Pettersson First to the Finish Line at Chrysler

By Sports NetworkOctober 30, 2005, 5:00 pm
2005 Chrysler ChampionshipPALM HARBOR, Fla. -- Carl Pettersson only managed an even-par 71 on Sunday, but it was enough to give him his first PGA Tour victory at the Chrysler Championship. He finished at 9-under-par 275, which was good for a one-shot win over Chad Campbell at the Copperhead Course at Westin Innisbrook Resort.
 
'I don't really know what to say right now,' admitted Pettersson, who pocketed $954,000 for the win. 'It feels fantastic. It hasn't quite sunk in yet. A real special day.'
 
Carl Pettersson
Carl Pettersson moved from 98th to 43rd on the money list.
Campbell nearly caught Pettersson with three birdies in his final five holes, but his 4-under 67 came up just short. Campbell can take some solace in his runner-up finish. The $572,400 second-place check moved Campbell inside the top-30 on the PGA Tour money list and got him into next week's Tour Championship.
 
'I'm pretty happy with myself to be able to get that done,' said Campbell, who won the Tour Championship two years ago. 'Winning is first, but to get myself into the Tour Championship...that was one of my main goals this week.'
 
Tag Ridings came into the week 126th on the money list with the top-125 retaining their cards after next week. He shot a 4-under 67 to tie for third and comfortably get inside the top-125.
 
'Next week, I get to go play my first golf tournament on tour without having to focus on making it inside the top-125,' said Ridings. 'I can just go out there and just play.'
 
Tim Herron (70) was also part of the group that tied for third and he, like Campbell, vaulted into the top-30 and will play at East Lake Golf Club next week.
 
Shigeki Maruyama, who bogeyed two of his last three holes on Sunday, and Geoff Ogilvy were bounced from the top-30.
 
Ridings and Herron were joined in third by Hidemichi Tanaka (67), Stewart Cink (67), Bo Van Pelt (70), Tom Pernice, Jr. (72) and overnight co-leader Steve Lowery (75). The group came in at 5-under-par 279.
 
Pettersson, who shared the top spot on the leaderboard with Lowery after the third round, had to overcome not just Campbell's late charge, but an early tie with Lowery.
 
Things changed quickly at the par-3 eighth. The two were tied and Lowery found a bunker off the tee. Pettersson was in a different trap and came up 30 feet short of the stick with his sand shot.
 
Lowery caught his ball thin and it flew over the green. His third shot did not reach the green, then his fourth ran 30 feet long. Lowery missed that putt for double bogey and finally tapped in for a triple, essentially knocking him out of the tournament.
 
Pettersson converted his 30-footer for par and had control of the tournament. At least until Campbell started making birdies on the back nine.
 
Pettersson, playing several groups behind Campbell, holed a 6-foot par save at the 10th to remain two ahead, but Campbell birdied the 11th and 12th holes to reach 6 under for the championship.
 
Campbell sank a 16-foot birdie putt at the 14th to get to 7 under and trail by one. He rolled in a 40-footer for birdie at No. 15 to join Pettersson in first at minus-8.
 
Campbell found trouble at the 16th when his drive landed in the left rough. He missed a 12-footer for par short to fall one behind. That margin was extended by Pettersson when he two-putted the 14th green for birdie.
 
It looked like the cushion would shrink when Pettersson badly missed the green right at the 15th. He hit a delicate pitch that stopped a foot from the hole and he tapped in the great par save.
 
'I knew there was a chance I could pull it off,' said Pettersson, referring to his spectacular shot at 15. 'But, I would have been happy with 10 feet past the hole.'
 
Campbell applied the pressure with an 11-foot birdie putt at the closing hole. Pettersson looked like he would give a stroke up at 16, but he holed a clutch 10-footer from the fringe to save par.
 
At the last, Pettersson ran his 21-foot birdie putt 3 feet by. He converted the par putt and become a first-time winner on the PGA Tour.
 
'It was a little easier in my dreams,' joked Pettersson, a Swede who has lived in the United States since he was a teenager. 'It's a fantastic feeling and tough to describe.'
 
Sean O'Hair (69), Jeff Brehaut (72) and Daniel Chopra (73) shared 10th place at minus-4.
 
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    Tiger Tracker: 147th Open Championship

    By Tiger TrackerJuly 20, 2018, 2:30 pm

    Tiger Woods shot his second consecutive 70 on Friday at Carnoustie and enters weekend play at even par for the championship, still in contention for major No. 15.


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    Scott and Sunesson a one-week partnership

    By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 2:13 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Adam Scott has been in between caddies for the last month and went with a bold stand-in for this week’s Open Championship, coaxing veteran looper Fanny Sunesson out of retirement to work for him at Carnoustie.

    Sunesson caddied for Nick Faldo in his prime, as the duo won four major titles together. She also worked for Henrik Stenson and Sergio Garcia before a back injury forced her to retire.

