The playoffs are here and so am I
That's no small feat, as anyone who has ever driven in the New York City area can attest. Of course, the Golf Channel production team provided detailed directions from the Newark airport to the hotel and from the hotel to the golf course, and yes, the roads here are fairly well-marked. What they cannot capture on paper, however, is the Defcon-5-level of urgency with which drivers around here treat their commutes, and the fact that many roads in north Jersey are divided (making U-turns almost impossible), and the frequent lack of warning that your exit is coming up.
But I got here.
'Here' is the magnificent Ridgewood Country Club, tucked away amidst the clutter of Paramus. The 27-hole A.W. Tillinghast layout opened in 1929, but the club itself dates to 1890, and you can feel it as soon as you walk through the gates.
The Barclay's will be contested on a hybrid 18 carved out of the three existing nines, but despite the contrived routing, it's still wonderfully authentic. Narrow fairways lined with towering trees, small bent-grass greens (with some poa annua thrown in), deceiving elevation changes, and not a single McMansion, waste area, or cell tower to spoil the view. This place feels like a perfect site for a U.S. Amateur (which Ridgewood hosted in 1974) or maybe even a Ryder Cup (1935), although many would consider it not brawny enough for either. I'm sure that's one of the reasons why the PGA Tour cobbled together this 'hybrid' 18, which allowed them to extend the old girl to a 7,319 yard, par-71 layout.
By the way, I tweeted this on Tuesday morning: if it stays damp, as it has been for several days, these pros will need a yak and a sherpa to find their way out of the rough. It's the really thick, really green, really gunchy stuff. Even if things get drier the most important stat at The Barclay's will surely be (teeny tiny) greens in regulation.
Lastly, speaking of small – because of all the rain, the pros have been moved up on Ridgewood's driving range to save some valuable turf for the week, which gave Tuesday's crowd the pleasure of watching Dustin Johnson air-mail the back of the range with ... a hybrid. And he wasn't just barely reaching, either. He was sending them halfway up the trees.
Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son
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.
Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?
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
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.
Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational
Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.
The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.