🏌 The Home of Happy Golf Stories

:golfing_man: The Home of Happy Golf Stories



It seems I didn’t mis-spend my Youth badly enough.

Got my confirmation last night that I had passed all the background and security checks needed to actually work at the Ryder Cup. Time to get blogging on that again as there is a lot of behind the scenes stuff now going on.

Meanwhile. Great to see Poulter get into the automatic qualification places, he just needs to keep his form going for the next 3 weeks to keep pulling in points. It will make Bjorn’s job a lot easier IF he qualifies on merit as it will free up a Captains’ Pick. More on that story in the weeks to come.

Also, form wise, good that Thorbjorn Olesen has signed up to play in Sweden this week. He sits just outside the automatic spots and with BA & American Airlines having lost TWO sets of his golf clubs in TWO flights to the PGA, he may just be the story to claim a spot.


I’ve added some stuff for volunteers to my blog but doubt you lot want advice on packing so not copying the update link unless someone has terminal insomnia

Will be updating a lot more regularly now, shit load of things going on, heck there is even going to be a free gig at the opening ceremony and it’s someone I love seeing in concert.
And no I want to work at the event so can’t leak the name :slight_smile:


This is a great story. And not one “get in the hole” from them in Scotland!


And a great photo from the course build-up today. Me? I’ll be in front of that TV Studio (swapping sides) while most of the morning groups head out before heading setting off with my group.

I will be reporting live but it will be via twitter and then links to here as it is a bit quicker to do :slight_smile:



Allegedly a $9 Mill winner takes all match

I will play around for that much.


9mil only? Surprised they even get out of bed for that :roll_eyes:

Meanwhile this gives an impression of scale that 1st tee grandstand will hold 8000 people watching 4 groups hit a golf ball. The scale of everything is immense


Watch your back, Phil.


Yeah that was clever by the Telegraph. Might as well print all the IT passwords as well.
The event is in Paris why anyone would be surprised at the levels of security and training going on :lou_sad:
Note how it says Elite.
We all have to be elite to be there. Me & my team are elite wine drinkers



Time for some behind the scenes anecdotes.

Things are building up, amazingly, the most boring page I’ve posted in my blog now has well over 100+ views more than any other I published. (It was more about what to pack and prepare than general golf stories)

So the main thing behind the scenes has been a ramp in the number of volunteers joining the closed FB group and some indications that Humans may not be the most intelligent species on earth.

First up, The Ryder Cup is in Paris. Now we all know the trauma that Paris has been through in the past years, yet to see people ranting or even shocked by the stories that “A Ring of Missiles” will surround the course is just silly. Of course there will be security. I worked for an American Company during the Gulf War and was sent on basic training stuff, so it is not posting any secrets that Security comes in layers.
Access to the course on foot is not possible, everyone gets herded through Security checks and Park & Ride or Shuttle Bus systems.
Those “special forces” will then be layered between those funnels and the course itself - duh.
As volunteers we all had to submit to background checks (obviously) and to work at the event (ie close up with players and spectators), we need special passes and photo ID - duh.
This was very clearly stated in September LAST year when we applied. We were told what days we could collect uniforms (actually free souvenir stuff) and our passes.
And yet all week I have been reading posts like “Oh I just checked my flights and I won’t arrive until after that office closed, can someone collect my pass for me?”

Then I’ve seen people Posting
They have no accomodation. They were waiting until nearer the event because they thought it would be cheaper (a room in an Ibis near the course is now about $1000 a NIGHT.) Seriously people?
I didn’t apply for the special travel card will they extend the offer? That Card is only for 6 days but I am there for 8 days will they give me discount on those 2 days? (Well, the offer T’s & C’s were IN BIG LETTERS)

I booked a hotel 3 hours away by train and asked for morning shift. Now I find I have to be on the course at 6am each morning, would it be a problem if I arrived at 10am?

Anyone want to play golf on Thursday afternoon, I selected a day off? Thursday afternoon??? It’s the Opening Ceremony FFS there is a FREE Rock Concert with some Brit Legends!

I’ve never been to Paris before why will it take me 1 hour to get to the course by train? Becuase the course ISN’T IN PARIS FFS!

Jeez, and these are supposed to be the people helping the spectators around! :lou_facepalm_2:

Me? The packing is well under way. I plan this as if it was a double Glastonbury. I will be outdoors for 8 days from around 7am until 8pm. That needs planning, clothing, washing systems, shopping. I need Meds (from stuff to cure Blisters to bad backs to anti hangover shit) I need waterproofs and/or sunscreen, walking boots and backpacks to put shit in. I will also need FOOD so have too plan in a shopping trip around everything else. Only this week some of the guys staying in hotels started realising that an Formula 1 Hotel at 30 quid a night doesn’t have a mini-bar fridge. In fact has nothing!
I have seen some posters ask Why would I need walking shoes? Duh because it is a 7km walk to and from the bus station to where you will be working in the retail store and it will be on grass.

