Notes: Putnam first double winner on Tour in 2013

June 04, 2013

The Tour does not have a tournament this week. Play resumes next week at the Air Capital Classic in Wichita, Kan. (June 13-16). Wichita marks the beginning of 14 tournaments in 16 weeks that will culminate in the season’s finale in late September where the 50 PGA TOUR cards for 2013-14 will be awarded.

MICHAEL PUTNAM, FIRST DOUBLE WINNER OF ‘13 -- A day after turning 30, Michael Putnam became only the tenth player in Tour history to register back-to-back victories on consecutive weeks when he won the Mid-Atlantic Championship at TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm outside Washington, D.C. on Sunday. The last to do so was Luke Guthrie nine months ago when he won in Boise, Idaho and Midland, Texas. The former Walker Cup team member from Lakewood, Wash. is the first player to capture two wins this year and is now one away from an immediate promotion to the PGA TOUR.  Putnam has a $132,876 lead over No. 2 Edward Loar.

PLAYER OF THE MONTH, GUESS WHO? -- Two wins in one month is hard to top.  So it should come as no surprise that Michael Putnam is May’s Player of the Month on the Tour.  Putnam played all four May events, adding a T5 (Stadion) and T47 (BMW) to his back-to-back wins that closed out the month.  He finished strong in April too with a T2 in Valdosta.

NO. 356 -- Matt Kuchar’s second victory of the year on Sunday at the Memorial Tournament was Tour alumni win No. 356 on the PGA TOUR.  The next six finishers at Muirfield Village were also alums.  

TOP-15 MACHINE -- New Zealand’s Tim Wilkinson tied for 10th in the Mid-Atlantic Championship.  It was the lefty’s seventh top-15 or better finish in eight starts this year.  His only hiccup came at the South Georgia Classic where he signed an incorrect scorecard after the first round.  Now third on the money list, Wilkinson and Chesson Hadley (8th) are the only players among the top 12 without a win. Wilkinson leads the Scoring Average stat with 69.00 through 28 rounds.  

CLIMBING THE MONEY LIST -- 2010 Georgia Tech grad Chesson Hadley kept up his strong play of late in Maryland.  The 6’4”, 165-pound Raleigh, N.C. native enjoyed his best Tour finish ever at TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm, a solo second, in his tenth start of 2013.  It comes on the heels of a T3 and a T6 the previous two weeks in Greenville, S.C. and Mexico, respectively.  Hadley improved 17 spots to eighth on the money list.

U.S OPEN QUALIFIERS -- The following 2013 Tour members qualified for the U.S. Open on Monday: Randall Hutchison, Adam Hadwin, Ryan Sullivan, Matt Harmon, Mathew Goggin, Cliff Kresge, Matt Bettencourt, Brandt Jobe, Joe Ogilvie, Matt Weibring, Edward Loar, Bio Kim, Steven Alker and Roger Tambellini. Russell Knox, who has made eight Tour starts this year, also earned a spot on Monday.

BEST WISHES FROM THE KING – Tyler Dunmore completed his mission of playing 50 courses in 50 days for Junior Achievement last week when he played in the Mid-Atlantic Championship Pro-Am at TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm.  Not surprisingly, Arnold Palmer took note when he heard the 17-year-old had been inspired by a magazine article in which “The King” talked about charity.  On May 23rd, Mr. Palmer sent Tyler a thoughtful note, along with a personalized photograph. View the note here.

DID YOU KNOW? – TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm became the toughest course on Tour through the first 11 events.  The average score was 72.631 or 2.631 over par.  The par-71 UGA Golf Course, site of the Stadion Classic, was previously the toughest, playing 1.396 over par.

NEXT WEEK – The 2013 season kicks into high gear next week, with the first of 14 tournaments over a stretch of 16 weeks.  This run includes the new four-event Tour Finals, which promises to end the season in unique and exciting fashion.  The Tour will be in Wichita, Kan. for the 24th year in a row next week for the newly named Air Capital Classic at Crestview Country Club (June 13-16).