The Loop

Rain Man: Tom Lehman studied 30 years of weather for Ryder Cup prep

September 20, 2016

PGA of America

EAST LAKE, Ga. -- Well, no one will accuse Tom Lehman of indifference at the Ryder Cup.

Lehman, one of the U.S. assistants to captain Davis Love III at Hazeltine National Golf Club, has been integral to the team's preparations. The 57-year-old is a Minnesota native, and he and his wife are using their local knowledge to make lodging, dining and other logistical reservations for the American club. But Lehman's services are more than just itinerary coordination. The 1996 Open champ has been doing reconnaissance work at Hazeltine, trying to took for any morsel that could give the U.S. an advantage. That includes a dive into meteorology.

“I looked up the Farmer’s Almanac, the history of that week,” Lehman told the Star Tribune. "Historically, it will be cool in the mornings, decent in the afternoons. The wind was all over the map. The years I looked up — over 30 years, it was — it’s going to have some breeze. You may get lucky and have one of those beautiful 80-degree, five-mile-per-hour weeks, but those are pretty rare. Blowing 10 to 15, 16, 17 [mph] was pretty normal, about 65 to 70 degrees was pretty normal. It will be cold in the morning, though."

Some observers may roll their eyes at Lehman's survey. It's the Ryder Cup, not the Invasion of Normandy. Conversely, when you've lost six of the last seven matches, every little bit can help.