Older Players Hold the Key at FedEx


The PGA Tour moves this week to the TPC of Southwind, where No. 3 David Toms and No. 8 Nick Price are set to tee it up near Memphis, Tenn.
The field is liberally sprinkled with players who are over 30, and recent history says that the winner will comes from that group. Last year's winner, Bob Estes, is 36 years old. Since the tournament moved from Colonial to Southwind in 1989, a host of over-30s have won here - John Mahaffey, Tom Kite, Fred Couples, Jay Haas, Jim Gallagher, John Cook, Greg Norman, Nick Price, Ted Tryba and Estes.
Haas, Price, Gallagher, Tryba and Estes all return, as well as Notah Begay and Dicky Pride, who were in their 20s when they won.
Estes last year beat 44-year-old Bernhard Langer by one shot to win the championship. He went wire-to-wire for the victory. Six of the top 10 were 40 years or older.
The victory ended a 162-tournament win drought for Estes, dating back to the 1994 Texas Open.
Estes looked like he might win going away after turning a one-stroke lead over John Daly and Scott McCarron into a four-stroke margin through 13 holes of the fourth round. Then, the man who opened the tournament with a course-tying 61 - Estes - made it interesting as he bogeyed two straight holes to trim his lead to just a stroke.
He finished off his victory with tough par saves on Nos. 16 and 17 to pick up the biggest check of his career - $630,000.

'I made it a little tougher than I meant to. I wanted a four- to five-stroke cushion coming down the stretch,' Estes said. 'You only got to win by one, don't you?'
Langer was impressed by Estes' poise. 'He did extremely well,' Langer said. 'It's tough to lead all four days with the stuff that's going on. He had a brilliant round on Thursday and was in the lead the whole week.'