2016 RBC Heritage — What’s a Royal Canadian?

Don’t know what South Carolina has to do with Royal Canadians, but who cares! Pretty sure they ditched the British crown a while ago and there’s nothing royal about Canada anymore, but that doesn’t stop RBC from using that word.

Well the Masters is over, and people are either devastated that Spieth collapsed, or pumped that Willett pulled through, or indifferent and just happy that the final round was damn good entertainment. I’m sitting in that last bucket for sure. And just like that cliche ex-girlfriend who broke your heart, dumped you, and is already in bed with another dude, the Tour has already moved on to another tournament.

Just a note, GOTM is a golf website, that may occasionally exaggerate or misrepresent history for the sake of entertainment. Don’t believe any bit of history you read on this blog.

Music time! Has nothing to do with RBC, Canada, or South Carolina, but it’s catchy.

What to watch for:

One of the more distinct courses on tour

Now, I’m not talking Augusta National level distinct, but Harbor Town is way up there in novel courses played on the PGA Tour. Built by Pete Dye and Jack Nicklaus, the course looks wayyyyy more like a Pete Dye track – with railroad ties, wavy greens, and deep bunkers galore. I’ll give Nicklaus a break for not having much influence though, because this is his first credited design. Dye probably took the lead on most aspects. Quite the jumping off point for Nicklaus however, who went on to design a whole army of courses around the world (wikipedia list here).

The course is well known for being one of the shortest on Tour, a 7,101 yard par 71. I realize when you see those numbers you might not think that’s short at all, but coming off Augusta National at over 7,400 yards, Harbour Town is a dinker.

Other features to watch for this week include a famous lighthouse off the 18th hole,

So purdy

So purdy

Spanish Moss,

Like this, but on a golf course.

Like this, but on a golf course.

and really skinny fairways,

Not much room there if you don't hit it straight.

Not much room there if you don’t hit it straight.

Snake DeChambeau

Bryson DeChanbeau, hot off his low am finish at the Masters, probably would have turned professional as he walked off the 72nd green this week if he could have. He hasn’t been going to school, he’s been playing in pro tournaments for the past 6 months, and only stayed amateur for this one event. I gotta imagine his bank account has been feeling left out when it would be quite full if he had turned pro way back at the end of last year. But he did not, and it’s tough for me to sit here and judge when I’m not in that position.

Nevertheless, DeCham’s time has come to join the pro ranks this week, and he’ll be all set with his custom set of bizarre golf clubs by Cobra when he plants that first tee in the ground on Thursday.

I can only hope he’s going to be decked out in an orange version of his dumb flat caps in honor of his new Cobra deal.

Best pic I could find, still not very good

Best pic I could find, still not very good.

Edit, after publishing, found this pic of Bryson in his new gear. Totally called it.

orange-bryson-hat

Good for Cobra though. They must be going after the most polarizing players on Tour, with Rickie first, and now DCham. I’m sure some people will love his style and how he plays the game and how fake he sounds when he gives interviews enough to buy one of those hats. But do I think he’ll ever get as popular as Rickie? No, and that’s because Rickie is cool. DCham is not.

All the RBC Sponsored People

#TeamRBC in the house! Turns out RBC sponsors a ton of people on the PGA (and LPGA) Tour, and as usual with these sponsorships, those players are required to show up for the RBC sponsored events. Take a look at Team RBC here.

Just as a sanity check for myself, and to make sure I wasn’t lying to you valued readers, all those guys (minus defending champ Jim Furyk who’s still nursing a hurt back) are in the field this week. Yes, even Mike Weir, presumably on sponsor’s exemption cause ain’t no way he qualified on his own.

I also want to take this time to mention RBC’s description of the currently crippled Furyk. Here’s the quote they use to describe him.

Known for his unorthodox swing, Jim Furyk is one of the ‘nice guys’ in golf, winning 17 tournaments on the PGA TOUR, including one major championship.

Might just be me, but I’d much rather be known for winning 17 times on Tour along with a major (the 2002 US Open) than having a funky swing and being nice. It’s ok Jim, we here at GOTM appreciate your on course accomplishments.

Though now that I think about it, he’s probably more well known recently for not being able to close 54 hole leads.

We miss you Jim!

We miss you Jim!

A Tartan Jacket

Now you have to be careful, because this isn’t the only tournament on the schedule where the winner receives an ugly jacket that they have to pose for pictures in, and then stuff in the back of the closet. The winner of the Colonial also earns a similar patterned sporting coat, and you need to make sure you can distinguish the two.

I failed at that last year, with the help of Boo Weekley. When previewing the RBC Heritage, I messed up and put a picture of him winning the Colonial in the RBC Heritage preview, and only realized it when I recognized that same picture as I was about to post it in our preview of the Colonial. There are a few takeaways from that little story. 1) Boo loves tartan jackets. 2) There are two too many tournaments that give tartan jackets away as a victor gift.

Boo loves winning tartan jackets.

Boo loves winning tartan jackets.

Normalcy

Just like Warren G. Harding promised after WWI, the RBC Heritage promises a return to normalcy on the PGA Tour. It’ll be great to step back, recline in our chairs, and casually watch a bunch of mostly white guys compete for a crap ton of money.

jk

Stoic

For real though, it’d be really tough to watch golf with the level of stress the Masters brings out in us fans. Only a few times in a year can I take watching golf with that much intensity. I need a few filler tournaments in between the majors. We’re just starting the real golf season here and there are going to be plenty of high stress events to come this summer. So everyone should be happy to know we’re in for a normal event.

British spellings

Apparently the course is named “Harbour Town Golf Links”. What’s that extra ‘u’ doing in Harbor? This is America dammit. Hamilton didn’t single handedly beat the British only to have this resort in South Carolina spell the word ‘harbor’ incorrectly. Sigh.

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