Notebook: Sutton expects quick return
February 17, 2014
- Hal Sutton withdrew after eight holes of last week's ACE Group Classic. (Petersen/Getty Images)
By Mark Williams, Champions Tour staff
Kirk Triplett sank a six-foot par putt on the final hole at last week’s ACE Group Classic to avoid a four-way playoff and claim his third Champions Tour title by one stroke over Bernhard Langer, Duffy Waldorf and Olin Browne. Triplett and Michael Allen, who won the Allianz Championship two weeks ago, both played golf for the Wolf Pack in college and are members of Nevada-Reno’s athletic Hall of Fame.
Duffy Waldorf finished second for the second consecutive week. He has posted six consecutive rounds in the 60s this year. His T2 at the ACE Group Classic was his fourth runner-up finish in 31 starts on the Champions Tour.
Hal Sutton, who withdrew during his opening round on Friday, was released from a Naples-area hospital on Sunday after undergoing a heart procedure. Sutton said he plans to resume practicing this week and expects to play when the Champions Tour resumes next month (March 14-16) at the Toshiba Classic in Newport Beach, Calif.
Vijay Singh finished T45 at last week’s Northern Trust Open on the PGA TOUR while Fred Couples and Fred Funk missed the cut.
Last week, U.S. Ryder Cup captain Tom Watson named Raymond Floyd as his second assistant for the 2014 matches. Floyd, who was a captain's pick by Watson the last time he captained the Ryder Cup team in 1993, joins Andy North as the vice-captains for the U.S.
The next event on the Champions Tour schedule is the Toshiba Classic at Newport Beach Country Club, which will celebrate the 20th playing of this longstanding tournament on March 10-16.
The Toshiba Classic’s annual ‘Breakfast with a Champion’ will feature World Golf Hall of Fame member Colin Montgomerie, who joined the Champions Tour in 2013, as the keynote speaker on Tuesday of tournament week. The breakfast event, presented by The Allergan Foundation, also includes awards for two top Orange County students with a $10,000 scholarship each from the Toshiba Classic Scholarship Fund.
The par-3 17th hole at Newport Beach Country Club, home of the Toshiba Classic, was recently renovated in a project that took 77 days to complete. Watch the attached time-lapse video to see the transition.
CHARLES SCHWAB CUP
Bernhard Langer leads the Charles Schwab Cup points race by 177 points over Michael Allen. Duffy Waldorf is third, up from eighth last week, while Kirk Triplett earned 240 points for his ACE Group Classic victory and is in fifth position.
1 – Jay Haas is the only player with three top-five finishes after three events this season. Haas finished fifth at the ACE Group Classic. He was fourth at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai and T5 at the Allianz Championship.
DID YOU KNOW?
Jay Don Blake earned $5,280 with his T48 finish at the ACE Group Classic and surpassed the $10 million mark in all-time earnings.
ON THIS DATE
2/17/2001 – Arnold Palmer shoots his age (71) during the fourth round of the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic.
QUOTES TO NOTE
"I've never won out here on this side of the world. I'm a West Coast guy through and through, so to win on this Bermuda grass is, I think, a little bit of a minor miracle for me." – Kirk Triplett, after his first win in Florida at last week’s ACE Group Classic.
“That’s the way this Tour is. That’s what makes it so much fun. They’re all really good players. Everybody keeps coming at you.” – Michael Allen comments on the need to make many birdies on the Champions Tour to stay competitive.
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