Huge Payoff Waiting in Las Vegas


The glitz and glamour of Las Vegas will be invaded by the casual nature of polos and pleats this week as the PGA Tour heads to Sin City for the $5 million Invensys Las Vegas Classic.
A field of 144 players and 432 amateurs will play on three courses over five days. The par-72 TPC at Summerlin will be the host venue. It will be played exclusively over the final two rounds. However, players will compete on Summerlin, the par-72 Southern Highlands Golf Club and the par-71 TPC at the Canyons Wednesday through Friday.
This is one of only two 90-hole tournaments on the tour schedule (Bob Hope Chrysler Classic is the other).
Bob Estes is the defending champion. He overcame a five-shot deficit Sunday, shooting 9-under 63 to win the event by one over Tom Lehman and Rory Sabbatini.
This is the 20th playing of the event. Jim Furyk is Vegas top showman. He won his first ever tour title here in 1995, and then won back-to-back in 98 and 99.
Tiger Woods also made this his first tour victory, in 1996.
Woods isnt in the field this year, but Furyk is. Furyk is the only player ranked inside the top 10 in the Official World Golf Ranking in attendance this week.
David Duval, PGA champion Rich Beem, Chris DiMarco, last week's winner Charles Howell III and Robert Allenby are also among those competing for the $900,000 first-place prize.
This is one of only three events remaining for players to try and qualify for the Tour Championship. The top 30 on the money list after the Buick Challenge will gain entry into the $5 million finale.
Nos. 28-34 on the money list are in the field, save for No. 29, Kenny Perry.
For those trying to secure their tour cards for 2003, teetering on the top 125 money line, there are four tournaments remaining, including the Southern Farm Bureau Classic, held opposite the Tour Championship.
Nos. 121-131 on the money list will be on hand.
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