Tiger-Taunting Plane Grounded by FAA
Tiger Woods watches his chip shot to the seventh green during the first round of the Masters golf tournament. "I was calm all day, just trying not to throw away shots," Woods said afterward. "I didn’t putt really well, and if I had, it would’ve been a special round.”
Thursday, Jun 30, 2011 Updated at 2:54 PM EDT
No would-be hecklers made a peep during Tiger’s first day on the links at Augusta National, for fear of immediate ejection. But that didn’t stop a rouge pilot from flying cheeky banners over the course that read “Tiger: Did you mean Bootyism?” and “Sex addict? Yeah. Right. Sure. Me too.”
But it was clear skies Friday for Tiger
and the rest of the golfers after the FAA
grounded the offending plane for minor mechanical issues, according to the Augusta Chronicle. TMZ reports that the problem was “over a worn-out tag on the seat belts.”
FAA spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen
said that the plane flew out of Saluda County
Airport in South Carolina, and though Augusta National officials were displeased with the stunt, she said there was no external pressure from the club to crack down on the plane, which was registered to Drake Aerial Enterprises.
“It was strictly internal” Bergen said of the investigation.
There is no restricted air space over Augusta National’s golf course, but due to increased air traffic in and out of Augusta, the FAA is advising pilots not to go within two nautical miles of the course and not to fly below 2,500 feet in that area.
Meanwhile, the Nielson ratings for ESPN were through the roof for Tiger's first round on Thurday, with a 50 percent increase over last years numbers.