Final Round News & Notes

May 24, 2009
Senior PGA Champion Michael Allen (photo: PGA of America)

Senior PGA Champion Michael Allen (photo: PGA of America)

For pictures from the Final Round of the 70th Senior PGA Championship, visit www.SeniorPGA2009.com.

Another First-Time Champion

Michael Allen is the 23rd player to win the Senior PGA Championship in his first try. Denis Watson (2007) was the most recent to capture the Senior PGA Championship in his debut. This list also includes Sam Snead, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player and Hale Irwin.

Hanging with Arnie

Allen and Arnold Palmer are the only two players to win the Senior PGA Championship in their Champions Tour debut.

A One-Two First

Since the beginning of the Champions Tour in 1980, this marks the first time that the top two finishers were making their first appearances in the Senior PGA Championship.

Tom Terrific

With his final-round 66 today, Tom Watson tied the low 18-hole score of the 70th Senior PGA Championship. Watson and Mize also shot 30 (4-under par) on the front nine today to match Fred Funk for the low score over either nine this week.

Fourth-Youngest in the Field

2009 Senior PGA Champion Michael Allen (born Jan. 31, 1959) is the fourth-youngest player in the field this week. Bob Tway, the 1986 PGA Champion, is the youngest. He was born May 4, 1959.

Lovin’ That Back Nine

Michael Allen shined on the back nine this week as he captured the 70th Senior PGA Championship. He played the back nine in 7-under par.

Back-Nine Bests

Ross Drummond and Lonnie Nielsen (second round) and Tim Simpson (third round) all fired 4-under-par 32s, the best scores on the back nine this week.

Masterful Mize

Earlier this spring, Larry Mize made the most of his only appearance outside the Champions Tour this year. The 1987 Masters Champion, Mize opened with 67 at The Masters and finished in a tie for 30th place.

Seven Swinging Senior PGA Champions

Tom Watson led the seven former Senior PGA Champions who played all four rounds this week at Canterbury Golf Club. Their 72-hole scores and finishing places:

  • Tom Watson:  280 (E)  4th
  • Jay Haas:  282 (+2)  T9
  • Mike Reid:  289 (+9)  T44
  • Allen Doyle:  292 (+12)  T57
  • Hale Irwin:  293 (+13)  T59
  • Tom Wargo:  294 (+14)  T68
  • John Jacobs:  296 (+16)  T70

Strong Finish for O’Meara

Mark O’Meara’s return to the site of his 1979 U.S. Amateur triumph, which served as a springboard to his outstanding professional career, turned out to be a memorable one.  After opening with 76, O’Meara improved every round, shooting 70-69-68. He closed out his 2-under par round today with a birdie on No. 18.

“I got off to a rough start on the back side the first day and I could have packed it in but I didn’t,” said O’Meara. “I kept hanging in there and fighting and to shoot what I did over the last three days was a good accomplishment.  So I won a little bit of the battle. I didn’t certainly win tournament, but at least I fought back.

“And now here I am 30 years later, having won 30 tournaments around the world and 16 in the United States … I propel it all back to the Canterbury win here in ’79. So I feel very fortunate to have played this great game for a long time.”

Frightening Fourth

The 470-yard, par-4 fourth hole was the hardest this week in terms of stroke average, at 4.412. The par-3 17th hole yielded the fewest birdies for the week (22).

Tough Finish for Stockton

Thirteen years after winning the U.S. Senior Open at Canterbury Golf Club, Dave Stockton started strong this week but was unable to finish in the same manner. The 67-year-old Stockton, who opened with 70, closed today with 78 for a four-day total of 13-over-par 293. He tied for 59th place.

Drummond’s Long Walk

The midway leader here at Canterbury Golf Club, Scotland’s Ross Drummond struggled over the weekend. He shot 76-76 and finished tied for 37th place.

Deja Vu for Haas

Defending Champion Jay Haas closed with 69 today and finished in a tie for ninth at 2-over-par 282. Interestingly, Haas tied for ninth the first time he defended his Senior PGA Championship title, in 2007 at The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island (S.C.) Golf Resort.

