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Feherty's mailbag

Why am I not ever able to bring the same game I have on the practice tee, where I rarely miss a shot, to the first tee? Please help.
-- Lawrence Green, London

Lawrence, Lawrence, Lawrence. Why do your best burps show up when you're on your own? For exactly the same reason, that's why. Try a biggie in front of the boys, and you choke. On the range, you care less about where it goes, because no one's watching but you. Do you care about where your partners are hitting it on the range? I didn't think so, but you laugh your arse off at them when they screw up on the first tee, don't you? My advice to you is to start drinking heavily, (standard procedure) and care less.

I think Annika Sorenstam has been the most dominant golfer on the planet for the last two years and deserves more credit/publicity/recognition than she has gotten for doing what she has done over that stretch. The question, though, is simply this; do you think she has any legitimate shot at winning a PGA tournament on any course, and what effect will it have on her if she fails to make the cut at the Colonial in May?
-- Jerry Stephenson, Puryear, TN

Whenever I get asked about who is the most dominant golfer on the planet, I always ask, in which weight division? Layla Ali would get her ass kicked by Lennox Lewis, but it doesn't mean she isn't the best by a long way in her weight class. Credit, publicity, and recognition are all tied to how much the networks can charge for a thirty-second commercial.

Annika's chances of winning a PGA Tour event are less than zero, as the physiological advantages the men have over her are far too great for her to overcome. If she were built like Chyna, she might have a chance. Missing the cut won't phase Annika at all. I believe she's doing this simply to see for herself how good she can be, and she should be applauded for having the courage to try.

Which town do the tournament players most look forward to staying in during the season. Conversely, which towns do they dread and can't wait to get out of?
-- Kevin Conner, Jacksonville, Florida

Generally speaking, Tour players are fond of venues that have good hotels attached to them, like Doral, Pebble Beach, Byron Nelson etc. A bed at the Four Seasons puts them right across from the practice tee and within minutes from great restaurants and shall we say, some high-class ballet clubs? On the other hand, if there's nothing but a Motel 6 or Holiday Inn Express around a venue, players tend to get out of town ASAP. Sadly, these venues are usually miles from the nearest decent airport too.

Many thanks for your stories the last few years. I still love reading Ramble in the Bramble. Your bio says your interests include golf course design. Have you done any courses yet? Can you describe your design style? For example, every Nicklaus course I've ever played seem to be patterned after his game: Tight fairways, small firm greens requiring towering irons shots and murder-by-bogey if you miss the green. Where can one play a Feherty design?
-- Louis Kaneshiro, Anaheim Hills, CA

Actually I have been involved in designing a couple of courses with my partner and friend David Jones, one near Belfast Airport in Northern Ireland, and the National Golf Club of Turkey, down on the Mediterranean coast, near Antalya. The latter of the two was the more interesting, as during construction the site manager made off with a bunch of the equipment, leaving the last green shaped like Patrick the Starfish in SpongeBob SquarePants. I remember showing some of the local work crew how I wanted the bunkers to look, and ending up digging one of them by hand, while they all smoked and talked about me in Turkish. Then I saw Midnight Express, and subsequently never went back, but I've seen photos and it looks gorgeous.

What is the most amusing or bizarre incident that you have ever witnessed as a player or commentator during a professional golf tournament?
-- Marcus Graham Winter Park, FL

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