European Tour: Every Shot Imaginable – Magicians

The latest in the mildly viral promotional European Tour videos starring the magicians from the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles.

See future compelling content fresh from the European Tour and the Saatchi & Saatchi Every Shot Imaginable campaign including the previous viral videos by visiting or by clicking the Every Shot Imaginable You Tube Channel here (clay pigeon golf) and here (200 yard Gong shot).

European Tour: Every Shot Imaginable

The latest in the mildly viral promotional European Tour videos starring Stephen Gallacher, Pablo Larrazabel and Jeev Milka Singh.

See future compelling content fresh from the European Tour and the Saatchi & Saatchi Every Shot Imaginable campaign including the previous viral videos by visiting or by clicking the Every Shot Imaginable You Tube Channel here (clay pigeon golf) and here (200 yard Gong shot).

111th US Open Championship: Golf Boys

In celebration of the 111th US Open Championship, this tickled my humour today.

San Francisco to Paris in 2 minutes?

A photo taken roughly every two miles between take-off in San Francisco and landing in Paris CDG made this airplane time lapse film. The flight path from SF to Paris goes well over greenland and the arctic circle, where you can see “northern” lights from all sides of the plane, which explains why they were able to shoot and achieve these results facing South.

View From the Spire: Ballsy CV’s

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A blog was introduced to me recently demonstrating some of the nerve that young creative whippersnapper types had in the creation of their CV. It certainly demonstrated their talents!

However, being far too clever for words, I thought it an interesting posisble topic to share with you – clever/ballsy CVs to remember – good or bad?

View From the Spire: Blatter the Devil you know

Sepp Blatter’s abstinence, and the involvement of other Fifa bureaucrats, today has caused conflict, disrespected the World Cup competition and has brought about embarrassment to what is normally a brilliant game.

The culprit: a high profile strike by England’s Frank Lampard that to everyone but the referee, clearly bounced two feet on the net side of the goal line before bouncing back into the field of play.

Interestingly, in December, Blatter and his committee of cronies advised: “Referees shall remain human, and we will not have monitors to stop the game to see if we are right or wrong. There will be no more discussion [between fans] and then no more hope and then no more life.”

In this simple statement, and with the turn of events this fine afternoon, Blatter has vowed not to step far from tradition and singlehandedly altered the beautiful game and the competition that he is enormously overpaid to run.

However, this is merely the tip of the iceberg. Should the finger of blame lie directly pointed at the Football Association and the Premier League? Two organisations who have played a part in the current situation (and honest truth) that the England National team are not as good as they, their governing organisations and the British media believe them to be. The Football Association who employ foreign team coaches who do not appear to speak the language, actually manage any of the team or are too stuborn to see the sizeable error of their ways – or the Premier League, owners of the greatest league in the world, that in some cases is bringing the beautiful game in England to its knees by the significant involvement of foreign talent to the detriment of home grown players who have to look overseas or lower down the pecking order to secure a career and a chance of some exposure?

Whatever the reasoning, and with the furore surrounding the media hype in the England National squad, the English will no doubt dispute the possible outcome of the game due to lack of goalline technology until the end of time.

The fact still remains though, despite an unfortunate disallowed goal, and barring an eight minute period before half time, England and the overpaid players were played off the pitch, brushed aside and firmly delt with yesterday by a German side who are still gathering pace in what will now (without England) finally be an interesting and unbiased World Cup.

The Beauty of Technology

Tiger Woods delivers best performance of 2010 after a U.S. Open at Pebble Beach without a coach!

Woods, who no longer has a coach after Hank Haney resigned, is in no rush to appoint a new one.  Woods who struggled with his game at the Memorial has been using video technology to iron out his faults says “that’s the beauty of technology…. there’s no need for a coach!”

Tigers ex-coach, Butch Harmon, believes he is reverting back towards the swing that won him most of his 14 Major trophies and as a consequence is definitely hitting the ball straighter.

Technology when used correctly can be a great help to golfers of all abilities.  Video software such as Vertex’s Coaching Studio allows you to see your swing and chart any changes that are made.  Flightscope in their latest software release have included a new club analysis screen allowing you to see all of your clubs details at impact.

Of course all of this technology is only of any use if you understand and know what to do with the information.  The chances are if you are not a professional or single figure handicap you may find interpreting the results somewhat of a challenge.  

Althought if this is the case you, keep your eyes on this blog as we will soon be able to allow you to take advantage of the latest technology available using your home camera, digital camera or smart phone. 

We will shortly announce the launch of the Seve Ballesteros Academy where you will be able to capture your swing in a number of ways and upload it to the Seve Ballesteros Academy (  Here users will have the chance to view, compare or have it sent away for analysis by Seve approved professionals who then send it back to you with instructions and exercises that help you to improve.

