Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player hit ceremonial tee shots at Masters (GIFs)
As part of a tradition unlike any other (that’s a good line, somebody should really use that), golf royalty Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player, as the three legends have done for years now, strode to the tee box on Thursday morning and hit their ceremonial tee shots at Augusta National. And with the drives — all which landed in the fairway — from the three titans of sport, the 78th Masters is officially underway.
Player joined Palmer and Nicklaus for the ceremonial tee shots in 2012.
“It’s been a wonderful journey with these two,” said Player.
Nicklaus, 74, narrowly out-drove Player, 78, with the 84-year-old Palmer coming up third, well short of his two pals, which makes perfect sense given he’s the oldest and is expected to undergo back surgery in the near future.
Player didn’t seem to mind being bested by his buddy, saying while laughing, “I think Jack outdrove me by a yard or two which isn’t too bad considering he used to outdrive me by 50 (yards).”
Ha. Awesome leg kick by Player. Hopefully, he didn’t poop himself, something he claimed Arnold Palmer once did on a green in Japan.
When asked how long he plans to take part in the much-deserved pomp and circumstance, Palmer said, “As long as they ask me to do it.”
Nicklaus, who always said he takes great honor in being included in the proceedings, still has some competitive juices flowing in him.
“I’d love to do this (play the event) for real,” he said afterward.
Tiger Woods, meanwhile, who could not compete in the Masters nor attend any of the events leading up to the tournament due to recent surgery, tweeted his appreciation of seeing the Old Three take their tee shots.
It never gets old watching the honorary starters tee off. One of the oldest and best traditions in the game.
— Tiger Woods (@TigerWoods) April 10, 2014
A tradition unlike any other, indeed. Seriously, why isn’t anyone using that line?
[H/T Eye on Golf, Golf Channel]