Monty's Bedroom SecretSure, great talent, serious preparation and good old-fashioned luck are all factors in winning the Ryder Cup, but victorious captain Colin Montgomerie also knows that the little things can make a big difference. As Monty revealed to the U.K.'s Mirror, the European team's superior sleeping arrangements might have been the factor that put them over the top in Wales.
"There are a lot of things behind the scenes you might not be aware of," said Montgomerie today at the launch of next May's 'Golf Live' event at the London Club in Kent.
"I looked at the rooms and thought they weren't big enough, so we all got connecting rooms.
"Then on the Saturday morning we got a removal company in and they brought six-foot beds and took the five-foot beds out.
"We were on the ninth floor and the Americans were on the eighth floor, but they didn't know about it." Corey Pavin and his side arrived two days later.
"You have one hit at this and I wanted to get it right."
There's a good chance that Monty's being a bit tongue-in-cheek about how much he really thinks the extra leg room helped his players, but there's no doubt he thinks some of his "small" decisions helped widen the incredibly small gap in talent at this year's Cup (the way he takes Pavin to task for messing with the U.S. rainsuits shows that). Still, I think Tiger Woods has proved beyond the shadow of a doubt that great players don't always need a good night's sleep to play dominant golf. More Q-school HistorySpeaking of the LPGA, Q-school finished up this week, and Jeff Shain of the Orlando Sentinel reports on one of the best stories of the week, the first female African-American to make it through golf's hardest test.
It turns out the PGA Tour won’t be the only circuit expanding its minority base this year. The LPGA is adding its first black member since 2001.
Shasta Averyhardt won’t have full playing status in 2011, having tied for 22nd at the LPGA’s qualifying finals that ended Sunday in Daytona Beach. However, the Michigan native ought to get at least a half-dozen starts from the category she occupies for those finishing between 21st and 30th in Q-school.
The LPGA’s last black member was LaRee Sugg, whose final season on the circuit was 2001.
Averyhardt was actually a bit unlucky, as a 79 in nearly impossible scoring conditions on Sunday kept her from getting full LPGA privileges for the year. It obviously must be noted that this accomplishment comes just a week after Joseph Bramlett made waves by becoming the first player of African-American descent to earn his Tour card on the men's side. It's tempting to see this as a trend, but while we all hoped that the Tiger boom would create a huge uptick in minority professional golfers, the major tours are still greatly lacking in diversity. Even if we're not holding our breaths in anticipation, here's hoping this is a sign of things to come. The Big Break-up?It's been a bit of a bumpy ride for the oft-overlooked LPGA with its broadcast partners The Golf Channel, and according to Golf World's Ron Sirak, the ladies' tour might not be willing to take a tape-delayed back seat to the men for much longer.
Sources tell Golf World the LPGA is looking for a way out of the 10-year contract that made Golf Channel the exclusive cable partner for the women's tour beginning this year. The deal, negotiated by LPGA commissioner Carolyn Bivens (who was ousted in 2009) puts the LPGA at the end of a long line of live programming available to GC, including the PGA, European, Champions and Nationwide Tours. As a result, of the 94 official LPGA rounds this year, 38 were on delayed tape and 11 had no TV coverage at all–meaning more than half the tour's rounds were not seen live.
There's been no official comment from the LPGA so far (and, seeing as how they're still in the midst of this contract, don't expect one any time soon), but this news hardly comes as a surprise. Without the star power of players like Annika and Lorena Ochoa, the LPGA is more desperate than ever to attract new fans, and in a world of instant sports gratification, doing that on tape delay is a tall order. Update: The LPGA released a statement saying it's not trying to get out of the Golf Channel contract.