Commander in trap? New book counts Trump's golf faults

WASHINGTON (AP) – Colusar with Russia? The special lawyer says no. Deceiving in golf? Well, that's another thing.

From throwing a quick one at Tiger Woods to exaggerating his disadvantage, Donald Trump's alleged faults on the golf course are the subject of a new book by former Sports Illustrated columnist Rick Reilly, "Commander in Trap: How Trump Golf Explains" . Reilly documents dozens of examples of inflexible golf behavior by the president, the transgressions mentioned by professional golfers and duffers alike.

"In golf, he's definitely not exempt," Reilly told The Associated Press. "There have been dozens and dozens of people who can plead guilty to cheating."

An infamous instance occurred in a round of 2017 with Tiger Woods and Dustin Johnson, who is the current No. 1 player in the world. The president's playmate, Fox Sports golf badyst Brad Faxon, reported that Trump's offenses included scoring a score that did not account for two balls that he threw into the water in a hole.

"You've heard a lot about it, it's almost like you want to witness it so you can tell the stories," Faxon says, according to the quote.

It's not a big deal, many would say. It is only a game.

But outside of formal tournaments, golf is a game of honor in which individual players act as their own referees, maintain their own scores and impose penalties for rule violations. Trump's deception, said Reilly, motivated him to write the book.

Reilly says: "I do not know much about politics, but I know golf and that really offended me, not as a voter or as a citizen, just as a golfer."

Reilly cites players who accuse Trump, his caddy and Secret Service agents of regularly moving their golf balls from difficult lies. At the Winged Foot Golf Club in New York, the only property that does not belong to Trump where the president is a member, Reilly writes: "The caddies got so used to seeing him kick his ball back on the fairway that gave him a nickname: & # 39; Pele & # 39; "That's the star of Brazil's world soccer.

Sports announcer Mike Tirico says that Trump once threw Tirico's golf ball off the green to a nearby bunker when they played together.

Some of the accusations are not new. Boxer Oscar De La Hoya told The AP in 2016 that Trump cheated him twice in the space of two holes. "Yes, I caught it," De La Hoya said. "It was amazing, but I guess it was his course, so it was his rules."

Trump, by all accounts, is a good golfer, especially for his age, writes Reilly. But the disadvantage of 2.8 strokes that he claims is the product of manipulation. A handicap is based on the 20 most recent scores of a golfer and allows players of different skill levels to compete fairly with each other. Someone with the Trump handicap would normally get scores of about three over the pair. Despite having made more than 150 visits to his golf courses since taking office, Trump has registered only one round in the USGA online handicap index, and 96 in that regard.

Trump's love for playing belies his previous criticism of President Barack Obama's regular game and his own campaign statement that he would be so busy at the White House, "I'm not going to have time to go play golf."

"It helps to know golf, because golf explains Trump," says Reilly. The president complements his public statements with golf metaphors, and tweeted in December about the Federal Reserve: "The Fed is like a powerful golfer who can not score because he has no contact, he can not hit!"

And Reilly argues that Trump's early days in the course provide a window into his zero-sum world view.

Trump perfected his game at Cobbs Creek, a public field outside of Philadelphia, which he then described as full of "scam artists" and where he "learned mostly". Reilly describes it as the kind of course in which "everyone is trying to cope." , "And where Trump learned" I have to trick them before they fool me. "

Bryan Marsal, the president of the US Open UU From 2020, which will be played in Winged Foot, he told Reilly that Trump started a game with him as a companion when he warned him: "Do you see those two guys? They cheat, see me, I cheat, and I hope you cheat because we're going to beat those two guys today. "

Trump is not the first president accused of doubling the rules in golf. Bill Clinton was infamous for his "Billigans" – taking shots openly and without remorse. But Reilly, who has known Trump for decades and played with him in his book "Who is your caddy?", Tells the Trump score alteration and other schemes like "so cheeky you almost admire him".

Reilly, who clearly is not a fan of the president, said he undertook the project because of Trump's "whopper," which was repeated throughout the campaign and in the White House, which won 18 club championships.

Reilly could not corroborate a single Trump victory in a club championship, and found that the president's account includes at least one in which Trump never played on the field that day, another in which he counted the opening round at an event still to open. club, and 12 that were "actually senior or super senior club championships".

The White House did not respond to a request for comment.

Reilly said he is giving Trump a challenge to defend his reputation in a game in a field that does not have an arbitrated referee, offering $ 100,000 to the charity the president chooses. Reilly, whose disadvantage is 4.8, says he is confident that Trump "can not cover that 2.8, by any means."

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