ORLANDO, Fla.-- I had breakfast with Nick Faldo Wednesday morning. I thought it was just going to be the two of us, but apparently Nick invited 50 other media types, who joined us in a tent in front of Orange County National.
It was the start of what I consider the Best Golf Day of the Year--the PGA Merchandise Show's Demo Day, where pros and media get to pound balls on Orange County's dreamy 360-degree range and try out what's new in golf equipment. It was a Chamber of Commerce day, all blue sky and warm sunshine and puffy white clouds en route to a high of 80 degrees.
What better way to start the festivities than with a modest (and free) breakfast buffet? Sir Nick arrived just past 8:30, looking a bit bleary-eyed but chipper. He tapped into his charming side immediately. Surveying a crowded tent, he quipped, "I don't think I had this many people rush in when I won majors." Then he began to talk about Faldo Pro-Care, a range of personal care products for men.
Faldo couldn't get out of the tent without fielding a few golf questions. He was asked if he thought Tiger would win a major in 2012. Faldo said we'll learn a lot about him in the next few months but added that the Masters would be his best chance. "Olympic Club is very difficult with the canted fairways and greens; Lytham should be like Hoylake, very firm and challenging; and Kiawah, with likely crosswinds, will be tough," he said. "In theory, the Masters is his best shot."
When the press conference finished, I headed for the range.