Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Stalking Hogan - Those Crazy Canucks Are Always Up To Something

It is pretty widely known that in the 1950's and 60's Ben Hogan used to prep for the Masters at Seminole in North Palm Beach, Florida. His good friend Claude Harmon was the pro there in the winter back in those days. Anyway it appears that back in the early sixties a 4-some of young Canadian pros and admitted Hogan junkies and Tour wannabe's including Irv Lightstone (one of Moe Norman's 1950's travelling buddies) and George Knudson (pictured here) took to hanging out in the bushes at Seminole to catch a glimpse of Hogan's practice sessions.

On day one they got kicked off of the premises by security. Same thing on day two. On day three those pesky and persistant Canucks try it again and damned if Hogan doesn't pull that security guard aside and say to him ....... "Let 'em watch."

By then Hogan was probably aware of who the groupies were. You see Seminole assistant Dave Marr had met the Canadian contingent earlier at a tournament and had screwed up and spilled the beans about where Hogan was practicing. But that bit doesn't matter. What matters is that Hogan must have respected their persistance and hearing who they were and that they were aspiring (read struggling) pro's just like he was once he threw them a bone. Knudson and pals watched Hogan hit balls for two more hours. Satisfied and grateful for the gesture they did not return and peace and tranquility once again returned to the bushes 'round Seminole.

Not long after that, Knudson was on tour himself observing and hitting balls on the same ranges as his idol Ben Hogan. There is a profile page on George Knudson at the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame.

Here's a link:

And here's a link from Fairways Magazine to the article Irv Lightstone wrote about their Hogan encounter:


Steve Wozeniak, PGA Golf Instructor said...

George also wrote one of the best books ever on the golf swing called "The Natural Golf Swing" with Lorne Rubenstein. I LOVE what he says about watching Hogan in this book and how he finally GOT the golf swing while practicing in Canada.......It's worth getting!!! He had THE MOVE..

Steve Wozeniak PGA

SEVAM1 said...

Yes a great gook. THat was the book that turned me on to studying Hogan many years ago. The practice he did with the flagpole att he end of the range is where my ideas of how to control trajectory came from. I discuss it in the Trajectory Talk video I put up at YouTube.