For the second straight week, a young PING pro won his first PGA Tour event – and the coveted perks that come with victory.
It was only a matter of time before Billy Horschel claimed his first PGA Tour win. Little did he know he would have to endure two rain delays during the final round, including one of nearly an hour as he played the 18th hole clinging to a one-shot lead.
Michael Thompson fired one of only five sub-par rounds on Sunday at a windy PGA National in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., a 1-under 69 that gave him a two-shot victory at The Honda Classic.
With his Anser driver, Louis Oosthuizen was #1 in average driving distance for the week at 304.9 yards, just one reason he was able to win the Volvo Golf Champions in his native South Africa. His final-round 66 helped him overcome a five-shot deficit to start the final round and win by a shot at Durban Country Club.
Miguel Ángel Jiménez became the oldest winner in European Tour history, winning the UBS Hong Kong Open for a third time. At 48 years and 318 days, Jiménez earned his 12th title since the age of 40, extending his own European Tour record.
Among the 25 PGA Tour cards handed out after the season-ending Web.com Tour Championship, three went to PING pros Luke Guthrie, David Lingmerth, and Doug LaBelle II.
Champions Tour rookie Kirk Triplett eagled the par-5 second hole, birdied the third, and made four more birdies, including a chip-in on the 16th, to give him a two-shot victory at the Nature Valley First Tee Open, at Pebble Beach Golf Links, in Monterey, Calif. His 6-under 66 was the low round of the day, giving him a 10 under total (70-70-66).
Trailing by one shot to start the final round, Mark Calcavecchia birdied 3, 4, 5, 7 and 8 to surge ahead. Adding a birdie and a pitch-in for eagle on the back nine, he matched the competitive course record with an 8-under 64 to win by four at the Montreal Championship at the 6,950-yard Vallee du Richelieu Vercheres, in Quebec, Canada.
Lee Westwood’s 40th worldwide title came in convincing fashion with a five-stroke win at the Nordea Masters at the 7,607-yard Bro Hof Slott Golf Club in Stockholm, Sweden. The 39-year-old’s 22nd European Tour win came after playing a new set of i20 irons and a new Nome 355 putter for the first time.
The maiden victory on the LPGA Tour for Azahara Muñoz came in a format that seems to suit her. Last fall she earned the clinching point for the European Solheim Cup team and was 2-1-1 in the event. At the Sybase Match Play Championship at Hamilton Farm Golf Club in Gladstone, N.J., she defeated six opponents en route to the win, the final match by a 2-and-1 score. Muñoz utilized a G20 driver, along with i20 woods, an i20 hybrid, and i20 irons.
Lee Westwood made a successful return to Indonesia, winning a second-straight batik jacket, which is awarded to the champion of the Indonesian Masters. “Hopefully, this will kick-start my year,” said the world’s #3 of his two-shot victory. “I’ve played well without any wins so hopefully I can go on and win other tournaments.”
Observers wondered how Louis Oosthuizen would respond to his playoff defeat to Bubba Watson at the Masters. Answer: He put Augusta in the rear-view mirror by jetting halfway across the world to compete in the Maybank Malaysian Open at Kuala Lumpur G&CC. The 30-hour journey was time well spent, as he came away with a three-shot victory, his second of the season. He was the only player with four rounds in the 60s (66-68-69-68), winning at 17 under in the stifling heat and humidity of a tournament twice delayed by storms.
Conventional wisdom says that The Masters doesn’t start until the back nine on Sunday. For 2012 Masters champion Bubba Watson, that’s where he caught fire, making four straight birdies on holes 13-16 to help him shoot an inward 33 and set up a playoff with PING Pro Louis Oosthuizen.
Hunter Mahan has said he is playing with more confidence than ever, and he has the results to show for it. He climbed to #4 in the Official World Golf Ranking, #1 in FedExCup points, and #1 on the money list after his one-shot victory at the Shell Houston Open.
Hunter Mahan agreed with the assessment of his caddie, John Wood, who felt it was the best Mahan has ever played over an entire tournament. His opponents would have a hard time arguing. Mahan won the prestigious WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship with a 2&1 victory in the finals at the 7,833-yard Ritz-Carlton Golf Club outside Tucson, Ariz. Three of the four top finishers were PING pros, as Mark Wilson defeated Lee Westwood in the consolation match, 1 up.
In only the third event of the PGA Tour season, Mark Wilson gave the i20 driver and irons their first wins. His two-shot victory at the Humana Challenge in La Quinta, Calif., was his fifth Tour title.
Before the final round, Louis Oosthuizen predicted that 27 under would win the Africa Open. That’s the number he would hit, firing a closing 6-under 67 to successfully defend his title at East London Golf Club in East London, South Africa.