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WGC - American Express 2002

  • 21-05-2021 1:28pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 2,485 ✭✭✭ Motivator


    Came across a video of the WGC event held at Mt Juliet in 2002. I remember being allowed the week off school to go and watch the practice days and then the first two rounds on Thursday and Friday. They were a great few days, to have those players in Ireland for a world event was massive.

    I remember meeting Woods on the Tuesday night, my aunt lives 10 minute walk from the back entrance of the estate and I was staying with her for the week. Being a local my aunt knew a hole in once of the fences and we went down for a walk and not even five minutes in there woods and Steve Williams were being driven back up to the clubhouse in a cart. The course and estate was pretty much off limits after the practice days had finished so there was nobody around only us and I flagged them down. Woods didn’t even get out of the cart but I nearly ended up on his lap I was so excited. I got a practice ball and a marker from Williams and got a great photo with Woods. Went back the following day and saw a huge crowd on the walkway with kids screaming. Woods was escaping while DJ Carey was being mobbed for autographs!

    The weather was beautiful and the crowds were massive for the four days, a far cry from the storms in 2004 when Els won it. It wasn’t the same at all the second year it came but still great to have those events here. At the time I think people thought they would become regular events. It would be great to have a regular season event back. The Ryder Cup was great but I’d prefer a four day event.


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 159 ✭✭ Grey Fox


    Motivator wrote: »
    Came across a video of the WGC event held at Mt Juliet in 2002. I remember being allowed the week off school to go and watch the practice days and then the first two rounds on Thursday and Friday. They were a great few days, to have those players in Ireland for a world event was massive.

    I remember meeting Woods on the Tuesday night, my aunt lives 10 minute walk from the back entrance of the estate and I was staying with her for the week. Being a local my aunt knew a hole in once of the fences and we went down for a walk and not even five minutes in there woods and Steve Williams were being driven back up to the clubhouse in a cart. The course and estate was pretty much off limits after the practice days had finished so there was nobody around only us and I flagged them down. Woods didn’t even get out of the cart but I nearly ended up on his lap I was so excited. I got a practice ball and a marker from Williams and got a great photo with Woods. Went back the following day and saw a huge crowd on the walkway with kids screaming. Woods was escaping while DJ Carey was being mobbed for autographs!

    The weather was beautiful and the crowds were massive for the four days, a far cry from the storms in 2004 when Els won it. It wasn’t the same at all the second year it came but still great to have those events here. At the time I think people thought they would become regular events. It would be great to have a regular season event back. The Ryder Cup was great but I’d prefer a four day event.
    That's fantastic! I went on the saturday as a fresh-faced 17 year old. Could hardly see anything of Woods as his gallery was so mobbed with people. I sometimes watch the videos of it on youtube, Woods was in huge form at the time and his iron play in particular was phenomenal. Great times :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,485 ✭✭✭ Motivator


    Grey Fox wrote: »
    That's fantastic! I went on the saturday as a fresh-faced 17 year old. Could hardly see anything of Woods as his gallery was so mobbed with people. I sometimes watch the videos of it on youtube, Woods was in huge form at the time and his iron play in particular was phenomenal. Great times :)

    The practice days were very quiet, I always remember that. The players were very approachable that’s another thing I can remember. The long walkway from the clubhouse from the 18th was a prime location for getting balls, gloves, hats etc. In 2004 I followed Chris Dimarco around and got talking to his wife for the 18 holes, I asked her would she get me his cap and after the round she went over and grabbed a jacket and a cap out of his bag. The jacket was a team USA Ryder Cup rain jacket! I still have it in my parents house.