A Very Normal Norman

Set back by a triple bogey on the 16th hole in the second round, Greg Norman played two ordinary rounds over the weekend. For the Championship, he shot 73-72-73-72. Last year, in his Senior PGA Championship debut, Norman shot 72-73-72-73.


News & Notes from Friday

May 22, 2009

The Cut List – To see who was cut from the field, visit www.SeniorPGA2009.com.

Round 2 Photos – Visit www.pga.com/seniorpga/2009/multimedia/photo/ for photos of the 2nd Round.

Michael Allen (Photo: PGA of America)

Michael Allen (Photo: PGA of America)

Some Potential “Firsts” for Allen

With a second-round 66 today, Michael Allen has put himself into position to be the 23rd player to win the Senior PGA Championship in his debut. Denis Watson, in 2007, was the most recent player to do so.

Allen is also shooting to become just the 14th player to capture his first event on the Champions Tour. Furthermore, Arnold Palmer won the 1980 Senior PGA Championship, and remains the only player to capture the Senior PGA Championship in his debut on the Champions Tour.

Eagles Are Soaring

Kiyoshi Murato of Japan and PGA Club Professional Jim Woodward recorded the first eagles of the 70th Senior PGA Championship in the morning round. Both eagles came at the par-5 15th hole. Bernhard Langer also eagled this hole in the afternoon round.

O’Meara and Cook, Day Two

After playing poorly in the opening round while paired together, 1979 U.S. Amateur finalists Mark O’Meara and John Cook improved in the second round. O’Meara, the U.S. Amateur Champion at Canterbury 30 years ago, shot even-par 70 today and is at 6-over-par 146. Cook finished the day one stroke better with a 69 for a 4-stroke lead over his playing partner for the Championship.

Ruining His Round

Greg Norman was coasting along today, 2-under par for the round until his game unraveled at the par-5 16th hole. From the rough, Norman pitched his third shot over the green, into a wooded area and out of bounds. Norman then dropped from the same spot where he had previously hit, pitched the ball on the green and three-putted for triple-bogey 8.

Norman then bogeyed the 17th hole and finished with 72 for the round and a 5-over par total. He will make the 36-hole cut.

Another View of Jacobs’ 70

Since 1992, when such statistics began to be kept, no player in the Senior PGA Championship had parred all 18 holes in a round until John Jacobs did so in the first round yesterday at Canterbury.

Roller-Coaster Back Nine

Keith Fergus parred Nos. 10 and 18, but in between Fergus had four birdies and three bogeys on his closing nine today. Fergus shot 69 and is 2-over par after 36 holes. Chris Starkjohann also rode the roller coaster but without so many hills. Chris parred 10 and 18, and inbetween recorded 5 birdies and 2 bogies.


News & Notes for Thursday

May 21, 2009

CANTERBURY GOLF CLUB’S COURSE RECORD
IS A LONG STORY WHICH INVOLVES A PROUD AMATEUR

Canterbury Golf Club’s competitive course record is owned by a former amateur turned Tour professional and broadcaster – Bobby Clampett. He posted a 5-under-par 66 (played at par-71) in the 1979 U.S. Amateur.

The lowest score in relation to par by a professional is 5-under, and shared by eight individuals:

  • Sam Snead in the 1940 U.S. Open (par-72)
  • Five players in the 1973 PGA Championship (par-71) – Al Geiberger, Don Iverson, Denny Lyons, Buddy Allin, Lee Trevino
  • Chick Harbert and Chandler Harper in the 1946 U.S. Open (par-72)

However, the lowest score ever posted at Canterbury is owned by a lifetime amateur and club member, Brian Sparrow (age 54).

While playing in his regular Sunday foursome in 2002 from the back tees with par set at 72, Sparrow finished with a 8-under-par 64.

“It does feel pretty good to know I have the lowest score ever shot at Canterbury,” said Sparrow, a native of Providence, R.I., and winner of the 2007 Northeastern Ohio Amateur and the 1990 Michigan Medal Play Championship. “It was the lowest round I’ve ever had. I can tell you that my partners weren’t talking to me much that day. We have our own very competitive group, and it wasn’t what I would call a casual round.”

