*Bawitdaba by Kid Rock begins playing*
Allow me to introduce myself. I’m Lafferty Daniel and I’m the resident golf guy. I’ll be talking PGA, all majors, some equipment, courses, news, and just generally shooting the shit about hitting the links. I’m not going to hammer you with flaming hot takes or hyperbolic discussions about Tiger getting to 18 majors or hating Ian Poulter/ Patrick Reed/ Bryson Dechambeau/ insert anyone who doesn’t approve of treating tour events like it’s the tailgate lot at a Bills game. I’ll leave those crutch topics for everyone else in the golf blogiverse.
I weirdly love this week in professional golf. In preparation for the Open Championship, players basically have three options.
First, they can go play the Aberdeen Scottish Open to get ready for the bitchin’ bunkers, greens, and winds of links golf. Notables in the field are always Phil Mickelson and a lot of the British dudes like Lee Westwood, Justin Rose, and Cameron Smith. We’ve also got Patrick Reed, Rickie Fowler, and Hideki Matsuyama. Opting into this tournament is great for getting over jet lag and being ready for next week, but there’s also a possibility of head games coming into play. If the winds kick up and get Phil’s tits flopping in the wind and he shoots a 76 to miss the cut, he’s going into Carnoustie with some doubt. As good as these guys are, there’s no doubt they can be head cases.
There’s always the option to play in the John Deere Classic, which is an odd decision to me if you’re already qualified for the British Open, but there is always a pretty strong field considering its the week before a major. Francesco Molinari, Kelly Kraft, Zach Johnson, and a few others. I don’t think any of those guys are particularly strong contenders for the Claret Jug, even if theres a little recency bias for Zach Johnson, but it’s still exciting to see. Sunday is also great because there are three spots in the British Open for the top three finishers in the top 10. You may recall 2013 when Jordan Spieth holed out to force himself into a playoff and he ultimately won. That win punched his ticket to the Open that year and he was on a plane that night across the pond without even having a suitcase packed for the inevitable cold rain. Storylines like that are what make majors great.
Finally, you can do nothing. Just chill out, practice, go get a rub and tug, or even just head over to Scotland and chug whiskey for a week straight. Just do whatever you need to do to get into the headspace and avoid injury to be ready to play for golf’s oldest major. This is what Spieth, Sergio, and Tiger are doing and those guys know a thing or two about racking up wins.
I think pre-open prep helps develop the storylines going into the tournament, but overall, it doesn’t matter what the fuck they do. The tee time draw, the weather, who has the sauce that week, and a little luck go into winning the Open, especially at Carnoustie. So enjoy the 14 hours of straight golf each day this weekend.