Notebook: Greater Gwinnett, Round 2April 20, 2013
By Dave Senko, Champions Tour staff
DULUTH, Ga. -- Forced to play 27 holes on Saturday, Esteban Toledo came through in near-perfect fashion, posting a 2-under-par 70 and will head into Sunday’s final round with a 36-hole total of 6-under-par 138 and a one stroke margin over four others. The four players chasing Toledo include Bernhard Langer, Roger Chapman, Tom Pernice, Jr. and Mark Calcavecchia. First-round leader Michael Allen and Gene Sauers are just two strokes back.
-- Toledo has made just one bogey over his 36 holes and that came in his first hole on Saturday.
-- This marks the first time Toledo is in sole possession of the lead heading into the final-round of a PGA TOUR-sponsored event since the 2005 Lake Erie Charity Classic on the Web.com Tour. He went on to win the event, his lone victory on that Tour. Toledo also held sole possession of the lead after 54 holes at the PGA TOUR’s 2000 B.C. Open, but eventually finished second, one behind Brad Faxon. The only other time he led or shared the lead was at the 2007 Showdown at Somerby on the Web.com Tour where he was tied with Jay Delsing and eventually finished T3.
-- Toledo’s 36-hole total of 6-under-par 138 is the highest score to lead after two rounds in a 54-hole Champions Tour event since the 2009 ACE Group Classic where Gene Jones led at 4-under-par 140.
-- Four different countries are represented among the top five players on the leaderboard. They include Mexico (Toledo), Germany (Langer), England (Chapman) and the U.S. (Pernice, Jr., Calcavecchia).
-- Jeff Sluman rebounded from his opening-round 4-over-76 to post a 6-under-par 66 on Saturday. The 10-shot swing helped him move up 47 spots in the standings from T57 to T10. Sluman had to play 24 holes on Saturday after only finishing 12 holes on Friday. Sluman also shared honors for the day’s low round with Langer following his 66.
-- First-round leader Allen overcame a disastrous three-hole stretch early in his second round (Nos. 3-5) where he went 5-over-par (bogey/double bogey/double bogey) by playing bogey-free over his final 13 holes to finish with a two-round total of 4-under-par 140. Allen was assessed a two-stroke penalty on No. 4 after calling a penalty on himself for violating the definition of a loose impediment (removing a embedded pine cone with effort along his intended line of swing/Rule 23).
-- With his recent victory at the Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic, Allen has a chance to win consecutive events for the second consecutive year. Virtually one year ago, Allen captured the Encompass Insurance Pro-Am of Tampa Bay and then teamed with David Frost to win the Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf the following week. The last player to win back-to-back events in consecutive years was Langer who in 2009 teamed with Tom Lehman to win the Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf and then captured the Triton Financial Classic. In 2010, Langer won the Senior British Open Championship at Carnoustie and then won the U.S. Senior Open the following week at Sahalee.
-- The winner of the Greater Gwinnett Championship will earn 270 points in the season-long Charles Schwab Cup race as well as a check for $270,000. Langer leads the current Charles Schwab Cup race with 658 points followed by Frost with 619 and Rocco Mediate with 461. Langer also leads the current money list with $677,779.
-- Pernice, Jr., has one-putted 22 of 36 greens through two rounds, including 11 each day.
-- The field scoring average for the second round was slightly higher than the opening round as the field averaged 73.821 compared to 73.800. It is the highest for any round on the Champions Tour so far in 2013. Once again, only 20 players finished below par with just seven rounds in the 60s, three fewer than in the opening round.
-- Hole No. 9 has been the most difficult after two rounds with an average score of 4.430 (+.430) and it has yielded just seven birdies. No. 18 is the easiest with an average score of 4.753 (-.247).
-- Langer leads all players in greens in regulation at 86.1 percent. Langer hit 17 of 18 on Saturday and also hit 13 of 14 fairways.
-- Bob Tway, a former winner of the PGA TOUR’s Georgia-Pacific Atlanta Golf Classic in 1986, has birdied six of the eight par-5 holes on the course.
-- Gene Jones was disqualified when he missed his 11:20 tee time.
-- D.A. Weibring withdrew after five holes on Saturday due to a bad back.