Media CEOs are the highest-paid American executives

first_imgNEW YORK | They’re not Hollywood stars, they’re not TV personalities and they don’t play in a rock band, but their pay packages are in the same league.Six of the 10 highest-paid CEOs last year worked in the media industry, according to a study carried out by executive compensation data firm Equilar and The Associated Press.The best-paid chief executive of a large American company was David Zaslav, head of Discovery Communications, the pay-TV channel operator that is home to “Shark Week.” His total compensation more than quadrupled to $156.1 million in 2014 after he extended his contract.Les Moonves, of CBS, held on to second place in the rankings, despite a drop in pay from a year earlier. His pay package totaled $54.4 million.The remaining four CEOs, from entertainment giants Viacom, Walt Disney, Comcast and Time Warner, have ranked among the nation’s highest-paid executives for at least four years, according to the Equilar/AP pay study.One reason for the high level of pay in the industry is that its CEOs are dealing with well-paid individuals.“The talent, the actors and directors and writers, they’re being paid a lot of money,” said Steven Kaplan, a professor of finance at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. “In industries where the talent makes a lot of money, the CEO makes a lot of money as well.”Pay packages for CEOs overall grew for the fifth straight year in 2014, driven by a rising stock market that pushed up the value of executive stock awards. Median compensation for the heads of Standard & Poor’s 500 companies rose to a record $10.6 million, up from $10.5 million the year before, according to the Equilar/AP pay study.Peer pressure is another factor driving up executive compensation. The board members responsible for setting CEO pay typically consider what the heads of similar companies are making. If pay for one goes up, it will likely go up for others.For the chieftains of media, there are also other factors boosting pay.Several work at companies where a few major shareholders control the vote.The media magnate Sumner Redstone controls almost 80 percent of the voting stock at CBS and Viacom. Because of his large holdings, Redstone can easily override the concerns of other investors about the level of CEO pay. Discovery’s voting stock is heavily influenced by the brothers Si and Donald Newhouse and John Malone, another influential investor in the media industry.At Comcast, which owns NBC and Universal Studios, CEO and Chairman Brian Roberts controls a third of his company’s voting stock. That means he has substantial influence on the pay that he is awarded.Comcast had no comment when contacted by the AP for this story.All of the media executives have tried, with varying degrees of success, to maximize the value of their company’s entertainment brands online and on mobile devices.For example, Moonves at CBS launched the series “Under the Dome” — based on the Stephen King novel — both on the network and on the Amazon Prime streaming service. Besides reaching online customers, the move helped offset production costs. The company, whose shows also include “NCIS” and “The Good Wife,” has attracted 100,000 customers to “CBS All Access,” an online subscription platform that costs $6 a month. Time Warner, under CEO Jeffrey Bewkes, launched HBO Now, which streams shows to computers, tablets and smartphones for $15 a month.At Disney, CEO Bob Iger has bolstered revenues through canny acquisitions.The purchase of Marvel in 2009 is reaping dividends with blockbuster superhero movies. “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” pulled in almost $190 million in its opening weekend, making it the second-biggest U.S. movie opening ever. Disney’s purchase of LucasFilms in 2012 means it also owns the highly lucrative “Star Wars” franchise, with the next installment scheduled for release in December.Disney spokesman David Jefferson said in an email that Iger’s pay award “reflected the company’s outstanding financial performance,” and cited its record earnings. He also said that during Iger’s tenure Disney has returned more than $51 billion to stockholders through share buybacks and dividends.Media stocks have climbed strongly the past five years. An index of media companies in the S&P 500 index has risen 193 percent compared with a gain of 95 percent for the broader S&P 500.Discovery’s stock price has climbed almost fivefold since it started trading as a public company in September 2008.Zaslav, who has led Discovery since 2007, saw his compensation rise last year after he negotiated a new contract that will keep him at the company until 2019. Last year’s pay package included $145 million in stock and options awards, $6 million in cash bonuses, $3 million in base salary, and $1.9 million in perks.The company has pushed its channels overseas where pay TV penetration is growing faster than in the U.S. Last year, Discovery also grabbed a controlling stake in Eurosport International, making a bet on live sports. The move into European sports has set the stage for renewed growth overseas.Zaslav has done a terrific job, said Chris Marangi, portfolio manager at GAMCO Investors Inc., which holds more than $150 million in Discovery stock.The CEO has returned cash to shareholders and increased viewership largely through company-owned reality TV shows like “Say Yes to the Dress” and “Deadliest Catch.”