Lessons Learned from the 2008 Masters

Do you miss the Masters?

Trap Five LogoYou remember the Masters don’t you? Not the quiet recent incarnations, but the raucaus roar-followed-by-roar Sunday back nine versions?

The Masters used to be a lot more fun. A Sunday “charge” was not defined by a player managing even par. Players actually made eagles and birdies to gain ground on guys choking on their leads. It was great!

Today, there are really two majors: the Open Championship and the U.S. Open. The latter just happens to be held three times each year with the first and last being called, respectively, the Masters and the PGA Championship.

Golf Talk [Episode 084]

Zzzzzzzzzzzz… oh, sorry, we’ve got a show to do? About what? Oh right, the Masters. I must have dozed off…

Golf Talk PodcastTrevor Immelman is your 2008 Masters Champion. Unfortunately, some of us had to wake up to find out! Plus Lorena the Hall-of-Famer, Par Three contests, and more in this episode of Golf Talk.

You can subscribe to the RSS feed for our podcasts here or download Episode 084 as an MP4 file. For those who want to subscribe to us in iTunes, click here.

For this week’s Show Notes – links to articles we discuss in the show and additional information – just read on.

Turning Up My Collar to Honor a Great Champion

Sometimes the hardest thing to see is what’s before your eyes. He’s no Tiger, but golf has seen few players in history as good as Phil Mickelson.

Thrash TalkAs I read my last Thrash Talk it occured to me that maybe it would be interesting to focus on the historical standing of a player other than Tiger Woods… or Jack Nicklaus, or Arnold Palmer, or Ben Hogan. It is a common theme in all sports to view the retired generations of stars as the gold standard of excellence, their career achievements standing like monuments on the top of a hill. Monuments which remind us of the great moments, ignoring the failures along the way.

Active players, in contrast, have incomplete careers, and generally no monuments. We are far better acquainted with both their successes and their failures, often causing us to rank them below the illusory image of the flawless champ of yesteryear. Certainly this is not true of all players; anyone watching Tiger Woods, or Roger Federer, or Michael Phelps, cannot escape the historical significance of their achievements, even in young, incomplete careers. But what about Tiger’s top competition? Could Tiger’s domination lead us to perhaps miss something truly great, right under our noses?

Clicgear Rolls Out Cart Model 2.0

Clicgear USA comes out with version 2.0 of an already impressive push cart.

Bag DropUnless I’m required to or play a course in a housing development with tee boxes about a mile from each other, I try to stay away from motorized golf carts as much as possible.

While I enjoy the exercise I get from walking, I’ve long given up carrying my golf bag. It’s not that I physically unable to carry, I just prefer to dump my bag on a cart and push my clubs around during those hot summer days. Golf can put enough stress on your back, why add more carrying your clubs and bag?

Volume One Hundred Forty

The Masters is over, and instead of mourning, let’s celebrate all that golf gives to us.

Hittin' the Links“Well, The Masters is over, now what am I going to do with my time?” Don’t fret golf nuts, Hittin’ the Links is here to help with all that is golf on the web.

In this edition of HTL we peruse the various stories coming out of Augusta for the week, see who got their first Green Jacket (like you don’t already know), and take a final look at Augusta National for yet another year. Also, we look in on the ladies down in Mexico, see who the best “athlete” golfers are, read up on the college ranks, and find out what else is going on in the world of golf. Read on!

2008 Masters Live Blog

Live blogging the 2008 Masters. Will Tiger come from behind for the first time, or will one of the four ahead of him pull out their first major win?

Masters14:17:02: Tiger misreads his putt from just off the green poorly on the first. This may not bode well for Woods today as he’s had trouble reading greens all week at Augusta.

What does bode well for Woods today is that none of the four guys ahead of him have won a major. Trevor’s average final round score at Augusta is north of 76, and 74+ in all majors. The winds are blowing and Tiger, arguably, controls his ball better than anyone on Tour. But if he keeps putting like a spaz (yeah), it’s not gonna happen. Odd fact: the last four times Tiger’s played with Stewart Cink in the last round, he’s won.

Prediction: Woods has about a 20-33% chance of winning. There’s a lot in his favor, but he’s still six strokes down, too, so we’re not about to get carried away here. Immelman has the best chance. Snedeker will falter but not embarrass himself. Flesch will have the worst day of the three, and Casey will play solidly and perhaps finish second.

Load this page and follow along as we live blog the final round of the 2008 Masters.

Mizuno MP-600 Driver Review

Will the MP-600 put Mizuno woods on the fast track?

The MP-600 features Fast Track weighting technology.Mizuno has long been known for their forged irons for better players. However, that reputation has largely failed to carry over into the world of woods. Their previous driver offering for low handicappers (the MP-001) had a small, but loyal following (at the range one day, a guy with an MP-001 couldn’t help but come over to check out the MP-600). In fact, only 16 of the nearly 800 Sand Trap forum members who responded to a driver survey, or just over 2%, use a Mizuno driver.

Mizuno makes quality woods, but breaking the mindset of the golfing public can be difficult. To be fair, until this year, Mizuno had not released a new driver since the MX-500, so they’d been out of the limelight. But the fact remains, many golfers don’t even consider Mizuno woods when making a purchase. The MP-600 is here to say maybe they should.

Favorite Holes at the Masters

What is your favorite hole at Augusta National?

Trap Five LogoIt’s among the most beautiful and exclusive courses in America. Yet everyday golfers feel close to Augusta National because every year we spend a week watching the best players in the world golf their way around a course that 99.9% of us can only ever dream of playing.

Still ask any golfer what his or her favorite golf hole in the world is, and many will still point to a hole they’ve never played, and often never even seen other than on TV. They’ll say #12 at Augusta, Firethorn, the last at the Masters, or any of the other 15 beauties at the National. They are holes that are burned into our memories. They connote spring. They make us smile.

2008 Masters Predictions

Can anyone stop Tiger from winning his fifth green jacket? Don’t bet on it.

Thrash TalkThe 2008 Masters is finally here! As usual, the hype is centered around the number one golfer in the world, Tiger Woods. Woods will be going for his fifth green jacket after coming up a little short the last two years at Augusta. His win streak might have ended at the WGC-CA Championship a couple weeks back, but he will be looking to start a new one this week.

Can anyone stop Tiger from winning the second leg in his bid for another Tiger Slam? The Sand Trap staff members have looked long and hard into the crystal ball and are ready to pick a winner, a possible disappointment, and more. If you have anything to add, feel free to comment below or discuss it in the forum.