment Centers whereby the NextLinks platform will be made available to UltraStar Multi-tainment Centers entertainment network as well as managed NextLinks sites.

“Working with a team that knows how to build, develop and integrate what NextLinks does into the types of spaces that attract fun-seekers puts our company in a position to grow and partner with developers who agree that the key to increasing golf participation is bringing access to the game indoors and engaging new golfers with fun, relaxing experience,” said Shultz.

For more information about NextLinks, visit Follow Nextlinks at as well as on Twitter and Instagram: @nextlinksgolf

Richard Mandell, RTJ II Team for Tanglewood Park Championship Course Renovations

(RELEASE) - What first started as a master planning exercise to return the luster to the Championship Course at Tanglewood Park in Clemmons, North Carolina has blossomed into a collaboration from a pair of golf architecture firms with a single-minded purpose: to restore the demanding and impressive dune-like bunkering of Robert Trent Jones, Sr. The plan from there is to bring the course back to heights it previously achieved as the host of the 1974 PGA Championship as well as numerous Senior PGA Tour Vantage Championships and the 1986 USGA Publinx.

Forsyth County gave this task to the firm of Robert Trent Jones II, led by President/Chief Design Officer, Bruce Charlton, ASGCA. RTJ II performed a hole by hole analysis to serve as the basis of a Golf Course Refinements Master Plan: A hole by hole road map for the future of the golf course.  One of Bruce's primary goals was to address the bunkering. An equally important primary task was to achieve the County's objective of making the course more playable by creating chipping areas around the greens for imaginative recovery shots. The bunkers had not been touched (other than routine edging) since Robert Trent Jones, Sr.'s own renovation work in preparation for Lee Trevino's PGA win in 1974.

Seeking local presence for the project, the County hired Richard Mandell Golf Architecture to develop detailed plans based on Bruce's concepts and lead the county toward a renovation project, which will begin this Spring. Richard won a competition over 15 other firms for the opportunity to collaborate with RTJ II in restoring the RTJ Sr. classic.

Bruce will work closely with Richard to ensure that the RTJ Sr. vision is properly implemented.  He found in Richard a common ally in restoring as much of the original design as possible. What Richard found was an open mind that was as enthusiastic about the possibilities as he was. "Bruce and Richard have created an outstanding renovation plan which will significantly enhance the golfing experience at Tanglewood while maintaining the integrity of the original Robert Trent Jones, Sr. design,"  said Mike Wilcox, long-time Director of Golf at Tanglewood Park.

Bruce has worked with Robert Trent Jones II since 1981. He knows how important history is to the Jones family and is excited about the prospects for Tanglewood.  "We are thrilled to be working closely with the Forsyth County team of professionals as we all “polish the gem” at the Tanglewood Championship Course" said Bruce. "Our design concepts, coupled with the collaborative project implementation process with fellow ASGCA Member Richard Mandell, will be aimed at preserving the historic legacy of the legendary Robert Trent Jones, Sr. while still implementing modern technologies. We believe the updated Championship Course at Tanglewood will delight golfers of all skill levels."

Richard's experience with Robert Trent Jones, Sr. golf courses began with work he did for the Fairfax course at Army Navy Country Club a decade ago so he was well-aware of the practical challenges the County faced with high, flashed-sand bunkers. He is currently working with Forsyth County on a Renovation Business Plan for Tanglewood Park's adjacent Reynolds Course.

In addition to Bruce's master planning, Richard utilized an aerial photograph of the site from 1974 as well as photographs from the 1974 PGA program to guide the detail work.  Bruce was fully on board with the idea of going back to 1974 rather than back to Jones' original 1960 design work. "When Bruce and I first spoke, we were on the same page in that regard and we had a ball brainstorming through some of the hole by hole details," Richard recalled. "Obviously I knew where Bruce stood on preserving the legacy, but I was excited to see the level of excitement in Bruce when we began discussing the old aerial and moving toward the 1974 design." Charlton felt the same way, always a good sign when two golf architects are thrust into a team atmosphere. "Working in a collaborative fashion with Richard at Tanglewood is definitely an enjoyable and creative endeavor," said Bruce.

Richard next undertook a series of course walk-throughs with the golfers and staff to help he and Bruce best balance the challenge of restoring a former professional event venue with a public golf course. "The golfers all felt there was too much sand but understood, and welcomed, the plan to restore RTJ Sr.'s design philosophies," said Richard.

Richard identified the one true conflict between the demanding Jones layout and everyday play:  The shallow dimensions of many of the greens with sand both in front and in back. "A shallow target will challenge the best golfers in the world but can be very frustrating for the average golfer who has trouble achieving the necessary trajectory on their shots to keep an approach on the green," Richard pointed out. "Bruce was open to softening that challenge yet we agreed not to completely eliminate that aspect of Mr. Jones' original intent. Instead, other areas were introduced to balance that challenge with creative playability."

The genesis of the project began in 2014 with Brown Golf Management's behind the scenes work as the County's consultant. Steve Johnson, Brown's Regional Manager for North Carolina saw the benefit in an initial analysis of the legendary layout. "When you have as great an asset as the County has in Tanglewood, the best way to protect that investment and maximize its value is to bring in a team like the firms of RTJ II and Richard Mandell Golf Architecture," said Steve. "Their expertise will make the course shine."

