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Mickelson continues to roll at Riviera

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By Seth Kerr

GolfWRX Staff Writer

Phil Mickelson shot a second-round 70 to remain one stroke ahead of the field at the Northern Trust Open.

Mickelson spun a hooked lob wedge from 110 yards into the hole for eagle on the 8th hole, which would have been the shot of the day if not for Joe Ogilvie’s ace on the 161-yard 16th hole.

“I’ve got to go out and shoot some low scores because they’re out there, but I gave myself a good opportunity, which is what’s so fun about competing and playing the Tour is those opportunities on the weekend,” Mickelson said.

Pat Perez is in second place after firing a bogey-free 65, tying Jarrod Lyle for low round of the day. Perez hit  only 12 greens and five fairways, but took just 25 putts in the round.

“I didn’t hit it like you’d think I would,” Perez said. “I didn’t drive it all that great. I just scrambled well.  I put myself in the right places to make par or birdie.”

Matt Kuchar, Carl Pettersson, Jimmy Walker, Jarrod Lyle and Jonathan Byrd are two shots back at 4-under. Kuchar is looking for his first top 10 finish at Riviera in six starts.

Kuchar was stung by a bee while lining up a six-foot birdie putt on the sixth green, causing him some discomfort throughout the round.

“I haven’t been stung by a bee in probably 20 years,” Kuchar said. “I had stopped being scared of bees as a matter of fact. The thing got me, and it was really painful. It was not much fun.”

Another player not having much fun was Anthony Kim. Kim was disqualified for signing an incorrect scorecard after marking down a bogey five on the seventh hole instead of a double-bogey six. It’s another black mark for Kim as he tries to come back from a thumb injury, which derailed his 2011 season. Kim has yet to make a cut in 2012.

The second round was suspended due to darkness with eight players still having holes to finish. Round three will be televised on CBS starting at 3 p.m. EST.

Click here for more discussion in the “Tour Talk” forum

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Seth is an avid golfer playing year round in Florida.

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Pro golfer Hosung Choi has the most ridiculous golf swing you’ll ever see

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Professional golfer Hosung Choi, playing in the third round of the Kolon Korea Open at Woo Jeong Hills Country Club, has set the golf Internet on fire with his wildly entertaining golf swing. And while it may look ridiculous, he’s currently sitting at 8-under for the event through three rounds, only two shots back of the leader. It’s worth noting that the top two finishers in the Korea Open will earn a spot in the 2018 Open Championship at Carnoustie next month.

Enjoy the videos of his golf swing below!

Top-100 swing instructor and GolfWRX’s resident swing expert Tom Stickney has this to say about Choi’s golf swing: “The club goes up and away with a nice rerouting motion from the top into a perfect delivery and impact position. It’s obvious that this guy can play from those two positions, however, I’m not sure about the dismount. Nor can I even guess why he does it…I’m betting he was self-taught and made that move from day one. Great lesson to all the “golf swing” centric people playing today, why change it if it brings you to the dance?!?!”

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Marty Jertson, Ping’s Director of Product Development, qualified for the PGA Championship

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The top 20 professionals from the PGA Professional Championship–contested last weekend at Bayonet and Black Horse Golf Courses in Seaside, California–are heading to the PGA Championship later this year.

Perhaps you saw Ryan Vermeer, at 5 under, was the medalist. What you may not have seen however, is something particularly cool for golf equipment geeks: Ping’s Director of Product Development, Marty Jertson, qualified–and he did so in spectacular fashion: the 37-year-old birdied the last three holes to finish T9.

Not bad for an engineer!

Also noteworthy: Ping confirmed Jertson played the company’s yet-to-be announced i500 irons in his 3, 4, and 5-irons, which will reportedly be available mid-summer. Yes, they confirmed that the rumors are true; Ping’s new iron will be called i500.

Related: We did a podcast with Jertson at the PGA Show, we also interviewed him back in 2017.

 

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Reddit AMA alert: Anthony Taranto, Callaway’s wedge art maestro, on his favorite designs, WITB

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If you’ve been around GolfWRX for any period of time, you’ve seen Anthony Taranto’s work. The Callaway wedge specialist is tasked with designing some of the coolest wedge decorations in the game.

Taranto did a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) yesterday, and The Wedge Art Wizard (as he introduced himself) didn’t disappoint.

Here are a few highlights (edited for spelling)

Remoolg asked: How did you start working at Callaway and get into this specific position?

AT: Back in 1999 Callaway had a job fair for their new golf ball plant Mr. Callaway was opening. I made it though many layoffs and reorganization. I was good at building clubs and I was placed in the pro tour department about 12 years ago. About 4 1/2 years ago I discovered this technique for sandblasting art onto wedges and now here we are.

Loudshorts asked: What’s the most odd art request you’ve put on a wedge and what’s the most common?

AT: Most odd: Probably Michelle Wie’s Harry Potter-themed wedges

I didn’t know anything about Harry Potter at the time so I had to do some research. Accio birdies!
Most common would just be old fashioned stamping of players initials.

Bunny said: Billy Idol, never pictured him as a golfer. What kind of design did he want on his clubs?

AT: He asked for his logo, which is this cool crown with a lightning bolt:

Iamrobert_paulson asked: What wedges are in your bag? Can we see pics?

AT: I’m gaming MD4’s: 45° (46 bent to 45), 50°, 55° (54 bent to 55), and 60°. Design wise: Skull & Crossbones and lots of stars.

Dr. Troutman asked: What is your favorite custom set you’ve ever done?

AT: Putting me on the spot! It might be these that I just recently made. Figured out how to evolve the sand blasting technique and start doing layers. Really happy with how these came out:

You can check out the full AMA here.

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