Notes Perrys Personal Choice Family Vacation

By Associated PressJune 3, 2008, 4:00 pm
He is closing in on 50 and so desperate to make the Ryder Cup team that he was willing to skip a major championship to increase his chances. Besides, he didnt think the course was a good fit for his game.
 
Kenny Perry isnt the only player who felt that way.
 
Four years ago, Fred Funk caused a minor stink when he skipped the British Open to play the B.C. Open and boost his chances of making the Ryder Cup team. The circumstances were slightly different, for several players didnt think it was right for Funk to pick up Ryder Cup points the same week as a major.
 
But it showed how much the Ryder Cup means to American players.
 
Funk had no regrets because he didnt think links golf at Royal Troon offered him much hope to succeed. Besides, the Ryder Cup criteria has changed since then and now is based primarily on money. In 2004, third place at the B.C. Open was equivalent to seventh place at the British Open. This year, third place in Milwaukee would be comparable to about 25th place the British Open.
 
Perry has played only three times at Torrey Pines without ever reaching the weekend. He is only hurting himself by not playing the U.S. Open, but feels as though he would be worse off going through a 36-hole qualifier (thats 108 holes in five days) for a course where he doesnt have good vibes. Instead, he will play Memphis, Hartford and Detroit, where he has more success.
 
How could anyone miss a major?
 
Jack Nicklaus said its one thing if Perry were in his 20s and a rising star, quite another for him to be 47 and trying to make a Ryder Cup team played in his home state of Kentucky.
 
Annika Sorenstam, for example, skipped an LPGA Tour major when she was 28, having played overseas and in need of a rest.
 
My goal was never to make the Ryder Cup. It was to win the U.S. Open, Nicklaus said. But I understand. Its a big thing to Kenny. I dont think Kenny is trying to be No. 1 in the world. Hes trying to make a Ryder Cup team in his home state. Thats perfectly fine.
 
Its doubtful that U.S. captain Paul Azinger minds. The money counts double at majors, but Azinger is aware that nearly half of the Americans who finished in the top 10 at majors last year failed to win a tournament.
 
Remember, he wants winners.
 
ITS THE ECONOMY
Memorial host Jack Nicklaus wanted the prize money to be $7 million this year, making it the highest purse among regular PGA TOUR events and equal to the playoff events.
 
Instead, he kept it at $6 million because he thought it would send a bad signal at a time when fans from around central Ohio are struggling with jobs, gas is approaching $4 a gallon and the economy is tight.
 
There are certain times you do certain things, Nicklaus said. I just dont think that sends a good message.
 
FAMILY VACATION
Carl Pettersson is not bashful about putting family before majors.
 
He missed the PGA Championship last year after his wife had their second child, although his logic didnt make sense to some people. Pettersson played the Bridgestone Invitational (which has no cut) a week after his son was born, then skipped Southern Hills the following week. He was trying to collect FedEx Cup points.
 
Pettersson had been eligible for the British Open the last two years, and forgot he had to qualify. The U.S. qualifier is in July, the same week Pettersson had scheduled a beach vacation for his family.
 
Its right in the middle of the vacation, he said. If I go up there (unprepared), why even bother? And if I left to try to qualify, my wife would go nuts. I dont mind. We had a great time last year at the beach, and its good for us to go back.
 
All is not lost.
 
Pettersson has two ways to get in. He can be the leading player among the top five at the John Deere Classic, or be among the top two PGA TOUR members on a special money list that includes THE PLAYERS Championship and five tournaments between this week through the AT&T National at Congressional.
 
That includes the U.S. Open, and Pettersson won his qualifier Monday.
 
COLLEGE CHANGE
Jack Nicklaus wishes there were more match play in college golf to get players more prepared'not for the Ryder Cup, but when tournaments come down to two players over the final few holes.
 
As he shared his sentiments, he learned help was on the way.
 
Gregg Grost, head of the Golf Coaches Association of America, said the NCAA Championship will revamp its formula next year. Grost said 30 teams will qualify and play 54 holes, with an NCAA individual champion and the top eight teams advancing.
 
Then comes a bracket of eight teams that are seeded based on their scores. The format would be medal-match play with players per team. Medal matches mean whichever has the lowest medal score wins the match.
 
There would be three rounds to determine the winner.
 
Grost said the format would be announced later this month, but he already got a thumbs-up from Nicklaus.
 
Im delighted, Nicklaus said. Then youre giving them the opportunity to learn how to play competitive golf.
 
SUZANN AND THE KING
Suzann Pettersen is a member at Bay Hill, and the biggest perk is running into Arnold Palmer.
 
Ive been around good players out here, like Juli Inkster, Meg Mallon, Beth Daniel. But to be able to get to know and dig into Mr. Palmers head, thats fun, she said. Hes like a grandpa out there. Hes so nice, always friendly, always smiles, always signs autographs.
 
She noticed something else about Palmer, who turns 79 in September.
 
Hes always on the range, she said. Hes there every morning. Any time hes unhappy with his game, hell go get a few drivers from his garage and go hit some. And hes like, all of a sudden, Ive got it! Hes like 79 years old. Were like, OK, thats great.
 
What a character.
 
DIVOTS
Colin Montgomerie fell out of the top 100 this week, leaving Alastair Forsyth at No. 95 as the highest-ranked player from Scotland Lorena Ochoa says she struggled to learn English when she arrived from Mexico to attend the University of Arizona. She wanted to major in psychology. I went into a few classes and I couldnt understand a word, she said. So I have to change to P.E. Ochoa, who spoke for a half-hour with ease, said she still laments her lack of vocabulary and grammar. Paula Creamer had her left ankle taped at the LPGA Championship. She attributed it to tendinitis.
 
