TOUR Notes Johnson Seeking Ga Trifecta

By Pga Tour MediaSeptember 11, 2007, 4:00 pm
News and notes from PGA TOUR officials for the PGA, Champions and Nationwide tours.
PGA Tour (75x100) PGA TOUR:
  • Zach Johnson has a chance at winning three tournaments this year in the state of Georgia when he tees it up this week at THE TOUR Championship presented by Coca-Cola. Earlier this year he won the Masters Tournament and the AT&T Classic. If he does so, hell be the first TOUR player to win three events in the same state in the same season since Tom Watson captured three titles in California in 1980.
  • More on Johnson: If he wins this week, hell have two wins this season in Atlanta. The last player to win two events in the same city in the same year was Tiger Woods who won twice in San Diego in 2003. By the way, Phil Mickelson won twice in Atlanta back in 2000.
  • Only two players have recorded Top-10 finishes in each of the three PGA TOUR Playoff events'Steve Stricker and Rory Sabbatini.
  • This weeks field for the final PGA TOUR Playoff event for the FedExCup features 30 players who hail from nine countries. Theres one rookie (Brandt Snedeker) and 24 players ranked among the Top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking, including the top 13 players.
  • There are eight first-time participants in this weeks TOUR Championship'Aaron Baddeley, Jonathan Byrd, Hunter Mahan, Justin Rose, Heath Slocum, Brandt Snedeker, Camilo Villegas and Boo Weekley.
  • With his victory last week at the BMW Championship, Tiger Woods now has seven tournaments that hes won at least four times each. He has six wins each at the World Golf Championships-CA Championship and Bridgestone Invitational. He has five wins at the Buick Invitational and four each at the PGA Championship, Masters, Arnold Palmer Invitational and BMW Championship.
  • More on Tiger: He has six wins this season, marking the fifth time in his career hes had at least that many wins in one year. Only Sam Snead, who won six or more events in a year six times, has done it more.
  • The top four players entering this weeks TOUR Championship presented by Coca-Cola'Tiger Woods, Steve Stricker, Phil Mickelson and Rory Sabbatini'finished in exactly that order earlier this year at the Wachovia Championship.

    Champions Tour CHAMPIONS TOUR:
  • The Champions Tour is off this week and only five events remain to qualify for the season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship.
  • Jeff Sluman makes his Champions Tour debut this week at the Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn. Sluman won six times on the PGA TOUR, including the 1988 PGA Championship. Hell serve as Jack Nicklaus Captains Assistant for the third time in the upcoming Presidents Cup matches.
  • Theres 240 Charles Schwab Cup points available this week to the winner which means that Jay Haas lead is safe for at least another week. Haas has a 258-point lead over Brad Bryant and a 437-point lead over Loren Roberts as the season winds down.
  • The last two winners of the Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn ended long winless streaks. Jay Haas won the 2005 event for his first win in a TOUR-sponsored event since 1993 and Andy Bean won last years tournament for his first win since 1986.

    Nationwide Tour NATIONWIDE TOUR:
  • Two members of the Class of 2006 have advanced all the way to the final week of the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup. Rookie Brandt Snedeker and Boo Weekley are among the final 30 players competing this week at THE TOUR Championship presented by Coca-Cola.
  • When Franklin Langham won last weeks Utah EnergySolutions Championship it came 14 years, one month and two days after his first win on the Nationwide Tour, the 1993 Permian Basin Open. Thats the longest time between first and last victory in Nationwide Tour history.
  • This weeks Oregon Classic presented by Kendall Automotive Group will feature every winner on the 2007 Nationwide Tour with the exception of recent PGA TOUR graduate Nick Flanagan and Paul Claxton. The field also boasts 48 of the Top 50 money winners, with Flanagan and Claxton again the exceptions.
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    What's in the bag: CareerBuilder winner Rahm

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 22, 2018, 10:37 pm

    Jon Rahm defeated Andrew Landry in a playoff to earn his second PGA Tour title at the CareerBuilder Challenge. Here's what's in his bag:

    Driver: TaylorMade M4 (9.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

    Fairway wood: TaylorMade M3 (19 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

    Irons: TaylorMade P790 (3), P750 (4-PW), with Project X 6.5 shafts

    Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (52, 56 degrees), Milled Grind Hi-Toe (60 degrees), with Project X 6.5 shafts

    Putter: TaylorMade Spider Tour Red

    Ball: TaylorMade TP5x

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    Strange irked by Rahm-Landry friendly playoff

    By Jason CrookJanuary 22, 2018, 9:45 pm

    Curtis Strange knows a thing or two about winning golf tournaments, and based on his reaction to the CareerBuilder Challenge playoff on Sunday, it’s safe to say he did things a little differently while picking up 17 PGA Tour victories in his Hall-of-Fame career.