Forsyth County's Parks & Recreation Director Michael Anderson and Assistant Director of Park Operations Chris Weavil have navigated the renovation project from concept through a successful construction bid process. Groundbreaking is slated for mid May with Wadsworth Golf Construction, out of Plainfield, Illinois, leading the efforts. Their craftsmanship will be enhanced by the utilization of the Better Billy Bunker system, a great tool for those who wish to preserve that high "dunesy" flashing that made RTJ Sr. a signature in the seventies and beyond.

Richard will be on-site weekly with Bruce making site inspection visits at key points during construction to continue the collaborative effort he and Richard continue to enjoy. Golf Course Superintendent Lee Barefoot will be a daily presence throughout the project just as he has since he first took over at Tanglewood back in 1990. The result of all this teamwork will be a dedication to keeping the Robert Trent Jones, Sr. legacy alive and creating a fun challenge to enjoy on a daily basis for Forsyth County residents and visiting golfers.

Casa de Campo’s ‘Unlimited Teeth of the Dog’ Golf Packages Ideal for Exceptional Getaways

Play Caribbean’s No. 1 Course, Enjoy Luxury Accommodations, Welcoming Tropical Weather

(LA ROMANA, Dominican Republic) – Casa de Campo Resort & Villas – home to the Caribbean’s premier, luxury golf experiences, including the iconic Teeth of the Dog course – features two exceptional “Unlimited Teeth of the Dog” golf packages ideal for tropical getaways to long savor.

Highlighted by the “bucket list” opportunity to play the Pete Dye-designed masterpiece widely recognized as the No. 1 course in the Caribbean, the “Unlimited Teeth of the Dog with Breakfast” package starts at $247 per person, per night through Dec. 21, 2018. In addition to “all day” play on Teeth of the Dog, guests can also tee it up from sunup to sundown on the resort’s two additional Pete Dye gems: Dye Fore (27 holes) and The Links (18).

The offer also includes deluxe accommodations in a Pete Dye Golf Lodge or Elite guest room, full daily breakfast buffet at Lago Restaurant, use of a four-passenger golf cart to travel throughout the resort, complimentary Wi-Fi and use of the resort’s fitness center. All golf rounds are based on availability and include arrival and departure days.

The activity-laden “Unlimited Teeth of the Dog Inclusive” golf package features all the components above plus daily breakfast, lunch, snacks, dinner and drinks by the glass at resort signature restaurants or room service (extra delivery charge). Additional features include unlimited horseback riding, use of the property’s tennis courts, one round at the 245-acre Shooting Club, non-motorized water sports and family programs. This offer starts at $375 per person, per night over the same timeframe.
“Life is too short to not treat yourself to all the luxuries, world-class golf, fun activities and lavish amenities we offer here at Casa de Campo,” says Andres Pichardo Rosenberg, President. “We invite you to visit us here in paradise and let us take care of everything.”

The stunning resort additionally offers an array of splendid villa options ranging from three to 11 bedrooms. Starting at $439 (per person, per night), the villas feature stylish living areas, a private pool and myriad creature comforts. Daily breakfast, private maid service and full-access to a wide range of on-site activities are included.

Contacting Casa de Campo Resort & Villa
For more information on Casa de Campo Resort & Villas call 800.877.3643, email or visit:,,

Four Seasons Resort Lānaʻi Makes Golf More Fun, More Accessible to All Guests

(LANA‘I, HAWAI‘I) – Golfers the world over know that the Jack Nicklaus-designed Manele Golf Course at the Four Seasons Resort Lānaʻi is one of the world’s most striking venues for the game, offering beauty, challenge, and fun in a true island paradise.

But beyond the traditional 18 holes, resort guests are treated to golf options sure to enchant non-players, newbies, and veterans alike.

Each Wednesday at 3 p.m., the Manele practice range transforms into “Mini Manele,” a six-hole, par-3 course that’s a uniquely enjoyable way to take a walk, listen to music, and ogle Hulopo’e Bay. And, oh yeah, have fun hitting shots to holes as short as 30 yards and no more than 90 yards. “Mini Manele” is complimentary to resort guests, with rental clubs and a logo golf ball included in the experience.

On Thursdays, the complimentary nine-hole “Manager’s Scramble” is hosted by a member of the Four Seasons Resort management with teams formed upon arrival. The shotgun start goes off at 3 p.m., with complimentary rental clubs available.

Friday’s popular Sunset Nine Tour is a scenic swing along the course’s signature “Ocean 9” holes, made even more exciting thanks to cocktails and the chance to win prizes by hitting the green at Manele’s famous par-3 12th hole. The casual caper starts at 5pm, for $50 per person, limited to 10 guests per tour.

Guests can play the Sunset Nine every day of the week after 3 p.m. in the company of a specialty cocktail—served at check in, delivered on course, or poured after the round—for $195 per person. Complimentary rental clubs are available.

Youngsters are encouraged to join the fun as “Juniors Play Free”: Guests 17 and younger play the Manele Course free when with a paid adult any day after noon. Complimentary rental clubs are available. The course also now features motorized Golf Boards that “surf the earth”; rental fee is $35.

Recently named Best Hotel in the USA by U.S. News & World Report, Four Seasons Resort Lānaʻi features 213 guestrooms and suites in a series of low-rise buildings spread along the Pacific coastline and immersed in Hawaiian botanical gardens, providing a private residential experience. Additional facilities include the signature ONE FORTY restaurant, Malibu Farm, NOBU LANAI, a spa and wellness program, variety of complimentary activities, luxury retail boutiques, and tennis.

