Pinehurst Heritage Archive

Phil Mickelson’s most painful U.S. Open loss

Sports Illustrated’s Alan Shipnuck has a new podcast, In the Rough, and the debut edition features Phil Mickelson’s caddie, Jim “Bones” Mackay. On it, Shipnuck poses a tough question:

Which of Mickelson’s six U.S. Open runner-up finishes was the most painful?

The answer might surprise you: It’s not Winged Foot.

“It’s probably a tie,” Mackay says. “I would say between Shinnecock in 2004 and Pinehurst in 1999. Just because he played so amazingly well in both of them.”

Mackay explains, and is recounted by Golf.com’s Coleman McDowell:

The 1999 U.S. Open was the memorable duel between Mickelson and Payne Stewart where Stewart won by a single stroke.
“At Pinehurst, it was so surreal,” Mackay says. “You’re out there in the mist, and it’s like being on a movie set. At that point, he hadn’t won a major, and Amy was incredibly pregnant. Phil played so incredibly well and got beat by a guy who made the greatest par putt I’ve ever seen on 16, then birdied 17 and made a putt on 18. It was a tough pill to swallow.”

Mackay, it turns out, blames himself for Mickelson’s short birdie miss on 17:

“Phil brought me in for the read,” Mackay says. “We both thought it was pretty straight. He hit the putt, and I’ve only seen it once or twice on video, but it broke definitively to the right and didn’t go in. Payne makes the birdie putt to go one ahead, which was the difference in the tournament. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about that, and if I had a do-over in my career, it would be that read.”

 

Shipnuck tries to smooth it over:

“I asked Phil,” Shipnuck says. “He says he pulled it.”
“Did he really?” Mackay says. “There you go, I’ve never asked him. That’s not something you talk about with your player there in the moment.”

 

Please check out the podcast below. Great stuff:

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Pete and Alice Dye and their Pinehurst connection

Pete and Alice Dye were Pinehurst regulars long before they were famed golf course architects

By LEE PACE

Pete Dye remembers playing a practice round for the North and South Amateur in the mid-1940s and encountering two older gentlemen strolling the No. 2 course and talking to some of the competitors. One of the men was J.C. Penney, the department store magnate. The other was Donald Ross, the golf course architect.

“After the round, we were in the bar and everyone was excited about having met J.C. Penney,” Dye says. “I can’t remember a single person thinking it was special he’d met Donald Ross. That’s hard to believe looking back.”

Dye and his wife and golf design partner Alice go way back in Pinehurst.

Pete was a soldier during World War II and was stationed at Fort Bragg in nearby Fayetteville.

Pete Dye_Pinehurst

Pete Dye at Pinehurst in the 1990s.

“The lieutenant colonel was an avid golfer and had a car,” Dye says. “It was a lot easier to come over here and play golf for three bucks than stay on the base and do KP duty. I had the greatest time coming over here. I’ve played that golf course more than the law should allow. I’ve looked at that thing ’till I’m blind.”

Alice O’Neal was a noted amateur golfer from Indianapolis and met Dye at Rollins College in 1946. Alice played many of the top amateur tournaments and was a regular in the Women’s North and South Amateur (and would win it in 1968). During those competitions, she developed a lifelong friendship with Richard Tufts, the president of Pinehurst Inc. and a noted golf administrator. … Continue Reading

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From Ross to Haney – A Century of Golf Instruction at Pinehurst

By LEE PACE

The concepts of golf instruction and practice were slow to evolve as the game developed a head of steam in America in the early 1900s. Richard Tufts, grandson of Pinehurst founder James W. Tufts, once observed: “I always thought it very strange that Walter Travis persisted in practicing chip shots, putting and even full shots when a vacant fairway was available. Why should he, of all golfers, need to waste time practicing?”

Pinehurst had three golf courses open by 1910 but no dedicated practice facility. Early lessons were conducted in the Scottish style of the teacher accompanying the student onto the golf course. But in the spring and summer of 1913, club pro and course architect Donald Ross allocated the ground covered by the first, second and 18th holes of course No. 1 exclusively for practice and built replacement holes on course No. 1 further southward from the clubhouse. The “Maniac Hill” practice range was the first of its kind in the country and remains a haven for resort guests and members to hone their swings.

Pinehurst Golf Academy

The Pinehurst Golf Academy

Various iterations of what exists today as the Pinehurst Golf Academy have been a constant fixture on the vast practice facility.

Frank Palumbo was one of the first to take the golf instruction baton at Pinehurst while serving as a staff pro for many years in the mid-1900s up through the 1980s. Palumbo created junior golf schools at Pinehurst and was assisted in his teaching efforts at various times by former PGA Tour golfer Johnny Palmer, who lived one county to the west in Stanley County. The Palumbo Cup is an annual match-play tournament played among the staff golf pros at Pinehurst.

… Continue Reading

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Golf Channel remembers Hogan’s breakthrough win at Pinehurst

If you were out enjoying the first weekend of spring, you may have missed two great Golf Channel pieces about Ben Hogan’s breakthrough win at Pinehurst.

Saturday marked the 75th anniversary of Hogan’s first professional win on Pinehurst No. 2. The historic victory broke a seven-year winless streak and set in motion one of the most successful careers of all time.

Hogan proceeded to win the Greater Greensboro Open and the Land of the Sky Open in Asheville. He went on to become one of just four golfers to win a career grand slam.

Pinehurst No. 2′s starters will be celebrating Hogan’s win all month long by donning Hogan-style caps. They’ll share his story with the players who are about to walk the fairways Hogan dominated in 1940.

Be sure to take 5 minutes out of your day to watch both of these videos and head over to PinehurstStories.com to learn more about Hogan.

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Paying tribute to Ben Hogan

On March 21, 1940, it finally happened.

Ben Hogan won.

The story has become the stuff of Pinehurst lore and legend. Hogan had toiled on the PGA Tour for seven years without a victory. He was close to calling the pro game quits and retiring back to Texas to become a club pro. His car rolled into Pinehurst for the 1940 North & South Open on four bald tires.

But Hogan opened with a first-round 66 on Pinehurst No. 2 and followed with a 67 in the next round, building a 7-shot lead. His 74 and 70 in the 36-hole finale on March 21 weren’t spectacular, but they still held off Snead by three shots. Hogan, finally – FINALLY -  was a winner.

The rest, as the cliche goes, is history.

Pinehurst No. 2's starters are donning Hogan-styled caps to commemorate the 75th anniversary of Ben Hogan's first professional victory in the 9140 North & South Open at Pinehurst.

Pinehurst No. 2′s starters are donning Hogan-styled caps to commemorate the 75th anniversary of Ben Hogan’s first professional victory in the 1940 North & South Open at Pinehurst.

History is something we cherish at Pinehurst. And beginning this week, 75 years after Hogan finally broke through on No. 2, we are paying tribute to The Hawk. This Spring, the starters at Pinehurst No. 2 will greet players while donning Hogan-styled caps. As part of their regular welcome to the first tee, they will recount the story above before players walk into Hogan’s own footsteps – the footsteps that after Pinehurst, led to nine major championships and 68 other professional victories.

 

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