    While Jon Rahm and Andrew Landry were “battling” through four extra holes, Strange, 62, tweeted his issues with the duo’s constant chit-chat and friendly banter down the stretch at La Quinta Country Club, where Rahm eventually came out on top.

    The two-time U.S. Open champ then engaged with some followers to explain his point a little more in depth.

    So, yeah ... don't think he's changing his perspective on this topic anytime soon ever.

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    Randall's Rant: The Euros won't just roll over

    By Randall MellJanuary 22, 2018, 9:36 pm

    The Ryder Cup may not be the King Kong of golf events yet, but you can hear the biennial international team event thumping its chest a full eight months out.

    As anticipation for this year’s big events goes, there is more buzz about Europe’s bid to hold off a rejuvenated American effort in Paris in September than there is about the Masters coming up in April.

    Thank Europe’s phenomenal success last weekend for that.

    And Rory McIlroy’s impassioned remarks in Abu Dhabi.

    And the provocative bulletin board material a certain Sports Illustrated writer provided the Europeans a couple months ago, with a stinging assault on the Euro chances that read like an obituary.

    McIlroy was asked in a news conference before his 2018 debut last week what he was most excited about this year.

    The Ryder Cup topped his list.

    Though McIlroy will be trying to complete the career Grand Slam at Augusta National come April, he talked more about the Ryder Cup than he did any of the game’s major championships.

    When asked a follow-up about the American team’s resurgence after a task-force overhaul and the injection of young, new star power, McIlroy nearly started breaking down the matchup. He talked about the young Americans and how good they are.

    “Yeah, the Americans have been, obviously, very buoyant about their chances and whatever, but it’s never as easy as that. ... The Ryder Cup’s always close,” McIlroy said. “I think we’ll have a great team, and it definitely won’t be as easy as they think it’s going to be.”

    McIlroy may have been talking about Alan Shipnuck’s bold prediction after the American Presidents Cup rout last fall.

    Or similar assertions from TV analysts.

    “The Ryder Cup is dead – you just don’t know it yet,” Shipnuck wrote. “One of the greatest events in sport is on the verge of irrelevancy. The young, talented, hungry golfers from the United States, benefitting from the cohesive leadership of the Task Force era, are going to roll to victory in 2018 in Paris.”

    European Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn won’t find words that will motivate the Euros more than that as he watches his prospective players jockey to make the team.

    And, boy, did they jockey last weekend.

    The Euros dominated across the planet, not that they did it with the Ryder Cup as some rallying cry, because they didn’t. But it was a heck of an encouraging start to the year for Bjorn to witness.

    Spain’s Jon Rahm won the CareerBuilder Challenge on the PGA Tour, England’s Tommy Fleetwood started the week at Abu Dhabi paired with American and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and won the European Tour event, and Spain’s Sergio Garcia won the Singapore Open in a rout on the Asian Tour.

    And McIlroy looked close to being in midseason form, tying for third in his first start in three months.

    Yes, it’s only January, and the Ryder Cup is still a long way off, with so much still to unfold, but you got an early sense from McIlroy how much defending European turf will mean to him and the Euros in Paris in September.

    The Masters is great theater, the U.S. Open a rigorous test, The Open and the PGA Championship historically important, too, but the Ryder Cup touches a nerve none of those do.

    The Ryder Cup stokes more fervor, provokes more passion and incites more vitriol than any other event in golf.

    More bulletin board material, too.

    Yeah, it’s a long way off, but you can already hear the Ryder Cup’s King Kong like footsteps in its distant approach. Watching how the American and European teams come together will be an ongoing drama through spring and summer.

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    Quail Hollow officials promise players easier conditions

    By Rex HoggardJanuary 22, 2018, 9:14 pm

    Quail Hollow Club - a staple on the PGA Tour since 2003 - debuted as a longer, tougher version of itself at last year’s PGA Championship, receiving mixed reviews from players.

    The course played to a lengthened 7,600 yards at last year’s PGA and a 73.46 stroke average, the toughest course in relation to par on Tour in 2017. As a result, it left some players less than excited to return to the Charlotte, N.C.-area layout later this spring for the Wells Fargo Championship.

    It’s that lack of enthusiasm that led officials at Quail Hollow to send a video to players saying, essentially, that the course players have lauded for years will be back in May.

    The video, which includes Quail Hollow president Johnny Harris and runs nearly five minutes, begins with an explanation of how the first hole, which played as a 524-yard par 4 at the PGA, will play much shorter at the Wells Fargo Championship.

    “I had a number of my friends who were playing in the tournament tell me that tee was better suited as a lemonade stand,” Harris joked of the new tee box on the fourth hole. “I doubt we’ll ever see that tee used again in competition.”

    Harris also explained that the greens, which became too fast for some, will be “softer” for this year’s Wells Fargo Championship.