For more information, or to make a reservation, contact Four Seasons at 1-800-321-4666, visit your travel professional,, or join our online communities at Facebook @FourSeasonsResortsLanai, Twitter @fslanai, and instagram @fslanai. To contact the Manele Golf Course Pro Shop, call 808.565.4000.

Product Review: Sound Caddy

Sound Caddy fits nicely in your bag or golf cart
Few sports have evolved quite like golf. From balls stuffed with feathers and shafts made of hickory, to balata balls and metal heads, to today’s incredible technology that actually has many discussing a distance roll-back … Golf is in a never-ending transition.

Control on unit or from smartphone
Much like equipment, etiquette has changed over the years. Time-crunched golfers now practice “ready golf” and the USGA even allows players to putt with the pin in.

So where does music fall into the sport? Some old school aficionados are quick to say no, while others have embraced a little sound on the course. I fall into the latter half and have stumbled upon the perfect accessory - Sound Caddy.

Sound Caddy is a bluetooth speaker designed specifically for golfers. It looks like a driver and fits neatly in your bag like a club. You may be tempted to actually hit a golf ball with the Sound Caddy, but don’t. While it looks like a club (head, shaft and grip) and is rugged enough to withstand normal mixing and mingling with other clubs in your bag, the company warranty does not cover stupidity.

We took informal polls in a golf-specific forum on Facebook and and in the +Google Golf Community. The opinions about music on the course were mixed, as you can imagine. Some said it’s acceptable for the driving range, but not the course. Others just want peace and quiet while playing. While another segment was all in favor of the Sound Caddy, on or off the course.

Terrific sound quality
One viewpoint I didn’t consider was the rhythmic benefits of music. Someone responded that a former instructor would teach the game with “The Blue Danube” playing on a stereo. I doubt many of us are listening to waltzes these days, but you certainly could with the Sound Caddy.

Some specifics about the Sound Caddy:
Play from your bag in the form of a club or detach the head and place inside the cart;
15+ hours of playtime;
Dual USB ports to charge two phones while on the course;
Control from your smartphone or on the Sound Caddy head;
Two premium drivers and a specially tuned and ported bass radiator deliver more efficient energy use as well as a deep and clear sound that exceeds expectations; and
It’s weatherproof - holding up to spills, splashes and rain.

Note: Weatherproof is NOT waterproof … Don’t throw the Sound Caddy in a lake. Remember the “stupidity” clause in the warranty?

Dual USB ports for charging devices
From a practical standpoint, the sound quality is incredible, but my favorite feature is the ability to charge my iPhone while on the course. There are so many golf apps on phones these days and they all drain the battery. No more concerns about that with the Sound Caddy.

Pro tip: Before playing music, check with your playing partners to make sure they’re on board with it. Also, do your best to keep the volume at a respectable level.

Times are changing and golf is changing right along with it.

Sound Caddy sells for $129. Learn more at

Monday, February 26, 2018

USGA Announces Revised Playoff Format Across All Open Championships

Two-Hole Aggregate Playoff to Determine USGA Open Championships in 2018, If Necessary

(LIBERTY CORNER, N.J.) – The United States Golf Association (USGA) announced a revised playoff format for all four of its Open Championships – the U.S. Open, U.S. Women’s Open, U.S. Senior Open and U.S. Senior Women’s Open. Each championship will implement a two-hole aggregate playoff in the event of a tie at the end of 72 holes of stroke play, effective with the 2018 season.

“We know how important it is to everyone in the golf world to see play conclude on the Sunday of a major championship, and to award the trophy to the champion,” said USGA CEO/Executive Director Mike Davis, who made the announcement prior to online player registration for each USGA Open Championship, which opens next week. “After receiving input from a variety of constituents, including players, fans, volunteers, officials and our broadcast partners, it clearly came across as something that everyone valued, and would benefit from.”

“There is no right or wrong way to determine a winner in stroke play, but we’ve seen over the years how the aggregate playoff has served us well in both the U.S. Women’s Open and U.S. Senior Open,” Davis added. “Two holes will allow a player to recover from any single mistake, and at the same time, provide a memorable, and perhaps dramatic, experience for all involved.”

In all four USGA Open Championships, the two-hole aggregate playoff will be used to break any ties after 72 holes of stroke-play competition. If the playoff results in a tie, the tied players would immediately continue to play off hole-by-hole (sudden-death format) until the champion is determined.

In its 117-year history, the U.S. Open has had 33 playoffs that have employed 18- and 36-hole formats. There have been 12 playoffs in U.S. Women’s Open history. A three-hole playoff was held for the first time in 2011. The U.S. Senior Open, which held a three-hole playoff for the first time in 2002, has had six playoffs in its championship history.

Online entry applications for 2018 USGA Open Championships will begin in the first week of March (

2018 USGA Open Championship Schedule
- May 31-June 3 73rd U.S. Women’s Open, Shoal Creek, Shoal Creek, Ala.
- June 14-17 118th U.S. Open, Shinnecock Hills Golf Club, Southampton, N.Y.
- June 28-July 1 39th U.S. Senior Open, The Broadmoor, Colorado Springs, Colo.
- July 12-15 1st U.S. Senior Women’s Open, Chicago Golf Club, Wheaton, Ill.

