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Tommy Armour III

Tommy Armour III

'Your'e allotted only so many days, so you might as well enjoy them.'--TA3

Brent Humphreys

February 2009

Drop the initials TA in the company of a tour pro, and it usually draws a smile and instant recognition. It's like MJ in the NBA. No clarification needed. Lots of guys want to putt like Tiger and play like Tommy Armour III, or at least be in his designer shoes for one pleasure-filled night on the town. Grandson of the legendary Silver Scot, TA3 owns not only a reputation as a man who enjoys the company of beautiful women and Hollywood stars but also the all-time 72-hole scoring record of 254. In November he won the Callaway Golf Pebble Beach Invitational for the second year in a row. "Mad Men" cool, Tommy Armour III takes us on a vicarious trip through his world.

First I find you at Gretzky's crib, then a day later you're playing Pebble. I like how TA3 rolls. What's the philosophy? You're allotted only so many days, so you might as well enjoy them.

You just returned from Pat Perez's bachelor party in Cabo. What's the best story from that weekend that the boys will be retelling for 10 years? Steve Elkington dancing.

With someone or alone? Alone. It was like Elaine from "Seinfeld."

That playboy image, is it legit? I guess to a certain extent it is.

Care to elaborate? I pick my spots and have fun.

When you shot 60 in Vegas, a reporter told you it could have been lower, and you responded, "It is what it is." You're a man of few words, aren't you? I try not to waste a lot of 'em.

Everyone thinks you're a party machine, but few people know how hard you work at your game. I really don't party that much. I drink with a purpose. If there's a fun group of people going out, and it's not a tournament week, I'll have a few cocktails—only wine, beer and tequila. During tournament weeks, I'm about business. You have to be when you're 49. Otherwise you won't be on tour long.

What do you love most about the game? The day-to-day struggle. It's always testing you. You have to be a little bit of a masochist to like golf.

You also love the trappings of being a tour player. When I was 13, I told my dad I wanted to be on tour and wear a brand-new golf glove every day. Wearing a new glove every day is one of those trappings.

Your grandfather passed away when you were 8, and you've said you didn't know him that well. Did you ever get a golf lesson from him or watch him play in person? I never did. I was around him a couple times, but what do you really remember when you're 8? I heard stories about him from the time I was little until yesterday. Smart guy, strong guy. Big, handsome man.

What's the best golf tip you've ever received? Tom Watson walked by me one time and said: "Rhythm, Tommy, rhythm." Another time he told me: "Even great putters miss putts."

Ever played with Tiger? Played with him at TPC and quite a few practice rounds from when he was an amateur until last year. You're watching something special, so you might as well enjoy it. He has that presence. We were sitting on the deck in Cabo trying to name the five greatest athletes of all time, and we were unanimous on four: Gretzky, Lance, MJ and Tiger, with maybe Ali or Secretariat as the fifth.

Is it different when Tiger hits it? When he gets out of the car, it's different. There are people who just have that.

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