From The Inbox

Fan favorites enjoy competitive edge

Former touring pro, who saw game’s stars from inside ropes in 1970s and ’80s, says their rapport with spectators pays off

That was a really nice, clever article by Gary Van Sickle on the feel-good side of golf – and right on point (“What makes a fan favorite on PGA Tour? It’s complicated,” Jan. 27).

It reminded me of the late 1970s and early ’80s when I got to play a bit with Seve Ballesteros, Fuzzy Zoeller and Tom Watson and spent a fair amount of time with Arnold Palmer and watched Lee Trevino on the range every time we happened to be in the same event (not enough). They had such a rapport with the crowds/fans that I really think it gave them an edge in the way they handled the pressure of each event.

They certainly improved golf and the way it was perceived by the public, and each made a significant contribution to the growth of our game.

Well done, and a very enjoyable read.

Mike Nixon
Nashville, Tenn.
(Nixon, who played the PGA Tour in the late 1970s and early 1980s, is the director of golf operations for the Tennessee Golf Trail.)

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