Torleif Sorenson a.k.a. Torleif Sorenson
He may only have one score entered, but he's one of our best oobers. If you check out this page you'll see the true awesomeness (and possibly insanity) of Tor. He has edited and updated over 6300 golf courses in the oob database!!! That's 10x more than the 2nd most avid course editor on the site and about 6300x more than the average oober. In short- he's amazing! If nothing else- you should thank him in the comments. His work on the courses has really helped make oob what it is today.

How old are you and what's your occupation?
44. I’m a technical writer, as well as a cellist and a bassist. I played six-string bass for a Minneapolis horn-funk band in the mid-1990s, hence the picture.

Tell me about the band.
If you can picture an all-white version of Earth, Wind and Fire with a female lead vocalist, you’re 90% of the way there. The best part was being in the recording studio; I got to co-write and play bass on two CDs. In 1996, we were nominated for a Minnesota Music Award for best R&B band, in the same category as Prince. We both lost. Sheesh.

When did you start playing golf and what's your handicap?
My maternal grandfather got me interested when I was about 14 and he was 92—he celebrated his 100th birthday by playing seven holes at Edgewood GC in Fargo with a couple of news photographers in tow. As far as my GHIN index, well, I hope to play much more in 2011 than in the last 12 years so that I can establish a USGA handicap.

How often do you play?
Unfortunately, I’m the opposite of HP and his 500+ rounds; until April of 2010 the last time I got to play was in April 2003 on the Snow Mountain course at the Las Vegas Paiute Resort. I even worked a second job at a Golf Galaxy store for most of 2007, but never had the time to go play because I was working there most nights and pretty much every weekend. Basically, I haven’t “had golf” since 2003 :)

Tell me about a great shot you've made.
In this case, it was the entire hole—and it was completely schizophrenic. I was playing The Pines at Grand View Lodge in 1997 or 1998. This was back when I was playing a set of 1950s Spalding Bobby Jones blades, which I still have in my closet.

It was a medium-length par-4 and I slice-conked my tee-shot off a pine tree backward into the fairway – at most, my tee shot went perhaps 140 yards. I pulled out my 2-iron and coasted a 200-yard fader onto the right side of the green. I was looking at a 10-footer for birdie, but got anxious and blasted the putt 20 feet past the jar.

And then I sank the comeback putt for par. If only I had a video camera...

What is your best golf memory?
In 1983 or 1984, my beloved maternal grandfather and I were walking up to the last hole at Rolling Hills, a fairly nondescript course near his lakeside cottage. His approach shot stopped within 35 feet, at the front edge of the ninth green. I had been asking him something about his game, but he said, “Oh, I just can’t hit it like I used to.”

And then he sank that 35-foot putt. I was laughing and Grandpa was smiling like a cat at a fish market. He was a complete gentleman; having him as a grandfather was a blessing-and-a-half from God Himself.

What is your "home" course?
I’m like Mike Webster; I don’t have a “home course” per se because I want to play as many different courses as I can. My USGA shot index is based at University of Minnesota-Les Bolstad GC – gee, it would be awfully nice to actually play there sometime. Soon.

What ball do you play?
To be honest, whatever is in my closet. I have boxes of Titleist NXTs and Nike Precision Distance Control 2-piece balls just itching to be struck. Once I have a grooved and repeatable swing, I should get analyzed for a particular ball. Someday...

DRIVER: In 2007 I got rid of a Goldwin 9° XXL300 that worked well in the simulator but proved worthless on the course. Lesson learned and I’m still shopping for the right one.

FAIRWAY METAL: Cleveland Launcher (steel), 15°.

HYBRID: Sweet Spot Golf 4H with an Alpha Platinum2 shaft. (It came very highly recommended.)

IRONS AND WEDGES: Aside from the aforementioned Spalding blades, I have a complete set of used Hogan Edge forged cavity-backs—I bought the 3-PW first and later tracked down the matching 1i, 2i, and SW. I measured them in Golf Galaxy’s repair booth, and everything turned out to be too long for me—except my ultra-sweeeeet 2-iron.

It turns out that somebody had put wood shaft extensions into these clubs and on a couple of shafts, the extensions were pounded in so solidly that we had to drill into the plugs, which got so hot that a few of them started smoking! Eventually the glue melted enough for us to yank out the plugs. (Another missed video camera moment.)

On all of my Hogan irons, the lie angles are 2° flat—just like my social life.

