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Golf Channel, Rory McIlroy launch GolfPass. Will you subscribe, GolfWRX Members?

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Today, Golf Channel solicited the help of Rory McIlroy to launch GolfPass. The subscription service will offer customers instructional videos, a bevy of discounts, and one round of golf per month for $9.99 per month or $99/year.

“It’s sort of like, for me, like Golf Channel 2.0,” McIlroy said at the launch press conference. “If you’re going to start a golf business, you probably wouldn’t do a 24-7 TV station or network like what happened 25 years ago.”

The service draws inspiration from Amazon Prime, which, in addition to streaming video, offers free delivery on goods and other benefits. Will McIntosh, Golf Channel’s executive vice president, hopes GolfPass will help hobbyists make the jump from watching golf to playing the game and offer a nice perk for avid golfers.

With respect to playing, more than 7,000 golf courses are available. Not surprisingly, GolfNow, also owned by NBC, is the facilitator of this element of the service. TPC Sawgrass, PGA National, Pasatiempo Golf Club, and Royal Portrush are among the course offerings.

While GolfPass won’t include any live tour events, the service will offer on-demand instruction videos (more than 4,000), including several featuring McIlroy himself. Original features, such as “My Roots: Rory McIlroy,” will also be offered.

Subscribers will also get a dozen TaylorMade balls and assorted discounts on apparel, accessories, and golf resort stays.

“I’m really trying to carry the torch that Arnold lit 25 years ago,” McIlroy said. “I know I have very big shoes to fill and I’m not trying to compare myself in any way to Arnold, but I was able to forge quite a good relationship with Arnold in the later years of his life and I know how much the game meant to him. I think he would be very proud that I’ve taken on this role to try and give golfers a better experience of playing the game and living that golfing lifestyle. I couldn’t imagine my life without golf.”

Rory McIlroy will co-host (along with Carson Daly) a monthly podcast via the service.

GolfPass+, a premium membership, will be offered for $199 per year. The “plus” version will include cancellation protection and waived convenience fees on GolfNow.

McIlroy discussed GolfPass on an appearance on Morning Drive.

So, what do you think, GolfWRX Members, will you be signing up for GolfPass at any of the subscription levels?

Will you subscribe to GolfPass?

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13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. Randy

    Feb 6, 2019 at 11:07 am

    Not happy with Golf Now’s no refund policy. Looked for a Sunday tee time on a Tues. night. The time I selected was then not available so it said search a new time. Instead of staying on Sunday times it sent me back to Wed. (which I didn’t notice until booking a Wed. time). Called the course first thing Wed. am and cancelled. Golf Now gave me a credit only good for Hot Deals after 12 Mon-Thurs. Thanks for nothing! Double bogey service. Will use Tee Off or call. No more Golf Now.

  2. c

    Feb 5, 2019 at 4:21 pm

    this is weird considering Rory has said he doesnt care about growing the game

  3. Tom

    Feb 5, 2019 at 3:42 pm

    Golf Channel’s Morning Drive has become like the “View” a bunch of people with opinions that I don’t care to listen to. Not much substance from GC anymore, they basically went off the air from mid Dec thru early Jan….running old shows and tournaments.

  4. Tmack

    Feb 5, 2019 at 3:12 pm

    As a cord cutter if it included the actual golf channel live golf coverage I would be interested.

  5. Mike Knights

    Feb 5, 2019 at 1:50 pm

    I dont understand why tour pros promote going to a website to watch a video to fix your swing when we all know they spend 100’s of hours with their coaches working on their swings. why in the world would you tell and Amateur to go watch a video and they will get better. Ugh!

  6. Gunter Eisenberg

    Feb 5, 2019 at 1:47 pm

    Doesn’t the Golf Channel also own Revolution Golf that offers that same instructional video content?

    • JJ

      Feb 6, 2019 at 11:25 am

      That’s where the 4000 videos will come from

  7. Stixman

    Feb 5, 2019 at 12:39 pm

    Sorry, Rory is not the torch-bearer you seem to think he is, he just isn’t, he’ll let you down and send you the memo.

