Notebook: Tour returns to action at next week's Toshiba Classic

March 04, 2013

By Mark Williams, Champions Tour staff

News and notes from around the Champions Tour for the week of March 4, 2013.


• Sandy Lyle was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award at last week’s Scottish Golf Awards.

• Hale Irwin missed the cut at the New Zealand PGA Championship following rounds of 80-71. The event at The Hills in Queenstown was won by New Zealander Michael Hendry for the second consecutive year. This NZ PGA celebrates its centenary during 2013.


• Loren Roberts will attempt to defend the Toshiba Classic title he won last year at Newport Beach CC. Last year’s win was the 13th career Champions Tour victory for Roberts. The 2013 Toshiba Classic is set for March 11-17.

• The Toshiba Classic will be played for the 18th consecutive year at the Newport Beach Country Club, the longest-running venue on the Champions Tour.

• The Toshiba Classic is the only event currently on the 2013 schedule where two of the eight lowest scores in the history of the Champions Tour have been shot. Both Tom Purtzer (2004) and Nick Price (2011) shot 11-under 60 at Newport Beach Country Club in the first round and both players went on to win.


• After three official events in 2013 Bernhard Langer holds a 58-point lead in the Charles Schwab Cup. Tom Lehman, in 2011, is the only player to have won the Schwab Cup after holding the lead through the first three official events of the season. Here’s a look at how leaders after the first three events of a season have finished;

Year Leader through three events Lead Finish
2013 Bernhard Langer 58 -
2012 Dan Forsman 37 26th
2011 Tom Lehman 149 1st
2010 Fred Couples 121 2nd
2009 Bernhard Langer 220 4th
2008 Fred Funk 15 2nd
2007 Hale Irwin 28 10th
2006 Loren Roberts 446 2nd
2005 Hale Irwin 59 4th
2004 Craig Stadler 59 2nd
2003 Dana Quigley 46 15th
2002 John Jacobs 50 12th
2001 Larry Nelson 277 4th


5 – The number of players who won their initial Champions Tour title at the Toshiba Classic. The group includes Gary McCord (1999), Jose Maria Canizares (2001), Rodger Davis (2003), Mark Johnson (2005), and Brad Bryant (2006).


3/7/99 – Starting the final round six-strokes behind 54-hole leader Greg Kraft, Steve Elkington fires a closing-round 64 to beat Kraft by one stroke at the Doral-Ryder Open. Elkington’s final round includes 10 birdies, including a run of six straight at one point.


Bernhard Langer has made 859 combined career starts on the Champions Tour, PGA TOUR and European Tour, winning 7.2% of those starts and finishing in the top-10 36% of the time.


“You’re in the dentist’s waiting room and you’ve got this horrible churning feeling in your stomach and you don’t know if it’s going to be a pleasurable experience or a painful experience.” – Sandy Lyle explains what it’s like going into the last day of a tournament with a one or two-shot lead.


Tom Watson ‏(@TomWatsonPGA): Having fun with these kids today doing M/C ads. Never seen so much tweeting in my limited experience with this new frontier