Three for the Ages:

When the threesome of Dave Stockton, Bob Charles and John Jacobs teed off on the first hole today at 7:50 a.m., they brought with them:

  • 204 combined years of age (Charles, 73 years; Stockton, 67; Jacobs, 64)
  • 136 years of combined professional experience (Charles, 49 years; Stockton, 45; Jacobs, 42)
  • Three major championships during their PGA Tour days (Stockton, 1970 and 1976 PGA Championship; Charles, 1963 British Open)
  • One Senior PGA Championship (Jacobs, 2003)

Together Again

Charles and Stockton are very familiar with one another while competing for senior major championships at Canterbury. In 1996, they played all four rounds together, with Stockton ultimately winning the U.S. Senior Open. They are playing the first two rounds together here this week.

In addition to Charles and Stockton, the last time O’Meara and Cook played Canterbury, they were paired together in the final match of the 1979 U.S. Amateur, with O’Meara eventually getting the better of Cook. Thirty years later, they too are paired together for the first two rounds.


The Future Looks Sunny

May 20, 2009

You’re 5-day weather forecast from Canterbury Golf Club can be summarized in three words — Great for Golf.

Picture 3Wednesday
Sunny  76 degrees

Picture 3Thursday
Sunny  80 degrees

Picture 4Friday
30% chance of showers  73 degrees

Picture 4Saturday
Partly Cloudy 69 degrees

Picture 4Sunday
AM Clouds PM Sunny  73 degrees


With the weather as nice as it’s going to be, fans are encouraged to come down to Canterbury and purchase tickets at the front gate. There is free parking available at Randall Park Mall off of Warrensville road and free shuttle service to the front gate.

Visit www.SeniorPGA2009.com for parking and ticket information.


The Canterbury Tale: Senior PGA Prologue

May 18, 2009

For those familiar with “The Canterbury Tales,” written by Geoffrey Chaucer, it is hard to miss the fact that this epic poem shares its name with the course that will host the 70th Senior PGA Championship this week. “The Canterbury Tales” is a collection of stories by a group of individuals making a pilgrimage to a city named Canterbury. Chaucer included a prologue to introduce the premise, each pilgrim and set up his or her tale.

We thought it would be fun to make our own “Senior PGA” version of this prologue. May my English teachers forgive me …

It’s happening in Cleveland, three days from now
A Championship, prestigious, historic and how.
The destination, a course rich in tradition
Towards Canterbury they come with PGA permission.
This week the Seniors will visit this city,
Professionals, some one hundred and fifty.
In fellowship, they are golfers all
Legends, proficient at striking a ball.
While all are eligible for the AARP
They are energetic and fun, you’ll definitely see.
By comparison, I seem frail and scuzzy
Even standing next to the one named Fuzzy
From across the country they’re making the trip
By car, by plane, but probably not ship.
One destination, one place to play
To Canterbury, as you heard me say.

Among them 23 major champions there are
41 titles combined, and that’s just thus far.
13 Masters, 12 British and 7 Open claimers
9 PGA Championships and 8 Hall of Famers.

Their Defending Champion comes raring to start
He possesses a weapon with whom few would part.
Tommy Lamb is his name, a friend and caddy
Read greens at this course when he was a laddie.
Twice has the Champion defeated his friends,
But with none does he plan to make amends.

Ready and waiting will be the Great White Shark
He has more fans than most amusement parks.
As one of the biggest names ever in the sport,
A repeat champion he is planning to thwart.
At his side will be a former tennis star
Reminding him no winner only shoots par.

For some this will be their first time back,
In ’79, a lifetime of memories did they lack.
In that year, two amateurs were at their best
Just starting to distinguish themselves from the rest.
O’Meara and Cook were in the finals that year
The former victorious and garnered the cheer.
With them were Hal Sutton and Bob Tway
PGA Champions they would be one day.

Seven coming back were here in ‘73
When Nicklaus said, “This Majors record belongs to me.”
In ‘96, of these seven, Irwin and Stockton returned
Unfortunately, for the title one would still yearn.
While Irwin made a push in the eleventh hour
It’s unlike Stockton to cower.
The U.S. Senior Open trophy he got to kiss
While Irwin settled with the near miss.
However, Irwin was not to be undone
Since then, four Senior PGAs he has won.

