Ginn Open 2006-Orlando FL

My player this week is Kim Saiki

Sunday: Just a bit over 400 miles door to door and made it in plenty of time to walk the course. Their are two tracks here one designed by, the one and only, Arnie (The Legacy) and the other by Tom Watson (Independence). We’re playing the front nines of both due to some liability concerns. A road or two may have had to be crossed and would have been too dangerous. At least that’s what I heard. The biggest obstacle for scoring will be the greens. Humpty-Dumpty, roly-poly, rollercoaster, how ever you wish to describe them, they’re big with plenty of slope and moguls to negotiate.

Looks like no detail has been overlooked and I heard the budget for this extravaganza is enormous. The only other event that even comes close is The Open. The sponsor tents adorning the eighteenth are second to none.

  • Hot water; Seems I keep stepping in it. The previously mentioned yardage book fiasco (deleted upon request) has been alleviated. We only have to fork out $10 instead of the usual twenty.

  • Monday, Monday…; With Kim not showing till Tuesday and my homework complete, I opted to tote for Yu Ping in the qualifier and will be first out of the hopper at 1:00. Thirty-five are teeing it up for a chance at a bite of the 2.5 million dollar apple.

Monday: No need to work the qualifier as Yu Ping took Kelly Robins’ spot in the field being the last alternate to get in. Set up my roommate Boston Ralph with the bag then took advantage of the extra time to walk the front once more and my day was complete.

  • Good eats; A party welcoming players, caddies and guests was held poolside just across the road from the clubhouse. Featuring one of the best selections of nourishment I’ve seen in awhile including jumbo prawns, sushi, ribs, chicken kabobs, smoked brisket, fried quail, tater salad, slaw, bbq beans, corn bread, apple pastries and vanilla ice cream, it’s safe to say no one left hungry. Completing the festivities was an open bar and a one-man-band. Another interesting feature was the wait staff decked out in Hogan caps, bow ties and plus fours.

Party Pics

Cheers from Jay, Billy and Keith. Caderos all.

Hanna Kim shooting some stick with Gulia Sergas

Roy Smith, Cindy Rarick, Sam Lloyd and Jan Stephenson. Roy and Sam are the caddie masters.

Tuesday: Met Kim at 6:30, teed off at 6:48 and finished by 11:00. We beat the heat and in just over four hours to boot. A little practice afterward and we were done.

  • Now you see it, now you don’t; A case of mistaken identity on the first hole (caused by the mystical eyesight of our playing partner Kate Golden) had me picking up Kate’s ball on the green thinking it was ours. A puzzling search which included the trap, over the green and right rough revealed little in the hunt for Kate’s missing egg and we were totally stumped. While walking off, I noticed one extra pellet on the green and it was Kim’s. So I reached into my pocket and there was Kate’s ball all along. For the next seventeen holes I was on the receiving end of stolen ball jokes and Randy, Kate’s looper, made sure it wouldn’t happen again. See below.

That hurts!

  • ‘Motorcycle’ Larry? A Harley was prominently displayed upon the second tee on Monday (must have been a prize for the pro-am) and I couldn’t help fantasizing.

I got a ticket to ride…

  • Loyal following or a cult? Apparently, many of the folks that frequent The Ginn Club and Resorts are refereed to as Ginnites. They travel the country enjoying some of the finest leisure lifestyles to be found. By the way, it’s pronounced with a hard G and short I.

The 18th green with a massive condo project (adjacent to the clubhouse) starting in the $600K range.

Wednesday: No E-9 for Kim. Just practiced for a few hours and had the sticks regripped. Got out of Dodge before the temp. hit 90.

  • Ill feeling; Paula Creamer was not in the best of health arriving to play the pro-am this morning and never did tee it up. Jo Head was the last minute sub.

  • Sweet ride, at least it was; As Jeff King headed to the Holiday Inn to pick up Candie Kung, his regular bag,  he never imagined he would become a crime statistic. “I just left it outside for forty-five seconds” was his explanation but in that short time, his car was snatched. It didn’t help leaving the keys in it and the motor running! Oh, did I mention that Candie’s clubs were in the trunk? Our resident repair specialist, Paul Boehner, put another set together before the noon hour struck.

  • All in the family; Christina Kim has her brother Mel on the bag this week.