  8. Matt

    Feb 5, 2019 at 11:45 am

    Carson Daly? WTF

  9. Thunder Bear

    Feb 5, 2019 at 11:45 am

    Wait, so for $9.99 per month, I can play TPC Sawgrass or one of their other elite courses once a month? That seems too good to be true even if you have to play on Monday thru Thursday.

    • Simms

      Feb 5, 2019 at 12:44 pm

      Guess again, it will be the same as with all their “Hot Deals” specials..it will be afternoons Monday thru Thursday..and many courses will be exempt..In California you will be playing after 12 in months you cannot finish because of time change. You have to think about the fact also there are only so many “HOT DEALS” after 12 in your area..Hot Deals do not bring any money into the golf course and are only given out by the course to Golf Now for advertising and use of computer scheduling programs….and many course look down on that “HOT DEAL” tee time and treat you like your cheating them…..and notice with the $99 price there is no mention of waved fees or free cancellations that comes at the $199 price….

  10. Joshua

    Feb 5, 2019 at 11:24 am

    The free golf seems enticing into you read the fine print. If I didn’t have a job and could golf Monday thru Thursday afternoons…

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News

Morning 9: Beyond “nice guy Stricker” | McIlroy to skip Irish Open | Opinion: Romo shouldn’t accept sponsor’s exemption

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By Ben Alberstadt (ben.alberstadt@golfwrx.com)