Seve inspires a new generation

Golfing legend and Optimal partner, Seve Ballesteros, yesterday delivered an inspirational speech to this year’s European Ryder Cup Team.

Despite being unable to accept captain Colin Montgomerie’s invitation to speak to the team in person, Seve addressed the team as a whole and spoke at length about his many Ryder Cup experiences over the years.

Skipper Montgomerie said “The whole team spoke to Seve for about 10 minutes and that was very motivational, very passionate and also very sad to hear him, to hear the way he is… but it was a real inspiration, especially for the rookies in the team, to speak to Seve and have Seve speak to them.”

 Seve Inspires a New Generation

He went on to say: “We were just honoured to have him, have his presence in the room. It’s always nice to not ever feel that Seve is forgotten by us or by European golf in any way, shape or form.”

“It definitely bonds a team, if it needed bonding, together, very close, when Seve, our legend, speaks to us.”

Seve Ballesteros has become entwined with the magic of the Ryder Cup. As a mainstay in the European side throughout the 80’s and 90’s, he scored 20 points out of 37 matches against the United States; his partnership with fellow Spaniard José María Olazábal being the most successful in the history of the competition.

While Seve was a member of European sides that won the Ryder Cup in 1985,1987, 1989 and 1995, the pinnacle of his career in the competition came in 1997, when he captained the winning European side at Valderrama Golf Club in Sotogrande, Spain.

Seve recently launched the Seve Ballesteros Golf Academy. The Academy is a unique golf coaching platform, developed by Edinburgh-based Optimal Analysis Solutions, allowing users to interactively learn the characteristic, instinctive “Natural” play, made famous by the five-time major winner.

The Academy will provide a unique online and mobile phone offering and become a key part of a golfer’s personal tuition. Through the academy, Seve hopes to raise significant funds for his foundation, which aims to progress the battle against brain cancer and help golfers from under-privileged backgrounds.

So, join Seve now! – Learn, improve, share and enjoy – and all for a great cause

View From the Spire: An Open Opportunity

I have long been an avid viewer of BBC’s coverage of The Open; with Peter Alliss and his meandering verbals; Ken out on the course; the dry Sam Torrance; young Andrew Cotter and some footballer who apparently plays a mean amateur game.

There is the theme tune; rousing music – bringing joy and inspiration to any would-be golfer; the compulsory end-of-the-day play montage (a BBC Sport signature piece?) and mandatory close-up of babies and good looking women. Finally, the once per day, slow panning zoom-out from dapper chaps near the Bollinger tent; revealing the extent of the tented village before finally bringing the viewers eye to attention with an all together different focus on some far flung vista. Each element typically BBC; collectively setting the standard for how golf on the box, should be.

This year however, I face a new way to view the same Open without my annual fix of golfing coverage from the BBC. For this year, and perhaps explaining nearly 11 weeks of View from the Spire silence; I will be on the ground in the tented village – as one of those dapper attired gents.

For the past two and half months, and on behalf of Edinburgh based Optimal Analysis, I have been developing the commercial opportunities of the multi-media platform behind the Seve Ballesteros Golf Academy.

The Seve Ballesteros Golf Academy is a unique golf coaching platform, developed by Edinburgh-based Optimal, which allows golfers to interactively learn the characteristic, instinctive “Natural” play, made famous by the five-time major winner. The launch will take place at the Academies golf simulator in the Tented Village of the 150th Open Championships at St Andrews next week.

The platform provides a complete online coaching tool that enables golfers of all abilities the chance to learn the way of the three-times Open Champion’s natural methodology – playing with passion, intuition and in particular, mastering the key skills required to conquer the short game.

The Academy will provide both unique online and mobile phone offering and become a key part of a golfer’s personal tuition. After The Open, The Seve Ballesteros Golf Academy simulator will also attend a number of tour and retail events to engage golfers and corporate partners who, at core, will benefit from demonstrations and coaching on how Seve made doing it the hard way, look breathtakingly easy!

At, golfers will also have access to an extensive library of multimedia lessons, exercises and tips, coupled with unique and exclusive footage of Seve throughout his successful career.

Contrary to recent reports, Seve himself has been spending a lot of time providing up-to-date content for the Academy; personally and by calling upon friends and colleagues to rally together to assist. This include support from top male and female touring professionals as well as many celebrity friends and supporters keen to support golf’s hero.

I have largely been focusing my efforts on ensure that consumers, corporate organisations and the media will also be able to be able to benefit from the Academy while at the same time showing support to Seve. Corporates of any size, across any industry can use the same Seve Ballesteros Golf Academy content to reward staff and clients and promote their own business in a unique and engaging manner.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, profits from the Seve Ballesteros Golf Academy will fund a number of projects supported through his Foundation. The dual purpose provides funding for brain cancer research projects and funds underprivileged children with the skills and drive required to help them achieve their dreams in the golf world, through access to pro golf coaching. In the UK, the Seve Ballesteros Foundation works in partnership with Cancer Research UK to fund vital research into brain tumours.

