Jacobsen Shoots Out of Greensboro Gates

By Sports NetworkOctober 16, 2003, 4:00 pm
GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Peter Jacobsen fired a 9-under-par 63 on Thursday to take the first-round lead of the Chrysler Classic of Greensboro. He owns a one-shot lead over Stephen Ames at Forest Oaks Country Club.
David Toms, a two-time winner on the PGA Tour in 2003, and Shigeki Maruyama share third place at 7-under-par 65. John E. Morgan, Jonathan Byrd, Dicky Pride and Paul Gow are tied for fifth at minus-6.
Jacobsen started on the second nine Thursday and flew out of the gate. He collected six birdies in his first six holes which is a career best, topping the five in a row he had in the first round last week in the Las Vegas Invitational.
Jacobsen dropped a shot at the 16th but reclaimed the lost stroke one hole later to make the turn at 6-under-par 30.
At the first hole, Jacobsen sank a 15-footer for birdie, then parred his next three holes. He rolled in a 12-foot birdie putt at the fifth then knocked his approach to tap-in range to set up birdie at the seventh.
His 3-iron missed the green at the eighth hole and he took bogey but once again rebounded. At the par-5 ninth, Jacobsen holed a 20-footer for birdie to go one clear of Ames.
Jacobsen won the Greater Hartford Open earlier this season for his first victory on tour since 1995. He underwent slumps and a hip operation but is now in the midst of a great run on tour.
'When I won at the GHO earlier this year, that changed a lot of my focus,' admitted Jacobsen. 'Yes, you want to be able to be in the World Golf Championship events, you want to qualify for the major championship events, and I would include the Tour Championship as a major event on our tour. So any time you win and have a good year, you look even higher and you set your sights higher.'
Jacobsen was also gracious to Davis Love III on Thursday. Love did some re- design work to Oaks Country Club over the winter, including restructuring all 18 greens.
'Davis has retained a lot of the old course flavor, but also added a lot of variety,' Jacobsen said. 'The golf course is more like a roller coaster. That's exciting to a golfer, nobody wants to play the same hole over and over.'
Ames was flawless on Thursday with five birdies on his front nine and three on the back. The native of Trinidad has only two top-10s on tour in 2003 and none since Bay Hill in March.
'I've always enjoyed playing the golf course,' said Ames. 'Now that the golf course itself has changed quite a bit, which is nice, and I think a lot of players will enjoy it in the future.'
Toms only made the turn at 2 under but tallied five birdies in his first six holes on the back nine.
'I drove the ball well today,' said Toms, the 2001 PGA champion. 'I could shoot at some of the flags in the corners. I took my chances when I could and backed off when I needed to.'
Maruyama recorded seven birdies against no bogeys for his share of third place.
Brad Faxon, Anthony Painter, Kenichi Kuboya and John Huston, who won the Southern Farm Bureau Classic two weeks ago, share ninth place at 5-under-par 67.
Love only managed a 2-under 70 in his opening round at his course.
Rocco Mediate, the 2002 winner, shot an even-par 72 and is part of a logjam tied for 81st.
Related Links:
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    Singh's lawsuit stalls as judge denies motion

    By Rex HoggardJanuary 23, 2018, 7:54 pm

    Vijay Singh’s attempts to speed up the proceedings in his ongoing lawsuit against the PGA Tour have been stalled, again.

    Singh – who filed the lawsuit in New York Supreme Court in May 2013 claiming the Tour recklessly administered its anti-doping program when he was suspended, a suspension that was later rescinded – sought to have the circuit sanctioned for what his attorneys argued was a frivolous motion, but judge Eileen Bransten denied the motion earlier this month.

    “While the court is of the position it correctly denied the Tour’s motion to argue, the court does not agree that the motion was filed in bad faith nor that it represents a ‘persistent pattern of repetitive or meritless motions,’” Bransten said.

    It also doesn’t appear likely the case will go to trial any time soon, with Bransten declining Singh’s request for a pretrial conference until a pair of appeals that have been sent to the court’s appellate division have been decided.

    “What really should be done is settle this case,” Bransten said during the hearing, before adding that it is, “unlikely a trail will commence prior to 2019.”

    The Tour’s longstanding policy is not to comment on ongoing litigation, but earlier this month commissioner Jay Monahan was asked about the lawsuit.

    “I'll just say that we're going through the process,” Monahan said. “Once you get into a legal process, and you've been into it as long as we have been into it, I think it's fair to assume that we're going to run it until the end.”

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    Videos and images from Tiger's Tuesday at Torrey

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 23, 2018, 7:45 pm

    Tiger Woods played a nine-hole practice round Tuesday at Torrey Pines South, site of this week's Farmers Insurance Open. Woods is making his first PGA Tour start since missing the cut in this event last year. Here's a look at some images and videos of Tiger, via social media:

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    Power Rankings: 2018 Farmers Insurance Open

    By Will GrayJanuary 23, 2018, 6:59 pm

    The PGA Tour remains in California this week for the Farmers Insurance Open. A field of 156 players will tackle the North and South Courses at Torrey Pines, with weekend play exclusively on the South Course.

