Posts Tagged ‘FBR Open’

FBR Open Final Round

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

The greens have really firmed up today; several players have found it near impossible to keep the ball on the greens having approach shots with long irons or fairway woods. Especially the drivable par 4 17th which held few balls today. Charley Hoffman put on quite the run but lipped out on the 17th for what should have been a birdie and left himself some 6 feet for par.

Kenny Perry birdied the 17th and took a one stroke lead. It looks like it may still come down to Perry and Hoffman as James Kenneth Perry has found himself in the fairway bunker at 18. None of the leaders have really gone low today; Hoffman is in the club house at -4 just waiting to see what Kenny does. James Nitties was at one time -4 but ended his round at -3 and looks like he will finish T4 at best. It hasn’t been due to striking the ball poorly; more so just the firmer greens that have not allowed the players to get their balls to bite on the greens.

As I write this Kevin Na has just barely missed his putt on 18 to force a three way play off, with Kenny’s bogey on 18 it will be James Kenneth Perry and Charley Hoffman going back to the 18th tee for a two man play off. Both of these players are gamers’ and will grind it out to the end.

James Nitties had his chances today with long irons into both the par 5’s on the back nine for eagle opportunities but with the firm greens was only able to par them both. Had he been able to birdie those two holes he would have been in the play off mix as well. Again the 2009 Q-school grads have proven themselves worthy so far in this young season.

Both players have found the fairway bunker at 18, but, it appears Charley Hoffman has the better lie. Neither player hit a particularly good shot from the bunker and now I would have to say Kenny Perry has the advantage as Charley Hoffman has left himself a difficult little flop or pitch over the bunker and land the ball short of the pin, he does not want to be long here and have a down hill putt. While Kenny can pitch from the rough and run it up close to the hole; but NO he has left him over 10 feet for par and misses. Now both players have a tap in for bogey and will move on to the 10th tee for playoff hole number 2.

We are moving ever closer to kickoff now with another hole to play. Not to worry that is why God invented picture in picture. Arizona has won the coin toss and elected to receive the ball to start the second half and give Pittsburgh the ball to start the first.

Kenny Perry and Charley Hoffman are both on the green in two and have birdie opportunities on the 2nd playoff hole. Both have missed the birdie putts and made par on 10 so we go the 3rd playoff hole which will be the drivable par 4 at 17. Meanwhile Pittsburgh is moving the ball well on their first possession.

Hoffman finds the bunker at 17 off the tee, Pittsburgh scores with Big Ben rushing at 3rd and goal, while Kenny Perry finds the fairway at 17. Well now they are reviewing the Pittsburgh touchdown, looks like his knee is clearly down to me and it should be 4th and goal. Kenny and Charley are both in the fringe after their 2nd shots at 17. Hoffman misses his putt and it is Kenny Perry with the victory after the 3rd playoff hole at the 2009 FBR Open. The Pittsburgh TD was revoked and they had to kick a field goal to take a 3-0 lead.

Congratulations to James Kenneth Perry.

FBR Open Round 3 Update

Saturday, January 31st, 2009

Kenny Perry leads the way with -12 at 201 after 3 rounds of play. Shooting a 66 to back up his 63 on Friday and his mediocre opening round of 72, it looks like he is on track for another good year on the PGA Tour. Kenny has 12 wins on tour and his goal is lofty to achieve 20, which would leave him unconditional status until he decides to go to the senior circuit.

Scott Piercy is in sole possession of 2nd place with rounds of 69/67/66 for a 202. Charley Hoffman, Brian Gay and Kevin Na are all T3 at 10 under par. Brian Gay has shot 16 consecutive rounds at par or better and has yet to win this year.

There are 7 players at T6 including Ogilvy, Purdy, Maggert, Toms, Moore, Nitties and Kuchar all at 9 under, while Mediate, Z. Johnson, Kresge and Watney are T13 at -8. That makes 15 players all within 4 strokes of the leader. Rory Sabbatini, Sean O’Hair and Bubba Watson are all still within striking distance.

Looks like the Thunderbirds and PGA Tour are going to be well pleased with this year’s tournament. Should be an exciting day tomorrow, provided there is not a playoff coverage should end 30 minutes prior to kickoff.

FBR Open Round 2 Update

Saturday, January 31st, 2009

Nick Watney shot an impressive 63 on Friday for cumulative 133 that is 9 under par to take sole possession of 1st place. Charley Hoffman, Matt Kuchar and James Nitties are all tied for 2nd at 8 under.

