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Drives of the Week: The Players Championship

Bubba Watson in the 2013 Zurich Classic of New Orleans third round
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Each week, will take a detailed look at the players who pounded the farthest and fastest tee shots on the PGA Tour. Here are the four most important distance-related stats from The Players Championship, won by Tiger Woods:

Longest drive: Martin Flores, 361 yards 

Distance isn’t paramount at TPC Sawgrass, but Flores still managed to unleash a big drive on the difficult, 481-yard 14th hole on the Stadium Course. He still bogeyed the hole, and the 31-year-old failed to play the weekend, shooting rounds of 76-72. His drive was the shortest chart-topper since Sean O’Hair’s 355-yarder at Pebble Beach. 

Last four leaders: Charlotte: Shawn Stefani, 363 yards; New Orleans: Michael Letzig, 376; Hilton Head: Camilo Villegas, 386; San Antonio: Luke List, 371

Carry distance: Jason Day, 306.1 yards

This was the second time this season that the Australian topped this category (Waste Management Phoenix Open), and he tied for 19th at Sawgrass. The longest this season in this category is Graham DeLaet’s 324.2-yard blast at PGA National.

Last four leaders: Charlotte: Gary Woodland, 297.4 yards; New Orleans: Graham DeLaet, 307.3; Hilton Head: Zach Johnson, 282.6; San Antonio: Rory McIlroy, 314.1

Clubhead speed: Bubba Watson, 123.86 mph

The big-hitting Watson struggled all week at Sawgrass, managing only a T-37 at The Players. But he appears in this category for the first time since Phoenix, where he topped out at 122.48 mph.

Last four leaders: Charlotte: Luke List, 124.88 mph; New Orleans: List, 124.76; Hilton Head: Robert Garrigus, 121.23; San Antonio: Charlie Beljan, 123.51

Ball speed: Bubba Watson, 183.94 mph

Not surprisingly, Watson also topped this category for the third time this season, after also having the highest ball speed at both Doral (181.32 mph) and Phoenix (181.89). Charlie Beljan’s 184.90, in Houston, is still the best this year.

Last four leaders: Charlotte: Luke List, 184.69 mph; New Orleans: List, 184.69; Hilton Head: Robert Garrigus, 180.02; San Antonio: Charlie Beljan, 181.46