“He’s a dynamic leader at the helm of a company in a very fast-changing industry,” Marangi said.Even though Discovery’s stock has slumped over the last 18 months, it is still up 243 percent since Zaslav took the helm in 2007. That compares with a gain of 49 percent for the S&P 500 over the same time.Discovery declined to comment for this story when contacted by the AP.The pay package of Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman’s reflects “solid financial results, execution on key operational goals and a return of $3.9 billion to stockholders through stock buybacks and dividends,” company spokesman Jeremy Zweig said in an email.Top executives are getting paid more because much of their compensation comes from bonuses linked to their company’s financial and stock performance. Only a small part of their pay comes from their base salary.Structuring pay this way is intended to align the executives’ interests to that of the company and to encourage long-term strategies.Because corporate earnings have grown consistently, with a near six-year expansion of the economy, executives have met or beaten their earnings targets generally.Earnings-per-share for the average S&P 500 company rose 7.7 percent in 2014, according to data from S&P Capital IQ. Revenue-per-share climbed 4 percent.“There should be a strong link between pay and performance. The markets were up in 2014 so it makes sense that (compensation) was going in the same direction,” said Bess Joffe, managing director of corporate governance at TIAA-CREF, an asset management company. “We would also expect, in a downturn, for the compensation numbers to fall.”The gap between pay for CEOs and that of the average worker narrowed slightly last year, because average wages crept up more than CEO pay did.A chief executive made about 205 times the average worker’s wage, compared with 257 times the year before, according to AP calculations using earnings statistics from The Labor Department. That gap was still much wider than six years before, during the recession, when executives earned 181 times the average worker’s pay.The notion that every CEO is a visionary in the mold of Steve Jobs, who led Apple, or Bill Gates, who co-founded Microsoft, is challenged by some.“There are superstar CEOs that definitely are the driving force of the company, but while they are out there, they are rare,” said Charles Elson, a corporate governance expert at the University of Delaware.Elson says that boards should look at overall levels of pay within their own company, rather than benchmarking pay against CEOs working in the same industry. He also says companies are paying too much to retain their chief executives when there is little evidence they’ll move to competitors.For the annual CEO pay study, Equilar assessed data from 338 companies that filed proxy statements with regulators between Jan. 1 and April 30, 2015. To calculate a CEO’s pay package, Equilar and the AP looked at salary, stock and option awards, perks and bonuses.The study only includes chief executives who have been at the helm of their company for at least two years. Because of these criteria, there are some notable omissions from the list.Among other findings:— The industry with the biggest pay increase was basic materials, which includes oil, mining and chemical companies. Median pay at these companies rose by 15 percent last year. Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson was the highest paid, making $28.4 million last year.— Female CEOs again had a median pay package worth more than their male counterparts. Last year, women chief executives earned $15.9 million compared with the median salary for male CEOs of $10.4 million. The number of female CEOs included in the study rose to 17 from 12 in the previous year. Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer was the highest paid, earning $42.1 million, which placed her fifth among CEOs in the survey.— Richard Hayne, the CEO and co-founder of Urban Outfitters, received the biggest pay bump. His compensation soared 682 percent to $535,636. Most of the increase came from his performance cash bonus, which jumped to $500,000 from $35,000 a year earlier. Hayne returned to lead the company in 2012 after an absence of five years.___Nakashima reported from Los Angeles.Follow Steve Rothwell on Twitter @SteveRothwellAPFollow Ryan Nakashima on Twitter @rnakashi___Online:https://www.equilar.com/last_img read more

CDC says 1 person dead from listeria linked to Dole salads

first_imgNEW YORK | The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said one person died and about a dozen others were sickened from a listeria outbreak linked to packaged salads made at a Dole processing facility.The salads were made in Springfield, Ohio, the CDC said. Those infected were spread in six states: Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.The CDC said the packaged salads made by Dole are the likely source of the outbreak. The salads are sold under several brands, including Dole, Fresh Selections, Simple Truth, Marketside, The Little Salad Bar and President’s Choice. The manufacturing code on the package starts with the letter “A.” The CDC says customers should not eat those bags.Dole stopped all production at the Ohio facility on Thursday, the CDC said.last_img read more

Snapchat introduces new way to save old snaps

first_imgNEW YORK | Snapchat’s commitment to the ephemeral message was … ephemeral. The popular visual messaging service is giving users a new way to save old “snaps” they shared with friends.The tool, called Memories, lets you save content on the app that was previously ephemeral. This includes photos, videos or photo montages called “stories.” You can later scroll through them or send them on to your contacts.That’s yet another step away from Snapchat’s former fixation on “snaps” that vanish. While it was already possible to save snaps to your phone’s camera roll, Memories lets users save them privately within the Snapchat app.The update will become available to Snapchat users over the next month or so.To find the Memories tool, open Snapchat and swipe up from your camera screen.last_img read more

Did your ancestor hunt whales? Museum database offers clues

first_img FILE – In this Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015 file photo, a man enters the New Bedford Whaling Museum in New Bedford, Mass. The museum has compiled a digital archive of more than a hundred thousand names of men who embarked on whaling voyages out of the Massachusetts port before the final one in 1927. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia) BOSTON | A digital list of the tens of thousands of men who embarked on whaling voyages out of New Bedford, from 10-year-old boys to a 70-year-old sailor who drank himself to death in South Africa, is a valuable resource for anyone researching their family’s seafaring past. Just be warned: You might not like what you find.One man who found an ancestor’s name in the database went to the ship’s logbook for more information and got quite a shock, said Mark Procknik, the librarian at the New Bedford Whaling Museum, which compiled the list of more than 127,000 men who set sail on whaler ships from 1809 until 1927. FILE – In this Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015 file photo, a group tours the New Bedford Whaling Museum in New Bedford, Mass. The museum has compiled a digital archive of more than a hundred thousand names of men who embarked on whaling voyages out of the Massachusetts port before the final one in 1927. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia) When the ship made a stop at Pitcairn Island in the South Pacific, someone sabotaged the vessel by boring holes in the hull. It turns out the villain was an ancestor.“They threw him in irons, and when the ship reached Peru, they threw him off,” Procknik said.Some people who for years have heard stories about an ancestor who was a captain on a whaling vessel have searched the database only to find out that their forebear was a greenhand, the lowest rank on board, said Judith Lund, a historian and author who led a platoon of volunteers in compiling the database.The searchable list includes the sailor’s name, age, job title, home state or country, and in some cases notes physical characteristics, including skin and hair color. It lists men from 33 states, two U.S. territories and more than 100 foreign nations.It illustrates what Herman Melville so eloquently described in “Moby-Dick” of a city teeming with the strangest characters from all corners of the globe.Melville writes of “the Feegeeans, Tongatobooarrs, Erromanggoans, Pannangians, and Brighggians,” and “the wild specimens of the whaling-craft which unheeded reel about the streets.”“Imagine coming to this little town in the middle of the 19th century and seeing all these strange people,” Lund said.Sometimes the list contains tidbits of information that shed more light on the life — or death — of a sailor.Charles Harmond, of Wareham, was 10 years old when joined the crew of the George Washington in 1832. H. Carleston, of New Bedford, was 70 when he embarked on the Charles W. Morgan in 1908. He never made it home. “Died at Durban after becoming intoxicated,” the records note.Some crewmen are listed under a single name, such as Chevelor, who joined the crew of the Java in 1841 and deserted the following year at Sandwich Island — what we now call Hawaii.And yes, Melville is in the database, although the information is scant. All the records show is that he set sail on the Acushnet in 1841 as a greenhand.The archive, also valuable to genealogists, anthropologists and sociologists, is actually a combination of a project that began years ago at the New Bedford Free Public Library and a more recent museum project, said Michael Lapides, the museum’s director of digital initiatives.It’s based on handwritten customs documents that were in turn copied by the chaplains of the New Bedford Port Society. The original records were written by customs officers who may not have been accomplished spellers and who got the information from seamen who may not have been certain of how to spell their own names.Therefore, the way a family spells their name today may not be how it is spelled in the database. In fact, a single sailor’s name may have been spelled different ways if he went on multiple voyages.The information was kept because the men often never returned, Procknik said.“There were deaths on every voyage, and desertion was rampant,” he said, noting that even Melville deserted.center_img FILE – In this Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015 file photo the likeness of a whale adorns a door at the New Bedford Whaling Museum in New Bedford, Mass. The museum has compiled a digital archive of more than a hundred thousand names of men who embarked on whaling voyages out of the Massachusetts port before the final one in 1927. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia, File) FILE – In this Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015 file photo, New Bedford Whaling Museum senior maritime historian Michael Dyer combs through the racks of whaling vessel log books in New Bedford, Mass. The museum has compiled a digital archive of more than a hundred thousand names of men who embarked on whaling voyages out of the Massachusetts port before the final one in 1927. (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia, File)last_img read more

Poodle gets tumor that’s a third of its body weight removed

first_imgNAUGATUCK, Conn. | A poodle named Oreo is on the mend after having a 6.4-pound (2.9-kilogram) tumor removed — nearly a third of its body weight. This August 2017 photo provided by Poodle Rescue Connecticut shows a poodle named Oreo afflicted with a 6.4-pound tumor at the animal rescue in Naugatuck, Conn. The group took custody of the poodle mix earlier in the month after a neighbor noticed the animal struggling with the large growth. The Watertown Animal Hospital performed the surgery to remove the growth. (Daryl Masone/Poodle Rescue Connecticut via AP) Daryl Masone says her group, Poodle Rescue Connecticut, got custody of the 6-year-old, 26-pound (11.8-kilogram) poodle mix earlier this month after a neighbor noticed it was struggling with the large tumor. She says it was hard for the dog to walk or do anything else, and it was also struggling with fleas and Lyme disease.The Watertown Animal Hospital performed a 2½-hour surgery to remove the growth last week.Masone said Wednesday that Oreo is doing great and now weighs 19 pounds. She says it will eventually need a second surgery to remove extra skin.last_img read more

Film Review: 40 years later, ‘Halloween’ slashes again

first_imgWith hollow eyes and sagging cheeks, the flabby white mask of Michael Myers is horror’s great blank slate. Project your fears here, it says. Myers doesn’t speak. His movements never rise beyond a deliberate gait (well, aside from all the stabbing and strangling). Even his name is purposefully bland.Decades after John Carpenter’s slasher landmark, David Gordon Green has resurrected the faceless Boogeyman of “Halloween” and set him loose on another Halloween night, 40 years later. Time has done little for Michael’s personality. He is still a poor conversationalist. (He hasn’t uttered a word in the intervening decades, says a doctor at the sanatorium that holds him.) He is still handy with a knife.This image released by Universal Pictures shows Jamie Lee Curtis in a scene from “Halloween,” in theaters nationwide on Oct. 19. (Ryan Green/Universal Pictures via AP)There are no roman numerals in the title of Green’s film, nor any of those dopey subtitles like 1998’s “Halloween H20,” which presumably delved into the very real fears of dehydration. As if to draw closer to the original (and to ignore the nine sequels and reboots in between), this “Halloween” has simply taken Carpenter’s 1978 title. And with gliding cameras, Carpenter’s score and original cast members Jamie Lee Curtis and Nick Castle (the man under the mask), it has tried very hard to take much more, too.But while Green’s “Halloween,” which he penned with Danny McBride and Jeff Fradley, has faithfully adopted much of what so resonated in Carpenter’s genre-creating film — the stoic killer, the gruesome executions, the suburban nightmares — what makes his “Halloween” such a thrill is how it deviates from its long-ago predecessor.Setting the template for countless slashers to follow, Carpenter’s film often reserved its most painful endings for more promiscuous girls or drug-using teens. As a grim reaper carrying out a metaphorical reckoning, Michael had questionable biases.But what Carpenter did do was equate sex with violence, a connection that Green has elaborated on with a more feminist streak. Having survived the “Babysitter Murders” of 40 years ago, Laurie Strode (a fabulously fierce Jamie Lee Curtis, reprising the role that was her film debut) is now a self-described “twice-divorced basket case” living in a run-down house on the outskirts of the fictional Haddonfield, Illinois. She has turned her home into a training ground and domestic fortification (beneath the kitchen island is a well-armed shelter) for the second coming of Michael she’s always been sure will happen.Her daughter (Judy Greer) and her son-in-law (Toby Huss) have grown tired of Strode’s fanatical survivalist paranoia. Certain that the world isn’t so bad a place as Strode insists, they plead for her to get over it. Their high-school daughter, Allyson (Andi Matichak) isn’t so sure, and she naturally gravitates to the grandmother she’s been shielded from.The curiosity of “Serial”-like podcast journalists (Jefferson Hall, Rhian Rees) introduces us to both the locked-up Myers and the withdrawn Strode. Before curtly dismissing them, Strode insists their investigation into Myers is pointless. “There’s nothing to learn,” says Strode, surely no fan of, say, neo-Nazi newspaper features. Hunt evil, she believes, don’t analyze it. It’s a message peppered throughout “Halloween” with clear reference to today (and to some of the earlier “Halloween” installments that sought to understand Michael).Needless to say, both those who dismiss Strode’s deep-seated trauma and those who would rather study evil than confront it are gonna get their comeuppance. When Michael is transferred to another facility, hell predictably breaks loose. Once Michael is again stalking the suburban streets of Haddonfield, custom kitchens start seeing their cutlery disappear, and the shadows and closets of seemingly safe neighborhoods are again rife with danger. Evil — soulless and unkillable — lurks everywhere, even if does wear a silly mask.Green, the sometimes brilliant, sometimes confounding filmmaker of art-house indies (“George Washington”), broader comedies (“Pineapple Express”) and, more recently, a few starry studio projects (“Our Brand Is Crisis”), can’t recreate the eeriness of Carpenter’s original. But he pumps more blood into the story, both literally and figuratively. Foggy nights and gas-station bathrooms turn predictably gory, more so than the original. But the scenes that fall between those foreboding, twinkling piano notes have far more warmth and spirit than you’d expect. You almost wish Green — easily the most talented filmmaker in the franchise since Carpenter — was instead making something original here on the same streets, with the same cast (including the scene-stealing Miles Robbins) and none of the skull crushing.But there are rituals to observe, and this “Halloween” lives up to its name.“Halloween,” a Universal Pictures release, is rated R by the Motion Picture Association of America for horror violence and bloody images, language, brief drug use and nudity. Running time: 105 minutes. Three stars out of four.MPAA definition of R: Restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.Follow AP Film Writer Jake Coyle on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/jakecoyleAPlast_img read more

Trump administration revokes transgender health protection

first_imgWASHINGTON  |  In a move applauded by President Donald Trump’s conservative religious base, his administration on Friday finalized a rule that overturns Obama-era protections for transgender people against sex discrimination in health care.The Department of Health and Human Services said it will enforce sex discrimination protections “according to the plain meaning of the word ‘sex’ as male or female and as determined by biology.” This rewrites an Obama-era regulation that sought a broader understanding shaped by a person’s internal sense of being male, female, neither or a combination.LGBTQ groups say explicit protections are needed for people seeking sex-reassignment treatment, and even for transgender people who need care for common illnesses such as diabetes or heart problems.But conservatives say the Obama administration exceeded its legal authority in broadly interpreting gender.The reversal comes in the middle of LGBTQ Pride Month. Activists and Democratic lawmakers noted that Friday was also the four-year anniversary of the mass shooting at the Pulse gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, in which 49 people were killed.Behind the dispute over legal rights is a medically recognized condition called “gender dysphoria” — discomfort or distress caused by a discrepancy between the gender that a person identifies as and the gender at birth. Consequences can include severe depression. Treatment can range from sex-reassignment surgery and hormones to people changing their outward appearance by adopting a different hairstyle or clothing.Many social conservatives disagree with the concept.“Under the old Obama rule, medical professionals could have been forced to facilitate gender reassignment surgeries and abortions — even if they believed this was a violation of their conscience or believed it harmful to the patient,” said Mary Beth Waddell of the religious conservative Family Research Council.But House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, “Religious freedom is no justification for hatred or bigotry, and every American has the right to seek and receive care without intimidation or fear.”The American Medical Association strongly criticized the Trump administration’s action.“The federal government should never make it more difficult for individuals to access health care — during a pandemic or any other time,” said Dr. Susan Bailey, the group’s president.Under the Obama-era rule, a hospital could be required to perform gender-transition procedures such as hysterectomies if the facility provided that kind of treatment for other medical conditions. The rule was meant to carry out the anti-discrimination section of the Affordable Care Act, which bars sex discrimination in health care but does not use the term “gender identity.”Women’s groups say the new regulations also undermine access to abortion, which is a legal medical procedure.“No one should fear being turned away by a medical provider because of who they are or the personal health decisions they have made,” said Fatima Goss Graves, president of the National Women’s Law Center.The ACLU says it has already moved to try to prevent the rollback of protections for transgender people. The LGBTQ civil rights group Lambda Legal said it will sue.More than 1.5 million Americans identify as transgender, according to the Williams Institute, a think tank focusing on LGBT policy at the UCLA School of Law. A bigger number — 4.5% of the population— identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender, according to Gallup.Roger Severino, head of the HHS unit that enforces civil rights laws, said transgender people continue to be protected by other statutes that bar discrimination in health care on account of race, color, national origin, age, disability and other factors.“Everyone deserves to be treated with respect and according to the law,” said Severino. “Our dedication to our civil rights laws is as strong as ever.” He cited recent actions to safeguard access to treatment for disabled people in the coronavirus pandemic.For the Trump administration it’s the latest in a series of steps to revoke newly won protections for LGBTQ people in areas ranging from the military to housing and education.The administration also has moved to restrict military service by transgender men and women, proposed allowing certain homeless shelters to take gender identity into account in offering someone a bed for the night, and concluded in a 2017 Justice Department memo that federal civil rights law does not protect transgender people from discrimination at work.The new rule would also affect the notices that millions of patients get in multiple languages about their rights to translation services. Such notices often come with insurer “explanation of benefits” forms. The Trump administration says the notice requirement has become a needless burden on health care providers, requiring billions of paper notices to be mailed annually at an estimated five-year cost of $2.9 billion.last_img read more

Clark stars with the bat in 7-wicket victory

first_imgThere were some fine bowling performances, notably David Scott who took 2 for 15, Hamza Khan with 1 for 15 and captain Speirs with 2 for 18.PCC started steadily in reply but good bowling from Girish had both openers back in the pavilion with the score on 42.  A fluent 50 not out from Colin Clark, which included 7 fours and a six, eased PCC to victory after only 15.2 overs, with support coming from Andy Emery (13).  Girish, with 2 for 12 off 3 overs, was the pick of the bowlers as PCC ran out winners by 7 wickets.PCC have now won two and lost one of their league games so far this season.  The next game is on Sunday 8th February at the Thai Polo Ground against the league leaders, Indorama CC.  The game starts at 11.00 am and all are welcome.Pattaya Cricket Club would like to thank Pattaya Sports Club for their continued support. Pattaya Cricket Club played their 3rd League game of the season at the picturesque Thai Polo Ground on Sunday 1st February.  The visitors were the HV Champions CC from Bangkok. PCC stand-in captain John Speirs lost the toss, and HV Champions chose to bat first.  Their openers made a good start and scored quickly against PCC opening bowlers Salman and Thomas.  The first wicket fell with the score at 39 after captain Speirs, turned to the wily spin of veteran “Disco” David Scott, who had Girish caught behind, by the excellent wicketkeeper Colin Clark.Unfortunately for the Champions side, that opened the floodgates and wickets started tumbling, with only their captain Jignesh, with a brisk 30 runs, and opener Nijaug with 38, offering any resistance.  The tail wagged a little, allowing the HV Champions to crawl to 112 for 9 wickets.  That score was never going to be enough, against a strong PCC batting line up.last_img read more

