New optimism plus star power including Natalie Gulbis energizes PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando
Meeting room #309A at the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando was packed with ING (International Network of Golf) members and many others who got the word Natalie Gulbis would make an appearance at the cocktail hour. Whether it was the presence of Gulbis, Matt Kuchar, Paula Creamer, Greg Norman and Annika Sorenstam along with other golf celebs injecting new energy into the Show or whether people, tired of commiserating with each other about the depressing state of the industry, were poised to put on smiley new faces, there was a definite buzz of optimism in this year’s event.
Wearing a cool white warm-up suit and a wide-brimmed pink golf hat, her large sunglasses stuck over the top, Natalie spent more than a token amount of time with her eager audience. At the event which was sponsored by TaylorMade-adidas Golf, she fielded questions from radio pros Holly Geoghegan and Tony Leodora.
Who did you follow as a young girl? Nancy Lopez and Greg Norman
If you hadn’t become an LPGA pro, what would you have done? Gone to law school
What tournament do you want to win the most this year? U.S. Women’s Open
What is your favorite dessert? Chocolate chip cookies
What is your favorite car? I’m driving a Lexis IS350 and a Lexis SUV — pretty much tricked out. I absolutely love my cars. I also love classic cars.
Ever get a speeding ticket? One
What’s your favorite workout tape? I listen to country and western top 40.
Who are you rooting for in the Super Bowl? Steelers
What tournaments are you playing this season? I’m playing a full schedule
What do you credit for your success? My parents. They were adamant about my setting goals, short and long term. I had reminders of these goals and motivational words everywhere. In my bedroom. Everywhere. My parents influenced me in keeping up positive energy.
Are you playing in the Founder’s Cup? Yes.
When do you think you’ll be Number One? Hopefully soon. There is no magic formula. It takes hard work. I thought I would do it sooner.
What about social interaction with international players? Not so much in America as we have families here, but when we travel internationally, the tour travels together so there is a lot of interaction.
And about that famous photo? (most know the swing we’re talking about) That was taken at the first hole during a practice round at St. Andrews.
Watching Gulbis tee off this past year at the LPGA Championship in Locust Hill, she seemed relaxed, chatted with her caddie, smiled. Upbeat players like Gulbis are good for the game. We wish her well as she heads out on this year’s circuit.
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