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Graeme McDowell thanks social media for getting his golf clubs back

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Graeme McDowell’s golf clubs were lost in transit from Paris to Manchester Sunday. Air France’s snafu left McDowell sans sticks as he was slated to tee it up in the Open Championship qualifier, Tuesday.

Ultimately, he withdrew, explaining he wouldn’t be able to cobble a set together from the tour trucks.

“My equipment is kind of old generation stuff,” he told the Belfast Telegraph. “My irons are three years old. My driver is a couple years old. I really don’t play with a lot of up-to-date equipment, so a lot of the stuff would have been very difficult to replace. The irons I use, Srixon won’t carry those on the truck anymore. The wedges I use, Cleveland, they won’t be on the truck anymore. The putter is 15 years old.

Now, McDowell must finish in the top 10 at this week’s Irish Open or next week’s Scottish Open to have a shot at making the Open field.

Fortunately, his weapons have been returned to him, and he credits the roles social media played in the return.

“I spent most of Monday on the phone to customer service at Air France which was frustrating to say the least,” he told the Belfast Telegraph.

“We established that the clubs were in Paris but not when they would get to me. It was basically ‘get in the queue, you’re one of many that have lost a bag and you’ll wait your turn.’

“On Monday night, I still didn’t know where my clubs were. It wasn’t until around 10.3am on Tuesday morning that I talked to somebody sensible at Air France who could tell me they would put the clubs on a flight for me.

“Thankfully the story had a happy ending. They landed at Dublin on Tuesday night at 10 o’clock and a courier company had them in the hotel by 3am this morning.

“It was really the power of social media in the end. If it wasn’t for Twitter and the fact that the story gained a huge amount of momentum to where Air France’s PR department had to call me and sort things out, the clubs would still be in Paris somewhere.”

Beyond just losing McDowell’s bag, can you believe he was told “get in the queue?” Dude didn’t just lose his luggage, he lost the ability to do his job…and from a PR standpoint, why step in it, Air France?

Here’s a bit of advice for any airlines losing a pro’s bag (again, this happens more than it should, and will continue to happen): Make a public apology (social media is great for this!) and a diligent search for the clubs! Good riddance!

 

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9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Tom54

    Jul 5, 2018 at 12:36 pm

    I agree with Aaron 100%. No back up set? He would have had everyone’s encouragement to give it a go with a replacement set. Who knows maybe he needs an upgrade in his equipment too, just like the rest of us are told every six months or so whenever something new hits the market. If I was a pro and my sponsor didn’t keep what I used around for emergency I’d change equipment company.

  2. clint

    Jul 5, 2018 at 12:12 pm

    So Graeme McDowell got satisfaction because he’s a professional athlete and his clubs are his livelihood, but when the rest of us lose our pants and shaving kits we just have to take our place in the queue? That’s BS.

  3. Dan

    Jul 4, 2018 at 9:30 pm

    Believe it or not this isn’t a tragedy

  4. Jon

    Jul 4, 2018 at 8:50 pm

    Hearing a paid endorser tell the world he plays a bunch of relics doesn’t really make me want to run out and drop big bucks on their “latest and greatest” clubs.

  5. James T

    Jul 4, 2018 at 5:48 pm

    Why does it take social media to shame a company into doing the right thing???

  6. Tiemco

    Jul 4, 2018 at 4:50 pm

    Graeme is obviously not a WRXer, no back-up set? WTF?!?!?!

  7. aaron

    Jul 4, 2018 at 2:17 pm

    This is a pathetic story to me…you’re a professional golfer, put together a set-play a practice round and give it a shot. If you don’t qualify you have an excuse but to withdraw because you don’t have your favorite sticks is lame

    • Aaron

      Jul 4, 2018 at 7:43 pm

      You’re lame for not understanding how difficult it is to play your best with a “loaner” set or a brand new set which doesn’t match your gamers. Even if he could find and buy a set off the rack, the standard specs probably aren’t what he’s used to, so who would bend or cut them down? Srixon/Cleveland’s truck doesn’t go to the qualifiers. Graeme said he can’t give it his 100% without his sticks, it’s that simple.

      • aaron

        Jul 5, 2018 at 11:24 am

        read the story moron he appeared to have access to the tour truck so they most certainly would have had all of his specs….I understand not being at your best but his clubs don’t make him a great golfer maybe he wouldn’t have qualified, maybe without his clubs he’s a 10 handicap I don’t know but why not at least try

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19th Hole

The 6 best #GolfWRX photos on Instagram today (6.19.19)

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In this segment, we’ll be taking a look at some of the best #GolfWRX tagged photos on Instagram. In case you aren’t already, there’s a whole load of action going on at our page, so follow us: @golfwrx

Let’s get to it then, here are six of the best #GolfWRX photos from the past 24 hours.

