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Absence of Malice
Tim Rosaforte
May 13, 1996
No hard feelings, but Valerie Helmbreck will skip the LPGA Championship, Faldo's new ball, Tiger's 61
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May 13, 1996

Absence Of Malice

No hard feelings, but Valerie Helmbreck will skip the LPGA Championship, Faldo's new ball, Tiger's 61

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After a 15-minute rest Woods continued his blitz. He shot 31 on his third nine, chipping in twice and needing just nine putts. On the final nine Woods birdied three of the first five holes to get to eight under for the round and 19 under for the day, then finally tired, bogeying 15 and parring out.

Big Canyon is no cream puff. After Woods's 65, the lowest score all week was 68. The course record was 66. Jim Wright, the NCAA director of statistics, said he can't determine if Woods's 61 is the lowest score ever shot in a college competition.
—RICK LIPSEY

Ready or Not

The countdown to the June 13-16 U.S. Open has begun, and Oakland Hills Country Club is racing to recover from a harsh Midwestern winter followed by an abnormally cold and wet spring. "Right now it looks like it could be the dead of winter," says Steve Glossinger, superintendent of the Birmingham, Mich., course. Last week 12 of the 18 greens were still being covered by tarpaulins at night for warmth, certain sections of the course were recovering from ice damage, and the rough was only three inches deep. Still, with the Open just five weeks away, the USGA is confident that the Monster will regain its bite in time.

"Everybody got a little nervous because it wasn't greening up," says Tim Moraghan, the USGA's agronomist, "but they just need a little warm weather." It was snowing and sleeting early last week when Moraghan, USGA vice president F. Morgan Taylor, and rules and competitions director Tom Meeks inspected the course.

Lopez Sees the Light
What do you do if you're fast approaching the big Four-0? Drop 30 pounds, which is what newly svelte Nancy Lopez has done. In January the 39-year-old Lopez hired a personal trainer and began working out two hours a day, six days a week. She also cut out dairy products and—voilà!—is now two dress sizes smaller (10). "I know 40 isn't old," Lopez says, "but to me it is."

The Short Game

Greg Norman got so much mail after his loss at the Masters that he paid $45,000 for full-page thank-you ads in Golf World, Golfweek and the Sydney Telegraph. "He received over 7,500 faxes and more than 3,000 letters, and they're still coming in," says Frank Williams, Norman's manager. "There was no way he could possibly respond to them all."...

Cathy Gerring, who missed the cut in the Sprint Titleholders after rounds of 75-74, was making her first start in a regular LPGA event since she was severely burned in a fire at the 1992 Sara Lee Classic....

In the midst of a 21-day trip around the world to visit golf course projects, Jack Nicklaus will stop in the Aleutian Islands in Alaska this weekend to hunt brown bear. Nicklaus has never bagged a bear, golden or otherwise.

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