By Donna DeClemente, Donna's Promo Talk
Tomorrow is the start of the 2014 Masters Tournament, the first PGA major of the year. Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia has been the host of this yearly tournament since 1934. This year the biggest talk of the tournament has been that Tiger Woods will not be playing in the Masters for the first time in 20 years because of a back injury. Tiger recently announced he had a successful surgery for a pinched nerve that has been hurting him for several months.
Phil Mickelson, a three-time Masters champion and the reigning Open Championship winner, is playing. He was quoted at the Practice Round on Tuesday that he misses having Tiger Woods in the field at the Masters this week. "He's been such a mainstay in professional golf and the majors. It's awkward to not have him here. I hope he gets back soon." Shown here is a photo of Phil Mickelson hitting a stroke on No. 11 during Tuesday's Practice Round taken by Charles Laberge/Augusta National.
Rory McIlroy is also a favorite player this year. This is McIlroy's sixth Masters, and his best finish remains that disappointment from three years ago when he was the third-round leader and shot a final-round 80 and dropped to tie for 15th. However, he bounced back to win the U.S. Open that year and captured the 2012 PGA Championship as part of a player-of-the-year season that saw him go to No. 1 in the world. "It's been six years since the first time I came here." McIlroy stated at yesterday's practice round. "Really looking forward to the week. It's probably the most anticipated week of the year."
To help celebrate the Masters this week I wanted to share with you a sweepstakes that we are administrating which is from the makers of Golf Pride, the #1 world leader in golf grip technology, and Golf Galaxy. They are promoting 2014 National Re-Gripping month by offering a chance to win a Stay and Play Golf Package at Brandon Dunes Golf Resort for one lucky winner and three of their friends. Entries are being accepted now up to April 23.
To enter the "Get a Grip on Your Game" Sweepstakes participates are invited to take a photo in any Golf Galaxy Store and share it by either 1)Visiting www.golfgalaxy.com and uploading their photo with their completed online entry form or 2) Sharing the photo on Twitter using the hashtag, #ReGripGolfGalaxy along with including @GolfGalaxy and @GolfGrips in the tweet.
The prize package includes a 3 night/4 day accommodations in a 4-bedroom unit at the Bandon Dunes Golf Resort in Bandon, Oregon along with golf and cart fees to play on all five of the resort courses, plus meal vouchers good for use at any of the Resort's restaurants and local transportation vouchers to and from the airport. The courses are famous for their links tradition that overlook the Pacific ocean.
Round One of the Masters starts tomorrow, Thursday, and it's anyone's guess who will take the green jacket home this year. My colleague, Matt, is there for today's practice round. He's been making an annual trip with a few golf buddies to first play a few rounds in Hilton Head, then head over to Augusta for the Wednesday Practice Round. He's a big Tiger fan, so was very disappointed when he heard the news that Tiger would not be there. Let's hope Tiger heals well and can get back to the game soon.