The sky was low and steely gray at Lake of Isles Golf Course yesterday. Periodically, a chill gust of wind would buffet the first tee... and the stadium seats that surrounded it. Spectators shivered. The lush vegetation that spread forth from the tee box was an intimidating tangle, and the leafy beech and cottonwood trees hugging the fairway were emboldened by a month of steady rain.
Ok... It was clearly not the typical setting for a long drive competition, but then this was not your typical long drive competition. Not... if you'll pardon the pun... by a long shot. It was, BIG SHOTS - TITANS AT THE TEE, and I was at that beautiful course in Ledyard, CT for the competition.
In addition to an undulating Rees Jones design that forced precision as well as length, other idiosyncrasies of this particular power golf contest were the team format...one champion power-hitter and one celebrity per team...and the fact that it's a television event. The show will air on the FOX Network this fall following NFL on FOX coverage.
The Long Drivers were the world's best: Pat Dempsey, Sean "The Beast" Fister, Scott Ionno, Danny Luirette, J.D. Murkerson, Brooks Baldwin, Allen McDougall and Jason Witczak. In addition to their prodigious power and skill these guys are fascinating personalities with some amazing stories to tell. A number of these guys are on Twitter too, so be sure to check them out there.
The celebrities included Hall-of-Famers and legendary athletes. Marcus Allen, Eric Dickerson, Jim Rice, Joe Theismann, "Goose" Gossage and Jim McMahon were there, as was Lawrence Taylor who was ribbed incessantly about his short stint on "Dancing with the Stars". Olympic gold medalist Bruce Jenner was there too and he was of course asked how he's "Keeping up with the Kardashians" these days. Then there was Oscar nominated actor Mark Wahlberg whose presence provoked more than a few long-drive Dirk Diggler jokes.
I won't tell you how it all turned out but suffice to say that sports marketer John Mamoudis, and his HorsePower Tee Shot Tour, have put together an extremely entertaining event that'll appeal to golfers and non-golfers alike. Find out more and keep posted on The HorsePower Tour's website. And yes...they're on Twitter too.
Photos & Animoto Video: Golf Girl Media❀