LPGA Clown Divot provides humor during Classic week
By Doug Kates
Corning -- He can hit a golf ball 200 yards sitting down.
He can drive a golf ball 150 yards off a three-foot tee.
He wears funny shoes, a red nose and a funny blue-striped tie. And best of all, he teaches kids how to play golf.
Divot, the nationally famous golfing clown, staged a one hour demonstration Tuesday at the Corning Country Club in an effort to teach kids basic techniques. At the same time, Divot, along with LPGA pros Jill Briles-Hinton and Gina Hull, entertained the crowd.
“We brought Divot in because kids love clowns,” Briles-Hinton said.
“The idea with kids is you have to entertain them. They have to have some fun.”
Last year a junior golf clinic at the Elmira-Corning Regional Airport allowed youngsters to hit a few balls with the pros. This year, however, most LPGA tournaments have hired Divot to do the teaching while the kids just watch.
Briles-Hinton said past junior golf clinics have had large crowds and clinics took too long at most tournaments. She said Divot has been touring for three months and so far has attracted favorable responses.
LPGA pro Adele Lukken, who walked to the range for some quality practice time, admitted Divot put on quite a show. However, she got little practice in and wound up a part of the show.
“I’ve seen him only one other time,” Lukken said. “I kept looking back behind me to see what he was doing.”
Divot hit golf balls with a foot-long club, a rubber club and a tennis racquet club. He showed how a loose grip can result in the club flying out of a golfer’s hands and how a swing too hard may result in the golfer spinning around.
Kevin Compare, also known as Divot, is a former golf pro from Miles Grant Country Club in Stuart, Fla. Compare said he travels all over the United States doing trick shots, demonstrating simple techniques and making people smile.
He said he started clowning around this year when he realized he could make more money making people laugh rather then heading a golf course.