All these golf greats, from Bob Charles to Bob Tway
Are still some of the best despite all the grey.
It is for one thing they crave, one primal need,
To have their names etched beside that of Sam Snead’s.
The winner will be listed with Nicklaus and Palmer,
Trevino, Floyd, Watson, Player and Zoeller.
But to the winner, it’s important to warn
Surprisingly heavy is the trophy named Bourne.
Make no mistake, it’s senior golf’s most historic prize
But to hoist it with one hand would be most unwise.

To Canterbury they flock ready for war,
Sure to leave fans wanting for more.

add to del.icio.us : Digg it : Stumble It! : : post to facebook


SportsTime Ohio to run Senior PGA Preview Show

March 26, 2009

Tonight (Mar. 26) at 7:00 p.m., and again at 11, SportsTime Ohio will air the 2009 Senior PGA Championship Preview Show.

Hosted by Jim Donovan and PGA Professional Jimmy Hanlin, the preview show will feature interviews with Canterbury Golf Club and PGA officials, a hole-by-hole analysis of the course, details of Canterbury’s rich history with the PGA and Major Championship golf, and the PGA’s reasoning behind completely rerouting the course.

Watch a :30 second clip below:

For SportsTime Ohio’s channel listing on your cable provider network CLICK HERE.

add to del.icio.us : Digg it : Stumble It! : : post to facebook


Canterbury provided stage for one of Nicklaus’ most memorable moments

March 18, 2009
Jack Nicklaus with son Gary at Canterbury

Jack Nicklaus with son Gary at Canterbury

It was one of the most touching, if not signature moments, in Jack Nicklaus’s remarkable career.

Son Gary ran on to the 18th green, jumped into his father’s arms, and was carried off by the Golden Bear after the second round of the 1973 PGA Championship at Canterbury Golf Club.

Nicklaus went on to cap his 14th major championship and cement his legacy as a champion who balanced with skill his family and a legendary career.

In a historical twist, Nicklaus’s victory at Canterbury was a four-stroke triumph over Bruce Crampton.

The Golden Bear’s lone victory in Senior PGA Championship history came in 1991 at PGA National Golf Club in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. Nicklaus defeated Crampton by six strokes. It was the fifth time that Crampton had finished as the runner-up in a major championship – each time to Nicklaus.

add to del.icio.us : Digg it : Stumble It! : : post to facebook


The Difference Between the PGA of America and PGA Tour

February 18, 2009

In a recent PGATour.com article, Stan Awtrey details the 1968 split of professional golf into two distinct organizations, a professional golfers tournament division — The PGA Tour — and a golf professionals division whose focus is on teaching and growing the game — the PGA of America.

In the simplest terms, the PGA of America is your local golf course professionals and the PGA Tour is the professional golfers you see on TV every weekend. However, there is much more to it and other golf entities that must be included, so below we’ve explained the difference between these organizations.

PGA of America
The PGA of America, founded in 1916, is a not-for-profit organization that is made up of local club and teaching professionals at golf courses throughout the country. It is divided into 41 sections spanning across the U.S., including Northeast Ohio’s section — the Northern Ohio PGA. Each section’s focus is on growing the game through teaching and working closely with amateurs. PGA of America sections organize local junior golf tours, and host section tournaments at area courses for local amateurs and professionals to compete against one another.

The PGA of America also owns and operates four major golf championships, including:

  • The Ryder Cup
  • The PGA Championship
  • The PGA Grand Slam of Golf
  • The Senior PGA Championship (coming to Canterbury Golf Club on May 21-24).

PGA Tour
Separated from the PGA of America in 1968, The PGA Tour operates as the “Tournament Players Division” of professional golf. If you are watching Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson or Padrig Harrington on a Sunday, and it is not a Major Championship, it is probably a PGA Tour event.

The PGA Tour hosts 47 events annually and is made up of three tours: The PGA Tour, the Champions Tour — for those professionals over the age of 50, and the Nationwide Tour — for those professionals who have not qualified for their Tour card or did not play well enough to remain on the Tour.

