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Louie Phipps

I’ll jump in here with my favorite memory. I think I’ve told it several dozen times over the years. I played in my first World Am in 1998 and this year will be my 25th time. This story happened in 2014…
I was in one of the super senior flights and we played Tradition the last day. For the first time, I was in the top 8 the last day and got to play with the leaders. There are 2 people in the cast of characters. The “driver” is the fellow driving my cart and the “cheater” is the passenger in the other cart. Upon arrival the driver and I got to our cart about the same time and this player in a cart beside us told us to watch out for a certain player that was playing with us (the cheater). This player said he played with him one day in the tournament and he was called down for cheating several times during the round. He said we really needed to keep a close eye on him.

Well, the driver felt that he was the perfect man for the job. On the very first tee, the cheater hit his drive into a fairway bunker. The driver makes it a point to ride over there to observe him. Sure enough, when we arrived you could see the clubhead on a fairway wood moving in the vicinity of the ball. The driver yelled out “you can’t move a ball in the bunker..!!”, to which the cheater yelled back “I’m not moving the ball”. The cheater hits his second shot into some bushes to the right of the first green. Both carts drive to that area and all of us (except the cheater) begin looking for the ball. After a few minutes we cannot find the ball and as we walk back to our carts, the cheater is sitting in his cart and had been the entire time we were looking for his ball. As we sat down in our carts, he gets out and begins his own search. The driver immediately follows him to watch what he does. The ball was not found and the cheater had to reluctantly play the shot over.

We had a couple of minor issues before we got to our 6th tee box of the morning. This was a par 3 with a pretty large pond on the right of the green. The cheater missed his tee shot to the right and it came to rest in some grass right on the edge of a bank above the water. His ball was inside the red hazard line, but the ball could be played. The cheater walks over to his ball while the driver is keeping a close eye on him and he immediately grounds his club behind the ball. The driver tells the cheater that he can’t ground his club in a hazard. The cheater yells back that he is not grounding his club and proceeds to hit his ball on the green and then 2-putts for a bogey.

When we get back to the carts the driver is asking for everyone’s score and the cheater says he had a 4. The driver told him he actually had a 6 because he incurred a 2-shot penalty for grounding his club in the hazard. At that time the cheater just went ballistic. He and the driver are trading insults to the hilt. Finally the driver said something to cause the cheater to get into the driver’s personal space and said the magic words…”what are you going to do about it”. Well, the driver just reached back and caught the cheater in his jaw with a pretty good right hook. All of a sudden, I have two 70+ year old men wrestling with each other on the ground. I finally convinced them to quit and they got back in their respective carts. About that time the driver of the other cart returned from the restroom and had no idea what had been going on. We drove on to the next tee box and the cheater never got out of the cart, just rode on in to the clubhouse after the 9th hole, where he promptly took his clubs to the car and left. Oh yeah, the driver of the other cart….he wound up winning the flight.

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