Plenty of Red in Greensboro

By Sports NetworkOctober 5, 2006, 4:00 pm
2006 Chrysler Classic of GreensboroGREENSBORO, N.C. -- Brent Geiberger, the 2004 champion, John Rollins and Nick Watney all fired rounds of 8-under-par 64 on Thursday to share the first-round lead of the Chrysler Classic of Greensboro.
 
John Senden, Robert Gamez, Tag Ridings, Mike Sposa, James Driscoll and Charley Hoffman are knotted in fourth place at 6-under-par 66 at Forest Oaks Country Club.
 
Brent Geiberger
2004 champion Brent Geiberger made eight birdies and no bogeys in the first round.
Thursday saw near perfect weather conditions and, therefore, scoring conditions were optimal. Ninety-eight players broke par in Thursday's opening round.
 
Geiberger parred his first six holes before he knocked an 8-iron to 15 feet to set up birdie at the seventh. He found a bunker with his second at the par-5 ninth, but blasted out to 3 feet for another birdie.
 
He continued his strong play around the turn when he hit a 9-iron 6 feet behind the hole at the 10th. Geiberger converted that birdie putt, then parred 11 before a huge birdie run.
 
Geiberger's 6-iron tee ball at the 12th ran to the back fringe, but he sank the 14-foot birdie putt to reach 4 under par. He two-putted for a birdie at 13, hit an 8-iron inside a foot for a birdie at 14, then made a 5-footer at 15 to cap off four consecutive birdies.
 
The 38-year-old got to 8 under par at the long, par-3 17th. Geiberger played a 3-iron 15 feet left of the hole and converted the breaking birdie putt. He parred the 18th to shoot his lowest round of the season.
 
'That was a nice way to start off the tournament for sure,' said Geiberger. 'I played solid today. I missed a little birdie putt on the third hole and I got a little pissed off and made sure I made some the rest of the way.'
 
This is reminiscent of 2004 as Geiberger came into that event needing a big paycheck to earn his PGA TOUR card for the following year. He won that tournament and now, 144th on the money list, needs a strong finish in 2006 if he is to play the PGA TOUR in 2007.
 
'I haven't really been thinking about it,' said Geiberger. 'I feel pretty comfortable out there playing. It's very similar to '04. I would love to start out the year right now because it would be a completely different story.'
 
Rollins flew out of the gate on Thursday with a 12-foot birdie putt at the first. He parred the next two, but converted a 10-footer for birdie at the par-3 fourth.
 
At the par-4 sixth, Rollins knocked his approach close and tapped in the short birdie putt. He made it two in a row at seven when his 11-foot birdie try found the bottom of the cup. Rollins closed out his front nine in style when his second at the par-5 hole missed the putting surface. He chipped to 8 feet and ran home the birdie putt to make the turn at 5-under-par 31.
 
The second nine featured much of the same for Rollins, who finished 11th on this year's United States Ryder Cup team. He holed a 15-foot birdie putt at No. 11, then took advantage of par -5s on the back nine. Rollins two-putted for birdies at both holes and walked to the par-3 17th tee at 7 under par.
 
Rollins pulled a 3-iron out of the bag at 227-yard 17th and admitted after the round it was the wrong club. He missed the green, then chipped across the green with his second. Rollins almost chipped in for par, but instead tapped in for bogey.
 
He redeemed himself at the par-4 closing hole. Rollins rolled in a 32-foot birdie putt to polish off his 8 under par and join Geiberger atop the leaderboard.
 
'You can't win today, so I knew that even if I made par on 18, I was still in good position,' said Rollins, who won this year's B.C. Open for his second TOUR victory. 'I was disappointed with the tee shot on 17, but I didn't let it get to me.'
 
Watney began on the back nine Thursday and collected a birdie at his first. He added a 12-foot birdie putt at 12, an 8-footer at 13 and a 20-foot putt at 14 to reach 4 under par through his first five holes.
 
Watney tallied one more birdie on his first nine, a 50-footer at the 16th.
 
At the first, Watney sank a 15-foot birdie putt, but dropped a shot when he missed a 5-foot par putt at the third. Watney recorded birdies at four, seven and nine to join the leaders.
 
'I putted very well, made some early so it was nice,' said Watney. 'Putting has kind of been holding me back lately, so it was nice to see some putts fall.'
 
Tim Clark, the top-ranked player in the field at No. 20, shot a 5-under-par 67 and is tied for 10th place with defending champion K.J. Choi, Brian Gay, Jonathan Byrd, Chris Smith, Ryan Moore, Rob Whittaker, Robert Damron, Arjun Atwal, Kris Cox, John Engler and last week's playoff loser, Joe Durant.
 
Related Links:
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    More sun, dry conditions expected early at Open

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 18, 2018, 9:14 am

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – An atypically dry Scottish summer is expected to continue this week at The Open.

    There’s a possibility of a few showers Thursday and Friday, but otherwise conditions are expected to remain dry with temperatures around 70 degrees and winds in the 15-20 mph range.

    The forecast for the opening round at Carnoustie is sunshine with clouds developing later in the day. The high is expected to be around 70 degrees, with winds increasing throughout the day, maxing out at 18 mph.


    Full-field tee times from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    There’s a chance of rain overnight Thursday and into Friday morning, but it’s not expected to slow down the fiery conditions.

    It’s been one of the driest summers in recent memory, leading to fairways that are baked out and fescue rough that is lighter and thinner than in previous years.

    Getty Images

    How to watch The Open on TV and online

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 18, 2018, 8:40 am

    You want to watch the 147th Open? Here’s how you can do it.