    In 2002 I didn’t realise until I watched the video today that Woods went bogey free for 71 holes, he bogeyed his final hole on Sunday. His display over those 4 days was incredible. I think it was the Par 3 13th he holed a long birdie putt on the Saturday evening and it felt like there was 30,000 people around the green.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,898 ✭✭✭ Deeper Blue


    I still remember the ad

    "Tiger Woods is coming to play in Ireland. The world is watching"


  • Registered Users Posts: 159 ✭✭ Grey Fox


    Motivator wrote: »

    In 2002 I didn’t realise until I watched the video today that Woods went bogey free for 71 holes, he bogeyed his final hole on Sunday.
    That's right, a camera man put Woods off while he was setting up to take his approach shot into the 72nd. He ended up missing the green and failing to get up and down. He was fuming!


  • Registered Users Posts: 159 ✭✭ Grey Fox


    I still remember the ad

    "Tiger Woods is coming to play in Ireland. The world is watching"
    I think I remember this too. It had a guy in a jail in Russia or somewhere using a mirror to try and watch Woods on the telly :) "Tiger Woooooods!!"


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  • Registered Users Posts: 159 ✭✭ Grey Fox


    I still remember the ad

    "Tiger Woods is coming to play in Ireland. The world is watching"
    I think I remember this too. It had a guy in a jail in Russia or somewhere using a mirror to try and watch Woods on the telly :) "Tiger Woooooods!!"


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,485 ✭✭✭ Motivator


    Grey Fox wrote: »
    I think I remember this too. It had a guy in a jail in Russia or somewhere using a mirror to try and watch Woods on the telly :) "Tiger Woooooods!!"

    Yes he had a mirror like a dentist would use and the prison guards were watching the tv. I’ve tried to find it on YouTube but not on it unfortunately.

    There was some field at that tournament, 65 players and all of the top 50 in the world at the time I think were there. I remember spending about an hour at the chipping green watching Davis Love playing bunker shot after bunker shot. The chipping and putting green had security on it towards the end of the week because the bags of Pro V practice balls were all robbed.

    If the weather had have been better in 2004 it would have been unbelievable again but the weather was shocking and it was into October I think due to the Ryder Cup being in America.


  • Registered Users Posts: 274 ✭✭ Neewollah


    Motivator wrote: »

    The chipping and putting green had security on it towards the end of the week because the bags of Pro V practice balls were all robbed.

    I still have the green bags that the balls came in at home :D:D

    I got many years out of those pro vs


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,485 ✭✭✭ Motivator


    Neewollah wrote: »
    I still have the green bags that the balls came in at home :D:D

    I got many years out of those pro vs

    That’s brilliant, I had a couple myself. Green bags with yellow drawstring on them? I remember lads hopping the barriers and hiding in behind advertising hoardings before making a dash at the green to scoop a bag or two.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,564 ✭✭✭ Russman


    It was a great event.
    I was there on the practice days and walked 11/12 holes with Vijay Singh and Nick Price on the Tuesday. They were both incredibly friendly (I was surprised at Vijay tbh, certainly changed my opinion of him) and happy to chat away with you walking down the fairways. After one hole, I think maybe the 7th, the one with the green up on the side of a hill, they sat down, sent their caddies over to one of the chip vans to get burgers and chips and just chatted away with people. Carl Petterson was playing on his own behind them and they called him through while they were eating. What a day, and what a ball striking clinic, f--k me !

    One thing that stood out for me was that you go to say, Irish Opens or European Opens that we used to hold, you see them on the range and the guys are all brilliant golfers, but you could definitely see the difference at WGC level, much more impressive.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,064 ✭✭✭ MarcusP12


    Was at it too on the Sunday.......i have vague memories of being on a hole watching tiger and after he played his shot from the fairway, he needed to use a portaloo but had to wait because there was a young fella using it at the time....imagine the surprise the little fella got....i'm nearly sure that happened as i haven't been to many tournaments in person and less again that Tiger was in. Was All Ireland final day if i remember as the bar was full with the match on....

    Kinda makes you sad to think that we used to host massive tournaments with all the top names and these days its a struggle to get a decent slot in the calendar for the Irish Open never mind get the top names to play or hold any other high profile events.....


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