LPGAs Farr tourney in jeopardy for 26th year

By Associated PressJuly 1, 2009, 4:00 pm
2009 Jamie Farr Owens Corning ClassicSYLVANIA, Ohio ' The Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic may be the next LPGA tournament to miss the cut.
 
The Farr, named for the actor who played a reluctant corporal on the classic TV series M.A.S.H., is being played for the 25th time ' and possibly last ' this week at Highland Meadows Golf Club in suburban Toledo.
 
I dont know what the intricate details are, theyll have to figure those out, Jamie Farr said Wednesday before hurrying out to play the pro-am. We have a 50-50 chance of being here next year.
 
The Farrs $1.4 million purse is among the smallest on the LPGA tour. In tough economic times, tournament officials have pared between $450,000 and $500,000 this year from an already bare-bones budget. The contract with the title sponsor expires after this tournament.
 
The LPGA had 34 events last year and that number is falling.
 
Organizers of the two-year-old Kapalua LPGA Classic in Hawaii announced Tuesday that financial problems would cause them to pull out of the last four years of their contract with the tour. LPGA officials threatened to pursue legal remedies.
 
The LPGA Corning Classic in Corning, N.Y., ended in May after 31 years when its title sponsor called it quits. Along with the Farr, the Michelob Ultra Opens future in Williamsburg, Va., is also uncertain.
 
Farr tournament director Judd Silverman remains upbeat.
 
Im very optimistic. Weve been in this position several times before through our 25 years where weve had to negotiate new contracts, he said on the eve of the opening round. Were going to roll up our sleeves with the LPGA and both parties are going to have to work hard to find a livable business model during some very tough economic times.
 
He said the Farr tried to spread the sacrifices around. The pro-am gift packages arent as big, fewer bleachers were set up and past champions were not provided with courtesy vehicles.
 
Despite that belt-tightening, no one knows if there will be a 26th Farr. The LPGA and Silverman will sit down after the tournament to discuss the events future.
 
LPGA officials at the tournament site did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
 
If the Farr tournament leaves, itll be another blow to the city that supports it. With its close ties to the auto industry, Toledos economy is in rough shape with an unemployment rate just under 13 percent.
 
Over its history, the tournament has donated $6.2 million to about 100 charities.
 
The primary charity, the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Northwest Ohio, gets about eight percent of its annual budget from the tournament.
 
Theyve been very kind to us over the years, said Chad Bringman, executive director.
 
Losing that money could force the organization, which provides family members of hospitalized children a free place to stay and eat, to cut services, he said.
 
We would have to make a stronger pitch to families that use it that were hurting and could really use a donation, Bringman said. Were already looking at what we would scale back.
 
Silverman said if the tournament cannot meet its obligations to local charities, its not likely to stay afloat.
 
Toledo Mayor Carty Finkbeiner cant fathom the loss of the tournament.
 
It would be hurtful to the communitys pride, but I dont think thats going to happen, Finkbeiner said. The LPGA has come to appreciate how much this city pours into the event and its love for Jamie Farr. When it comes to volunteers and love for an event, I think we rank right up there.
 
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  • Rose wins; Aphibarnrat earns Masters bid in Indonesia

    By Will GrayDecember 17, 2017, 1:59 pm

    Justin Rose continued his recent run of dominance in Indonesia, while Kiradech Aphibarnrat snagged a Masters invite with some 72nd-hole dramatics.

    Rose cruised to an eight-shot victory at the Indonesian Masters, carding bookend rounds of 10-under 62 that featured a brief run at a 59 during the final round. The Englishman was the highest-ranked player in the field and he led wire-to-wire, with Thailand's Phachara Khongwatmai finishing second.

    Rose closes out the year as perhaps the hottest player in the world, with top-10 finishes in each of his final 10 worldwide starts. That stretch includes three victories, as Rose also won the WGC-HSBC Champions and Turkish Airlines Open. He hasn't finished outside the top 10 in a tournament since missing the cut at the PGA Championship.

    Meanwhile, it took until the final hole of the final tournament of 2017 for Aphibarnrat to secure a return to the Masters. The Thai entered the week ranked No. 56 in the world, with the top 50 in the year-end world rankings earning invites to Augusta National. Needing an eagle on the 72nd hole, Aphibarnrat got just that to snag solo fifth place.

    It means that he is projected to end the year ranked No. 49, while Japan's Yusaku Miyazato - who started the week ranked No. 58 and finished alone in fourth - is projected to finish No. 50. Aphibarnrat finished T-15 in his Masters debut in 2016, while Miyazato will make his first appearance in the spring.

    The results in Indonesia mean that American Peter Uihlein and South Africa's Dylan Frittelli are projected to barely miss the year-end, top-50 cutoff. Their options for Masters qualification will include winning a full-point PGA Tour event in early 2018 or cracking the top 50 by the final March 25 cutoff.

    Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

    By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

    Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

    ''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

    They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

    ''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

    Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

    ''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

    Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

    Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

    Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

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    Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 16, 2017, 5:46 pm

    Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.

    Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”

    Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told GolfChannel.com that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.

    Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.

    The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.

    Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters

    By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 3:52 pm

    JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.

    Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.

    Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.