To learn more, visit

Mauna Lani Resort Debuts Sunset Golf Cart Tours

(Kohala Coast, Hawai‘i) – Whether a romantic at heart or someone who simply enjoys the breathtaking beauty of Hawai‘i, Mauna Lani Resort recently debuted Sunset Golf Cart Tours on the resort’s South Course. Sunset Golf Cart Tours open up the splendor of the incredible property to everyone at the most amazing time of day, while the sun sets over the Pacific Ocean.

Mauna Lani’s Sunset Golf Cart Tours are offered daily for $45 per cart (up to two people). Tours begin with optional refreshment purchases at the clubhouse, then head to their first stop at hole No. 7, a 200-yard par 3 overlooking Honoka’ope Bay. The tour continues in hole succession from holes 7 through 13 while the sun slowly creeps towards the horizon. At No. 13, guests stop to take-in the beauty of the sun setting over the Pacific Ocean with the 13th and 15th greens in the foreground. Stop four on the tour takes place at one of the most iconic locales on the Kohala Coast, the 15th hole overlooking Ili’ilinaehehe Bay. This spot is celebrated by Mauna Lani guests as the perfect spot to watch the sun slip over the horizon while watching for the illusive “green flash.”  The tour concludes at dusk while driving holes 16 through 18, ultimately ending at the Mauna Lani clubhouse where dinner and drinks at Shiono, are an excellent option.  

“Golfer or non-golfer, resort guest or visitor, we invite everyone to experience what our team gets to experience on a daily basis – the beauty of the Mauna Lani Resort, our two incredible golf courses and the Kohala Coast at sunset,” said Scott Christenson, director of golf, Mauna Lani Resort. “Not surprisingly, our Sunset Golf Cart Tours continue to be well-received by all.”

For reservations or more information on Mauna Lani’s Sunset Golf Cart Tours, call 808-885-6655. For more information on Mauna Lani Resort, visit

For additional news and information, visit

Marriott Golf Announces Annual Awards for Performance Excellence

JW Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort Named Golf Property of the Year

(ORLANDO, Fla.) - Marriott Golf, the Global Golf Division of Marriott International, Inc. today announced its annual awards for golf excellence across the Company’s portfolio of properties.  JW Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort in Marco Island, Florida has been named Golf Property of the Year; Colin Gooch, Director of Golf Operations of Griffin Gate Marriott Resort, in Lexington, Kentucky, was named Golf Professional of the Year and Todd Evans, the Director of Grounds Operations at JW Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort in Marco Island, Florida, was recognized as Golf Grounds Manager of the Year.

Property of the Year
Highlighting the annual awards, JW Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort, has been named Golf Property of the Year.  In addition to its successful Membership Program and earning the highest guest satisfaction ratings in  Marriott International’s Global Golf Division, JW Marriott Marco Island weathered  Hurricane Irma and extensive renovation work in order to re-open and operate its business.  The property is a consistent leader of the competitive Southwest Florida / Greater Naples resort and club market.    Some of the many award criteria for Golf Property of the Year include:  performance excellence for current and previous years in various categories including golf sales, round improvements, turf grass conditions, innovative program development, customer satisfaction, and personnel training & leadership.

Golf Professional of the Yea
“Despite an extraordinary year of weather difficulties, JW Marriott Marco Island exceeded all of its goals and is a testament to hard work and dedication”, said Claye Atcheson, Vice President, Marriott Golf.  “The Golf team at the resort drives exceptional value for our Members and Resort Guests and deserves special recognition.”

Colin Gooch of Griffin Gate Marriott Resort was named Golf Professional of the Year.  Gooch was recognized as an individual who consistently performs and exceeds in areas of sales and profit, supplier program compliance, rounds improvement, leadership in staff development, sales and marketing initiatives, and customer loyalty.  Under Colin’s leadership, the property saw an increase in member participation and raised the most fundraising for Marriott Golf’s Hit the Green for Hope, PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere) programming, an introductory golf program for military Veterans with disabilities.  Colin created a tournament, hosted over Labor Day to support the cause.  Consideration for this prestigious award is based on performance excellence for current and previous years.

“Since assuming the Director of Golf Operations position at Griffin Gate Marriott Resort, Colin Gooch has found creative ways to market his golf club and drive value to its loyal members”, said Brett Stark, Senior Director, Marketing & eCommerce, Marriott Golf.  “It’s an honor to recognize Colin as our Golf Professional of the Year.”

Grounds Manager of the Year
A 13-year veteran of Marriott Golf, with the last 10 years leading the golf grounds team at JW Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort in Marco Island, Florida, Director of Grounds Operations, Todd Evans, was recognized as Golf Grounds Manager of the Year.  Todd achieved record scores in associate satisfaction, an accident free workplace, charitable fundraising, and course conditioning measures.  His ability to produce consistent championship tier playing conditions is a key contributing factor in impressing a fully subscribed Membership.  Todd also guided the property through Hurricane Irma preparation and substantial recovery when the hurricane made landfall directly at Marco Island.  Some of the criteria for this award include:  overall turf grass condition, successful large scale renovation or construction projects, member and guest satisfaction scores, employee satisfaction scores, loss prevention efforts, staff development, financial management, and continuing education with active pursuit of certification from the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America.