STAT OF THE WEEK
Of the 160 amateurs who made it through local qualifying, only five of them earned a spot in the U.S. Open.
 
FINAL WORD
I thought Id win more tournaments by now, but Im not going to stop trying.'Lee Janzen, whose eighth and most recent victory was 10 years ago at the U.S. Open.
 
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    Perez skips Torrey, 'upset' with Ryder Cup standings

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 2:19 am

    Pat Perez is unhappy about his standing on the U.S. Ryder Cup points list, and his situation won't improve this week.

    Perez won the CIMB Classic during the fall portion of this season, and he followed that with a T-5 finish at the inaugural CJ Cup. But he didn't receive any Ryder Cup points for either result because of a rule enacted by the American task force prior to the 2014 Ryder Cup which only awards points during the calendar year of the biennial matches as well as select events like majors and WGCs during the prior year.

    As a result, Perez is currently 17th in the American points race - behind players like Patrick Reed, Zach Johnson, Bill Haas and James Hahn, none of whom have won a tournament since the 2016 Ryder Cup - as he looks to make a U.S. squad for the first time at age 42.

    "That kind of upset me a little bit, the fact that I'm (17) on the list, but I should probably be (No.) 3 or 4," Perez told Golf Digest. "So it kind of put a bitter taste in my mouth. The fact that you win on the PGA Tour and you beat some good players, yet you don't get any points because of what our committee has decided to do."

    Perez won't be earning any points this week because he has opted to tee it up at the European Tour's Omega Dubai Desert Classic. The decision comes after Perez finished T-21 last week at the Singapore Open, and it means that the veteran is missing the Farmers Insurance Open in his former hometown of San Diego for the first time since 2001.

    Perez went to high school a few minutes from Torrey Pines, and he defeated a field that included Tiger Woods to win the junior world title on the South Course in 1993. His father, Tony, has been a longtime starter on the tournament's opening hole, and Perez was a runner-up in 2014 and tied for fourth last year.

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    Woods favored to miss Farmers Insurance Open cut

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 1:54 am

    If the Las Vegas bookmakers are to be believed, folks in the San Diego area hoping to see Tiger Woods this week might want to head to Torrey Pines early.

    Woods is making his first competitive start of the year this week at the Farmers Insurance Open, and it will be his first official start on the PGA Tour since last year's event. He missed nearly all of 2017 because of a back injury before returning with a T-9 finish last month at the Hero World Challenge.

    But the South Course at Torrey Pines is a far different test than Albany, and the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook lists Woods as a -180 favorite to miss the 36-hole cut. It means bettors must wager $180 to win $100, while his +150 odds to make the cut mean a bettor can win $150 with a $100 wager.

    Woods is listed at 25/1 to win. He won the tournament for the seventh time in 2013, but in three appearances since he has missed the 36-hole cut, missed the 54-hole cut and withdrawn after 12 holes.

    Here's a look at the various Woods-related prop bets available at the Westgate:

    Will Woods make the 36-hole cut? Yes +150, No -180

    Lowest single-round score (both courses par 72): Over/Under 70

    Highest single-round score: Over/Under 74.5

    Will Woods finish inside the top 10? Yes +350, No -450

    Will Woods finish inside the top 20? Yes +170, No -200

    Will Woods withdraw during the tournament? Yes +650, No -1000

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    Monahan buoyed by Tour's sponsor agreements

    By Rex HoggardJanuary 24, 2018, 12:27 am

    SAN DIEGO – Farmers Insurance announced on Tuesday at Torrey Pines a seven-year extension of the company’s sponsorship of the Southern California PGA Tour event. This comes on the heels of Sony extending its sponsorship of the year’s first full-field event in Hawaii through 2022.

    Although these might seem to be relatively predictable moves, considering the drastic makeover of the Tour schedule that will begin with the 2018-19 season, it is a telling sign of the confidence corporations have in professional golf.

    “It’s a compliment to our players and the value that the sponsors are achieving,” Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said.

    Monahan said that before 2014 there were no 10-year title sponsorship agreements in place. Now there are seven events sponsored for 10-years, and another five tournaments that have agreements in place of at least seven years.

    “What it means is, it gives organizations like the Century Club [which hosts this week’s Farmers Insurance Open], when you have that level of stability on a long-term basis that allows you to invest in your product, to grow interest and to grow the impact of it,” Monahan said. “You experienced what this was like in 2010 or seen other tournaments that you don’t know what the future is.S o to go out and sell and inspire a community and you can’t state that we have a long-term agreement it’s more difficult.”

    Events like this year’s Houston Open, Colonial in Fort Worth, Texas, and The National all currently don’t have title sponsors – although officials at Colonial are confident they can piece together a sponsorship package. But even that is encouraging to Monahan considering the uncertainty surrounding next season’s schedule, which will include the PGA Championship moving to May and The Players to March as well as a pre-Labor Day finish to the season.

    “When you look back historically to any given year [the number of events needing sponsors] is lower than the typical average,” Monahan said. “As we start looking to a new schedule next year, you get excited about a great schedule with a great group of partners.”

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    Day WDs from Farmers pro-am because of sore back

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 24, 2018, 12:07 am

    SAN DIEGO – Jason Day has withdrawn from the Wednesday pro-am at the Farmers Insurance Open, citing a sore back.

    Day, the 2015 champion, played a practice round with Tiger Woods and Bryson DeChambeau on Tuesday at Torrey Pines, and he is still expected to play in the tournament.

    Day was replaced in the pro-am by Whee Kim. 

    Making his first start since the Australian Open in November, Day is scheduled to tee off at 1:30 p.m. ET Thursday alongside Jon Rahm and Brandt Snedeker.