March 19, 2010
Pete Oakley is some kind of traveling fool.
The 2004 Senior British Open champion and Director of Golf for The Rookery Golf Course near Milton has been traipsing across much of the earth on the 2010 European Senior PGA Tour.
That reference to “European” in the title of that Tour is true for the most part, but not completely. In fact, the first four tournaments in this year’s schedule take place far from Europe’s shores.
Oakley competed in the first official 2010 European Senior Tour event last year, at the the Mauritius Commercial Bank Open, held Dec. 11-13 at the Constance Belle Mare Plage. He finished in a tie for 30th, and picked up a nice 1,771 Euros for the holiday.
The second event of the season took place Mar. 5-7. Oakley played in Brunei, at the Aberdeen Brunei Senior Masters presented by The Stapleford Forum. His three-over par performance at The Empire Hotel & Country Club put him in a tie for 28th place, good for 2,340 Euros.
Oakley then traveled to Thailand, for the Chang Thailand Senior Masters presented by ISPS. The Royal Gems Golf Club in Nakhonpathom, Thailand hosted the event Mar. 12-14. Oakley’s 3-over par total dropped him down to 48th place, earning him 1,100 Euros.
The fourth event on the Tour then jumps to South Africa, for the Berenberg Bank Masters, held at The Links in Fancourt Mar. 26-28. Oakley is entered for the tournament, and qualified to play in it because of his high finish in last year’s Tour q-school.
This is the first year in which the European Senior Tour will hold one of its tournaments in South Africa. It also offers one of the highest total purses, with 500,000 Euros at stake. Oakley will be playing with other major winners, such as Gary Player and Ian Woosnam.
The Tour’s next event finally reaches Europe May 12, when the pros tee it up at the Handa Senior Masters, presented by the Stapleford Forum, and held at Stapleford Park, in Leicestershire, England.
By comparison, flying to England to compete in that event will seem like a short hop.
The Magic of Recycling
Never let it be said that the golf publishing industry is environmentally insensitive.
For example, they firmly believe in recycling, on at least two levels. Allow me to explain.
Golf Magazine, now affiliated with Sports Illustrated, has for many years run an extremely popular section of specialized “Private Lessons” for their golfing readership. That’s not particularly unusual, but printing those pages on brown-tinted recycled paper certainly is—especially when compared to the usual glossy paper used for the rest of that publication.
These golf lessons are aimed at different segments of the playing audience—low handicappers, seniors, high handicappers, power hitters, and short-hitting “straight” hitters. The tailored-to-talents approach is one reason why these pieces are so popular, but there are other factors.
The illustrations are uniformly helpful, especially for visual learners. In addition, the text for each piece is usually short, sweet, and blessedly non-technical. While none of these lessons are a complete substitute for a good session with your local golf teaching professional, they are often very useful for those looking for a basic understanding or a quick reminder.
Golf Magazine’s second level of recycling is now on sale, with the publication of a revised and updated edition of a book of these Private Lessons (Abrams Golf; $29.95 SRP).
The paperback edition compiles over two hundred of these pieces, culled from the last twenty years of the magazine’s series.
Unlike the magazine versions, the segments do not carry an identifying label for the primary intended beneficiary of each lesson.
On the other hand, from the text it’s usually pretty easy to figure that out; and for some, the lessons should be valuable for all skill levels.
This new edition should be a good seller, as the golf season begins across the northern half of the country. Golfers can skim through the pages, stop on a topic that interests them, and quickly enjoy a handy playing tip.