Part two of my look back at 2010. This one is from the HOG (Hooked On Golf Blog) perspective. What big events and happenings happened to, with or by HOG this last year? Check out part one, A Look Back At 2010 – The Golf World.
In January 2010 I was able to nail down sponsors for the year’s fantasy golf. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to get Rife Putters to come through with a prize at the end of the season after my contact left the company.
Of course, the buzz was the Tiger Woods scandal and I blogged about it a lot.
I started a new gig, working as national sales manager for Sumi-G. Over the course of the year I’d build up a rep force in the USA for the company, as well as work on many media related items like the company web site etc. That gig ended (on good terms so no worries) in October.
January saw me traveling to the PGA Merchandise show with Sumi-G and experiencing a perspective to the PGA Show which I hadn’t seen before. That was one of working very hard for 15 hour days on and in the booth, meeting and talking with potential customers.
February I continued to blog and review gear.
Tried to tune in to Pebble Beach but couldn’t stand all the hack “stars” like George Lopez.
March was huge. On March 1st I found a letter from Augusta National, letting me know that I had tickets to the Tuesday practice round at the Masters! My life would forever be changed.
Sand Hollow Golf Course
On March 3rd I posted a review of Sand Hollow Golf Course, one of the coolest courses I’ve EVER played.
On March 12 I was in Puerto Rico, covering the PGA Tour’s Puerto Rico Open. On my first night there I got to hang out with one of the coolest cats ever in golf, Chi Chi Rodriguez. The next night I met Stefania Fernandez, Miss Universe. What a gig. During the off hours of tournament I hung out in the casino with Rocco Mediate and Rory Sabbatini for about an hour.
While in Puerto Rico, I shot a two part series of videos, interviews and photos of The Golf Channel. It was a very cool “behind the scenes” look at a live broadcast by TGC and the people who make it happen. Months later, I was contacted and asked to pull it because nobody had “permission.” Party poopers if you ask me.
In April I started the first ever “HOG Putter Week” where I reviewed putters like the Nike Method, Heavy Putter Mid Weight K4-M, Double Duty Divot Repair Putter, Bob Burns Roll-In Putter, Bettinardi BB32 Putter,
On April 7 my “Dream Foursome” attended the Tuesday Masters Tournament practice round at Augusta National Golf Club. I’ll never be the same and it was SO cool to have my best friend, my son and my dad there with me! Man that was cool.
We saw the birth of the new category “How Not To.”
May 22 I married the most awesome lady in the universe! The day before I won my own tournament, the Non Annual Korologos Wedding Invitational Golf Tournament.
Started playing with the new Bridgestone B330-RX and B330-RXS golf balls. One of my favorites now.
Speaking of Bridgestone, I had my first Bridgestone ball fitting on June 6th.
Tiger Woods divorce and scandal was still the big talk. Divorce wasn’t confirmed yet, but rumors were flying that Elin was going to get $750 million. That estimate was a little off.
On June 21st, my pop and I won the club’s annual Father’s Day tournament.
Graeme McDowell won the US OPEN.
In possibly my best work ever, I posted the Potty Putter Review.
For the first time in 10 years plus, I finished in the money in the Salt Lake City Amateur golf tournament, despite finishing bogey double-bogey on the 35th and 36th holes.
Summer heat, the altitude of Salt Lake, and no moisture in the air added up to the longest shots of the year. 350 yard drives, 205 yard 7-irons, 150 yard gap wedges…
I post my lowest round of the year on my home course on July 11th, a 69 from the black tees (tips).
My friend and St. Andrews caddy John Boyne posts an awesome three part guide to St. Andrews for the British Open.
Hooked On Golf Blog gets a new logo. I like skulls.
HOG moves to a new, faster, bigger dedicated server because the site is getting so much traffic the old server was melting down!
Played in a great charity tournament for Homes For Our Troops, an organization which builds homes for disabled veterans.
In a move which rarely happens, I put a new putter in the bag. My Dornoch Putter by Grant Mackay is the best putter EVER.
I shoot my best score ever at Wingpointe Golf Course, an Arthur Hills design. That 70 topped my previous lowest round of the year because it was -2 for 18 while my 69 at River Oaks as -1 (par 70). Needless to say, my opponents were hurting pretty bad that day.
I review the fanciest golf shoes I’ve ever worn, Royal Albatross’ hand made Italian leather Black Jack Nero Golf Shoes.
I travel to Colonial Williamsburg to review the two great courses there, Golden Horseshoe Green Course and Gold Course. I also do a review on the Historic Area in Colonial Williamsburg.
After six years, I retire as president of my local men’s club at the final tournament of the year, Hell Day.
I reviewed the Vdara Hotel and Spa in Las Vegas.
I started a new food and drink web site called MegaChomp.
Posted a bunch of Ryder Cup blogs.