All three players have been consistent; Charley Hoffman had back to back rounds of 66/68, Matt Kuchar of 67/67 and James Nitties 65/69. Webb Simpson continues to impress me; he is currently T5 at 7 under along with Bubba Watson, Kenny Perry and Cameron Beckman.

And oh by the way as for consistency Webb Simpson has posted rounds of 68/67. Other players in the hunt are Zach Johnson, Geoff Ogilvy, Vaughn Taylor, Lucas Glover, Brian Gay and David Toms.

Several notable players failed to make the cut which was at even par. Those include Camilo Vilegas, Stephen Ames, Justin Leonard, Jesper Parnevik, J.B. Holmes, Stewart Cink and Phil Mickelson. Phil Mickelson failed to shoot either round under par with a 76/73 for a 149. Holmes and Mickelson have won the tournament two times. I noticed them being in the rough a lot and while you can overcome a bad shot or two if you don’t keep it in the short grass you eliminate your chances for birdies and eagles. It isn’t all about power, more so about placing that 2nd shot on a par 4 or the 3rd on a par 5 that wins golf tournaments.

FBR Open Round 1 Update

Friday, January 30th, 2009

Australia’s James Nitties and our own Lucas Glover are T1 at -6 after the first round of play. Charley Hoffman and Dave Bergainio, Jr. are T3 at -5. Briny Baird, Kevin Na and Matt Kuchar are all T5 at -4.

There are 13 players T8 at -3 that include Rocco Mediate, Bubba Watson and Webb Simpson. J.B. Homes started strong with a 31 on his front 9 but had a rough back 9 with a 39 to card a 70, one under par.

Phil Mickelson who has a good history at TPC Scottsdale had a disappointing debut for 2009 and is at 5 over par 76. He will need a phenomenal day to make the cut he is currently T121 out of 132 players. Mr. Mickelson has lobbied the PGA for approval on a new driver and it certainly looks like he could use it, earliest it can be approved and put into play will be next week. The golf gurus all expected him to capitalize on Tiger Woods absence which he was unable to do and has actually fallen to 4th in the world golf rankings.

I stated earlier I expected him to play well this weekend and I was wrong. On the positive side I can’t recall a year when the rookies have had such an impact at the beginning of the season. James Nitties who was probably best known for his appearance on the Big Break is doing surprisingly well and Webb Simpson has not finished a tournament out of the top 10 yet this year and is off to a good start here.

Good for them. Last years q-school grads didn’t impress me that much, so I am glad to see these guys getting a good start on the season.

The TPC Scottsdale is the venue for the FBR Open

Tuesday, January 27th, 2009

It has been referred to as the “biggest party in golf”

About the course: Designed by Tom Weiskopf and Jay Morrish in 1985;

Par is 71 and the course ranked 36th out of 54 on the PGA Tour in 2009 and plays to 7,216 yards, with 72 sand bunkers and 6 water hazards. The course record is 60 shared by Grant Waite (1996), Mark Calcavecchia (2001) and Phil Mickelson (2005). Statistically, in 2008 the most difficult hole was the par 4 11th and the easiest the par 5 13th. Only 47 birdies were recorded at the 11th and zero eagles while the 13th saw 11 eagles and 167 birdies. The most entertaining and raucous hole is the 16th, a par 3 that is entirely surrounded by fans and often referred to as the “coliseum”. There have been 18 aces recorded at the FBR Open with 7 of them coming at the 16th.

About the field: 4 of the Top 10 players in the world will play including Phil Mickelson, Geoff Ogilvy, Anthony Kim and Camilo Vilegas (AK did not play last week due to a shoulder injury and is questionable). Also in the field are Zach Johnson, Pat Perez, John Merrick, David Toms, Brian Gay, Steve Stricker, Sean O’Hair, J. B. Holmes, Aaron Baddeley, Mark Calcavecchia, Rocco Mediate, Chris DiMarco, Paul Azinger, Jesper Parnevik and Tom Lehman. Some of the Majors winners not previously listed are Freddy Couples, David Duval, Justin Leonard, Steve Elkington, Mike Weir, Ben Curtis and Angel Carbrera.

The Purse: $6 million, the winners share a paltry $1,080,000.00

Coverage will be provided by the Golf Channel Thursday and Friday and on CBS Saturday and Sunday. 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM daily.

I look for Phil Mickelson to come out with a strong showing (his 2009 debut), as well as AK (provided the shoulder is healed), J. B. Holmes (2 time winner of the event), Ogilvy and Johnson to both play well and keep earning those Fed-Ex Cup points.