“Todd Evans embodies the company philosophy – take care of associates and they will take care of the customer.  His leadership has led to one of the most engaged teams in the company.  For the last decade, his guidance has steered multiple projects, hurricane recovery, and property initiatives, all while maintaining exceptional playing conditions, said David Robinson, Senior Director, Grounds, Marriott Golf.  “We couldn’t be more proud to recognize Todd Evans as our Grounds Manager of the Year.”

For more information, visit

Swannies Announces Partnerships for 2018 Party Scramble Series

Partners with ChippoGolf, CutGolf, FlingGolf and GolfShotGPS for Series;
Fun-Filled Golf Tournaments to be Offered at 16 Cities Across the U.S.

(Minneapolis, MN.) – Swannies – creator of stylish, comfortable and fun clothing popular among millennial golfers – announces its partnership with ChippoGolf, CutGolf, FlingGolf and GolfShotGPS to provide on-site and promotional support for the Swannies 2018 Party Scramble Series.

Sponsored by Swannies and hosted by urban golf courses around the country, each Swannies Party Scramble event follows a similar format, with teams meeting at a local brewery to enjoy pre-round drinks before being transported by party bus to the course. Upon arrival, participants play a nine-hole team scramble with three party games along the way. Scoring is a combination of results from both golf and party games.

“Though we are primarily an apparel company, our vision is much larger. We aim to change the culture of golf to make it more fun and accessible,” says Adam Iversen, Co-Founder of Swannies Apparel. “Whether you’re a novice or lifelong player, these events appeal to all by offering a no pressure, laid-back afternoon of friendly competition and comradery.”

Starting in Brea, CA on March 24, the tournament series will hit 16 cities, including Chicago, Cincinnati, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Tampa, Tucson, Washington D.C. and more.

To learn more, visit

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Tony's Top Ten Products from PGA Show

(PHILADELPHIA, Pa.) - For 26 years award-winning golf journalist Tony Leodora has traveled the miles of aisles at the PGA Merchandise Show, inspecting the great (and not so great) items that are on display at the industry's biggest gathering.
And, for the last 16 years he has put together "Tony's Top Ten" - the 10 products (or services) that caught his eye during this annual trek.
As usual, these 10 heralded products have been introduced on the award-winning GolfTalk Live radio show (which aired Feb. 3, They also make their debut in March on the Traveling Golfer television show, named the No. 1 Golf Television Show in America for an unprecedented third straight year by the International Network of Golf.
Now, Tony's Top Ten is available in written form - in the Blog section of the website.
The products that made this year's Top Ten list include:
Antigua Anchorage Pullover - the 100 percent polyester double knit solid textured ottoman pullover has a rich look that appealing on the golf course or out on the town.

Club Champion - the No. 1 premium club fitter in the country, with 26 locations nationally ... and growing.

Copper Tech Golf Glove - infusing copper technology in a high-quality glove provides amazing inflammation and pain relief.

High Heat 257+ Driver, Fairway Wood, Hybrid - The team rocked the golf industry with products for the average golfer, now features clubs with the highest MOI on off-center hits.

Nexbelt Rowland Thomas Luxury Belts - the latest from Nexbelt is a line of high-fashion belts that use calfskin, imported from Italy, but hand-made in the United States.

Pyramid Putters - the hit of the New Product Section, Pyramid Putters made a splash with their Pyramid grooves on the leading edge that help center the ball on the sweet spot of the putter face.

Srixon Q-Star Tour - the new Q-Star Tour golf ball is designed specifically for the average golfer - great distance but tour quality feel.

SuperSpeed Golf - the training aid system that trains the golfer to attain a higher club speed and hit the ball further.

Survivor Tee - performance, technology and the fact that Tour players are using performance tees on a regular basis are the factors behind the success of the Survivor Tee.

Tour Edge Exotics CBX Fairway Woods and Hybrids - dominating the PGA Tour Champions, the Tour Edge CBX clubs give amateur players a true material advantage.

For more information about the GolfTalk Live radio show, contact TL Golf Services at 610-279-9220 or go to the website at

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Coming Soon: Sound Caddy Review

(REVIEW) - Our review of the golf-specific bluetooth speaker should go live Tuesday or Wednesday. We've already heard a lot of comments from both sides - pro and con. Where do you stand on the topic of plying music on the golf course?

One GREAT feature ... Dual USB ports that are great for charging your phone while on the course.

Learn more at and check back next week for the full review.

Tour Edge Awarded Multiple 2018 Golf Digest Hot List Awards

(RELEASE) - Tour Edge announces that two more new products representing four new Tour Edge models were honored with 2018 Golf Digest Hot List awards.

The Exotics CBX fairway wood and the Hot Launch 3 Triple Combo Iron set (HL3 Hybrid, HL3 Iron-Wood and HL3 Iron) have all been added to the list of current Tour Edge clubs that have received the annual award.

These latest Hot List recipients increase the current Tour Edge in-line award winning count to 11 models.

Exotics CBX Fairway Wood - The engine of the CBX fairway wood lies within Exotics core ethos of using superior multi-materials and construction methods. A Beta Ti cup face is brazed with a Hyper Steel body to produce the perfect launch and low spin combination. The CBX design alters the club’s CG to manipulate initial launch angle and velocity, also reducing the amount of spin the ball will have on release. The precise engineering creates a spin-killing distance machine - and the proof is in the numbers. Independent testing proves that the CBX fairway wood outdistances its most popular competitors an average of over 16 yards. So far in 2018, the CBX fairway woods and hybrids have been the fastest growing on the PGA TOURS with over 30 clubs in play and eight Top 10 finishes on the PGA TOUR, PGA TOUR Champions and The clubs were in play last week in the bag of the winner of the Chubb Classic on the PGA Champions Tour.

