Woods Leads Tours Award Winners


Tiger Woods, Hale Irwin and Patrick Moore are the 2002 Players of the Year on the PGA Tour, Champions Tour and Nationwide Tour, respectively.
Woods won the award the the fourth consecutive time - the fifth time in the last six years. He is the only player to have earned the Jack Nicklaus Trophy, symbolic of the Player of the Year, more than twice.
Woods won five times in 2002, including two major championships. He earned $6,912,625 to lead the tour in earnings for the fourth consecutive year, winning the Arnold Palmer Award. His four consecutive titles ties Tom Watson for the most in history.
Woods also won his fourth consecutive Byron Nelson Award for leading the tour scoring average with a 68.56 mark.
'It's always special to have the votes of the other players. I'm especially proud to have won this award four consecutive times,' said Woods. 'It's a great year when you win one major championship, so I was really pleased to win two in 2002, plus three other PGA Tour events.'
Irwin, 57, won his third Jack Nicklaus Trophy as the Champions Tour Player of the Year after win four events in 2002. He joins Lee Trevino as just the second player in Champions Tour history to be Player of the Year on three occasions.
Irwin became the first player in Champions Tour history to top the $3 million mark in season earnings with $3,028,308, nabbing a record-tying third Arnold Palmer Award (Don January did it as well). He also collected his fourth Byron Nelson Trophy as the Tour's leading scorer with a 68.93 average.
He also won the Charles Schwab Cup and becomes the oldest player in the history of the Tour to win any of those titles, much less all of them.
'The 2002 season was very gratifying for me and being named Player of the Year by my peers caps it off. It's especially rewarding as the competition on the Champions Tour gets tougher and tougher each year, which means it's harder to finish on top,' said Irwin. 'The Jack Nicklaus Trophy symbolizes great achievement and to be among those who have received it is an honor.'
Patrick Moore, who began the 2002 season with conditional status on the Nationwide Tour, won three times last year to earn a promotion to the PGA Tour. He led the tour in earnings with $381,965 and scoring average (69.86) and earned Player of the Year honors for his efforts.
Jonathan Byrd won the Buick Challenge and collected $1,462,713 this past year to win PGA Tour Rookie of the Year honors. Morris Hatalsky began the season with no status on the Champions Tour, but played his way onto the Tour and after a win and $1,391,044 in earnings, capped his year with Champions Tour Rookie of the Year honors.
More than 13 years after his last win on the PGA Tour, Gene Sauers returned to the winners circle with his triumph at the Air Canada Championship and was named the tour's Comeback Player of the Year. Hubert Green, who dropped to 51st on the Champions Tour money list in 2001, returned to form in 2002 and finished 16th on the money list. He collected his fourth career Champions Tour title during the year.