Kuchar with new caddie after split with Bennett

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Matt Kuchar confirmed Thursday that he has parted ways with his longtime caddie Lance Bennett. (Getty Images)

PLAYA DEL CARMEN, Mexico – Matt Kuchar has a fresh face on the bag as he makes his season debut this week at the OHL Classic at Mayakoba.

Kuchar opened with a 1-over 71 at El Camaleon and sits seven shots off the early pace in his first PGA Tour action since the Presidents Cup. After the round, he confirmed that he and longtime caddie Lance Bennett have parted ways.

“It’s a hard decision,” Kuchar said. “It’s hard to say, it was just one of those times where it was time to try something different.”

Kuchar’s caddie this week is John Wood, who spent the last nine years working for Hunter Mahan. According to a source close to the situation, Kuchar and Wood have known each other well through past Presidents and Ryder Cups, and the pairing seemed like a natural fit.

Wood will loop for Kuchar this season, but he won’t be on the bag next week at the RSM Classic as he and Jim “Bones” Mackay will both serve as on-course reporters during Golf Channel broadcasts. Kuchar will instead turn to swing coach Chris O’Connell during what amounts to his hometown event.