By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- For all the back and forth, permutations, and scoreboard watching, only two players moved from outside the top 125 on the money list to inside it, and one of them was the winner of the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Classic.
Charlie Beljan, who entered the week 139th in money, locked up a PGA TOUR card for the next two years after his two-shot victory. Tim Herron’s journey to full status was a little more harrowing.
Herron, who came here 136th in money, was cruising along with five birdies through his first 14 holes Sunday. Then he double bogeyed the 17th hole after hitting his tee shot into the water and left his putt from just off the green a few inches short of the hole.
“I needed to suck it up and hit it down the left and try to hit a cut and I came over and hooked it in the water,” Herron said. “I thought if I got in at 12 under, I was in.”
But Herron finished at 11 under and thought he was out, kicking and walking on his bag in frustration. “Usually when I walk on something, it breaks,” he said.
Then he was informed he was safe.
“Billy Andrade told me, ‘Don't worry about it; you’re in; don't break any more stuff’,” Herron said. “But I didn't believe him.”
Herron finished 124th, about $13,000 ahead of Kevin Chappell.
Chappell, who tied for 34th, teetered back and forth most of the day before finishing just over $1,800 ahead of Jerry Kelly, who finished outside the top 125 for the first time in more than a decade.
Chappell, though, wasn't safe until Charlie Wi and Josh Teater each made par on the last hole. If either made bogey, Kelly would have moved up on the leaderboard and passed Chappell on the money list.
Kelly, meanwhile, can use a career money exemption.
Only two players fell out of the top 125. Rod Pampling and Billy Mayfair, who began the week 124th and 125th, respectively, both missed the cut and had to watch their fate from home.
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. -- So much for Friday the 13th being a bad omen, at least for Bob Estes.
Playing the 183-yard par-3 fourth at Harbour Town, Estes made the fourth hole-in-one of his career. He used a 6-iron and it was the 22nd ace on the PGA TOUR this season.
The other holes-in-one for Estes came in the 1991 Buick Classic, the 2002 FedEx St. Jude Classic and the 2007 AT&T Classic.
The ace was also the second to come out of his group. Thursday, Billy Mayfair made a hole-in-one with a 5-iron from 202 yards on the par-3 seventh hole. It was the sixth ace of Mayfair’s career with the others coming at the 1989 AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, 1992 BellSouth Classic, 2005 AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, 2007 Wyndham Championship and 2010 FedEx St. Jude Classic.
Since 1971, only nine players have more aces than Mayfair, led by Hal Sutton’s 10.
There's always a lot of great moments at the crowd-filled 16th at TPC Scottsdale, but it's always just a little louder when Phoenix native Billy Mayfair steps up to the tee wearing a local jersey.
In the second round in 2009, Mayfair teed it up wearing a Tim Hightower No. 34 Arizona Cardinals jersey, sending the crowd into a frenzy:
In 2011, Mayfair teed off in the second round wearing a No. 42 Pat Tillman Arizona State jersey. He went on to birdie the hole ( watch it here ) after sinking a long putt:
What should Mayfair wear this year in the Waste Management Phoenix Open? Diamondbacks? Suns? (And, as reader Tom pointed out below, we forgot Coyotes). Is there something else? Leave your thoughts below.
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – Billy Mayfair came up clutch last December when he was medalist at q-school in his first trip to the fall extravaganza since 1988.
The 45-year-old veteran is doing the same thing this week at the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Classic with his job at stake once again. That’s because Mayfair came to Disney ranked No. 127 on the PGA TOUR money list.
Forget the uncertainty near the all-exempt bubble, tough. Mayfair has taken dead aim on what could be his sixth PGA TOUR title – and his first since he won twice during the 1998 season.
Mayfair is tied for second right now with Webb Simpson, one shot off the lead held by Kevin Chappell at 15 under. He’s just made the turn in 3 under.
By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- For the third straight season, Billy Mayfair has come to the Children's Miracle Network Classic on the outside looking in.
This year the challenge isn't quite as great as it was the last two years. Mayfair is 127th on the money list -- trailing the all-exempt bubble boy, James Driscoll, by just over $12,000.
Mayfair got himself headed in the right direction on Thursday, too, when he opened with a 68 at the Palm Course. The round of 4 under was just his second in the 60s in his last 16 rounds at Disney and left him two strokes off the lead.
"I've played good the last four weeks, since Vegas, and played well last week and finished good (tied for 20th)," the five-time PGA TOUR champ said. " So I got a lot of confidence. ... Just got to go out tomorrow and see what I can do."
Mayfair says a player can never really can banish thoughts of finishing outside the top 125 on the money list and losing his card. But you can't obsess about it.
Besides, there are other options. When he finished 142nd on the money list last year, Mayfair went back to q-school to improve his place in the pecking order and ended up finishing as the medalist.
"You just go out there and you try to make this as a normal
tournament here,' Mayfair said. "... So I think once you tee off
and get going out there, you just try to get into the heat of the
"Sure, I want to play well and get my card, but still want to try to win this week. That's your goal. That's what we're really doing here. We all have little goals and all that stuff, but you don't put it out of your mind.
"But if you start playing good, it's a lot easier, that's for sure."
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – The battle for the No. 1 spot on the PGA TOUR money list is off to a good start as Luke Donald and Webb Simpson have made the turn in 4 under and 2 under, respectively.
But another guy who stands to gain a lot at the Children’s Miracle Network Classic is the current leader, James Driscoll, who is playing the Palm Course and is 7 under through 12 holes. He’s one stroke ahead of Kevin Kisner, who is playing the more difficult Magnolia Course.
Driscoll started the week on the bubble for 2012 PGA TOUR cards, holding down the final all-exempt spot at No. 125. He’s $6,287 ahead of Bill Lunde, who still has a year left on his exemption for winning in 2010, and just over $12,000 up on last year’s q-school medalist, veteran Billy Mayfair.
Driscoll, who played at Virginia, is looking for his first PGA TOUR win. His best finish came earlier this year when he fired four rounds in the 60s and placed fifth at the Travelers Championship.
Kisner ranks 197th on the money list so he needs a big week, as well. The Nationwide Tour grad’s best finish of the year came last week at the McGladrey Classic when he tied for 26th.
For the second year in a row, Billy Mayfair has come to the Frys.com Open fighting to keep his card.
The veteran ranked 136th on the money list and was $81,097 shy of a spot in the all-exempt top 125 when he came to CordeValle in 2010. This week, though, Mayfair is in a better spot at No. 127 and just $3,907 behind the bubble boy, Tim Clark, who is recovering from shoulder surgery. (Clark is exempt regardless of where he finishes due to his 2010 victory at THE PLAYERS Championship.)
Mayfair is having a more productive week at CordeValle, too. He's 4 under through 14 holes right now and currently tied for fifth at the same number. The Arizona State product, who tied for 63rd a year ago, has risen 32 spots on the leaderboard and is currently projected at No. 111 on the money list.
Mayfair, who has five PGA TOUR victories, likely wouldn't be phased by another trip to q-school, though. After all, the 45-year-old won the qualifying tournament a year ago in his first trip to the finals since 1988.