Chesson Hadley celebrated his T9 finish at the U.S. Open by giving us all his rendition of “Shallow”.

Just enough sauce from Tyson Lamb?

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You can never have too much sauce. #LambCrafted

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New designs from Dormie Workshop.

Phil showcasing Philmont Country Club in Philadelphia.

Arriving later this week from Swag.

“Beer me” headcovers from Michael Martinez.

Get hashtagging your golf posts #GolfWRX for your chance to feature in our best of Instagram posts in the future!

 

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Gary Woodland discusses trading NBA ambitions for a U.S. Open title, what it meant to win in front of his father, and more on the Dan Patrick Show

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Gary Woodland dialed into the Dan Patrick Show this week where he discussed amongst other topics – his impressive U.S. Open victory at Pebble Beach, what it meant to have his father in attendance, and how he traded his NBA aspirations for his career in golf.

Speaking on the emotions he felt winning the U.S. Open on Father’s Day in front of his father, who suffered a heart attack in Woodland’s rookie year while he was playing at Pebble Beach, the 35-year-old described the occasion as one that “you can’t make up.”

Clips courtesy of AT&T Audience Network.

As well as Sunday’s victory, Woodland discussed how his sporting ambitions changed after initially desiring a career in the NBA. In the 10 minute interview, the U.S. Open champion mentioned how in his first basketball game in college when matched up against Kirk Hinrick he realised that “he needed to find something else to do”.

Woodland also talked about his celebrations which involved drinking vodka out of the trophy with Jordan Spieth – a ritual Justin Thomas wouldn’t partake in due to a superstition having not yet won the U.S. Open, as well as the advantage longer hitters on Tour now have whether the course is long or short, and his nerveless shots on 14 and 17 on Sunday.

Check out the entire interview in the video below.

The Dan Patrick Show airs daily at 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. ET on AT&T Audience Network which can be found on DIRECTV Ch. 239.

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19th Hole

Gary Woodland discusses beating Woods’ record, his approach on 14, and his clutch chip on 17 with Adam Schein

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U.S. Open Champion Gary Woodland made an appearance at SiriusXM’s Manhattan studios on Tuesday, where he sat down to discuss a multitude of topics with Adam Schein on his Mad Dog Sports Radio program – Schein on Sports.

Fresh off his career-defining victory at Pebble Beach, Woodland heaped praise on his caddie, Brennan Little, while speaking on the show, whom he credited with giving him the confidence to hit his outstanding second shot to the par-5 14th hole which led to birdie in the final round.

(*All quotes courtesy of SiriusXM’s Mad Dog Sports Radio)

“I’ll give the credit to my caddie on that one. It was one of those where we talked all week – I wanted to play aggressive. I wanted to play to win. I knew I was playing well. I got up there, I knew I had a one-shot lead. I’d actually – to that pin – I’d hit the chip shot left of the green, it wasn’t great in the practice rounds. I knew right’s out of bounds.

It was probably the first time all day I wanted to play conservative. I was actually thinking about laying up, and my caddie, it was the first time probably – we’ve been together three years – that he just, he said, ‘This is it. Hit three wood. Let’s go. Knock it up there, make a swing, hit at the right edge of the green and go.’ He gave me confidence, not only for that shot, but that gave me confidence in the last five holes.”

As for his clutch chip on 17 to save par, Woodland described his mindset taking the shot as well as how he was keeping tabs on what Koepka was doing at the same time on 18.

“Fortunately I had a similar shot off that green earlier in the week. That was one I’m just trying to make four. I can see Koepka on the green on 18; I saw he had a putt, I didn’t know if it was for birdie or for eagle. And I was trying to get it (the chip) past the hole, and it just came out perfectly with a little spin.”

Woodland also discussed beating Tiger Woods’ total of 12-under-par from the 2000 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. The 35-year-old first mentioned how he recognized that Woods won that tournament by 15 strokes, before adding how he was aware of beating his 72-hole total, saying

“I knew it, but I was trying to two-putt. I wasn’t trying to make that putt. Once it got halfway there and it went in I obviously let the emotion out. My caddie came over to tell me congrats and I said, ‘You know that clipped Tiger by one?’ And he said, ‘No I didn’t.’ He was focused on the wrong stuff, he was focused on winning, I was focused on beating that record.”

While speaking more generally on Woods and the impact the 15-time major champion has on the game, Woodland described him being back as “everything”, which you can see in the embedded clip below.

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