  • Just a stones throw away; Jeff Steffler, one of the five sharing our abode this week, was invited to attend a house warming party held at Maria Hjorth’s place last night. Arriving late from the course and still in need of a good cleaning, he mistakenly loaned his car to Ralph for a trip to the store figuring it would only take a few minutes. Not! The party started at 6:30 and it was now past 8:00 with no car in sight. By the time Ralph returned, after getting lost and forgetting the key code for the gate, Jeff was in a bit of a  pother but kept his cool. A quick check for the directions to Maria’s house revealed something quite odd. They were the same we used to get back to our place but a different address. She was just down the street and within walking distance. DUH! Jeff wasn’t the only one to be fooled. Kari Koch and hubby jumped in the car and wound up driving only two houses down the road. Turned out they were neighbors.

  • Record setting commute; This one is unverified but worth telling anyway. Kyeong Bae drove to Tampa after last week’s event and, after getting online to check what she made, found something amiss. It was only Saturday and there was still one day to go! She must have thought it was another three day event ending a day early as Las Vegas. Back in the car she went and made it in time to shoot 68 on the actual final day and tied for 13th.

Thursday: An hour delay due to a storm cell too close for comfort made it a very long day for some of us. Kim shot a respectable +1 with a very cold putter in the bag but hitting it well enough to go low tomorrow. We’ll see.

  • Now on deck; Being a new course, the set-up may need tweaking after we put a round under our belts and see how it plays. A perfect example is the 16th hole. A 202 yard par three with today’s pin cut five from the right, a collection area awaiting even a slightly arrant shot in that direction and a 20 mph wind off the left reeked havoc all day. As we approached, there was a group on the green, another on the tee and one in the hole. We made it four. Our first nine took 3 hours and 13 minutes. YUK!

  • Confirmed; The previously mentioned baffling Bae blunder was for real. Wonder if her dad took the blame?

  • Just want to rent it, not buy it; Looking for a house or condo to rent for the week is becoming more popular, especially this year, and The LPGA Championship at Bulle Rock seemed a logical venue. But the search undertaken by one player displayed an unusual pattern. Every owner was asking for the identical fee of a whopping $6000 for the week! Seems, as part of his sale pitch, the developer assured prospective buyers this was the amount they could fetch that week. After realizing this was not even in the ballpark, it was dropped to 4K. Still way out of my reach.

Friday: Hung on to finish +3 for the event. Playing the weekend but chopping up the par fives. Need to take advantage of those scoring holes.

  • Trust me, I’m a professional; Don’t know how the field staff is coming up with the measurements on some of these pin placements. The eight hole was off by four or five and the tenth by seven. That’s almost a full cub. The pins are determined the day before and a spot of paint indicates their position. Most of the caderos will check them when time permits and mark it on the yardage book. When you inform your player of the discrepancy, some look at you as if a third eye adorns the middle of your forehead. Tough to have faith in the club selection if you don’t believe the yardage.

  • Oooh; That welcoming party wasn’t much of a welcome to some after all. Tummy aches and the trots visited a few attendees. I really didn’t think the shrimp and crab weren’t iced down enough.

  • Rumor mill; After the demise of the LPGA message boards a new venue sprung up to voice your opinions. The LPGA Fantasy Golf League has an intriguing entry in the forum section under  ‘New Announcements’. Laura posts the supposition that Nissan will be the new sponsor of the Tennessee event next season and will bump the purse to 2.5 mil. This could be one of the big announcements the ‘top dog’ referred to at Nabisco.

Saturday: The swirling, gusty winds made this day a nightmare. Needed plenty of luck in choosing the right stick. Kim managed a +1 round and sits in the middle of the pack.

  • One to watch; Keep an eye on Katie Kim. Wait a minute, there isn’t any Kim in her name!  It’s Katy Futcher.  Just not used to seeing another American with promise. We were paired together and she has plenty of game.

  • Send a message; Another fan site for LPGA posters is myLPGA.com. Very impressive.

Sunday: Finished strong with a 2 under par day and made a good move. Kudos for The Ginn Open, all the volunteers and workers. A rousing success for their inaugural year.

  • Four days of music and golf; That was the theme of The Ginn Open. There seemed to a party of some sort every day culminating in two days of concerts on Friday and Saturday. I took in the later event and caught Delbert McClinton and Brooks and Dunn. There was a rumor going around it was Mel Brooks and Moira Dunn but it was discovered to be unfounded. The concerts were included in a weekly ticket for the golf tournament and is the best deal on tour. Along with the inexpensive lodging in the area, this is a must LPGA destination for you roadies.

The crowd builds.

Delbert on the big screen. Best of the night in my estimation.

The beer was flowing freely.

Aloha, hola, hang loose, this Bud’s for you…

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