Sindelar Thrilled at Turning 50

By Associated PressJuly 3, 2008, 4:00 pm
Champions TourENDICOTT, New York -- Birthdays dont seem to phase Joey Sindelar, even the big ones. He was so excited about turning 50 he was gushing about it long before the fact.
The prospect of playing the Champions Tour can have that effect on newcomers to pro golfs senior circuit.
It was probably less stressful because in our world that means you get to be a rookie again, said Sindelar, who celebrated his 50th on March 30. So, there was all kinds of positive impact to go along with a potentially not-so-positive milestone. I probably looked forward to it more than most people.
Sindelar also is looking forward with great anticipation to Friday, when the Dicks Sporting Goods Open begins at En-Joie Golf Club. Sindelar, who won the B.C. Open in 1985 and 1987 on the course before the tournament was eliminated from the PGA TOUR, tees off in mid-morning in a threesome with Andy Bean and defending champion R.W. Eaks.
Youre going to look at two guys who can really play, Sindelar said. I think the folks will be surprised at the level of play. R.W. shot 17 under last year. Thats pretty amazing.
Eaks beat Bruce Vaughan by three shots for his first Champions Tour triumph by making three eagles and 15 birdies, shooting 8 under on both the par 5s and par 4s.
This tour is amazing for those of us who are eligible, said Sindelar, who has won just over $380,000 in his inaugural season. As a pro golfer, unless youve got some kind of hangup or desire to be on the biggest stage in the world'the regular PGA TOUR'this has to be the best job in the world. The guys put it in the hole like you cannot believe.
Including Sindelar, who has three top-5s in eight starts, including a tie for third in the Senior PGA Championship at Oak Hill in May. His new life didnt start out so well, though'he shot 75, 76, 71 to finish in a tie for 61st in his first event, the Cap Cana Championship.
My first two weeks I was not able to get a handle on it, said Sindelar, a seven-time winner on the PGA TOUR. It was a very funny thing. Clearly, in hindsight, I had been staring at that opportunity for way too long. I had been talking about it for several years with my friends, family, anybody who knew me from golf. Youre going to be 50, its going to be great. Youre going to do this, youre going to do that.
I got out there and I was shook. I was very, very nervous those first two weeks. Its funny, non-tour friends of mine found that hard to believe, that I had played competitively my whole life and that I would be whacked-out going on to this new place. That just goes to show you the power of the brain. It became way too important.
The B.C. Open was staged at En-Joie from 1971-2005, when flooding from the Susquehanna River forced the finale of the event to be moved to Turning Stone Resort about 90 miles northeast. Sindelar, who grew up and still lives in Horseheads, hadnt played En-Joie in three years prior to this week and was stunned when he returned.
Its shocking how much improvement theyve made, he said. And thats not compared to last year or the flood years. Thats compared to any of my last 20 years out there. Dicks (Sporting Goods) made a commitment and it shows.
Ironically, the B.C. Open managed to survive for so long without ever having a title sponsor. Its future was placed in doubt when the PGA TOUR moved it opposite the British Open beginning in 2000, which assured it would be dominated by players at the lower reaches of the money list or from the minor leagues of professional golf.
The quaint, small-town feel of the tournament was an anomaly on a circuit dominated by big-money corporate sponsors and network television contracts. Named after the cartoon strip, the event struggled financially in one of the tours smallest markets.
Still, it managed to survive more than three decades and raised more than $8 million for local charities before finally becoming a victim to the major modifications to the tour schedule that began in 2007.
Sindelar likes what has transpired since, especially since Dicks, which was founded in nearby Binghamton, has become that long-sought-after benefactor. The purse this week is $1.6 million, with $240,000 going to the winner.
I just always felt this Champions event might be a better fit, Sindelar said. I just think this is a perfect place for them. I just hope the future is bright.
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    Cabreras win PNC Father/Son Challenge

    By Associated PressDecember 17, 2017, 11:36 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. - Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. closed with a 12-under 60 for a three-shot victory in their debut at the PNC Father/Son Challenge.

    The Cabreras opened with a 59 at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club and were challenged briefly by the defending champions, David Duval and Nick Karavites, in the scramble format Sunday. The Argentines went out in 30, and they had a two-shot lead with Cabrera's son came within an inch of chipping in for eagle on the final hole.

    They finished at 25-under 199 for a three-shot victory over Duval and Karavites, and Bernhard Langer and Jason Langer. The Langer team won in 2014.

    Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara tied for fourth at 21 under with Jerry Pate and Wesley Pate.

    Cabrera wasn't even in the field until two-time U.S. Open champion Curtis Strange and his son, Tom Strange, had to withdraw.

    Duval and his stepson went out in 28, but the Cabreras regained control by starting the back nine with back-to-back birdies, and then making birdies on the 13th, 14th and 16th. The final birdie allowed them to tie the tournament scoring record.

    ''This is certain my best week of the year,'' said Cabrera, the 2009 Masters champion and 2007 U.S. Open champion at Oakmont. ''To play alongside all the legends ... as well as playing alongside my son, has been the greatest week of the year.''

    The popular event is for players who have won a major championship or The Players Championship. It is a scramble format both days.

    In some cases, the major champions lean on the power of their sons for the distance. O'Meara said Saturday that his ''little man'' hit it 58 yards by him on the 18th. And on Sunday, Stewart Cink said son Reagan told him after outdriving him on the opening four holes, ''In this tournament I may be your son, but right now I'm your Daddy!''

    Jack Nicklaus played with his grandson, G.T. They closed with a 64 and tied for 15th in the field of 20 teams.

    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 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.