The heat is on Alena Sharp and Brooke Henderson at this week’s ANA Inspiration, not only due to the pressure of playing in a major, but because temperatures are predicted to be in the low 40s under sunny skies with only a light wind. Temperatures in one part of Los Angeles County reached 121 F (49.44 C), a new record, although it is expected to cool somewhat as the week progresses … The ANA Inspiration will celebrate its 50th anniversary next year and Randall Mell floated an interesting concept here that the winners of the first 11 events be recognized as major champions, even if the tournament didn’t become a major until 1983. The ANA got its start in 1972 as the Colgate-Dinah Shore Winner’s Circle, which quickly became one of, if not the premier events on tour. With the glamourous Shore and Colgate president David Foster, the “Dinah,” as it came to be known, was one of the few LPGA events that were televised, had far and away the largest purse, celebrities such as Frank Sinatra, Bob Hope and Bing Crosby in its pro-ams and large galleries. The ideas is to honour that legacy and it isn’t without precedence. Masters champions, for example, are recognized all the way back to its beginning in 1934, when it was a little event known as the Augusta National Invitational, but not a major championship. If the idea were to come true, it would mean a rewrite of Canadian golf history as Sandra Post won consecutive Dinahs in 1978 and ’79, before it became an official major. That would make her a three time major winner. She already has one major title from the 1968 LPGA Championship … Graham DeLaet makes his first appearance on the PGA Tour since the Sony Open in Hawaii back in January when he tees it up at this week’s Safeway Open in Napa, Calif. After missing the cut in Hawaii, DeLaet, who is playing on a major medical exemption, withdrew from the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines due to ongoing back issues, just five tournaments into a comeback from previous back surgery. He’ll be joined at the Safeway Open by Michael Gligic, David Hearn and Roger Sloan … Michael O’Keefe, aka Danny Noonan from the movie Caddyshack, is seeking a bag to carry at next week’s U.S. Open at Winged Foot, where he says he caddied in the early 70s. He’s giving it a try and if it doesn’t work out, the world needs ditch diggers too, as Judge Smails once said.
Calling all players!
— U.S. Open (USGA) (@usopengolf) September 6, 2020
Stuart MacDonald, Taylor Pendrith, Ben Silverman, Adam Svensson, Monday qualifier Matt Hill and sponsor invite, amateur Garrett Rank, will play the Korn Ferry Tour’s Evans Scholars Invitational in Westchester, Ill., this week. Pendrith will leave from there for his first major appearance at next week’s U.S. Open at Winged Foot … Mike Weir is the lone Canadian at this week’s PGA Tour Champions stop, the Sanford International in Sioux Falls, S.D. … The Symetra Tour is off until Sept. 25, when the IOA Classic will commence in Longwood, Fla. … With the final Canada Life Series event beginning on Wednesday at TPC Toronto at Osprey Valley’s Heathlands Course in Caledon, Ont., three players still have a mathematical shot at finishing first on the series points list, those being China’s Yi Cao and South Africa’s Albert Pistorius, although both reside in Canada. Only 18.3 points separate the top two players, with Vancouver’s Evan Holmes 222.3 points behind Cao in the standings. The top finisher will receive six 2021 Mackenzie Tour tournament starts and an appearance in the 2021 RBC Canadian Open. Players who finish second to fifth on the points list will also earn 2021 Mackenzie Tour status and are guaranteed two tournament starts … Last week’s GNN Poll asked readers to describe the number of rounds put through in August at the golf operations where they work, compared to the same month in previous years. Eighty per cent of respondents said rounds were the most they’d ever seen in August, while 20 per cent said rounds were about the same as previous year. Nobody said rounds were down compared to other years … This week’s poll asks readers how they expect fall rounds to compare to previous autumns. As of this writing, 73 per cent of respondents said more, 19 per cent said the same and eight per cent said less. If you haven’t already, you can cast your vote on the GNN home page.