“The CBX wood is a game-changer,” said President and Founder David Glod. “The distance gains from the independent test are phenomenal. Then we saw the spin numbers and started calling it the ‘spin-killer’ around the office. Everything has lined-up for the CBX, the design, compilation of materials, and CG location to make it our next best fairway wood.”

Exotics CBX Fairway Wood -  From the pages of Golf Digest:
The Verdict: The CB stands for "combo brazing," the technique that made Exotics fairway woods a cult favorite in 2004. The technique fuses the face to the rest of the club without welding to save weight and allow the marriage of a flexible, lightweight titanium cup face and a stability-enhancing steel body. The carbon-composite panel near the back of the sole moves the center of gravity level with the center of the face and forward to lower spin.

Loft: 13.5, 15, 16, 18
Street Price: $350

HL3 Triple Combo Iron Set - The HL3 Triple combo iron set includes two HL3 Hybrids, two HL3 Iron-Woods and three HL3 Irons; making the HL3 the most versatile set of irons on the market and a way to efficiently maximize your investment over buying the clubs individually. Distance gaps will be perfectly in tune from club to club while offering optimal launch, distance and accuracy from every distance.
“The HL3 Triple Combo set combines three different HL3 models in a perfect seven-club blend,” said Executive Vice President of Tour Edge John Craig. “The set earns classification as a maximum game improvement set due to the ease of use and added distance it provides, but it really stands out as a set that will bring efficiency and control to your golf game. It’s not so much improvement, but it’s the dramatic reduction of common mistakes that sneak into every round provided by this three club blended concept. I think that’s something that every golfer can get behind, making the HL3 Triple Combo a visionary set that every golfer should be taking a hard look at.”

HL3 Triple Combo Iron Set From the pages of Golf Digest:
The Verdict: Tour Edge applies common-sense thinking in addressing golfers' issues. By breaking the iron set into a combination of two hybrids, two hollow-body irons and three cavity-back irons, help is provided where it's needed most—in the longer clubs—and control is available in the scoring clubs. The hybrids have a maraging-steel face to generate distance, and the hollow-body middle irons have substantial weight low to assist getting those shots airborne. The 8-iron through pitching wedge are traditional cavity-backs. Plus, the price is the epitome of the word bargain.

Loft: 7-iron: 32 degrees; PW: 44 degrees
Street Price: Set of seven/graphite: $600

“We are proud that our products keep resonating with the testers of the Hot List,” said Tour Edge founder and club designer David Glod. “Currently, we have four fairway woods, three hybrids and iron-woods and four iron sets have now been honored by Golf Digest available to the golfing consumer.”

The Exotics CBX fairway wood and HL3 Triple Combo set (HL3 Hybrids, HL3 Iron-Woods and HL3 Irons) join the following Hot List award winners in the Tour Edge line up:
- Exotics XJ1 fairway wood – Super 9-1-1 Titanium for a much lighter head, faster ball speeds
- Exotics EX 10 fairway wood - Extremely thin Japanese high-density HT 980 steel cup face for higher COR
- Exotics EX10 beta fairway wood - Tour-preferred pear shape features one-of-a-kind SlipStream sole
- Exotics EX10 hybrid - Steel cup face is combo brazed with a 450 SS hyper-steel body to produce - Exotics legendary distance and forgiveness
- Exotics CBX forged iron set - Triple forged from Japanese S25c Carbon steel delivers softer feel and substantial forgiveness in a blade design
- Exotics CB Pro Tungsten iron set - Hollow design features a solid tungsten sole for optimal weighting and super thin variable face thickness technology
- Exotics EXd iron set - The 431 stainless steel irons feature a generous offset design for added forgiveness helping players return to square at impact

All Tour Edge Tour Hot List winners are currently available at select authorized Tour Edge retailers. To find a Tour Edge retailer near you, call (800) 515-3343 or visit

Friday, February 23, 2018

Swannies Partners with ChippoGolf, CutGolf, FlingGolf and GolfShotGPS for 2018 Party Scramble Series

Fun-Filled Golf Tournaments to be Offered at 16 Cities Across the U.S.

(Minneapolis, MN.) – Swannies – creator of stylish, comfortable and fun clothing popular among millennial golfers – announces its partnership with ChippoGolf, CutGolf, FlingGolf and GolfShotGPS to provide on-site and promotional support for the Swannies 2018 Party Scramble Series.

Sponsored by Swannies and hosted by urban golf courses around the country, each Swannies Party Scramble event follows a similar format, with teams meeting at a local brewery to enjoy pre-round drinks before being transported by party bus to the course. Upon arrival, participants play a nine-hole team scramble with three party games along the way. Scoring is a combination of results from both golf and party games.

“Though we are primarily an apparel company, our vision is much larger. We aim to change the culture of golf to make it more fun and accessible,” says Adam Iversen, Co-Founder of Swannies Apparel. “Whether you’re a novice or lifelong player, these events appeal to all by offering a no pressure, laid-back afternoon of friendly competition and comradery.”

