Graeme McDowell ranked No. 1 in scrambling at The Honda Classic, getting up-and-down 23 of 30 times.
|Category||Winner: Michael Thompson
|Driving Distance||279.6 (53rd)||Nicolas Colsaerts (314.5 yards)||T68|
|Driving Accuracy||71.43% (T9)||Mark Wilson, Doug LaBelle II,
Cameron Percy, Greg Chalmers (76.79%)
|Strokes Gained-Putting||1.494 (5th)||Tom Gillis (2.075)
|Greens in Regulation||66.67% (T5)||Peter Hanson (70.83%)||T13|
|Proximity to Hole||37' 0" (36th)||Peter Hanson (29' 1")||T13|
|Scrambling||58.33% (36th)||Graeme McDowell (76.67%)||T9
WEEKLY PERFORMANCE STATS ARCHIVE
Week 2: Sony Open in Hawaii
Week 4: Farmers Insurance Open
Week 5: Waste Management Phoenix Open
Week 7: Northern Trust Open
Michael Thompson's positive attitude might be his greatest asset. (Ehrmann/Getty Images)
By Gregg Steinberg, Special to PGATOUR.COM
The Honda Classic had a major championship atmosphere.
The best in the world were playing. The conditions were extremely difficult and par was a great score. In fact, only five players broke par during the final round at PGA National.
For Michael Thompson, the eventual champion, this PGA TOUR event played to his strengths. While Thompson has many strengths such as his calm demeanor and his impeccable short game, these tough conditions fit his greatest strength: His positive attitude.
Thompson has stated that he wants to have the best attitude on the course. This is an essential strength to have when the tournament is playing very difficult. In fact, this strength suited very him well in the past in tough playing conditions as he tied for second in the 2012 U.S. Open.
The good news is that Thompson’s strength of having a great attitude can be your greatest strength as well.
But let’s be honest. While having a great attitude is an essential ingredient to your success on the course, it is as fickle as an 8 year-old boy at a candy store. Good shots create a sweet air of invincibility. A couple of bad shots can instantly sour your attitude, particularly under tough conditions like everyone experienced at this year’s Honda Classic.
One of the toughest mental game skills to acquire is to remain confident in your ability and keep a positive attitude when your game takes the train south to bogey land. However, no matter how poorly you are playing or how many bad breaks come your way, you can always choose to have a good attitude like Thompson.
Centuries ago, the renowned philosopher Rene Descartes wrote that we have the capacity to think whatever we choose. Your attitude is always a choice and your confidence is always within your control. If you make the correct choice, the chances are much greater that you will become a better player who shoots much better scores under pressure.
Dr. Gregg Steinberg is the author of the best selling golf psychology book, MentalRules for Golf. He is a regular guest every Tuesday on “Talk of the Tour” heard on the Sirius/XM PGA TOUR radio. Dr. Gregg is a tenured professor of sports psychology and has been the mental game coach for many PGA TOUR players. You can see more about him at www.drgreggsteinberg.com, and you can e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Michael Thompson entered The Honda Classic 197th in the FedExCup standings. He's now ranked 11th.
By Fred Albers, PGATOUR.COM Correspondent
It has been said every player on the PGA TOUR is one swing thought away from victory. The talent level is so high and there is so very little that separates the top from the bottom. That came to fruition at The Honda Classic on Sunday in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
Champion Michael Thompson had made one cut this year and ranked 197th in the FedExCup standings coming into The Honda Classic. Geoff Ogilvy, who placed second, had missed four straight cuts and was 144th in FedExCup points.
Every player on the PGA TOUR is capable of winning every week. Several players, who are off to rough starts in the 2013 season, will look at this week's final leaderboard and draw inspiration.
Changes: PGA National changed dramatically over the course of the week. Golfers found a lush layout upon arrival with receptive greens. That changed with the wind. PGA National became very firm as wind sucked moisture from the greens. The frustration level was extremely high for both weekend rounds. Patience was a player's greatest attribute.
Back nine: When the wind blows into the face of golfers at the 10th hole, it’s always a challenge. At 508 yards, the 10th was a very difficult test in the final round. Players tried to reach the green by hitting 250-yard 3-woods, when the right play might have been a low runner, short of the green and then attempt a chip and hopefully one-putt for par. Just because the scorecard says par 4 doesn’t mean the hole played that way on Sunday. It was the toughest on the golf course playing to a stroke average of 4.68.
