Volume Four Hundred Thirteen

Jordan Spieth bests the best down under, the Euros plot continued Ryder Cup dominance, and Tiger is set to return.

Hittin' the LinksThere’s just one month left of 2014, and means that while those in the southern climes are entering the prime of their golf season, those of us in the North are facing a harsh reality. In the northern latitudes, there’s no denying that golf season is just about at its end (despite the fact that many of us in Central Ohio played in shorts on the last day of November). As the Starks would say on Game of Thrones, “Winter is coming.”

But we’re not quite done with competitive golf, yet. Tiger returns next week at the Hero World Challenge at Isleworth. It will be interesting to see if he can play pain free, and if he can play more like the Tiger of old than we’ve seen thus far in 2014.

So while we still can this year, let’s hit the links.

Hole #1: Spieth Wins Down Under
Jordan Spieth shot a course record 63 to beat world numbers one and three (and the rest of the field) at the Emirates Australian Open in Sydney. His 13-under total was good for a six-stroke win over Rod Pampling. [Link]

Hole #2: Sifford Lauded at White House
Watch Charlie Sifford receive his Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama at the White House. [Link]

Hole #3: Lawrie Launches New Match Play Event
Paul Lawrie picked his home town of Aberdeen to host a new match play event on the European Tour. The event at Murcar Links in Scotland is designed to help prepare players for the Ryder Cup. Because, you know, the Euros have been struggling so much in that competition lately. [Link]

Hole #4: Mats vs. Grass
With the North heading into the season of artificial mats for those diehards who keep the clubs out through the winter months, here’s the answer to the question “how do mats affect contact, ball flight, and more?” [Link]

Hole #5: An Anniversary to Forget for Tiger
It’s been five years since Tiger Wood’s “car accident” at the end of his drive. We may never know all of the answers (Was Elin chasing him with a nine iron as reported at the time?), but the event’s mark on Tiger’s career has been undeniable. [Link]

Hole #6: Golf Courses Struggling
In 2013, 13 new courses opened across the U.S., and 157 closed. This cannot be good. Florida may be the epicenter of this growing crisis in golf. [Link]

Hole #7: Olympic Golf Course Wins Legal Battle
The Olympic Games won the most recent round of legal battles over its new golf course. Environmental concerns won’t halt construction at the Olympic golf course in Rio, at least for now, easing concerns that the course will not be ready for the 2016 games. [Link]

Hole #8: Legends in Their Spare Time
A couple of brothers are finding fame through YouTube and golf trick shots. [Link]

Hole #9: The Sand Trap Forum Turns 10
We don’t often self reference in HTL, but every once in awhile something comes along that deserves to be noted. The Sand Trap Forum launched 10 years ago. That’s 10 years of opinions, jokes, and helpful tips from your fellow golfers, which naturally also means plenty of point/counterpoint and other fun. We look forward to 10 more. [Link]

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