PUTTER: A really nice Cleveland Classics II from about 1999 or 2000. It’s like the old Ping Anser II, but this has a matte finish, a CNC-milled face, and a forged head. However, I’ve also tried the TaylorMade Rossa Tourismo DB AGSI+, and as ugly as it is, it was money for me on the practice green. I hope to get one someday.

Favorite pro?
I don’t really have a “favorite” pro, but when Y.E. Yang won the 2009 PGA Championship at Hazeltine National and then hoisted his golf bag over his head like it was the Stanley Cup—in front of thousands of Minnesotans who are serious hockey fans—I became partial to Yang in a hurry. That was such a nice gesture on his part.

Ben Crenshaw, Tom Kite, Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els, and Paul Casey are good in my book, and I’ve already commented favorably about David Feherty here on oobGolf.

Favorite course you've played?
Snow Mountain course (Pete Dye) at Las Vegas Paiute Resort, although it was a bit expensive for me. They had the nicest greens I’ve ever seen and the stark desert-to-mountain views are unforgettable.

Dream course you've yet to play?
Whoa—WAY too many places to mention just one. Let me get it down to a “top ten” in alphabetical order:
The Broadmoor, Colorado Springs
Bandon Dunes Golf Resort, Bandon, Oregon (all four courses!)
Hovden Golfklubb, Hovden, Norway
National Golf Links, Southampton, New York
Pebble Beach Golf Links, Pebble Beach, California
The Prairie Club, Valentine, Nebraska
Sand Hills Golf Club, Mullen, Nebraska
Saint Andrews, especially the Old Course and David McLay Kidd’s Castle Course, Saint Andrews, Fife, Scotland
Superior National at Lutsen, Lutsen, Minnesota
Waterville Golf Links, Waterville, County Kerry, Ireland

Best round ever- and what course?
Not to be flippant, but I haven’t yet had one remotely good enough to mention here. But with my off-course practice since 2003, my best golfing experience should be yet to come.

What is one aspect of your golf game you would like to improve on in the next year?
I have a bad habit of not turning over my right hand at impact, the result of incompetent instruction when I was in high school. (Old habits die hard.)

Tell me a story.
I can’t—it has yet to occur. Hopefully it will involve a three-week vacation in Scotland and Norway where I can bring both my cello and my golf clubs. Ideally, it will also involve an attractive Norwegian female classical musician of the brunette variety. But God has to approve that story, not me.


Interested in being next weeks featured golfer? email us here

[ comments ]
Banker85 says:
good read, Hey if you live to be 100+ like your grandpa then you have a lifetime a of golf ahead of you!
TWUES17 says:
Will agree on the views at Paiute. Just played the Wolf Course this past weekend and if it wasn't for a ton of wind it would have been a really awesome time.
bkuehn1952 says:
A worthy choice for GOW. Now quit editing and get out and play!!
Torleif Sorenson says:
@TWUES17 -- I can relate; I went to Boulder City NV in April of 2003 and never even got on the course; the gale-force winds pretty much ruined it.
Kurt the Knife says:
cool dude
askarzy says:
Your only round posted was on 4/20 lol.
Banker85 says:
nice work on the courses Tor!
lcgolfer64 says:
Great GOW to pick - Congrats Torleif! I agree get out and play more this year!

Knowing that he lives in MN, plenty of time over the winter to edit courses, but wow, 6300 edits! You're awesome man. But especially this year, I have yet to even get outside to a range yet because of this gawd-awful snow, freakin-a!
I had at close to 1/2 dozen rounds in this time last year, argh...

wrhall02 says:
Congrats Torleif. You sound like a interesting dude. I hope you can get out and play some rounds soon.

6300 courses!!! How in the heck??? Thanks, course reviews is one of my favorite oob features.
Torleif Sorenson says:
@Banker85, BKuehn1952, and KTK: Thank you -- that's very kind of you to say.

@WRHall02 and LCGolfer64: I appreciate that; I've been doing background research and edits for oobgolf since 2009 -- I'm a technical writer, which means that my mission is to do the research and writing that makes other people look good. I hope to actually play a bunch of courses this year, so that I can write some detailed course reviews.

Lenny, I'm with you on the weather *and* we're facing more snow in the forecast Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. And yes, I'm hoping some friends and acquaintances will swing by my place and grab me for a few rounds this year. (I'm minus a car right now.)

- Tor
Kurt the Knife says:
I mean,
With a name like "Tor" how can you not rock.

Like "kurt". Doesn't rock but kinda leans a bit.
ckeilah says:
What was the name of your band?

Did all those 6300 courses get trashed when they added the 25,000+ with the app update?
bradypas says:
Hey there
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