    Be sure to join the all-new Golf Channel Fantasy Challenge - including a new One & Done game offering - to compete for prizes and form your own leagues, and log on to www.playfantasygolf.com to submit your picks for this week's event.

    Jon Rahm won this event last year by three shots over Charles Howell III and C.T. Pan. Here are 10 names to watch in La Jolla:

    1. Jon Rahm: No need to overthink it at the top. Rahm enters as a defending champ for the first time, fresh off a playoff win at the CareerBuilder Challenge that itself was preceded by a runner-up showing at Kapalua. Rahm is perhaps the hottest player in the field, and with a chance to become world No. 1 should be set for another big week.

    2. Jason Day: The Aussie has missed the cut here the last two years, and he hasn't played competitively since November. But he ended a disappointing 2017 on a slight uptick, and his Torrey Pines record includes three straight top-10s from 2013-15 that ended with his victory three years ago.

    3. Justin Rose: Rose ended last year on a tear, with three victories over his final six starts including two in a row in Turkey and China. The former U.S. Open winner has the patience to deal with a brutal layout like the South Course, as evidenced by his fourth-place showing at this event a year ago.

    4. Rickie Fowler: This tournament has become somewhat feast-or-famine for Fowler, who is making his ninth straight start at Torrey Pines. The first four in that run all netted top-20 finishes, including two top-10s, while the last four have led to three missed cuts and a T-61. After a win in the Bahamas and T-4 at Kapalua, it's likely his mini-slump comes to an end.

    5. Brandt Snedeker: Snedeker has become somewhat of a course specialist at Torrey Pines in recent years, with six top-10 finishes over the last eight years including wins in both 2012 and 2016. While he missed much of the second half of 2017 recovering from injury and missed the cut last week, Snedeker is always a threat to contend at this particular event.

    6. Hideki Matsuyama: Matsuyama struggled to find his footing after a near-miss at the PGA Championship, but he appears to be returning to form. The Japanese phenom finished T-4 at Kapalua and has put up solid results in two of his four prior trips to San Diego, including a T-16 finish in his 2014 tournament debut. Matsuyama deserves a look at any event that puts a strong emphasis on ball-striking.

    7. Tony Finau: Finau has the length to handle the difficult demands of the South Course, and his results have gotten progressively better each time around: T-24 in 2015, T-18 in 2016 and T-4 last year. Finau is coming off the best season of his career, one that included a trip to the Tour Championship, and he put together four solid rounds at the Sony Open earlier this month.

    8. Charles Howell III: Howell is no stranger to West Coast golf, and his record at this event since 2013 includes three top-10 finishes highlighted by last year's runner-up showing. Howell chased a T-32 finish in Hawaii with a T-20 finish last week in Palm Springs, his fourth top-20 finish this season.

    9. Marc Leishman: Leishman was twice a runner-up at this event, first in 2010 and again in 2014, and he finished T-20 last year. The Aussie is coming off a season that included two wins, and he has amassed five top-10s in his last eight worldwide starts dating back to the Dell Technologies Championship in September.

    10. Gary Woodland: Woodland played in the final group at this event in 2014 before tying for 10th, and he was one shot off the lead entering the final round in 2016 before Mother Nature blew the entire field sideways. Still, the veteran has three top-20s in his last four trips to San Diego and finished T-7 two weeks ago in Honolulu.

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    Davis on distance: Not 'necessarily good for the game'

    By Will GrayJanuary 23, 2018, 6:28 pm

    It's a new year, but USGA executive Mike Davis hasn't changed his views on the growing debate over distance.

    Speaking with Matt Adams on SiriusXM PGA Tour Radio, Davis didn't mince words regarding his perception that increased distance has had a negative impact on the game of golf, and he reiterated that it's a topic that the USGA and R&A plan to jointly address.

    "The issue is complex. It's important, and it's one that we need to, and we will, face straight on," Davis said. "I think on the topic of distance, we've been steadfast to say that we do not think increased distance is necessarily good for the game."

    Davis' comments echoed his thoughts in November, when he stated that the impact of increased distance has been "horrible" for the game. Those comments drew a strong rebuke from Titleist CEO Wally Uihlein, who claimed there was "no evidence" to support Davis' argument.

    That argument, again reiterated Tuesday, centers on the rising costs associated with both acquiring and maintaining increased footprints for courses. Davis claimed that 1 in 4 courses in the U.S. is currently "not making money," and noted that while U.S. Open venues were 6,800-6,900 yards at the start of his USGA tenure, the norm is now closer to 7,400-7,500 yards.

    "You ask yourself, 'What has this done for the game? How has that made the game better?'" Davis said. "I think if we look at it, and as we look to the future, we're asking ourselves, saying, 'We want the game of golf to be fun.' We want it to continue to be challenging and really let your skills dictate what scores you should shoot versus necessarily the equipment.

    "But at the same time, we know there are pressures on golf courses. We know those pressures are going to become more acute."