Golf's groupies a secret world

2009-12-09 14:15

Orlando - Tiger Woods isn’t the only golfer with carousing issues. Retired players and current caddies have spoken out about the game inside the real PGA: The “Party Groupie Association.”

According to The Daily Beast's Gerald Posner, the shock surrounding Woods's revelations this past week had a lot to do with his carefully generated squeaky-clean image. At the professional level, however, there’s a secret underworld not unlike many other major league sports. An investigation turned up groupies, carousing and wild sex as a central element for many players on the PGA Tour.

Posner spoke to eight retired golfers, current caddies, and ex-PGA workers. All spoke on the condition of anonymity.

These sources recounted stories of “hounds” or “wild men” inside the small professional fraternity. One of the names that came up the most: John Daly. Some of the stories are well known, such as when he passed out drunk at Hooters or showed up at one tournament with scratches on his face from an angry wife (he’s on his fourth marriage). What isn’t publicly known is that in 2006, Daly’s autobiography originally included several torrid adult-only escapades. Sources say that business advisors thought the material far too racy, even for Daly, and talked the golfer out of it. Whole sections were cut from the first draft, including references to threesomes, and his then-wife Sherrie installing cameras on his tour bus to deter sex with groupies.

Golfers like Daly log a lot of time on the road, away from families, ensconced in deluxe hotel suites. A top golfer might do up to 20 one-week tournaments a year.

According to the ex-players and the caddies, so-called “gallery girls” exist: the prettiest girls at the tournament who get prominent placement at the front line of the ropes that set off the spectators from the players. If a player finds a girl interesting, it’s the caddy who might actually make the contact.

“I’ve been told ’Look around the ropes,’” says one caddie. “’See who is easy on the eyes.’”

Caddies frequently pull the prettiest girls out of the autograph line, often offering a private chat with the pro. The caddy then often serves as the go-between. Players never give out their telephone number or contact information, instead leaning on the caddy as a trusted arranger.

Tournament volunteers

“Some of the girls become tournament volunteers,” one retired player tells me. “That way they can run errands, or drive the players to the driving range or other places. It’s the best chance for a one-on-one.”

“You’d be surprised if you check the bios of all the pros,” one caddie tells me, “how many say they met their wife at this or that tournament.” That doesn’t mean that every wife who met her pro golfing husband at a tournament was a groupie, but it’s another sign of how much social and extracurricular life is part of the pro tour.

Sources said that clubhouses sometimes resembled frat houses, with golfers exchanging graphic stories of the previous night’s escapades. Players talk about “the 19th hole,” or dub a girl willing to have anal sex a “double bogey.” A “water hole” is anyone who performs only oral sex.

Almost everyone spoken to said Woods had a reputation, since the mid-1990s, as a womaniser. Two of those interviewed claimed to “know” that one of golf’s superstars, and his wife, were swingers, a rumour that persistently makes the rounds on the Internet and is repeated even by other golfers on the tour.

So Tiger Woods surely seems to have a lot of company in the golfer’s behaving badly department. The big difference: no one else on the tour has made $1 billion based on a reputation of perfection.

Gerald Posner is The Daily Beast's Chief Investigative Reporter.


  • Interesting - 2009-12-09 14:51

    What a guy!!!!!

  • Clive - 2009-12-09 15:11

    What a tale of woe and utter rubbish!!. I was on the pro tour for a number of years and this is just the biggest exaggeration and drivel. Tiger might be labled a womaniser right now, but to generalise this is just pitiful. I sincerely hope that Sport 24 is not sinking to the abyss of this gutter trash put out by pathetic publications like "the daily beast".

  • AA - 2009-12-09 15:35

    Now we know why men love golf because the sport itself is really not that exciting.

  • Awwsum - 2009-12-09 15:58

    I think it's important they share this info,so many kids want to be rock stars for the parties and sex, little did they know they can have the same life,without the singing ridiculous songs

  • steve@clive - 2009-12-09 15:59

    Clive you clearly weren't good enough to attract the attention of the groupies then. And the Sunshine tour doesn't count either.

  • Jdawg - 2009-12-09 16:22

    "what goes on tour, stays on tour..."

  • Swingers? - 2009-12-09 16:22

    Elin a swinger ahh please pick me.............

  • Neil - 2009-12-09 16:24

    Clive where and when were you on the pro-tour? I am not referring to South Africa's tour, just so we are clear there! Two friends of mine played on the European Tour and now plays on the senior tour, mainly in the States, but some in Europe, and he has told a few tales of what happened in his day! And what he was talking about is not too far away from what is reported above. I will be seeing both of them shortly, and will ask!

  • matt - 2009-12-09 16:31

    clive ..... um ... who?

  • @ Clive - 2009-12-10 10:28

    Cannot find your name nowhere as being on the pro tour- give us your last name and year you played so we can check ........................

  • GeePMB - 2009-12-10 12:14

    And another thing - If he has cheated on his wife, is he liable to have cheated on any of his scorecards??? Most golfers will tell you that cheating (or "ringing") on a score card hapens all the time - Just a thought, use it don't use it!

  • tony cape town - 2009-12-10 13:13

    most of the chicks I think he met were ate clubs - of the course no?? hooters-strippers - maybe lolly jackson did a deal here ! hes game for a quick ...buck !

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