    But for this week’s championship, Scott convinced the Swede to return to the caddie corps. The results have been impressive, with the Australian following an opening 71 with a second-round 70 for a tie for 16th place.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    “It's been going great. Fanny is, obviously, a fantastic caddie, and to be able to have that experience out there with me is certainly comforting,” Scott said. “We've gotten along really well. She's picked up on my game quickly, and I think we think about things in a very similar way.”

    Scott was also asked about a potential long-term partnership between the duo, but he didn’t sound hopeful.

    “It's just for this week,” he said. “It would be up to her, but I don't think she's making plans of a comeback. I was being a bit opportunistic in contacting her and coaxing her out of retirement, I guess. But I think she's having a good week. We'll just take it one week at the moment.”

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    After tense Augusta Sunday, Rory ready to be aggressive

    By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 1:51 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Rory McIlroy temporarily lost his superpowers during the Masters.  

    In one of the most surprising rounds of the year, he played tentatively and carefully during the final day. Squaring off against the major-less Patrick Reed, on the brink of history, with the backing of nearly the entire crowd, it was McIlroy who shrank in the moment, who looked like the one searching for validation. He shot a joyless 74 and wound up six shots behind Reed.

    No, the final round was nowhere near as dispiriting as the finale in 2011, but McIlroy still sulked the following week. He binge-watched TV shows. Devoured a few books. Guzzled a couple of bottles of wine. His pity party lasted a few days, until his wife, Erica, finally dragged him out of the house for a walk.

    Some deeper introspection was required, and McIlroy revealed a healthier self-analysis Friday at Carnoustie. He diagnosed what went wrong at Augusta, and then again two months later at the U.S. Open, where he blew himself out of the tournament with an opening 80.

    “I was worrying too much about the result, not focusing on the process,” he said. “Sunday at Augusta was a big learning curve for me because, even if I hadn’t won that tournament, but I went down swinging and aggressive and committing to every shot, I would have walked away a lot happier.”


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    And so McIlroy has a new mantra this week at The Open.

    Let it go.

    Don’t hold back. Don’t worry about the repercussions. Don’t play scared.

    “I’m committed to making sure, even if I don’t play my best golf and don’t shoot the scores I want, I’m going to go down swinging, and I’m going to go down giving my best,” he said. “The result is the byproduct of all the little things you do to lead up to that. Sometimes I’ve forgotten that, and I just need to get back in that mindset.”

    It’s worked through two rounds, even after the cool, damp conditions led McIlroy to abandon his ultra-aggressive strategy. He offset a few mistakes with four birdies, shooting a second consecutive 69 to sit just a couple of shots off the lead.

    During a sun-splashed first round, McIlroy gleefully banged driver on almost every hole, flying or skirting the bunkers that dot these baked-out, undulating fairways. He wasn’t particularly accurate, but he also didn’t need to be, as the thin, wispy rough enabled every player to at least advance their approach shots near the green.

    Friday’s weather presented a different challenge. A steady morning rain took some of the fire out of parched fairways, but the cooler temperatures also reduced much of the bombers’ hang time. Suddenly, all of the bunkers were in play, and McIlroy needed to adjust his driver-heavy approach (he hit only six) on the fly.

    “It just wasn’t worth it,” he said.

    McIlroy hit a few “skanky” shots, in his words, but even his bigger misses – on the sixth and 17th holes – were on the proper side, allowing him to scramble for par and keep the round going.

    It’s the fifth time in his career that he’s opened a major with back-to-back rounds in the 60s. He’s gone on to win three of the previous four – the lone exception that disastrous final round (80) at Augusta in 2011.

    “I don’t want to say easy,” he said, “but it’s felt comfortable.”

    The weekend gets uncomfortable for everyone, apparently even four-time major winners who, when in form, ooze confidence and swagger.

    Once again McIlroy has that look at a major.

    The only thing left to do?

    Let it go.

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    Z. Johnson may have to pay for the jet home

    By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 1:23 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Zach Johnson will have some bragging rights when he gets back to the ultimate golf frat house on Friday after a second-round 67 moved him into the lead at The Open.

    Johnson is rooming with Jordan Spieth, Jason Dufner, Kevin Kisner, Jimmy Walker, Justin Thomas and Rickie Fowler this week at Carnoustie. It’s a tradition that began two years ago at Royal Troon.

    Kisner joked on Thursday after he took the first-round lead that the perks for the house/tournament front-runner were limited: “I probably get to eat first,” he said.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    There is, however, one running wager.

    “Two years ago we, I don't know if you call it bet, but agreement that, if you win, you get the jet and you buy it, so we go home,” said Johnson, who added that because of varying travel arrangements, the wager might not be needed this year. “I didn't pay last year. Somebody else did.”

    Spieth won last year’s championship at Royal Birkdale.

    Despite the expense, Johnson said he didn’t know how much it costs to charter a private flight back to the United States, but it’s a good problem to have.

    “I’d be happy to fork it over,” he smiled.