February 21, 2019

Good Thursday morning, golf fans.
1. More than just a nice guy
Steve Stricker is a fiery competitor and tactician who has the allegiance and respect of his players. So says Steve Dimeglio regarding the now-official 2020 U.S. Ryder Cup captain.
  • “On the surface, Stricker could be mistaken as being a softy, a man without a temper and one who is reluctant to put up a fight. That would be a mistake.”
  • “Well, everyone knows he’s such a nice guy, but beneath all of that exterior is this fieriness and this competitiveness,” Tiger Woods said Wednesday at the World Golf Championships-Mexico Championship.
  • “In other words, Stricker is as tough as he is nice, a nice combo that U.S. players can lean on in the 2020 Ryder Cup. On Wednesday Stricker, 51, was officially named the U.S. captain for Ryder Cup matches to be played in his home state of Wisconsin at Whistling Straits.”
2. He has their backs
Interesting tidbit from Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard on one Patrick Reed.
  • “Stricker, who was named the 2020 U.S. Ryder Cup captain, said he’s already spoken with Patrick Reed about last year’s matches and that he doesn’t expect the American’s inflammatory comments following last year’s matches to be an issue in 2020.”
  • “As far as he’s concerned, and I am, too, it’s been handled,” Stricker said. “He’s apologized and spoke to the players. He spoke to me and I kind of asked him what to expect from him. He’s like, ‘You know what, I’ve got your guys’ back. I’m there for the team.'”
3. The inside scoop
An interesting story in particular, yes, but the general takeaway–PGA Tour pros sometimes settle on gamers in extremely atypical ways–is just as cool.
  • Our Ryan Barath talked with Mizuno’s Senior Club Engineer, Chris Voshall, about the MP-32 irons Danny Lee was spotted with at the Genesis Open.
  • “We recently spotted Danny Lee at the Genesis Open and it started a LOT of discussion about classic designs, as well as whether these are new old stock (NOS) or new forgings, using the original tooling.”
  • “I reached out to Mizuno’s Senior Club Engineer Chris Voshall to get to the bottom of this interesting iron development. (Plus the idea that Mizuno has sets of 10-plus year-old irons kicking around ready for custom builds – I have a huge smile thinking about what that storage room might look like – is a pretty fun thought).”
  • “Heres the inside scoop on Danny’s irons from Chris Voshall…”The MP-32s being played by Danny Lee are a new old stock set that came from Luke Donald’s personal stash inside the tour van. The ones Danny is playing are the very last set of custom grind 32s that were made for Luke.”
4. Tiger moves Mexico
AP report on the Tiger Woods Effect at the WGC-Mexico Championship
  • “Golf is still in its relative infancy in Mexico, though the appeal changes when one of the most recognizable athletes in the world is in town. Security has increased this year, most of that because of Woods.”
  • “Grupo Salinas took over sponsorship of this WGC in the summer of 2016, when Woods was recovering from two back surgeries. There was no guarantee if his game would get back, so news of his decision to play last week was massive for small sector of golf fans in Mexico.”
  • “Tiger definitely moves the needle,” said Benjamin Salinas, the CEO of TV Azteca and lead voice for Grupo Salinas at the Mexico Championship. “When he announced he was coming, ticket sales leaped tenfold. He moves Mexico.”
5. Hot take: Romo is wrong
I’ll just let Carlos Monarrez take it from here regarding Tony Romo’s sponsor’s exemption into the Byron Nelson.
  • “Romo couldn’t get in the honest way, through a Monday qualifier like the hoi polloi who have to scratch and claw their way in.”
  • “Maybe some fans think it’s cute and harmless and will be curious to see how Romo will fare. But I’ve covered pro golfers for years, and I have too much respect for their struggle to watch an amateur with an inflated sense of himself pretend to be a pro for two days on his way to missing the cut badly.”
  • “And make no mistake, Romo will miss the cut. At last year’s Nelson, the cut came at 4-under-par. Amazing players like Sergio Garcia, Ernie Els, Padraig Harrington, Graeme McDowell and Brandt Snedeker missed the cut. Romo also got a sponsor’s exemption last March to the PGA Tour’s event in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, and he finished dead last among 132 players at 15-over.”
6. Pat Perez loves his Js
Helen Ross of PGATour.com talked to the singular Pat Perez about his affection for Jordans.
Here’s a morsel regarding Double P’s meeting with his Airness
  • “The relationship developed into a business pact, as well, and Perez now wears Jordan Brand shoes on the golf course. The two text often, and his Airness even sent Perez and his wife Ashley gifts when their daughter was born last year. Oh, and Perez loves getting shipments of Air Jordans for his collection.”
  • “Perez’s only regret? One day when the two had hit the links, Jordan was wearing a pair of VI golf shoes – which were “the only pair in the world,” Perez says.”
  • “After the round, Perez says, “I can’t, believe you made those into golf shoes.” To which Jordan replies, “Well, take them if they fit.”
7. Tiger Hood doc
Golf Digest’s Alex Myers...”What began as an activity to pass the time while trying to sell his photographs has “become a lifestyle” for Patrick Barr. Better known around the streets of New York City as “Tiger Hood,” Barr now spends much of his days and nights hitting empty milk cartons with a golf club. And he’s about to have even bigger galleries watching him in action.”
  • “A new documentary titled Neighborhood Golf Association by Nicolas Heller explores Barr’s life, career, and mostly his unusual hobby. Heller, the man behind the popular New York Nico Instagram account, does a nice job of showing the charismatic local legend in his element while also getting across Barr’s beautiful message of inclusivity.”
8. McIlroy to skip Irish Open
Gareth Hanna at the Belfast Telegraph on the news that Rory will be passing on his island’s Open.
  • “The world number eight was the tournament host from 2015 to 2018 and strived to place the Irish Open among the European Tour’s top events.”
  • “However, he says missing out on this year’s edition at Lahinch will give him a better chance of lifting the Claret Jug at the Open Championship in Portrush.”
  • “The Irish Open will be played, as is the norm, two weeks before the major in July…McIlroy has previously said that he will look to play the week before the four major tournaments this season and has now confirmed his intention to tee it up at the Scottish Open at The Renaissance Club rather than the week before in County Clare.”
9. Wiezy’s back
Michelle Wie fired an opening-round 68 at the Honda LPGA Thailand in her first
competitive action since hand surgery in October.
Eun-Hee Ji leads at 9 under after one round. Scores.
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Equipment

Abraham Ancer becomes Miura’s first PGA Tour ambassador

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Miura Golf has announced that Abraham Ancer will be the company’s first-ever PGA Tour ambassador ahead of this week’s WGC-Mexico Championship.

As a PGA Tour ambassador for the club manufacturer, Ancer, who has played Miura clubs since 2017, will work directly with the Miura family in Himeji, Japan to craft his custom-designed forged irons and will don a Miura hat at tour events.

