World Long Drive Is (Already) Back: And Meet Troy Mullins

There are four big changes this year for the Volvik World Long Drive Championship: the women's final will be played Wednesday on the same night as the men, Tuesday features a mixed team event, drivers can only be 48 inches and the event is now in early September (better weather!). 

The men's round of 16 is now set after qualifying, with one big surprise in top-ranked Maurice Allen's failure to advance, writes Will Gray for


(1) Ryan Reisbeck (Layton, Utah) vs. (16) Wes Patterson (St. Louis, Mo.)
(8) Kevin Shook (Bradenton, Fla.) vs. (9) Mitch Grassing (Ottawa, Ont., Canada)
(4) Tim Burke (Orlando, Fla.) vs. (13) Stephen Kois (Wheaton, Ill.)
(5) Trent Scruggs (Hickory, N.C.) vs. (12) Kyle Berkshire (Orlando, Fla.)
(2) Justin James (Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.) vs. (15) Bobby Bradley (Wellington, Fla.)
(7) Paul Howell (Wilson, N.C.) vs. (10) Steve Monroe (Clearwater, Fla.)
(3) Will Hogue (Memphis, Tenn.) vs. (14) Josh Cassaday (Denver, Colo.)
(6) Joe Miller (London, England) vs. (11) Nick Kiefer (Chicago, Ill.)

Mark Wahlberg is excited...

Last week I had the privilege of chat at Wilshire Country Club with budding star Troy Mullins, winner recently in Denver, a favorite for the women's title and Los Angeles native who attended high school near Wilshire before attending Cornell. Troy is already one of the more fascinating young studies in golf, using off-the-(Roger Dunn)-shelf drivers, athleticism developed as a heptathlete and aspiring to play LPGA Tour golf.

Here is the chat and a short feature produced by Ben Elisha:

Here was Mullins recently in her final preparation as posted by instructor George Gankas, which involves getting uber-flexible for the shot at the belt.

@trojangoddess going deep💦💦💦💦

A post shared by George Gankas (@ggswingtips) on Aug 29, 2017 at 4:05pm PDT

Long Drive airs on Golf Channel Tuesday from 9-11 p.m. ET and 9-11:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday.

Bring Long Drive To The Olympics!

In this week's Golf World I pen a column on last week's World Long Drive Championship in Las Vegas and while the new live, primetime edition still has some kinks to work out, the event was a super start on the path to something bigger.

Since the current Olympic golf format of 72-holes-of-stroke-play iss my preferred method of inducing deep naps, the column floats the idea of making Long Drive the next Beach Volleyball and adding it as an Olympic sport. Ty, this is my early Christmas gift to you, lover of skill competitions that you are!

In the column, make sure to note the input from former USGA Executive Director David Fay. Yet another reminder that there are no new ideas, just ones of the recycled 100-year-old variety.

A few photos from a festive and exciting night at Las Vegas Motor Speedway: