Jacobsen Skips Defense to Play Tradition

By Associated PressAugust 25, 2004, 4:00 pm
ALOHA, Ore. -- Last year, Peter Jacobsen was too young to play in the Tradition. This year, he has already won a major on the Champions Tour as he readies for his debut in the tournament he helped bring to his home state.
Jacobsen won the U.S. Senior Open in St. Louis earlier this month, his first victory on the 50-and-over circuit and his first major title.
On Thursday, he'll forgo defending at the PGA Tour's Buick Championship to play in the JELD-WEN Tradition at the Reserve Vineyards and Golf Club in the suburbs west of his native Portland.
'It is Portland,' he said matter-of-factly. 'It is my hometown.'
Jacobsen, who went to the University of Oregon, won the tournament formerly known as the Greater Hartford Open last year at age 49. He became eligible for the Champions Tour when he turned 50 in March.
But the tournaments clashed on his schedule, forcing Jacobsen to make a choice.
The Tradition moved to Oregon last year after 14 years in Arizona. Jacobsen, who had hosted the popular Fred Meyer Challenge charity tournament for several years in Oregon, helped lure the Champions Tour to the area.
Peter Jacobsen Productions, the golfer's sports management firm, runs the Tradition. It is the tour's fifth and final major of the year.
'I will not miss Hartford one bit,' Jacobsen said, 'because my heart is here.'
After several days of rain, the 7,212-yard layout at the Reserve was seriously soggy Wednesday. The few spectators who watched practice rounds had umbrellas at the ready for frequent downpours.
Hale Irwin, winner of this year's Senior PGA Championship, said the recent weather will be a factor over the tournament's 72 holes, even though the forecast for the weekend called for sunny and warm conditions.
'This is not going to dry out that much by this weekend,' Irwin said. 'It's still going to be soft out there.'
Tom Watson won the inaugural Oregon event, defeating Tom Kite and Jim Ahern with a birdie on the final hole. It was Watson's last victory with longtime caddie Bruce Edwards, who died in April from Lou Gehrig's disease.
Watson is unsure of his prospects at the Reserve this year, mostly because he has been dealing with nerve compression, which has sapped his strength in his right arm.
The problem peaked in June, but has been getting better.
'I just have to deal with it,' he said Wednesday. 'Fortunately, there's no pain with the weakness.'
Jacobsen got his first Champions Tour victory by beating Irwin by a stroke at the Senior Open. The win sent his production company hurrying to retool television commercials for the Oregon event.
In the old spots, Jacobsen said: 'I can't wait to tee it up in my home state of Oregon and win my first major championship.'
Thanks to some foresight months ago when the commercials were made, the new spots featured Jacobsen saying he was anxious to win his 'second major championship.'
But Jacobsen's rookie season on Champions Tour has been marred by injury. He had hip surgery earlier this year and had to pull out of two tournaments before the Senior Open.
'Every week it gets better,' he said. 'It's just a matter of time.'
For the moment, however, the hip wasn't a concern. It was the rain.
'I hope it's gone,' he said optimistically.
Related Links:
  • TGC Airtimes
  • Leaderboard - JELD-WEN Tradition
  • Full Coverage - JELD-WEN Tradition
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    Kelly, Sauers co-lead in Hawaii; Monty, Couples in mix

    By Associated PressJanuary 19, 2018, 3:52 am

    KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii - Fresh off a solid performance on Oahu, Jerry Kelly shot an 8-under 64 on the Big Island on Thursday to share the first-round lead at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship, the season opener on the PGA Tour Champions.

    The 51-year-old Kelly, who tied for 14th at the PGA Tour's Sony Open last week in Honolulu, birdied five of his final seven holes to shoot 30 on the back nine at Hualalai. He won twice last season, his first on the over-50 tour.

    Gene Sauers also shot 64, going bogey-free amid calm conditions. Thirty-two of the 44 players broke par in the limited-field event, which includes winners from last season, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.

    Rocco Mediate and Colin Montgomerie were one shot back, and Fred Couples, Kevin Sutherland and Kirk Triplett were another shot behind.

    Bernhard Langer, defending the first of his seven 2017 titles, was in the middle of the pack after a 69.