Now for the most of you who know me well, you’ll have heard of my goal to create a “Golf Aid” – in the same way that my great mentor Craig Paterson created his Football Aid ( While I have had many an interesting discussion, and explored many opportunities – nothing has as yet provided an appropriate launch opportunity to fulfill that dream. That is – until now.

For as I write this, the realisation is that this IS the launch of an appropriate “Golf Aid”. Despite not being my own personal vision, I am delighted to have played a small part in helping take to market something that, like Football Aid, I am proud to associate myself with; am proud to have spent a time assisting the development of (even in a small way) and something that I can quite possibly say has been a fantastic use for three months of my career – so far.

And so, as you channel hop between BBC channels in mid-July watching The 150th Open Championship viewing a low panning zoom-out over the tented village at St Andrews, spare a thought for those of us working on the ground; welcoming customers into the arms of the Seve Ballesteros Golf Academy and consider registering online at

If however, you are one of the 120,000 expected eager golfers to attend over the Championship week, why not make the journey to the tented village and drop in by the Seve Ballesteros Golf Academy (Stand 76) and ask for me. We are easy to find – we are the dapper chaps by the Bollinger tent.


Optimal Analysis is a sports performance analysis solutions company. Since 2004, it has allowed countless sportsmen to achieve a higher level of performance using the latest performance-enhancing technology.Based in Edinburgh, with a presence across the globe, employing a mix of sports, IT and business professionals, Optimal has the products, skills and experience across sports and marketing environments including: technological solutions, online academies, marketing and advertising experience.

Hugh Grants advice to Seve…

Celebrities and pros alike, pay homage to golfing legend Seve Ballesteros on a blustery day at St. Andrews, the scene of his famous 1984 British Open victory – you know the one, that magical celebration on the 18th green!

Decked out in Seve Ballesteros Glenbrae golf shirts and tops, the Optimal team embarked on to the Dunhill practice range to film the swings of some well-known faces of sport, entertainment and even victorious Ryder Cup stars. The purpose of our mission was simple; capture swings in order for users of the Seve Ballesteros Golf Academy to compare their swing with those of superior quality such as Lee Westwood, Martin Kaymer, Francesco Molinari (make sure you don’t get the brothers mixed up), Ruud Gullit, Jamie Redknapp, Sir Bobby Charlton or Hugh Grant! This was, however, only objective #1.

In order to raise awareness for the Seve Ballesteros Academy and thus the Seve Ballesteros Foundation, we also asked those who were willing to send out a message of goodwill and/or a memory to the legend himself. A particular highlight and favourite of mine was the hugely amusing Hugh Grant, adorned in Sunningdale Golf Club clothing, showing Seve how to hit a lovely little fade with an 8-iron:

“I wish you the very best… you are a great hero, and that is how you hit a soft fade with an 8-iron…”

Sky Sports golf presenter Di Stewart and Number-One-spot-chasing pair, Lee Westwood and Billy Foster, who delivered a very personal and quite hilarious joint message, direct to the golfing legend. Billy only associates himself with the best golfers; as those in the know will remember that it was Billy who carried Seve’s bag for many successful years.

Confident and fresh off the back of two Tour victories AND the Ryder Cup, we also captured the swing of the eventual Dunhill Links Championship winner, superstar Martin Kaymer, who blew away the field with a flawless display over 4 rounds. Not only does this victory cement his place at the top of the Race to Dubai rankings, but brings in a new element to the world number 1 mixing pot.

Unbeknownst to many, if Kaymer is successful at the Andalucía Masters on Halloween, he could possibly leapfrog Tiger Woods and Lee Westwood into the number 1 spot! Regardless of who wins that, Kaymers’ swing will be available for comparison alongside Seve’s to members of theSeve Academy

The amount of support shown to Seve’s cause, was quite breathtaking and when golfers (of all abilities) realise what the Seve Ballesteros Academy is and what it achieves through the Foundation, they are only too willing to lend their support to the cause.

Lee Westwood 225x300 Hugh Grant advises Seve to watch and learn as he tees it up at the Dunhill!Lee Westwood

The Seve Ballesteros Golf Academy harnesses the spirit of natural golf to deliver the most advanced online golf instructional and golfing entertainment platform on the web.

The combination of exclusive Seve and Ballesteros Family instruction videos, rare and insightful footage from throughout Seve’s career, active one on one involvement from PGA professionals and an integrated creation of world-leading technologies including the iPhone, deliver a unique, meaningful, engaging and fully interactive golf improvement platform for players of all abilities.