Golf shot: Geoff Ogilvy sure did not look headed for birdie at the 16th hole. He drove into a bunker and then flew the green with his approach. With his ball nestled down into the rough, Ogilvy flipped a wedge about five yards onto the green and watched as the ball trickled toward the cup. It rolled across the edge, hanging on the lip of the cup for just a second before tumbling home.
Bounces: Thompson thought he had missed the 16th fairway. His ball hooked left and took a bounce toward the primary rough and then suddenly took a bizarre kick back to the right. Instead of the primary rough, his ball settled into a much more manageable lie in the first cut. When Thompson arrived at the ball, he thought it had bounced off a person and thanked the gallery, never realizing it was a good bounce. The odds evened out on the green, when his par putt lipped out after catching a good portion of the cup. Thompson had a good and bad break all within 10 minutes.
Fred Albers is a course reporter for SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio. For more information on SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio, click here
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. -- Geoff Ogilvy needs to do laundry and doesn't have a hotel room for the night.
The good news?
"Half the TOUR lives in this area, so I'm sure I can find somewhere to stay," said Ogilvy, who unexpectedly qualified for next week's World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship after a runner-up finish Sunday at The Honda Classic.
Ogilvy, who shot a final-round 69 to finish two back of winner Michael Thompson, moved to 47th in the Official World Golf Ranking. The top 50 qualify for next week's event at Trump Doral.
It also puts the Masters in the equation for Ogilvy, who earlier this year failed to qualify for the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship.
"Missing the Match Play wasn't much fun," he said. "I would have loved to have won here and sealed (a Masters invite) but at least I've gone the right direction.
"If I can play well at a course next week that I've played well at before, hopefully I can make more of a move up and get back to Augusta."
Ogilvy has done that, winning at Doral in 2008 after finishing third the year before.
Thompson also qualified for the WGC-Cadillac Championship, moving to 45th in the world after his win.
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. -- The story of Erik Compton, the double heart transplant recipient, has been well-documeneted.
Even he's ready to move on. "It's hard for me to get too sentimental about it, because I've turned the corner on my story," Compton said. "I really want to be one of the top 50 players in the world, and I have to the game to do it."
Sunday was a nice step in that direction. Compton shot even-par 70 to finish in a tie for fourth at The Honda Classic, his best career finish on the PGA TOUR.
"I've been trying to do this for a long time," said Compton, who also tied for 15th in San Diego earlier this season.
About the only thing that didn't go right for Compton was the par-5 18th, where his second shot had mud on the ball and consequently sliced into the water. He went on to make 6.
"It's going to bother me for a little bit," Compton said. "But this year, I've put aside some goals and obviously I've been through a lot in my life but I really want to win out here."
PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. -- Despite a bevy of major champions giving chase, Michael Thompson never wavered Sunday at The Honda Classic.
Thompson shot a final-round 69 on a breezy, blustery afternoon at PGA National to get his first career win. He finished just ahead of Geoff Ogilv, who put on a late charge but came up two strokes short.
"I wanted to just stick to a game plan just like I've been saying all week," Thompson said. "This week was magical, just find a groove, keep believing."
On a day when only four others broke par, it certainly was that for Thompson.
After an up-and-down front nine that included an eagle, two birdies and three bogeys, Thompson, who finished second in last year's U.S. Open, played it like one with six straight pars to open the back nine.
His only hiccup came on the par-4 16th, where he thre-putted for bogey. Thompson's lead shrunk to just one, but he parred the difficult par-3 17th and added one more birdie on the par-5 finishing hole to secure the win.
The victory earns Thompson 500 FedExCup points and moves him to 11th in the standings.
He also becomes the third player in his 20s to win on TOUR this year and the second first-time winer.
Luke Guthrie, who began the day tied with Thompson, finished solo third for his best finish on TOUR.
Five others -- David Lynn, Lucas Glover, Erik Compton, Keegan Bradley and Justin Rose -- tied for fourth at 3 under, six strokes back. For Compton, a two-time heart transplant recipient, it's his highest career finish on TOUR.
Michael Thompson finished off an impressive week on Sunday by winning The Honda Classic for his first career PGA TOUR victory.
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