Storylines: South Georgia Classic presented by First State Bank & Trust Company

April 23, 2013


ONE-THIRD MARK -- The South Georgia Classic is the seventh of 21 Regular Season events on the 2013 Tour schedule, marking the one-third point in the run-up to the Tour Finals. New in 2013, the Regular Season will be followed by four Finals events that will determine which 50 players earn their 2013-14 PGA TOUR cards and what their eligibility positions will be. 2013 is a year of big change for the Tour and by extension, the PGA TOUR. Every tournament is extremely important in the competition to secure a PGA TOUR card.

SUPER-LONG KINDERLOU FOREST GC -- Host Kinderlou Forest will once again be the Tour's longest course of the year at 7,781 yards. It outdistances the Mexico Championship's 7,708-yard El Bosque Country Club, which is played at considerable altitude. Coincidence or otherwise, last year's South Georgia Classic winner was Luke List, the Tour's 2012 leader in Driving Distance.

MYLAN CLASSIC ASSUMES COLLEGIATE/AMATEUR ELIGIBILITY COMPONENT -- The Mylan Classic will have a new look this year. The three-year old Pittsburgh, Pa.-area event will include 12 invitations to college and amateur golf’s top players – the reigning U.S. Amateur champion (Steven Fox), this June’s NCAA Division I individual champion, the Jack Nicklaus Award winner (collegiate player of the year) and First-Team All-Americans. The same eligibility component had been a feature of the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Championship at Ohio State University in Columbus since its inception in 2007. It has been won by three All-Americans – Daniel Summerhays (2007), Harris English (2011) and Ben Kohles (2012). In 2013, the Championship becomes a Tour Finals.

24 YEARS PLUS AT LEAST THREE MORE FOR ALBERTSONS IN BOISE -- Albertsons has renewed its sponsorship of the Albertsons Boise Open presented by Kraft for three years, 2014-2016. The Idaho-based event is one of four original events that have been on the Tour schedule every year since its inception in 1990. It holds the distinction of being the only Tour event to maintain a partnership with its lead sponsor all 24 years and to be played at the same golf course (Hillcrest Country Club) and run by the same organization (Jeff Sanders Promotions) every year. Only four PGA TOUR or Champions Tour events have enjoyed longer-running title sponsor relationships (Honda/1982, AT&T/1986, FedEx/1986 and Liberty Mutual/1980). The event has raised over $14 million for charity since 1990, which is tops among Tour tournaments.

FROM AUGUSTA TO NEW ORLEANS -- John Peterson’s return to the Tour will be delayed one week as he accepted a sponsor exemption to compete in the PGA TOUR’s Zurich Classic of New Orleans this week in his adopted home state of Louisiana. Peterson was a three-time All-American at LSU in Baton Rouge where he has since taken up residence. The native of Fort Worth, Texas who turned 24 last Thursday recently became the first exempt Tour player to compete in the Masters. After four starts, he is 35th on the money list. Commenting on his Masters’ experience and walking up toward the 18th green on Sunday, Peterson told Jeff Shain for PGATOUR.COM, “We (Peterson and his caddie) got about 50 to 60 yards from the green and I said let’s just slow down and take all this in…Having the people stand up and clap for you when you come on the last green – that’s stuff I’d only seen on TV. It was really, really cool.”

FIRST ON TOUR -- will conduct its first “Small Business Forum” in conjunction with a PGA TOUR event this week at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans. Forums, which are free to registered individuals, will be held at every domestic Tour event this year, plus six on the PGA TOUR and one on the Champions Tour. They are designed to help small businesses learn how to be successful on the internet. To learn more, go to:

NINE-HOLE PLAYOFFS -- On Sunday, the European Tour’s Open de España ended after nine playoff holes, repeating the 18th hole each time. Raphaël Jacquelin was victorious in what equaled the Tour’s longest overtime event (1989 KLM Dutch Open/rotation of playoff holes). In 2009, the Tour had a similar finish when Gary Christian defeated Mathias Gronberg at the Northeast Pennsylvania Classic outside Scranton. It, too, was the Tour’s longest playoff and repeated the same hole (No. 18) nine times. The Tour has had one other nine-hole playoff. In 1998 Eric Booker outlasted Notah Begay III at the Lehigh (Pa.) Valley Open. It is believed to have also featured the same hole in the playoff.

AUTISM MONTH COMES TO A CLOSE THIS WEEK -- April has been autism awareness month on the PGA TOUR and Tour. Things come to an end this week in New Orleans and Valdosta on the respective tours, with players, caddies and others encouraged to wear blue shirts on Saturday.

BILLY ANDRADE IN GEORGIA -- Four-time PGA TOUR winner Billy Andrade is in this week’s South Georgia Classic field. The 49-year-old Rhode Island native is making only his second Tour start ever (2008 Chattanooga Classic).

DID YOU KNOW? -- With a U.S. Amateur title (2008) and a European Tour title (2009) on his resume, plus stints on both the PGA TOUR (2012) and the Tour (2011 & ’13), it may come as a surprise that Danny Lee is still among the youngest members of the Tour this year. Only two players (Patrick Cantlay/21 and Meen Whee Kim/21) are younger. Lee is among six members who turn 23 this year.

NEXT WEEK -- It’s up the highway to northeast Georgia for the Stadion Classic at UGA Golf Course in Athens.