Anyway. we are now receiving training materials, I have the names of my “team”, I will be out on course each afternoon walking with one match and in the mornings I will be on that 1st Tee checking all the groups in and sending them on their way and then intercepting them at different locations to see how they are getting on.
My biggest fear is being sent out with Rory & Tiger in the same group. That will be mayhem. (And yes of course Tiger will get a Captains pick IF he is fit)

The biggest overall concern for the entire organisation is the rumour that Trump actually wants to come and watch. That changes the game entirely, and not in any good way unfortunately “for someone having to manage the media” while golf happens in the background. That would be worse news than the arrival of Mrs D_P and her Bestie doing that whole Paris thing.

Anyway here is my ultimate Ryder Cup Team. Picked on the basis of who helped make it what it has become rather than only points won.


Tick, tock. 4 weeks to go.
Picking a team for the Ryder Cup.

Yeah finally a photo of me hitting a golf ball from about a zillion years ago :slight_smile:

I now (strangely) have an audience for this stuff - the volunteers actually read it so I got the team selection debate in first.

The short version, ASSUMING automatic qualification places stay like this I would pick
Casey, Poulter, Rafa and Henrik.

For the Yanks I think Jim will pick Bryson, Tiger, Tony Finau and Kevin Kisner leaving Leftie on the bench.

It’s almost time to start debating the teams anyway so I just dived in as my work at the moment is with people in the UK and you were all off getting wet in traffic jams at the weekend so I was bored.
If you have insomnia, read the whole thing.


OK, one question Mr Phil, do you have to pick your automatic picks?

If not would you drop McIlory given his recent “form”?


I’d still have him in even as a captain’s pick :sunglasses:
I’ll need a dance partner again when the winning putt drops :roll_eyes:
And automatic picks are in automatically unless they pull out injured. I expect Thomas will invite some of the other up and coming kids along to experience the gig like McGinley did in 2014


You are such a tart :kissing_heart:


Getting down to the detail now. I actually have an audience who need to know this stuff rather than using it to fall asleep.

Hopefully only one more “history” post to go which will be the How I won the Ryder Cup in 2014 :slight_smile:
before I move into reporting mode on the actual journey to Paris.



At the weekend this little story was going to go in the thread for “The Little annoyances of Everyday Life”, but everyone loves a happy ending and this just about qualifies for one…

This is a bit of a long one as I wanted to milk the situation for all its worth…

So…a little backdrop:
Every year the golf club has the Annual club championship which is played over 4 rounds on consecutive Saturdays.
It’s split into 3 Grades : A - the good golfers B: The golfers who think they aren’t bad (this includes me) and C: The hackers (this used to be me…)
Everybody in each grade plays “off scratch” - ie no handicaps are taken into account.

After week 3 I’m sitting in 9th place (out of about 60), 9 shots off the lead, thinking I’m out of the running (yet again…).

Friday night we discover the B Grade Leader has signed for a wrong score and has been disqualified (not as harsh as it sounds - he knocked 10 strokes off his score after the card had been signed and thought nobody would notice…)
Suddenly the gap has narrowed to 6 shots with him out of the way.

Saturday morning I tee off nice and early with slim hopes that I might be able to work my way up the pack and get a “podium finish”. None of this going out in reverse order with the leaders going out last - we all still tee off with our mates at the normal time. In my case, 7am so that I can get finished, get a few beers in and still by home by lunch time :slight_smile:
1st hole goes to plan with a bogey 5 (at my level, that’s still a reasonable achievement).

2nd hole is a par 3 with water all down the right hand side. Disaster strikes, my tee shot goes in the water and I finish the hole with a triple bogey 6.

At this point I’m thinking I figure I’m back to 9 shots off the pace and accept my fate. It’s now out of my hands and it’s just pride I’m playing for.

The next 13 holes actually go pretty well, and considering the pressure of it being the final round of the club championship I’m pretty pleased with how it’s gone. I may yet end up in the top 3 or 4 as at least a couple of those above me may crack under the pressure (don’t knock it - this is our own version of “The Masters”!)

The 16th hole is another Par 3. Water in front of the tee and then all down the right hand side. A pressure shot if ever there was one. I safely knock it on to the green but leave myself about a 30 footer. I have no expectations of holing it, but I’m happy to knock it up close and then tap in for an easy par.
The first part goes to plan and I leave myself a putt of about 18 inches.

…and here’s the part where it goes wrong…but the scale of the error gets worse later on.

I go to mark my ball as it’s the3 done thing to do as if I putt I will be standing on the line of one of my colleagues putt. He tells me not to worry, just take my normal stance and tap it in. Fair enough it’s his call.
One of my other colleagues decides to heckle and tell me I couldn’t stand normal if I tried…
I laugh. Step away. Recompose myself and line my little tap in putt up.
I’m ready to putt. I take the club back… and just as I start my stroke, the original colleague decides to pipe up with the identical same comment “No, stand normal” he says. I twitch. The putt veers left and misses the cup by an inch.
I tap it in for a bogey 4 and then retreat to the back of the green before I wrap my putter around his neck.

2 holes to go. a REALLY tough Par 5 with the approach to the green across a lake. I have to recompose myself, as I am determined not to let the jerk ruin what had become a decent round.
Surprisingly, I end up with pars on both the last 2 holes and end up signing for a reasonable score (considering my lack of talent…lol).

Fast forward to the evening…and where the scale of the issue multiplies…

I’m checking all the scores to try and work out where I might have finished and whether I might have done enough to get in the top 3.
I check them all, and one by one the realisation dawns that no-one has had a decent round.

As I tot up the totals, it’s becoming clear that I have indeed, got a podium finish. I have finished joint 2nd, ONE shot off the top spot.
This is the point when I was going to post in other aforementioned thread.

My one (albeit unlikely) chance of top spot ruined by the jerk who thought it was funny to put me off while I was putting. To say I was a bit miffed is an understatement, but at the end of the day the BLAME was on me, for losing concentration. Oh well… there is always next year!

Now here’s the bit where it gets moved into “The Home of Happy Golf Stories” thread :slight_smile:

Apparently the guy who I thought had top spot actually had one horror hole (shame…happens to the best of us…) which doesn’t get reflected on the score sheet I looked at (long story and this one has already been long enough), but actually meant his score was 2 worse than I had calculated.

As a result the two people who had finished joint second actually finished joint first.

Of course, if I hadn’t missed the putt I would have won it outright, but at the end of the day, 1st is 1st. I got a trophy, my name in the history books and on the honour board in the clubhouse. I had the lowest score on the day (even if the total after 4 rounds was the same) and feel morally, like I deserve it :smile:

Phil - can you put a word in with the committee - I can make myself available as a Captain’s pick if required!


Great story @Smiler!

I’m not a golfist but he I enjoyed that.

However half way through I was slightly perturbed by the realisation that somewhere in Dubai a prospective Raiyderr Shield marshal would be knocking one out while reading it.

You deserve a badge which I’ll construct after my morning yoga.


Cracking tale Smiler. I assume the playing partners are no longer mates?

I’ve been in limbo here, we wait to see if we go bust before the Investors sort their shit out so have been stuck at home for 3 weeks spending no money.

Mate uses a credit card for work & gets fee golf so Suday took me to the Earth course - now considering I couldn’t play for a year due to injury I had been slowly getting better. Shot 35 points (24 handicap) 97 which was 1st time I’ve broken 100 in about 18 months.
Went back on Tuesday my 3 opening holes were double bogey double bogey par and actually shot 45 on the front 9.
Something then went very wrong, on the back 9 I had 3 putts lip out and shot 42. On the Earth Course - the whole Race to Dubai thing.
It qualified me for an actual tournament tomorrow.
I will take your story. I will step away if one of my playing partners is a git and I WILL prevail. Hell there is a case of beer for coming last that I have my eyes on!

That last blog post of mine has gone a bit nuts. I am now getting pings from bloody Journos and everything.
Sod all that, the ONLY thing I want out of that blog is for one of the sponsors - Emirates - to upgrade me on my flight there & back!


My current handicap is 14 and the last round I shot an 87, so just one over my handicap.
The first guy who commented gets a free pass for that one, as he is a regular partner and we do tend to have a bit of banter - and at least it was before I had got settled over the putt. The 2nd guy… Well, I won’t be looking to partner up with him any time soon. If you believe in karma, he actually missed a 3 foot birdie putt on the very next hole (without any barracking, I might add). The consequences weren’t the same, but it did make me feel marginally less angry at the time!
Good luck with the upgrade and good luck in the comp!


The only knocking out of one I will be doing today will be the FVCKING A/C MAINTENANCE guy.
Did I mention it is still not working?
Today they admitted they had been trying to fit the wrong motor, it ran at too high an RPM. Last night they said the motor ran at too low an RPM and needed a higher RPM.
Looking forward to playing golf in 39C tomorrow - it will be cooler than in the apartment


I know fuck all about golf but confess to quite enjoying your blog Phil. Keep it up.