Speaking on the announcement, Ancer said

“I switched to Miura irons well before any partnership; I just wanted to play the best forged irons available. I am honored to represent Miura and look forward to introducing Miura to the Mexican market.”

Ancer as well as club fitter Genaro Davila (who initially fit Ancer for Miura clubs two years ago) have also teamed up with entrepreneur Gerardo Benavides to form Dead Solid Perfect (DSP) Golf Mexico, which will become the official distributor of Miura Golf in Mexico.

Hoyt McGarity, President of Miura Golf, shared his thoughts on the partnership, stating

“This is a first for Miura, and it was important to us that this partnership transcend the traditional sponsorship model. Abraham is the perfect partner to grow Miura’s presence on and off the course. As one of the most successful Mexican golfers ever, his personal investment in Miura is the strongest endorsement as we increase our operations in Mexico and other parts of the world.”

Ancer will tee it up for the first time since becoming Miura’s first PGA Tour Ambassador today at the WGC-Mexico Championship at Club de Golf Chapultepec. The 27-year-old will play alongside Tiger Woods and Bryson DeChambeau in the opening round at 2.03 pm ET.

 

 

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Equipment

Danny Lee’s Mizuno MP-32 irons: The real inside scoop!

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Hipsters are known for loving “old” stuff — you know the classics, the vintage, the retro. From vinyl, to thrift store sweaters, what’s old is new again. In the case of Danny Lee, he’s leading the charge as the PGA Tour’s iron hipster.

It should also be noted that “old” is a relative term, especially with golf equipment. Now when it comes to “classics,” Mizuno has produced some of the most recognizable irons of all time, including the Cut Muscle MP-32 released in 2004.

We recently spotted Danny Lee at the Genesis Open and it started a LOT of discussion about classic designs, as well as whether these are new old stock (NOS) or new forgings, using the original tooling.

I reached out to Mizuno’s Senior Club Engineer Chris Voshall to get to the bottom of this interesting iron development. (Plus the idea that Mizuno has sets of 10-plus year-old irons kicking around ready for custom builds — I have a huge smile thinking about what that storage room might look like — is a pretty fun thought).

Heres the inside scoop on Danny’s irons from Chris Voshall

“The MP-32s being played by Danny Lee are a new old stock set that came from Luke Donald’s personal stash inside the tour van. The ones Danny is playing are the very last set of custom grind 32s that were made for Luke.”

(HERES WHERE THE STORY GETS VERY INTERESTING)

“Here’s the part that makes the Danny’s set unique – During final development of the 32s, Luke was feeling that the soles for him were not getting through the turf the same as his previous MP-33s, but he loved the profile and extra forgiveness offered by the cut muscle design.

“By working with the Craftsman on the Mizuno team they created a unique sole profile for Luke that modernized that of the MP-33 for his new MP-32s. They rounded off and beveled the trailing edge of the 32s and had multiple sets made that he used during their entire run in the line.

“The tell tale of the Luke soled irons vs. the retail and standard version is how close the trailing edge of the sole is to the “Mizuno” on the back. What’s even more interesting about the development of that sole and grind is that every MP iron moving forward in the line starting with the MP-62 in 2008 utilized the exact sole profile of the one developed with Luke for the 32s and then 62s he used to become Number 1 player in the world.”

Below are comparison pics of Danny’s irons vs retail MP-32s and MP-62s

Danny Lee’s LD Grind 32s

Standard MP-32 7-iron – notice the amount of space above the “Mizuno” text

Right – MP-62 vs Standard MP-32

Danny Lees LD Grind 9-iron

Retail MP-32 9-iron

MP-62 9-iron vs retail MP-32

WOW! How cool is that insider information? True 14-year-old prototypes back in play on Tour! Now we know 100 percent the real story behind this very cool set and how it lead to historical Mizuno design changes that we still see in the MP line today!

 

NOTE: All Mizuno forged irons pre-2010 meet the 2010 USGA Conforming Groove rule; they were conforming before and are still conforming now. This is also part of the reason you don’t see many other classic irons on tour, except for maybe some from Ping which did do a few older models with new grooves –most notably D.A Points’ i5s irons. 

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