Missing from this strange sequence of events is that Duval had already been rejected once. When the exemption was awarded to him on Monday night, his West Coast schedule already was set.
“It was entirely unplanned,” Duval said on Tuesday from his home in Denver. “I had written for an exemption and was turned down, and other things fell into place.”
The former British Open champion ran out of status last year when he failed to finish in the top 125 on the money list and didn’t earn a card from Q-School. He is having to rely on sponsor exemptions and his status as a past champion, and he’s having relatively good success.
Just not in San Diego.
The PGA Tour players who initially received exemptions to Torrey Pines were John Daly, Rocco Mediate and Billy Mayfair. The tournament had two extra exemptions to award on Monday, and gave them to Duval and Tom Pernice Jr.
Duval missed the cut on Sunday at the Bob Hope Classic, flew home with his family and then learned a spot was waiting for him in San Diego. Trouble was, he already had accepted exemptions to Los Angeles and Pebble Beach, and he’s in the tournament in Mexico. To play in San Diego would have meant five straight weeks.
“That’s not conducive to your golf game, mental game, anything,” Duval said. “I feel bad about it, but I already had been turned down once and I had to build my schedule around that.”
CHARITY BOOST: In a tough year for charity, Billy Andrade and Brad Faxon had a record year in New England.
The Andrade-Faxon Charities for Children distributed more than $321,135 to 52 organizations that serve at-risk children in Rhode Island and southeastern Massachusetts.
Money comes from their CVS Charity Classic in the summer and from individual contributions. They have awarded more than $4 million since they created the charity in 1994.
“These grants will help meet the basic needs of our community’s children,” Faxon said. “We try to lessen the burden of hunger and illness so kids can be kids.”
VETERANS: Bobby Mitchell, a two-time winner on the PGA Tour, once showed up at Quail Hollow as a 60-year-old who was the 61st alternate. Because so many alternates didn’t show up, he was next in line when the final group teed off.
That wouldn’t happen under a new policy in the PGA Tour regulations this year.
To be eligible as an alternate as a past champion or a veteran (making 150 cuts in a career), a player must have signed up for Q-School in at least one of the previous two years, made a cut on the PGA Tour or Nationwide Tour in the previous two calendar years, or played in five or more tournaments on either tour the previous year.
The change should help Lance Ten Broeck, the caddie for Jesper Parnevik who played in the Texas Open last year under such circumstances. He gets credit for playing the Texas Open in 2009. Plus, he played the Reno-Tahoe Open and a Champions Tour event in Minnesota in 2008.
DIVOTS: The PGA Tour’s final tally for charity in 2009 was $108 million, with the Valero Texas Open the top tournament at $8 million. … Paul Lawrie signed an equipment deal with Wilson Golf. Lawrie last played Wilson when he won the British Open at Carnoustie in 1999. … Four weeks into the PGA Tour season, Pat Perez is the only player to enter every event this year.
STAT: Tim Clark of South Africa has more runner-up finishes (eight) than any other active player without a PGA Tour victory. Next on the list is Brett Quigley with five.