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Ian Poulter on how the Europeans have embraced Ryder Cup underdog mentality

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Ahead of next week’s 43rd Ryder Cup matches, Ian Poulter hopped on SiriusXM PGA Tour Radio with Michael Breed to discuss the European team’s chances.

When Breed asked the 12-time European Tour winner about the team’s underdog mentality, Poulter chuckled,

“You know that’s our advantage, I guess, in a way, right? That we have delivered when perhaps we shouldn’t have delivered. And that is the magical question that gets asked all the time. That’s what has the American press scratching their head. That’s what has the American team scratching their heads at times, right? On paper, on paper, on paper, on paper, the U.S. team should have delivered. It’s for us to enjoy and for the American team to figure out, right?”

It’s hard to knock Poulter’s confidence. The European side has won four out of the last five, seven of the last nine, and nine of the last 12 Ryder Cups. Poulter is a six-time Ryder Cup veteran, and the European team is 4-2 when he plays. He holds a lifetime 14-6-2 record, and he has yet to record a loss in Sunday singles.

Nothing about Ian Poulter’s statistical profile jumps out “on paper.” In fact, out of the 24 players competing at Whistling Straits next week, Poulter ranks 21st in data golf’s true strokes gained metric over the last year. With that being said, the U.S. team always has the advantage “on paper,” and that appears to be just the way the Europeans like it.

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19th Hole

Lamborghini set to build golf carts with solar panels

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One of the most iconic high-performance car brands has officially entered the golf cart business. That’s right, Lamborghini is partnering with Kinetic Green Energy, an Indian electric-vehicle manufacturer.

Kinetic Green CEO Sulajja Firodia Motwani told Bloomberg Television that their new venture would create “beautifully differentiated golf carts,” which will also feature solar panels.

It is not a surprise to see luxury car brands enter this space, as golf carts are reportedly a $3 billion market.

The Lamborghini-Kinetic Green golf cart collaboration has yet to attach an official name to their partnership. Distribution is set to begin in 2020, and the golf carts are expected to be sold at airports, hotels and resorts.

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19th Hole

LPGA pros react with ambivalence to USGA’s new driver-length rule

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The USGA announced earlier this week that they would be implementing a local rule that limits the driver shaft to 46 inches. While Phil Mickelson was among some of those who were in outrage with new stipulation, LPGA tour pros were far more ambivalent.

The Korda sisters commented on the controversial issue during their press conference for the Aramco Team Series. “No drama,” Jessica stated. “It doesn’t affect us,” Nelly added. This appears to be a common response in the women’s game, which caters to a more finesse and strategic style of play, as opposed to the “bomb and gauge” approach that many PGA Tour pros have employed.

“I would only see something like that as a problem if 90 percent of the field played with something like that. I don’t really see it as a big point. You can do way more with other things– limiting driver heads or balls, stuff like that. I don’t think this rule will change much, especially in the women’s game,” said Anne van Dam, who also happens to rank first on the LPGA Tour in driving distance.

Sophia Popov seemed to sum up the LPGA’s common sentiment best, “I don’t care, because I don’t have a drier that’s longer than 46 inches. I know I heard some criticism on the men’s side, but for us, the shorter the driver is, the harder you can hit it. I don’t think it’s that big a deal… It’s something I just watch from afar and watch on Twitter and laugh about.”

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19th Hole

Introvert vs Extrovert – Study shows what brand golfers buy based on personality type

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A recent study conducted by Stephen Smith, chief psychologist at the UK-based Sports Psychology Ltd (SPL), sought to determine the brand preference of golfers based on them having either an extrovert or introvert personality.

As reported by FirstCallGolf’s Ken Klavon, Smith, who has worked as a psychologist to professional athletes in golf, Formula One, rugby, and football, posted a short questionnaire with questions on golf equipment preferences focused on around 15 brands, followed by a level of personality questions. 

The study focused on three main character identification questions for the personality section: Introvert versus Extrovert, Pragmatic versus Visionary, and Logical versus Idealist.

After receiving “hundreds upon hundreds” of responses, the data, matched up with their favored golf equipment, showed the following results:

Introverts

Ping was the preferred brand of 40% of those who were identified as introverts, while Titleist was next up for introverts, with 18% of those naming the brand as their favorite.

Extroverts

Callaway and TaylorMade were brands that 40% of those identified as extroverts chose as their favourites.

Smith’s data also concluded that “60 percent of golfers are sensory pragmatics who will be driven by the look, feel and sound of any equipment” and that golfers are by and large a group of consumers driven by a futuristic vision.

Amongst his takeaways, Smith said:

“This study shows that golf needs to be much more sophisticated in its understanding of the customers it is connecting with, and in the way it communicates to build that connection.

How do you get personalities to react to something, particularly a piece of equipment? No doubt the 2020s may be the decade when the psychology of design will be as important as the engineering that underpins it.”

Find out more about the study here.

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