Monday, June 27, 2011

Nike Dri-Fit socks

I never really put much thought into socks. They've always been just a unseen part of my attire when playing golf.

But after trying a pair of Nike Dri-Fit socks, I'm a changed man. Thanks to a blend of cotton, nylon, polyester and spandex, I've found the best socks I've ever worn.

I think the key is the spandex. The Nike socks form to your feet like a mold - almost like they were made with your feet in mind. They say one size fits all. Well, I think these really do fit all sizes of feet.

The mesh fabric on the top of the sock allows lots of breathing room for your foot. And the fabric allows the sweat to evaporate rather than stay stuck inside the sock, which causes smelly feet. Reinforced heel and toe areas top off the form-fitting Nike Dri-Fit sock.

To be completely transparent, I've never tried the Adidas Climalite sock, which touts itself as a sock that provides maximum sweat protection and comfort. And it's true that I'm a TaylorMade guy - clubs, balls and Adidas golf shoes.

But I usually find something I like and stick with it. I can't imagine finding a better sock than the Nike Dri-Fit.

We'll see though.

Monday, June 13, 2011

2011 Rex Hospital Open

Some call the Nationwide Tour the minor leagues of professional golf. And technically, that's true.

But that doesn't mean you're not going to see plenty of good golf - and excitement, as well. This past weekend at the Rex Hospital Open at TPC Wakefield in Raleigh, the tournament came down to the final group, with two players barely missing birdie putts that would have forced a playoff with the eventual winner.

Kyle Thompson won the event, moving into the Top 10 of the Nationwide Tour money list.

It definitely was a treat for me to cover the event, which included interviewing players, snapping photos and watching some of the future stars of golf.

Here are the links to my coverage. I hope you enjoy.

Tournament officials rearrange the course for the tournament.
15-year-old gets to play with the pros
Rex Hospital Open turns into a U.S. Open tune-up for qualifiers
Three tied after the first round
Former Tarboro golfer struggles on first day
Scott Brown leads after 36 holes
Spence Fulford rallies for round of par on second day
Three-way tie after 54 holes
Thompson wins with birdie on 18

I've covered PGA Tour and Champions Tour events in the past, but the 2011 Rex Hospital Open was one of the more exciting tournaments I've seen as a reporter.

Now, I can hardly wait until next year.

Photo: Eliot Gealy finished tied for 11th at the Rex Hospital Open, and he's competing in the U.S. Open this weekend at Congressional.

Monday, June 6, 2011

The first one's free

So, I was playing golf the other day at Birchwood Country Club thanks to my pal, Lynwood Roberson. Birchwood pro Randy Davis played nine holes with us, and after my first tee shot, Randy asks me: "Do you want me to say anything about your swing, you know, to help you?"

Knowing that I need all the help I can get, I immediately said, "YES."

From experience, I know a lot of golfers hate when someone tries to "fix" them during a round of golf. Practice is for the driving range, they say. Not me, man. I take as many tips as I get - as long as they come from someone I trust.

I trust Randy. He's a good guy.

So, part of my problem - according to Randy - is that I don't break my wrists much at the top of my backswing. And then, I don't turn them over on my downswing, which makes most of my shots go right.

In other words, a very stiff-armed swing.

My fix has been to overcompensate by either aiming left or starting out with my clubhead turned over dramatically.

Randy's tip during the first nine holes was to hinge my wrists more and try to turn them over at impact. He said if I did this correctly, my shots will start going up and left.

I asked how to fix that, and he said, "One thing at a time."

So I did what he said, and I was consistently hitting everything left. But by then, Randy had ditched us.

I got a good lesson, and I appreciate it. But now what? I sent Randy a message about what to do next.

Nothing. Just my luck - the first one is always free.

My next plan - try to make a trade. To be sure, Birchwood needs some help with a newsletter or marketing or something.

Or maybe I can wash his car.