    Golf Channel and NBC Sports will be televising 182 hours of overall programming from the men's third major of the year at Carnoustie

    In addition to the traditional coverage, the two networks will showcase three live alternate feeds: marquee groups, featured holes (our new 3-hole channel) and spotlight action. You can also watch replays of full-day coverage, Thursday-Sunday, in the Golf Channel app, NBC Sports apps, and on GolfChannel.com.  

    Here’s the weekly TV schedule, with live stream links in parentheses. You can view all the action on the Golf Channel mobile, as well. Alternate coverage is noted in italics:

    (All times Eastern; GC=Golf Channel; NBC=NBC Sports; GC.com=GolfChannel.com or check the GLE app)

    Monday, July 16

    GC: 7-9AM: Morning Drive (stream.golfchannel.com)

    GC: 9-11AM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

    GC: 7-9PM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)


    Tuesday, July 17

    GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)


    Wednesday, July 18

    GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)


    Thursday, July 19

    GC: Midnight-1:30AM: Midnight Drive (stream.golfchannel.com)

    GC: Day 1: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

    GC.com: Day 1: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

    GC.com: Day 1: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

    GC.com: Day 1: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

    GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)


    Friday, July 20

    GC: Day 2: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

    GC.com: Day 2: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

    GC.com: Day 2: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

    GC.com: Day 2: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

    GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)


    Saturday, July 21

    GC: Day 3: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

    NBC: Rd. 3: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

    GC.com: Day 3: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

    GC.com: Day 3: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

    GC.com: Day 3: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

    GC: Live From The Open: 3-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)


    Sunday, July 22

    GC: Day 4: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

    NBC: Rd. 4: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-2:30PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

    GC.com: Day 4: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-2:30PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

    GC.com: Day 4: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-2PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

    GC.com: Day 4: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-2PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

    GC: Live From The Open: 2:30-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

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    The Open 101: A guide to the year's third major

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 18, 2018, 8:30 am

    Take a look at some answers to frequently asked questions about The Open:

    What's all this "The Open" stuff? I thought it was the British Open.

    What you call it has historically depended on where you were. If you were in the U.S., you called it the British Open, just as Europeans refer to the PGA Championship as the U.S. PGA. Outside the U.S. it generally has been referred to as The Open Championship. The preferred name of the organizers is The Open.

    How old is it?

    It's the oldest golf championship, dating back to 1860.

    Where is it played?

    There is a rotation – or "rota" – of courses used. Currently there are 10: Royal Birkdale, Royal St. George's, Royal Liverpool and Royal Lytham and St. Annes, all in England; Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland and St. Andrews, Carnoustie, Royal Troon, Turnberry and Muirfield, all in Scotland. Muirfield was removed from the rota in 2016 when members voted against allowing female members, but when the vote was reversed in 2017 it was allowed back in.

    Where will it be played this year?

    At Carnoustie, which is located on the south-eastern shore of Scotland.

    Who has won The Open on that course?

    Going back to the first time Carnoustie hosted, in 1931, winners there have been Tommy Armour, Henry Cotton (1937), Ben Hogan (1953), Gary Player (1968), Tom Watson (1975), Paul Lawrie (1999), Padraig Harrington (2007).

    Wasn't that the year Hogan nearly won the Slam?

    Yep. He had won the Masters and U.S. Open that season, then traveled to Carnoustie and won that as well. It was the only time he ever played The Open. He was unable to play the PGA Championship that season because the dates conflicted with those of The Open.

    Jean Van de Velde's name should be on that list, right?

    This is true. He had a three-shot lead on the final hole in 1999 and made triple bogey. He lost in a playoff to Lawrie, which also included Justin Leonard.

    Who has won this event the most?

    Harry Vardon, who was from the Channel Island of Jersey, won a record six times between 1896 and 1914. Australian Peter Thomson, American Watson, Scot James Braid and Englishman J.H. Taylor each won five times.

    What about the Morrises?

    Tom Sr. won four times between 1861 and 1867. His son, Tom Jr., also won four times, between 1868 and 1872.

    Have players from any particular country dominated?

    In the early days, Scots won the first 29 Opens – not a shocker since they were all played at one of three Scottish courses, Prestwick, St. Andrews and Musselburgh. In the current era, going back to 1999 (we'll explain why that year in a minute), the scoreboard is United States, nine wins; South Africa, three wins; Ireland, two wins; Northern Ireland, two wins; and Sweden, one win. The only Scot to win in that period was Lawrie, who took advantage of one of the biggest collapses in golf history.

    Who is this year's defending champion?

    That would be American Jordan Spieth, who survived an adventerous final round to defeat Matt Kuchar by three strokes and earn the third leg of the career Grand Slam.

    What is the trophy called?

    The claret jug. It's official name is the Golf Champion Trophy, but you rarely hear that used. The claret jug replaced the original Challenge Belt in 1872. The winner of the claret jug gets to keep it for a year, then must return it (each winner gets a replica to keep).

    Which Opens have been the most memorable?

    Well, there was Palmer in 1961and '62; Van de Velde's collapse in 1999; Hogan's win in 1953; Tiger Woods' eight-shot domination of the 2000 Open at St. Andrews; Watson almost winning at age 59 in 2009; Doug Sanders missing what would have been a winning 3-foot putt at St. Andrews in 1970; Tony Jacklin becoming the first Briton to win the championship in 18 years; and, of course, the Duel in the Sun at Turnberry in 1977, in which Watson and Jack Nicklaus dueled head-to-head over the final 36 holes, Watson winning by shooting 65-65 to Nicklaus' 65-66.

    When I watch this tournament on TV, I hear lots of unfamiliar terms, like "gorse" and "whin" and "burn." What do these terms mean?

    Gorse is a prickly shrub, which sometimes is referred to as whin. Heather is also a shrub. What the scots call a burn, would also be considered a creek or stream.