Other Professional Golf Organizations
Other organizations also play vital roles in professional golf. The United States Golf Association (USGA), with their headquarters in Far Hills, N.J., oversees the national championships (U.S. Open, U.S. Senior Open, U.S. Amateur, etc.) and administers the Rules of Golf. The Augusta National Golf Club plays host to the Masters Tournament. The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, Scotland, oversees the British Open and administers the world’s golf rules jointly with the USGA.

LPGA
The Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) is the longest-running women’s sports association in the world.  Founded in 1950, the organization has grown from its roots as a playing tour into a non-profit organization involved in every facet of golf. The LPGA Tour and the LPGA Teaching & Club Professionals (T&CP) comprise the backbone of what has become the premier women’s sports organization in the world today.  Headquartered in Daytona Beach, Fla., the LPGA maintains a strong focus on charity through:

  • Its tournaments
  • Its grassroots junior and women’s programs
  • Its affiliation with Susan G. Komen For The Cure
  • The formation of The LPGA Foundation

add to del.icio.us : Digg it : Stumble It! : : post to facebook


Golf Legend and Senior PGA Champion Charlie Sifford Honored in Golf Channel Documentary

February 11, 2009
1975 Senior PGA Champion Charlie Sifford

1975 Senior PGA Champion Charlie Sifford

Tonight (Feb. 11) at 9:00 p.m., Golf Channel will air the special, “Uneven Fairways.” Narrated by Samuel L. Jackson, this 60-minute documentary will reveal the story of the little-known, but rich history of African-Americans who had the courage to stand up for their rights and pave the way for future stars of golf.

Referred to by many as the Jackie Robinson of golf, Charlie Sifford became the first African-American to break professional golf’s color barrier. He endured threats, mistreatment and racial abuse as he challenged and overcame the “Caucasian only” clause of the PGA of America, and later became the first card-holding member of the Tour in 1961.

Prior to joining the PGA, Sifford, sporting his ever-present cigar, won the UGA National Negro Open six times between 1952 and 1960, and the 1957 Long Beach Open, which included some well-known Caucasian players. After joining the PGA Tour, he went on to win two official money events — the 1967 Greater Hartford Open Invitational and 1969 Los Angeles Open, and was among the top 60 money winners on the PGA Tour between 1960 and 1969.

In 1975, Sifford made history again when he won the PGA Seniors’ Championship, known today as the Senior PGA Championship. After the final round at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Fla., Sifford and Fred Wampler were tied at 8-under-par, 280, forcing a playoff. On the first playoff hole, Sifford sunk a 22-foot putt to become the first African-America to have his name etched on senior golf’s most prestigious and historic prize, the Alfred S. Bourne Trophy.

After retiring from the game of golf in 2004, Sifford received an honorary degree from the University of St. Andrews as a Doctor of Law in 2006. He also became the first African-American to be inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame.

We are honored to have Charlie Sifford, a resident of Highland Heights, play a significant role in the 2009 Senior PGA Championship. Throughout his career he has truly been a pioneer, blazing a path few dared to travel, and he continues to be an inspiration to all.

add to del.icio.us : Digg it : Stumble It! : : post to facebook


Sneak Peek at Upcoming Blog Post

February 5, 2009

With the 2009 Senior PGA Championship now only 104 days away and counting, we wanted to give you a sneak peek at some of the topics we’ll be covering on this site over the next three-plus months.

Our goal is to provide you with a unique behind-the-scenes look at the 2009 Senior PGA Championship — the side of a professional golf Major that most do not get to see.

So, in addition to being your source for breaking news about the Championship, we will:

  • Discuss the setup and planning that goes into a PGA Major Championship
  • Detail the rich history of Canterbury and the PGA
  • Highlight opportunities on how you can get involved
  • Interview Canterbury and Senior PGA Championship officials
  • Call attention to the Champions Tour players to watch leading up to the Championship
  • Provide useful tips to attendees, such as the best parking locations, prime spots on the course to see the most action, and where you can stand to get an up-close and personal view of the players

To make sure we’re posting the information you’re most interested in, please send us topics you’d like to read or learn more about. We need your feedback to make sure we’re posting the most useful content possible.

add to del.icio.us : Digg it : Stumble It! : : post to facebook