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    Rahm (62) fires career low round

    By Will GrayJanuary 19, 2018, 12:03 am

    The scores were predictably low during the opening round of the CareerBuilder Challenge, where the top-ranked player in the field currently sits atop the standings. Here's how things look after the first day in Palm Springs as Jon Rahm is out to an early advantage:

    Leaderboard: Jon Rahm (-10), Austin Cook (-9), Andrew Landry (-9), Jason Kokrak (-9), Brandon Harkins (-8), Martin Piller (-8), Aaron Wise (-8), Beau Hossler (-8)

    What it means: Rahm is coming off a runner-up finish two weeks ago at Kapalua, and he picked up right where he left off with a 10-under 62 at La Quinta Country Club. It marked his lowest career round on the PGA Tour, and it gave him a one-shot lead heading to the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Cook is the only player within two shots of Rahm who has won already on Tour.

    Round of the day: Rahm got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under, and he made it around La Quinta without dropping a shot. The 62 bettered his previous career low on Tour by two shots and it included an eagle on the par-5 fifth hole to go along with eight birdies.

    Best of the rest: Cook was a winner earlier this season at the RSM Classic, and he's now in the mix for trophy No. 2 following a 9-under 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Like Rahm, he opened with a seven-hole stretch at 6 under and turned in a scorecard without a bogey. He'll now head to the more difficult Stadium Course for his second round.

    Biggest disappointment: Patrick Reed blitzed the three-course rotation in Palm Springs en route to his first career Tour title back in 2014, but he's unlikely to repeat that feat after opening with a 2-over 74 on the Nicklaus Tournament course. Reed made only one birdie against three bogeys and was one of only 32 players in the 156-man field who failed to break par in the opening round.

    Main storyline heading into Friday: Rahm deserves the spotlight, as he entered the week as one of the event's headliners and did nothing to lose that billing in the opening round. But the pack of contenders is sure to keep pace, while players like Phil Mickelson (-2) will look to put up a low score in order to build some momentum heading into the weekend.

    Shot of the day: Wesley Bryan's 7-under 65 on the Nicklaus Tournament course was helped in large part by an eagle on the par-4 10th, where he holed a 54-degree wedge from 112 yards away. Bryan went on to birdie the next hole amid a five-hole stretch of 5 under play.

    Quote of the day: "Shot 10 under par. There's not much more I can ask for." - Rahm

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    Recent winner Cook contending at CareerBuilder

    By Will GrayJanuary 18, 2018, 11:45 pm

    Patton Kizzire is currently the only two-time PGA Tour winner this season, but Austin Cook hopes to join him this week at the CareerBuilder Challenge.

    Cook won for the first time in November at the RSM Classic, a victory that catapaulted him from the Web.com Tour graduate category into an entirely new echelon. Cook notched a pair of top-25 finishes over the last two weeks in Hawaii, and he's again in the mix after an opening 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course left him one shot behind Jon Rahm.

    "Today was great," Cook told reporters. "The conditions were perfect, but I always loved desert golf and I was just hitting the ball well and seeing good lines on the greens and hitting good putts."

    Cook got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under highlighted by an eagle on the par-5 fourth hole. He briefly entertained the notion of a sub-60 round after birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 before closing with six pars and a birdie.

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

    Cook was a relative unknown before his victory at Sea Island earlier this season, but now with the flexibility and confidence afforded by a win he hopes to build on his burgeoning momentum this week in California.

    "That was a big, proud moment for myself, knowing that I can finish a tournament," Cook said. "I think it was one of those things that I've proven to myself that now I can do it, and it just meant the world to me."

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    Photo: Fleetwood's phone cover is picture of Bjorn

    By Jason CrookJanuary 18, 2018, 11:40 pm

    There's phone covers and then there are Phone Covers.

    Paul Casey has himself a Phone Cover, showing off the protective case that features a picture of his wife at last year's U.S. Open.

    Now, it appears, Tommy Fleetwood has joined the movement.

    Fleetwood, last year's season-long Race to Dubai winner, has a phone cover with a picture of Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn on it. And not even a current Thomas Bjorn. This is a young Bjorn. A hair-having Bjorn.


    A post shared by Alex Noren (@alexnoren1) on

    The 26-year-old is a virtual lock for this year's European Ryder Cup team, but just in case, he's carrying around a phone with a picture of the team captain attached to the back of it.

    It's a bold strategy, Cotton. Let's see if it pays off for him.