Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Ten reasons why The Masters is the best tournament in golf
I will be attending the Masters for the second consecutive year. As I prepare for my trip to Augusta National, I reflect on some of the memories that stick out in my mind about what makes this course and tournament the best in the world.
All photos were taken by me at the 2010 Masters Monday practice round at Augusta National except (4) and (9), which were taken by Rob Markham at the 2009 Masters.
1. Hole Number 18: Holly
Imagine walking up to the 18th hole of Augusta National. It is Sunday afternoon and the Green Jacket awaits you. You have a one shot lead and all you need is a par to win the tournament. Every eye of Augusta is on you. Millions of eyes outside of Augusta are watching you. Can you compose yourself and win the Masters?
2. Hole Number 12: Golden Bell
One of the most famous holes in golf that brings variable weather conditions. This is the shortest par three on the course, and club selection can often be vary difficult. Golfers be aware: stick one in Rae's creek and your Masters dreams could be put on hold for one more year.
3. The Green Jacket
One of the most prestigious traditions in sports, and the reward for finishing first at Augusta National at the Masters. For professional golfers this is the most sought after item in the game.
4. Phil is the Man
Phil Mickelson is not only a great golfer but also a great man and a true gentleman. Two years ago he played with a Florida State golfer during a practice round. I am sure it was a great experience for Phil but an experience of a lifetime for the Florida State golfer.
5. The Beverage and Food Menu
Tickets to the Masters are pricey and often difficult to obtain, but once inside the grounds the prices for food and beverages are quite cheap. Grab a pimiento cheese sandwich and bottle of water for $3.00.
6. Masters Chairs
Get to the Masters early and make sure you have your Masters chair. Leave that chair wherever you may choose and walk the grounds of Augusta National. Your chair will not be removed, it will not be touched. It's the Masters.
7. Expect the Unexpected
I had the opportunity to witness a 12-year-old boy hit Fuzzy Zoeller's club. He hit one ball, and it landed within 20 yards of the pin.
8. See a Young Professional Become a Star
Rory Mcllroy would look great in a Green Jacket. He turns 22 on May 4, 2011.
9. See Something You Might Not Ever See Again
During two tournaments Vijay Signh skipped a ball across the water, and it landed on the green. I guess it's true what they say: these guys are good.
10. Tiger Woods
I had the opportunity to witness Tiger Woods play in his first time back on the course since his chaos off the course events. The gallery cheered louder for him than they did for any other player all day. Will the 2011 Masters be Tiger's return to golf glory?