WiretoWire: Villegas a winner again
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Written by Staff @PGATOUR
Camilo Villegas immediately looked to the sky after putting out to win the Butterfield Bermuda Championship on Sunday, his first PGA TOUR title since 2014. A lot has changed for Villegas since that last victory, both good and bad. It’s his first win as a husband and father, and it’s his first win since losing his daughter Mia at just 22 months in July 2020, after she battled tumors on her brain and spine. Villegas has been through the gamut both on and off the course, and he emerged as the triumphant champion at Port Royal Golf Course; the Colombian carded 24 under at Port Royal Golf Course for a two-stroke victory over Alex Noren. Villegas, 41, has seen a dramatic change of competitive fortune in the past two weeks. He was signed up to play next week at Second Stage of PGA TOUR Q-School presented by Korn Ferry, then he finished runner-up at the World Wide Technology Championship to jump from 223rd to 147th in the FedExCup Fall standings. He one-upped himself in Bermuda, moving to 75th in the FedExCup and cementing PGA TOUR exempt status through 2025. The only thing missing was Mia, but she was there in spirit. She always will be. “I’ve got my little one up there watching it, smiling,” Villegas said afterward. “She’s where she needs to be after a long fight.”
Steve Stricker didn’t compete at the PGA TOUR Champions’ season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship – he spent the week with his dad Bob, who was admitted to the hospital last Monday and has since been discharged – but his season-long dominance on the 50-and-over circuit secured his first Charles Schwab Cup title. Stricker won six times this season, including three senior major championships and a runner-up in a fourth. He finished outside the top two on the leaderboard in just five of 16 starts. He finished a streak of 55 consecutive rounds at par or better – supplanting Tiger Woods (52) for a record on a TOUR-sanctioned circuit – and he set a Champions Tour single-season earnings record with just shy of $4 million. Across 16 starts, he only lost to 41 players. After overcoming a mysterious illness in late 2021 that required two separate hospital stays, Stricker is playing some of the best golf of his career, and his season-long Charles Schwab Cup title is overwhelmingly deserved.
The PGA TOUR returns to Georgia for The RSM Classic. Adam Svensson, who hasn’t missed a cut on TOUR since the Travelers Championship in June, will make his fifth start of the FedExCup Fall as he looks to defend the final event of the 2022-23 season. The TOUR heads to Sea Island for the last chance to earn FedExCup points, with spots in two Signature Events, THE PLAYERS and full-status PGA TOUR cards (allotted to the top 125 in the FedExCup standings) on the line. European Ryder Cup star Ludvig Åberg is back in action at Sea Island Golf Club. The Open Championship winner Brian Harman tees it up for the first time since the TOUR Championship alongside other Sea Island residents including tournament host Davis Love III, Zach Johnson, Harris English, Keith Mitchell and Patton Kizzire. Twins David and Maxwell Ford will tee it up together at a PGA TOUR event for the first time. Follow the storylines as the race for the top 125 and the chase for The Next 10 come to a head.
VIDEO OF THE WEEK
George Bryan and caddie discuss strategy before Butterfield Bermuda
“I've got my little one up there watching it, smiling. She's where she needs to be after a long fight.” - Camilo Villegas after winning the Butterfield Bermuda Championship
BY THE NUMBERS
69 – Adam Long set a PGA TOUR record for most number of consecutive fairways hit Thursday during the first round of the Butterfield Bermuda Championship.
35 – A 7-foot bogey putt earned second-year pro Rob Labritz a spot in the Charles Schwab Cup Championship as the last man in the field, where he ended up finishing 29th in Phoenix at the conclusion of the season-long race for the Charles Schwab Cup.
15 – 15-year-old Bermudian Oliver Betschart qualified for the Butterfield Bermuda Championship, making him the youngest player to compete on TOUR since 2014 and the fifth youngest since 2000.