Nationwide Tour weekly e-notesApril 10, 2007
By PGA TOUR Staff
TOUR WELCOMES SOUTH GEORGIA CLASSIC TO SCHEDULE -- Coming on the heels of the Masters tournament in Augusta, GA, the Nationwide Tour will be in Valdosta, Ga. this week (April 9-15) for one of three new events on the 2007 schedule, the South Georgia Classic. Host Kinderlou Forest GC was designed by Davis Love III. The South Georgia Classic debuts this year along with next month's Melwood Prince Georges County Open outside Washington, D.C. and July's Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational in Columbus, Ohio. The Tour travels up the road to Athens, Ga. next week for the Athens Regional Foundation Classic.
LONGEST COURSE IN PGA TOUR HISTORY -- At 7,781 yards, the par-72 Kinderlou Forest GC will be the longest course to ever host a PGA TOUR-sanctioned event. It was designed by Davis Love III and opened in 2004. The longest course played in a Nationwide Tour event to date is the 7,702-yard Whistle Bear Golf Club (par 72), site of the 2005 Canadian PGA Championship, won by Jon Mills. The longest course to host a PGA TOUR event is the par-72 Castle Pines Golf Club in Colorado which played 7,619 yards for the International in 2004-2006.
URESTI'S EXPECTING -- Four of the five 2007 Nationwide Tour winners are scheduled to tee it up in Valdosta. Leading money winner Skip Kendall and Nos. 3-5 Scott Sterling, Nicholas Thompson and Miguel Carballo will be there. The Tour's most recent winner at the Livermore Valley Wine Country Championship, Omar Uresti, will be at home in Austin, Texas with his wife, who is anticipating the birth of their second child.
TOLLES AND BROADAWAY AMONG SPONSOR EXEMPTIONS -- Former University of Georgia standout Tommy Tolles is in the South Georgia Classic field via sponsor exemption as is nearby Albany, Ga. resident and unique cross-handed player Josh Broadaway. Broadaway's goal is to become the first cross-handed golfer to win a major championship.
GOLF CHANNEL / "QUEST FOR THE CARD" SHOW MAKES ITS 2007 DEBUT -- "Quest for the Card: Inside the Nationwide Tour" makes its 2007 debut next week on a new day and in a new time slot. The show moves to Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. ET on GOLF CHANNEL. The first of 16 half-hour shows airs Tuesday, April 17th and will recap the beginning of the 2007 season. "Quest for the Card" will reair four times each week.
JOHNSON'S WIN SECURES NATIONWIDE TOUR "GRAND SLAM" -- With Zach Johnson's win at the Masters, Nationwide Tour players completed their own Grand Slam. After nine runner-up finishes by players with Nationwide Tour roots, Johnson's victory was the first at Augusta. There are now 11 wins in the majors by Nationwide Tour players, including four in the British Open and three each in the U.S. Open and PGA Championship.
HOLDING THE LEAD -- Through five starts in 2007, players with at least a share of the 54-hole lead have gone on to win 60 percent of the time (three of five). That is considerably better than last year's final figure of 29 percent (9 of 31).
DID YOU KNOW?? 19 Monday qualifiers have gone on to win a Nationwide Tour event. The last to do so was Kyle Reifers at last year's Chattanooga Classic. He is playing on the PGA TOUR this year.
• The victory by Zach Johnson last week at the Masters was the 201st PGA TOUR win by a former Nationwide Tour player and the 11th major championship.
• With the exception of the first-year Mayakoba Golf Classic at Riviera Maya-Cancun and the PODS Championship, former Nationwide Tour players have won every event on TOUR at least once.
• This week's stop on Tour, the South Georgia Classic, will be contested on the Davis Love III-designed 7,781-yard Kinderlou Forest GC in Valdosta, Ga. The course is the longest to ever host a PGA TOUR-sponsored event.
• No less than 20 of the top 50 players in the current Official World Golf Ranking are former Nationwide Tour players.
• This week's inaugural South Georgia Classic will feature a field that includes four of the first five winners on this year's Nationwide Tour, along with 30 former PGA TOUR champions who have earned 61 TOUR titles between them. Four players -- Carlos Franco, Jim Gallagher Jr., Bradley Hughes and John Huston -- have even competed in The Presidents Cup.