Friday, April 11, 2014

The Magnificent Masters - The 1975 Cliffhanger at Augusta

For the first time ever, the story of the 1975 Masters is told.

The three best golfers of the time. Playing on the best course. Culminating in one of the best finishes in the game's history.

The debut book by NBC Sports & Golf Channel's Gil Capps

The greatest golfer of all time squatted down to study his line. There wasn't a tougher putt to judge on the course – forty feet, uphill, along a pronounced ridge. Standing on the tee just 160 yards behind him, his two keenest rivals watched intently. They had been chasing him, not only through the dramatic twists and turns of this final round, but their entire lives, each dreaming of the day they would eclipse this man on the game’s most exalted stage. The consequences of what happened next altered the careers of all three men and the game of golf.

The 1975 Masters Tournament always seemed destined for the record books. A veritable Hall of Fame list of competitors had gathered that spring in Augusta, Georgia, for the game’s most famous event, including Arnold Palmer, Tom Watson, Gary Player, Lee Trevino, Hale Irwin, Billy Casper, and Sam Snead. The lead-up had been dominated by Lee Elder, the first black golfer ever invited to the exclusive club’s tourney. But by the weekend, the tournament turned into a showdown of the period’s three heavyweights: Jack Nicklaus, Johnny Miller, and Tom Weiskopf. Never before had golf’s top-three players of the moment summoned the best golf of their lives in the same major championship. Their back-and-forth battle would rivet the sporting world and dramatically culminate in one of the greatest finishes in golf history.

In The Magnificent Masters, Gil Capps, a twenty-two-year veteran of the golf industry with NBC Sports and Golf Channel, brings to life the 39th Masters Tournament thirty-nine years after its playing. Based on exhaustive research and exclusive interviews with the three principals, The Magnificent Masters recaptures hole-by-hole the thrilling drama of this singular event during golf’s golden era, from the media-crazed build-up and intertwined careers of the three combatants to the tournament's final dramatic putts that would change the game of golf forever.

About the Author
Gil Capps is an Emmy award-winning associate producer on NBC Sports golf telecasts and managing editor at Golf Channel. He has spent his entire working career in golf media, having founded a regional golf magazine right out of Davidson College and written extensively about the game before jumping into television. Capps has worked on-site at more than 400 tournaments around the world – most spent sitting in NBC’s main tower providing editorial direction to its broadcasts and announcers such as Johnny Miller, Dan Hicks, and Dick Enberg. Since 2012, he has helped lead the creation of Golf Channel’s Editorial Research Unit, which he also oversees. A native of North Carolina, Capps now resides with his family in Winter Park, Florida.