So this past Friday, thanks to a boss with a mini cooper and too busy of a schedule, I was able to head out to Conway Farms and check out second round action at the BMW Championship. What follows is an account of the happenings interspersed with observations from the first Tour event I’ve been to in person in a surprisingly long time. Also note the lack of clickbait in the title of this. I easily could have called it “15 Observations from the BMW Championship You Won’t Believe”. But I didn’t and I should get credit for that.
Observation 1 — There are an impressive amount of brand new BMWs parked in spots you wouldn’t really expect to see parked BMWs
I’m really just realizing this out now, and wish I had made a pictorial account of all the cars on the property. When walking into the tournament grounds, you’re greeted with a couple BMWs on this track with a giant hill in the middle that’s supposed show how versatile a BMW is even though, let’s face it, these things are only going to be used to drive around the suburbs after dropping off the kids to private school.
Then there was the BMW in a glass cage in the main area near the practice facility like it was an animal in a zoo. Then there’s the BMW (or two I can’t remember) on the platform of the BMW owner’s box. The only thing that was missing was a giant lake with a car floating in the middle. Though since I didn’t see the whole course, there very well could have been.
Observation 2 — It’s probably a good idea to check if the tee times have been moved up because of possible weather.
Dumb me only looked on Tuesday and saw that tee times started at about 10:30 (since it’s only a field of 70) and planned the day around that. Well because of possible storms later, they bumped the times up a couple hours and everyone was off by the time we got there. Not the end of the world, but range and warm ups are fun to watch cause the swings are so damn pretty.
Observation 3 — The percentage of people in the BMW Owners Area who actually owned a BMW had to be about 41%
Since I work for a prediction market company, and deal with making forecasts on a daily basis, I figure I’ll go through my analysis in coming to this decently precise number.
First, the only thing that you need to get in that area is a BMW key, and with that you’re allowed to bring one guest with you. So right there, the prior probability is 50% in that one of those people actually owns the BMW, and the other is probably related, but not on the title.
Aww yeah Tdubs is back. Theme of the week is how the PGA Tour and FedEx have finally won. Tiger playing this week means that he cares about the structure of the playoff system enough to play in a new event. So congrats to that. Greensboro, and the Wyndham Championship are here.
About the Sponsor
It’s been a while since we’ve had a hotel be the title sponsor of an event. Last one I can remember was the Crowne Plaza, and since I lack the will to open up the 2015 Tour schedule, that’s the final answer. Now like most giant companies, the Wyndham name is both the name of a holding company for a bunch of different hotel chains, as well as a hotel brand itself. Wyndham Worldwide is the holding company name, and their brands (excluding the ones that use the Wyndham name) are Baymont Inn & Suites, Days Inn, Howard Johnson’s, Knights Inn, Microtel, Ramada, Super 8, Travelodge.
The history of the Wyndham name goes back to 1981 when Trammell Crow, who incidentally wins the award for oddest name I’ve typed out in a while, named it after his friend and reporter, Wyndham Robertson. I have a feeling that Mrs. Trammell Crow probably wasn’t too pleased that her husband named a hotel brand after another woman. Apparently not since the Trammell Crows were married 67 years before the guy kicked it.
After its founding and subsequent growth period, following the chain of ownership for the brand becomes rather confusing. According to the allknowing Wikipedia, it appears to have changed hands 3 or 4 times before ending up with something called Cendant, which then spun off it’s hotel business into something called Wyndham Worldwide, the current sponsor of this week’s event.
And that’s all I have to say about that.