LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Canada’s Brooke Henderson parlayed four birdies and a late eagle into Friday’s hottest round and a share of the lead at the LPGA’s season-opening Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions. Henderson had a 5-under 66 to join Inbee Park of South Korea at 9-under 133 heading to the weekend at Four Seasons Golf and Sports Club Orlando. Henderson, No. 3 in the Rolex Rankings and the highest-ranked player among the 26 LPGA players in the field, had a clean scorecard until three-putting from the back collar at the difficult, 192-yard closing hole for her lone bogey. She wasn’t pleased with the finish, but she also wasn’t going to allow it to sour a solid body of work on a day when the scoring average was nearly 71. Mexico’s Gaby Lopez, whose lone LPGA victory is the 2018 Blue Bay LPGA in China, shot 69 and is alone in third, two shots back. Henderson (66) tames wind in Round 2 of TOC Park, already a World Golf Hall of Fame member with more victories (19 on the LPGA, seven majors) in the Diamond Resorts field, does not usually compete this early in the season. But with 2020 being an Olympic year, the gold medalist in Rio de Janeiro in 2016 adjusted her winter schedule to play weeks earlier than normal. Park shot a bogey-free 68 Friday, nearly holing her third shot at the par-5 17th to set up her third and final birdie. Only 22, Henderson is seeking her 10th LPGA victory, and has earned multiple victories in each of her four seasons on tour. Winning this week would be a nice jump on extending her streak. Friday’s wind proved more demanding than a day earlier, with gusts topping 20 mph as Henderson reached the middle of her round. “Once it started to pick up, I guess around the seventh hole, Britt (Henderson, her younger sister and caddie) and I did a really good job of just counting in all the factors and trying to hit smart shots and give ourselves some birdie looks,” Henderson said. Henderson comes within an inch of an albatross Full-field scores from the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions Her highlight was making an eagle-3 at the 525-yard 17th hole. After a big drive, Henderson had 200 yards to the front of the green, 230 yards to the flagstick. She was between a 3-wood and 7-wood, decided on 3-wood because of strong crosswinds, and ripped an approach shot that finished 4 inches from the hole. Henderson owned one of two eagles recorded in the round. The other was by France’s Celine Boutier, who made the LPGA’s first ace of 2020 when she holed a 4-iron at the 179-yard fifth hole. It was her second lifetime hole-in-one, her first coming eight years ago, when she was an amateur. When Boutier birdied her next hole, she held a share of the lead with first-round leader Danielle Kang at 9 under. Boutier (69) is tied for fourth, two shots behind the leaders. Kang, who had birdied six of her first 10 holes and shot 5-under 29 on her front nine a day earlier, opened her day with seven consecutive pars before making back-to-back birdies at the eighth and ninth holes. Kang, however, would stumble with four bogeys on her closing nine and shot 73. She trails the leaders by three shots. Golf Central Mom-to-be O’Neal among those in hunt at TOC BY Randall Mell — January 17, 2020 at 5:15 PM Blair O’Neal is among those in the hunt for the celebrity pro-am division title at the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions. Oh, and she’s competing while six months pregnant. In the 49-player celebrity and entertainment division, which competes for a purse of $500,000 (the LPGA’s purse is $1.2 million), Major League Baseball Hall of Famer and Fox analyst John Smoltz, the event’s defending champion, surged into a three-way tie for the leader. He was joined by two-time Diamond Resorts champion Mardy Fish (tennis) and U.S. military veteran Chad Pfeifer, who plays with a prosthetic left leg. All three players have 74 points using a Modified Stableford scoring system. Blair O’Neal, a former Symetra Tour player who now works in television, is playing six-months pregnant and is tied for sixth.
