Today is the second round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill in Orlando, Florida.
As most of you know, this is the first time the tournament has been played since Arnie passed away last fall.
The first round scores weren’t great – even Orlando has been hit with cold weather. Speaking of cold weather … obviously my prediction of opening our course today was wrong … probably by a week. So we’re shooting for Friday, March 24 … wish us luck.
Back to the Arnold Palmer Invitational. Local boy – Tim Herron – shot even par 72, which was a very good score on a cold, windy day. Tim won the tournament in 1999. This has always been a big tournament, but is especially big this year because of the memory of Arnie. I cannot emphasize enough how much Arnie did for golf. The PGA Tour would probably not be a big deal if it wasn’t for Arnold Palmer.
So, of course all of the big names in golf are in Orlando to pay their respects to the man who made their unbelievable lives possible. Wrong. Everyone in the golf media is making excuses for the big names who are not attending Arnold’s tournament. Maybe those media types want to maintain their relationships with the no-shows … or maybe they really don’t think it’s a big deal to honor Arnold Palmer. Either way is wrong and disrespectful.
I meant to write about Arnie’s grip. Though he had a funny looking swing – he had a great golf grip. And he also had a great grip on the game of golf … because he had a great grip on the importance of people. Ironically, his “grip” has been lost on many people who should understand.
Let’s hope that the weather warms up and Tim Herron wins the Arnold Palmer Invitational.
GM and Head Golf Professional