In October my working relationship with Sumi-G ended, but my golfing relationship continues!
On November 16th my YouTube golf channel topped 3,000,000 views.
Posted the annual HOG Turkey Awards, featuring the year’s biggest boneheads in the golf world.
On November 30th, I posted my 3000th golf blog.
I travel to Notre Dame University to watch my Utah Utes football team. Despite the Utes terrible performance on the field, visiting Notre Dame with my best friends and my dad was one of the coolest experiences I’ve ever had.
I find a picture of myself sitting on the potty, in the men’s restroom at a local golf course.
I travel to Puerto Rico, Mexico. There I review Puerto Los Cabos Golf Club, Palmilla Golf Club and the One And Only Palmilla Resort. I also happen to enjoy the 83 degree weather while my friends back home were freezing to death.
I post my look back at the golf world in 2010.
On 12/22 I review the new Nike Sport Cart Bag.
On 12/11 the HOG Golf Photo Gallery went over the 13,000 image mark.
On 12/31/10 I vowed to blog my golf ass off in 2011!
I wonder if I can use my golf blogger web geek cred to get Srixon to sign me to a deal like Graeme McDowell’s? He has moved from Callaway to Srixon in a deal worth worth about $3 million per year. I’d probably sign for a little less than that, since I didn’t win the US OPEN last year like Graeme did. How about we call it $30 bucks, 24 dozen golf balls and a hat?
That is quite an upgrade in the dough department over Graeme’s 2009 endorsements. Last year Golf Digest reported that he pulled in a total of $2 million. I’m sure Graeme isn’t done finding new sponsors either.
Acer XF Black Driver - click to view larger version
Recently I pointed out that all white putters and all black drivers are the rage in golf equipment right now. I’m still waiting for all purple with green polka dots to come into vogue, then I’ll be happy. Until then, black will work just fine.
Acer XF Titanium Driver
If you’re looking for a new all black driver, take a look at the Acer XF Titanium driver by Hireko Golf. Like the white putter article previously posted, this is a cost-effective way to jump on the black driver bandwagon, but the performance level is that of drivers costing up to $300 more than the $99 sticker price.
Have you been salivating over the new “white” putters lately? Entertaining fad. Right now the hot golf items are white putters and black drivers. Personally, I’ll wait until the fad is purple with green polka dot putters and black/yellow zebra striped drivers. Better yet, let’s just put skulls on all the gear. Then I’m in…
If you are an aspiring white putter guy who wants to jump on the bandwagon, but the economy isn’t quite treating you right, read below.
Bionik 101 Nano White Blade
The Taylormade Daytona white blade putter runs about $130. It is a nice putter. But if you want to save $100 and get a blade putter similar, then check out the Hireko “Bionik 101” putter in white. Their price, with grip and shaft (assembled) is under $30 (below).
I putted with a Bionik 101 yesterday and it is actually a good putter, despite being so inexpensive. The head of the putter is made out of zinc, and the insert is aluminum a milled pattern in the face which gets the ball rolling nicely.
Bionik 105 Nano White Mallet Putter
If you are the guy above, the white putter guy, but you like mallets then you are also in luck.
The Taylormade Rossa Corza Ghost putter is a nice white mallet which will set you back $160. You’ll be the “cool guy in the group” if you own one. But if you’re a bit tight on the funds, probably from not making putts and losing bets on the golf course, you should look at the Bionik 105 Nano White mallet putter (below). They’re only $27.95 so you can save over $130 over the TM Ghost.
The 105 also has a milled aluminum insert in the face, but this pattern is a little different than the pattern in the 101.
I played with this putter yesterday as well. I put it in play on the 3rd hole. By the 5th hole I had the feel down and drained a 60 foot downhill birdie putt with it. It works, unfortunately for my golf opponents whose skins I won with this putter. Three holes later I drained about a 30 foot birdie.
The 105 works. If you miss putts with it, I’d bet $30 it is operator error.
Hireko web site
More Hireko white putter images
Fortune Brands is going to split into three units and sell off its golf and home products units, keeping its most profitable division which is in the alcohol realm (Jim Beam).
Fortune’s golf unit would include anything under the Acushnet umbrella, Titleist, Footjoy, Pinnacle etc. Cobra has already been sold off to Puma.
This essentially means that golf’s biggest brand will have one of those WalMart happy face stickers and be up for sale to the highest bidder.
“While the breadth and balance of our portfolio have served shareholders very well, we see the potential for even greater value by separating our businesses into focused companies,” ~ Chief Executive Bruce Carbonari.
So, I’ve just gone through my wallet. I managed to gather up $19.60. I’m willing to throw that in the pot. What do you say we pass around a golf hat and see if we can come up with enough dough to make the purchase? I think that would mean we could get a great deal on, or perhaps even scam some free ProV1’s…