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Bob Burns Up Disney

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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. ' After making 19 birdies in three rounds and still missing the cut in last week's Invensys Classic at Las Vegas, Bob Burns made a declaration to his caddie: 'I'm going to win next week.
 
The power of positive thinking.
 
Burns, the 1998 Buy.Com Tour Player of the Year, became the 16th first-time winner on tour this season by shooting 7-under 65 Sunday to win the Disney Golf Classic, doing so in his 173rd career tour event.
 
That you can win after saying you are going to win, that is kind of what happened this week, Burns said. Maybe that is what I should do every week.
 
The worlds 241st-ranked player finished at 25-under-par 263, one stroke clear of overnight leader Chris DiMarco (68). World No. 1 Tiger Woods (63) finished alone in third, at 23-under.
 
'My hat is off to him,' DiMarco said of Burns. 'He came out here and beat me today and that's what it's all about out here.'
 
In my mind it was so simple, Burns said. Maybe I predestined myself this week to win by saying I was going to win and I went out and that is all I thought about.
 
Premium Video - Subscription Required Bob Burns talks about his win.
 
Woods started the day six back of DiMarco, and tied his career-best final-round score on tour. He made six birdies in a seven-hole stretch starting at the fourth, and added more pressure with birdies on 13 and 14.
 
After a ninth birdie at 17, he pulled a six-footer for birdie at the last to come up short of his third Disney title.
 
Its crazy to think thats the number you have to shoot to have a chance, said Woods, who has now finished outside the top 4 only twice since The Players Championship.
 
Thankfully, it was only 72 holes, Burns said. Give (Woods) nine more holes and he would have had it.
 
Burns, who entered the week 118th on the money list, earned $666,000 to surpass the $1 million plateau for the season. He has now made more money this year than in his previous five seasons combined.
 
But more importantly, he secured his tour playing privilege for the next two years, and wont have to attend Q-School, like he did in 1999 and 2001.
 
'I played year-to-year so much in my career, trying to finish in the top 125, trying to get over an injury, trying to get over some personal problems, trying to get over something each year and just maintain my playing privileges, said Burns, who got married less than two months ago.
 
Were trying to start a family. We got a lot of plans for both of us. It helps, definitely helps.
 
DiMarco looked predestined to win this week after opening in 64-63. But he could only manage a 1-under 35 on the front side both Saturday and Sunday. His penchant for pars allowed the field to catch, and eventually surpass him.
 
As many as nine players reached the 20-under mark as the final pair hit the inward half, with Burns leading the way at minus 23 thanks to his third straight birdie at the par-4 11th.
 
He continued to climb the leaderboard with a 15-foot birdie at 13. He said he was advised by his caddie not to look at the leaderboard until he reached 24-under.
 
We looked at 24. Next hole I birdied to go to 25, he said.
 
With Burns now at 25-under, Woods needed to birdie 18 to have an outside chance of winning. He stuffed his approach shot to six feet, but ran his last-chance effort two feet past the hole. He had to settle for par, and set the clubhouse target at 23-under.
 
I figured I needed to make that putt to have a chance, Woods said. I dont think that Ive played a round where I fired at this many flags, not used to doing that. But you have to.
 
DiMarco wasnt able to match the exhausting pace he set the first two days. Instead, he was simply exasperated. DiMarco, who made only one bogey over his final 58 holes, made just eight birdies over the weekend ' after making 17 birdies and an eagle in rounds one and two.
 
Burns parred his final four holes, but DiMarco's chance to add to his Phoenix Open victory earlier in the season ended when he missed an eight-footer for birdie at 17. He birdied the last, but it only managed to break a second-place tie with Woods.
 
'I think that's the third time I've shot 24-under and lost,' DiMarco said.
 
Burns had a chance to win earlier in the year. After acing the par-3 11th to take a two-shot lead in the final round of the Kemper Open, he made double bogey at the par-4 16th when his approach shot ' which should have finished some 15 feet from the hole ' bounded off the dried-out greens and into a trough.
 
He eventually finished tied for third, but as he explained this past Thursday: 'I hit the shot I was trying to hit in the fairway (on 16)...so hopefully, Im right there again with three holes to play, you know, and Ill be able to pull off the shot that I want to.
 
This time it wasn't one shot in particular; it was 65 of them that got the job done.
 
It has been a long time and a lot of balls hit and a lot of putts on the practice greens and a few sleepless nights and early tee times, but here we are, he said. Thats what its all about.
 
Final results from the Disney Golf Classic