It’s easy to compare the differences between train and air travel.Speed and cost are the obvious ones, which reminds me of the old consultant’s saw: “Quality, Speed or Price, choose any two.”Meaning that you can choose two of those, but the third is likely to suffer.When it comes to long-distance public transportation, most people tend to choose speed, unless they’re going from NW Montana to Salt Lake, Seattle or Portland with a car-sized group of staff members.Making the speed / quality / price choiceRecently I had that choice to make and decided to try Amtrak. My wife and I recently became empty nesters and had wondered about taking the train the next time we went somewhere.Being the family guinea pig, I took Amtrak’s Empire Builder home from Portland after driving with my youngest (in his rig) to drop him off at college.Returning on Amtrak wasn’t just the slow, cheap choice – it was the obvious one: Board at 5:00 pm in Portland, avoid a 12 hour drive after three long days, spend less on train fare than on gas and do all of that without any effort on my part (ie: get on the train and ride home vs. flog my rig all the way home, get tired, get a room and end up using up a decent chunk of two days traveling.I wasn’t too worried about being on time to the minute. I was on a train *because* my schedule was a little flexible. I’d heard a fair share of horror stories about late trains from folks in the Midwest and East, so I wasn’t exactly ready for the seriously-on-time that I experienced.The Amtrak ExperienceWhat I was really interested in was comparing the customer / passenger experience between Amtrak and the last few airline trips I’ve taken.On an airplane, you get “beat up”, annoyed, hot, cramped, belittled and so on. By the time you get in your seat, you’ll often find passengers in a detached, staring-at-nothing, “how many minutes till it ends” state of mind.It’s not that the people are bad, I think a lot of it is the series of annoyances and inconveniences that people are submitted to prior to takeoff.On the train, it’s like another planet. It’s like a big traveling party and a sleepover rolled into one – and the seats are bigger. The big traveling party is in the observation car, where you might see people playing Uno, Scrabble, Texas Hold-Em, or just talking with a crowd of people they just met. The dining car is like a cafe with too few seats, so you sit where the empty chairs are – even if someone’s in mid-meal – and it’s ok.The cattle car isn’t the cattle carIf you didn’t know better, you’d think someone hired the “Evil Captain Kirk” version of Temple Grandin to design the process of getting people from their cars, through ticketing, past security and onto a plane.It’s not the speed, it’s the how and the what.On Amtrak, it’s given that everything (and I mean *everything*) is slower – yet on time, in my limited experience.The experience is far less tense and there is none of the “We just need to get through it, so you’re just gonna take it” that you get when flying. My impression is that you’re far less likely to run into the Evil Kirk.Why?Sure, there are some folks in the airline business who are pleasant, friendly and happy to help. On Amtrak, almost everyone seems that way.Both groups are obviously under pressure to produce. Neither is raking in the profits. Neither has excuses. They just do what they do.The process is what makes the difference between the experience found by your customers vs. your competitors’.Take nothing for granted about your processes.Want to learn more about Mark or ask him to write about a business, operations or marketing problem? See Mark’s site or contact him via email at mriffey at flatheadbeacon.com. Email Stay Connected with the Daily Roundup. Sign up for our newsletter and get the best of the Beacon delivered every day to your inbox.
NMIAD News: November is a time to honor the 19 pueblos, 3 apache tribes, and the Navajo Nation in New Mexico and the 573 federally recognized tribal nations across the country. SANTA FE ― National Native American Heritage Month is a celebration of the contributions of the First Americans. The month of November is also a time to celebrate our rich and diverse cultures, traditions, and histories. Heritage month is a time to educate the public about our tribes and the unique challenges that Native people have faced throughout the centuries. Despite centuries of discrimination, our country’s Native American cultures and tribal nations have endured. Tribal governments and Native communities have made monumental progress over the past century, while maintaining unique languages and cultures. We must also take this time to recognize and bear witness to the challenges that Indigenous People face. Issues like the epidemic of missing and murdered Indigenous women, preservation of natural resources, the need to support and improve health and education outcomes in our native communities, and the struggle to preserve, revitalize and restore our native languages are all challenges that continue to affect our tribal communities today. “As the Cabinet Secretary of the New Mexico Indian Affairs Department, I have met with all 23 of our tribal leaders to discuss the needs of Indian Country. We have much work to do to address disparities and empower all Native Americans,” said Cabinet Secretary Lynn Trujillo. “As we honor the achievements and resilience of our people, I will continue working to ensure that our Native American communities continue to be healthy and prosperous and that our traditional ways of life are honored, valued and respected.”