Starting in Brea, CA on March 24, the tournament series will hit 16 cities including Chicago, Cincinnati, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Tampa, Tucson, Washington D.C. and more.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Tifosi Optics Launches SWANK - New Style for Spring '18

(WATKINSVILLE, GA.) - Tifosi Optics introduces SWANK, a fun new style with features designed to perform in any situation. SWANK combines a lifestyle silhouette and a vibrant color palette with many of the same technical features found in our other high performance sports sunglasses. SWANK is sure to become a new favorite for style-conscious athletes and individuals of every generation who strive to live life at the top of their game and look great while doing it.

The Tifosi DNA gives SWANK a huge advantage over the competition. The characteristically lightweight and comfortable frames are made from Grilamid TR-90. Hydrophilic rubber nose pads are soft for comfort and increase their grip the more you sweat.  New Tifosi Glide technology helps SWANK slide on easily without pulling hair and ensures the glasses stay in place while you focus on performing at your best. An integrated hinge keeps the frame sleek and helps them hold their shape, guaranteeing long years of use. Optical quality, shatterproof polycarbonate lenses with 100% UV protection will protect you from the elements while projecting your style.

Perfect for running a marathon or running your life, SWANK offers many features of a hi-tech sunglass while looking perfectly comfortable in any environment.

For more information, visit

Fast Company Honors Arccos Golf as One of the World's Most Innovative Companies 2018

(STAMFORD, Conn.) – Arccos Golf announced that it has been recognized by Fast Company as one of the “World’s Most Innovative Companies 2018,” ranking #3 in the Sports sector based on the success of Arccos Caddie, golf’s first artificial intelligence platform.

Developed in partnership with Microsoft, Arccos Caddie shows a player their optimal strategy on any hole in the world. Its AI engine is fueled by golf’s richest data set, which includes over 100 million shots hit during 750,000+ rounds played by the Arccos community, and 418 million GPS mapping data points on 40,000+ courses worldwide. Arccos Caddie also considers a player’s personal shot history, the course elevation, and weather conditions. It was recently declared Permitted Under the Rules of Golf, according to USGA decision #2017-0754.

“Arccos’ mission is to combine automatic data capture and artificial intelligence to help golfers of all skill levels make smarter decisions and shoot lower scores,” says Sal Syed, Arccos CEO and Co-Founder. “In conjunction with the launch of Arccos Caddie, our users lowered their handicap by an average of 3.55 strokes in 2017. That’s 46.7x faster than the average player with a USGA handicap, and a huge testament to the fact that we are truly on the right track.”

Fast Company's Most Innovative Companies (MIC) issue recognizes pioneering companies across 36 categories, from sport to artificial intelligence to virtual reality. More than three dozen Fast Company editors, reporters, and contributors surveyed thousands of companies—many of which were identified by a new MIC submission process—to create these lists.

Most Innovative Companies is Fast Company’s signature franchise and one of its most highly anticipated editorial efforts of the year. It provides both a snapshot and a road map for the future of innovation across the most dynamic sectors of the economy. The top 10 companies on this year’s list are: (1.) Apple, (2.) Netflix, (3.) Square, (4.) Tencent, (5.) Amazon, (6.) Patagonia, (7.) CVS Health, (8.) Washington Post Company, (9.) Spotify, and (10.) NBA.

“This year’s MIC list is an inspiring and insightful window into how many companies have embraced innovation and are working to make meaningful change,” said Fast Company deputy editor David Lidsky, who oversaw the issue with senior editor Amy Farley.

Arccos Caddie is offered as a premium upgrade to the Arccos 360 platform. Tiered pricing – $7.99/month, $39.99/six months, $49.99/12 months – allows users to choose the subscription option which bests suits their needs.

“The PGA TOUR has done a great job of using advanced analytics to help its players practice and perform their best. At other levels of the game, capturing the necessary on-course data has been a real challenge,” said Mike Downey, Director, Principal Evangelist – Sports at Microsoft. “Arccos has cracked that code and built a robust data set which they’re deploying via the Microsoft Azure cloud to the benefit of golfers worldwide.”

In addition to Microsoft, Arccos’ official partners include Cobra Puma Golf, which recently launched golf’s first smart set, Cobra Connect Powered by Arccos. As part of this ongoing collaboration, every club in the Cobra KING F8 line features an Arccos sensor embedded in the grip. This helps players improve faster by automatically tracking and receiving actionable insights for every aspect of their game.

“At COBRA PUMA GOLF, we believe COBRA CONNECT Powered by Arccos is a game-changer for the golf industry. Thanks to our partnership with Arccos we are putting the first ‘smart set’ of clubs in the hands of golfers of all levels, helping them play better golf and have more fun while doing so,” said Bob Philion, President of PUMA North America and COBRA PUMA GOLF. “We truly believe that ‘smart’ clubs are the future and utilizing Tour level analytics will help golfers make smarter decisions on course, practice more efficiently, and ultimately improve their performance. We’re truly excited about the continued partnership with Arccos.”

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Noblesville Artist’s Work Selected for Display at the Augusta Regional Airport During the 2018 Masters

(NOBLESVILLE, Ind.) – Award-winning Noblesville artist Christine Merchent’s body of work, Ballerinas on the Green, will be featured at the Augusta Regional Airport during the 2018 Masters Tournament.

The Airport’s Art Committee selected Ballerinas on the Green – a fine art photography series that combines classical ballet themes on a golf course backdrop – to be featured April – June. The 2018 Masters Tournament will be hosted at Augusta National Golf Club April 2 – 8.

“The Augusta Regional Airport is thrilled to have Mrs. Merchent’s work on display during Masters week. Her portrait style will not only attract attention from golf fans, but the dance community as well. The Airport Art Committee thought the Airport would be the perfect venue to highlight her creative talent,” said Lauren Smith, spokesperson for the Augusta Regional Airport.

Augusta National does not release ticket sales, but it is estimated that over 250,000 visitors attend each year. Many of those visitors will see five pieces from Merchent’s Ballerinas on the Green as they pass through the Augusta Airport.

Merchent’s passion for sports, particularly golf, comes from spending countless hours watching and photographing her son who plays golf for Noblesville High School. Merchent and her husband own Purgatory Golf Club that is managed by Billy Casper Golf, its namesake having won the 1970 Masters Tournament.

“The golf course is my studio. Replacing golfers with ballerinas makes it a fantasy. But because every other element in the art is so true to the game, it feels like it could happen. The project as a whole also highlighted two very different junior sports,” Merchent said.

Merchent is the first to approach fine art photography pairing ballerinas and golfers together on a golf course. She studied over 21,000 junior golf images to develop the stories that she brought to life with the project. The body of work features Noblesville High School golfers and local ballerinas all shot at Purgatory Golf Club.

“To start with, the poses she caught of the golfers and dancers are beautiful and the colors spectacular,” said Indiana PGA Executive Director, Mike David, one of the first to view the artwork. “But I was overwhelmed by the similarities between dance and golf. At first, I was kind of taken aback by how two totally opposite sports are on the same playing field. But the more you look the more you see the grace and beauty and how the two naturally tie together. You have a whole new understanding and appreciation of both sports. It does almost seem natural, having the two together.”

Ron Kern, Golf Course Architect of Purgatory Golf Club, who is also a photographer says, “Christine Merchent’s photographs captures the essence and spirit of two quite different pursuits, the art of ballet and the game of golf.  Merchent’s body of work blends ballet and golf into a beautiful tandem through intelligent visualization and a sympathetic and creative use of light.”

Merchent was named the 2017 Nickel Plate Arts Artist of the Year and was also juried into the prestigious 2017 Center Santa Fe Review. In 2014, Merchent was recognized as a Top Ten Photographer in the state of Indiana that was awarded by the Indianapolis Professional Photographer’s Guild, and the Indiana State Fair for overall print case score. In 2015, she was recognized by the Professional Photographers of America (PPA) International Photographic Competition (IPC).

The Buenaventura Golf & Beach Resort Enhances Golf Experience with Cobra Performance Center

A golf experience unlike any other in Latin America for golf enthusiasts and beginners

(Rio Hato, Panama) – The Buenaventura Golf & Beach Resort, set within the Buenaventura resort community among lush, tropical gardens by the Pacific Ocean, offers a one-of-a-kind golf experience for advanced players, as well as beginners, with the only Cobra Performance Center in Latin America. Available to guests of The Buenaventura Golf & Beach Resort, the hotel is offering a Golf & Spa package starting at $399 per night, which includes unlimited golf per day and a spa treatment for two.

The centerpiece of the Buenaventura golf course is the ultra-advanced, Cobra Performance Center where players dissect every stroke and design a plan to improve their game through technology that tracks movement from shoulder to feet, by using body sensors that determine point of gravity and tracks their stroke. The GEARS technology within the center includes high-speed cameras, calibration tools, suits, markers and club mounts – all of which determine the range of motion. Players can learn and perfect their swing as the technology gathers data in 3D with more than 600 images per swing and analyzes their full body position along with the swing’s path, impact location, club head speed and much more. The training takes an hour and a half with instructors providing feedback on how to make the best of the data.

“The Cobra Performance Center is what makes the experience at our golf course so unique,” said Miguel Marin Casero, director of golf and PGA professional.  “The body sensors replicate the body movements and the GEARS technology provides hard data measuring the entire swing as it unfolds, helping players improve their swing to make that perfect golf shot.”

The breathtaking 18-hole Nicklaus-design par-72 championship course is home to one of the only two in Panama and is managed by the world’s largest golf management company, Troon.  Designed within a seaside community, the Buenaventura’s golf course incorporates the surrounding water and lush environment within its 123 acres. With more than 110 unique water bunkers set around the course and 300 mature Corotu trees strategically placed throughout the landscape, the golf course provides both a stunning atmosphere and a challenging game. Players who appreciate a difficult hole will enjoy the course’s signature hole 16, which is set between two, large Corotu trees that are difficult to maneuver. Golfers wanting to perfect their skills can take advantage of the driving range with plenty of spots to hit from natural grass along with a short game, chipping and putting green for practicing in between games.

After training, players can relax at the club house, a repurposed and luxuriously upgraded stable once used for the community’s horses. Food, drinks, and wine are available at the club house’s Hoyo 19 snack bar.

Recently named ‘Best Golf Couse in Panama’ by Golf Digest, the Buenaventura golf course also provides a Kids Clinic on weekends to help introduce children to the game or help them improve their game. The golf clinic designed for children ages four to 18 includes golf fundamentals from six important aspects: grip, stance, alignment, posture, ball position and dynamics and also introduces rules and etiquette and a variety of golf skills.

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