Low takes bragging rights at Laem Chabang

first_imgPSC Golf from The Outback Golf BarMonday, July 13, Burapha – StablefordWhat a difference seven days makes!  This past week’s winning score at Burapha would only have finished fifth the previous week.We have rarely if ever seen the A and B courses here in better condition and it is sad to see so few golfers at this very good venue.  As usual we got away early and had the place to ourselves… our first group getting around in four hours twenty minutes.(Standing rear L-R) Geoff Christie, Wally Brown and John Low, (Front) Bob St. Aubin. Tim Knight had a rare good round to win with 39 points ahead of Murray Hart (37) in second while Willy Van Heetvelde (36), Bob Finley (35) and Kim Danboise (34) completed the podium.There were no ‘2’s.Outback opinion: Weather – fine; Check in – fast; Tee time – early; Fairways – fast; Rough – light; Greens – fast; Bunkers – well raked; Value for money – very good; Pace of play – under 4.5hrs; Drink stations open – all open; Restaurant – not visited.1st Tim Knight (27) 39pts2nd Murray Hart (16) 37pts3rd Willy Van Heetvelde (23) 36pts4th Bob Finley (14) 35 pts5th Kim Danboise (13) 34ptsTuesday, July 14, Laem Chabang – StablefordThree groups today at our regular Tuesday rendezvous at Laem Chabang, this week playing the A & C loops that were in their usual good order.  Back on the whites this week after the previous week’s blues and Kiwi John Low made the most of the shorter tees to not only win the day with an excellent 41 points, but also get his revenge on Sugar, who up until then had been getting the better of him, John that is.John can expect to be cut after his fine display and we will see how he deals with that later.  Mike Missler was second with 38 points with the new Outback boss, Andre, in third on 36.There was only one ‘2’, from John Low (C8).1st John Low (14) 41pts2nd Mike Missler (06) 38pts3rd Andre Coetzee (08) 36ptsFriday, July 17, St. Andrews – StablefordThirty-one Outbackers played St. Andrews 2000 today, Green Valley our normal Friday venue being pre-booked for a tournament.  Many Outbackers actually liked the change as the course was in fine condition, the only disappointment being the 5 hour round, a not too often happening in low season.Two divisions today, and Kiwis John Low and Geoff Christie filled first and third in Div. 1, with 36 and 35 points respectively, with Pete LeNoury in between them, also on 36 points but losing out to John on count back.  Bob ‘whispering’ St. Aubin was fourth, also on 35, but missing out to Geoff on c/b.It was a great day for Andy Makara in Div. 2, the ever popular player cleaning up with 35 points.  He was followed home by Tom Byrne, Wally Brown and Waldo, all with 34 points, and sadly Sugar Ray missed out on the money by a point, much to the delight of John Low and everybody else as Lowy, who registered his second win this week is gradually hauling Sugar in.There were two ‘2’s, both on the 10th from Mark Allen and Tim Knight.Div A (0-14)1st John Low (13) 36pts2nd Peter LeNoury (10) 36pts3rd Geoff Christie (04) 35pts4th Bob St. Aubin (13) 35ptsDiv B (15+)1st Andy Makara (26) 35pts2nd Tom Byrne (16) 34pts3rd Wally Brown (16) 34pts4th Stephen Blazsanyik (17) 34ptsNote:  The Outback Golf Bar is situated about 6km from Sukhumvit Road along Soi Siam Country.  Call Jack on 081 578 1956.last_img read more

Pattaya City ready to host Asian Youth Weight Lifting Championships

first_imgThe 2011 Asian Youth Weight Lifting Championships will be held from 5th to 12th September at the Pattaya Indoor Atheletic Stadium on Soi Chaiyapruk 2. A press conference was held on August 25 at Pattaya City Hall to announce the tournament and was chaired by Bunphot Saengkaew, Secretary of the event, along with other organizers and public officials who outlined the extensive preparations required.  Transport and accommodation has had to be arranged for the visiting athletes and modification work has also been carried out at the venue itself to enable the competition to run smoothly.As part of the celebrations to mark His Majesty the King’s 84th birthday, special music and dance performances by local schools will take place during the opening and closing ceremonies. Some 476 strongmen and women representing 38 countries throughout Asia will attend the competition with host country Thailand sending 48 athletes to the event.Bunphot Saengkaew, Secretary of the championships, sits alongside Somphot Yimiploy, Technological Manager at the meeting held at Pattaya City Hall, Thursday, August 25.last_img read more