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Finchem Wants Awards Banquet Home

PGA Tour (75x100)The PGA Tour thought it finally found a permanent home for its annual awards presentation. It was held the last two years during the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, a perfect place with so many corporate executives on site.
Now, the tour is trying to arrange a new site for the fifth time in the last six years.
While Pebble Beach typically has strong media coverage and corporate presence from all the CEOs playing in the pro-am, it doesn't make sense to present the Player of the Year award when the player of the year isn't around.
There are growing indications that Tiger Woods will skip Pebble Beach for the first time since he turned pro in 1996.
Woods has had mixed success at Pebble.
While most people recall his spectacular 63-64 weekend in 1997 to finish second, and his stunning comeback in 2000 ' seven strokes behind with seven holes to play ' those were his only two top-10 finishes in six tries at the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.
His cut streak dates to Pebble in 1998, when he withdrew rather than return seven months later to complete the tournament in August.
A year later, Woods shot 78 in the third round, narrowly making the cut.
The poa annua greens are bumpy at best in early February, too inconsistent for some players to develop confidence with their putting.
Woods hasn't announced his plans for Pebble, but the tour already is looking at alternative sites. Officials are meeting this week, and Torrey Pines (Buick Invitational) is the likely place for the 2002 awards presentation.
Since 1997, the awards ceremony has been at La Costa Resort, the World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Fla., Kapalua during the season-opening Mercedes Championships and Pebble Beach the last two years.
The Mercedes seemed like the best this time since it is the first tournament of the year and almost all the PGA Tour winners are at Kapalua. However, PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem is cool to the idea because two years ago hardly any players bothered to get on an elevator at the Ritz-Carlton to attend the banquet.