Three First Coast members of the First Tee-North Florida got their chances in the spotlight at Pebble Beach last week.
Flagler College freshman and Nease graduate Grace Richards, Bishop Snyder student Matthew French of Jacksonville and Fernandina Beach High student Madelyn Campbell competed in the Pure Insurance Championship, a PGA Tour Champions event in which junior golfers compete in pro-am groups with Champions Tour players.
More: First Tee-North Florida members get surprise announcement by PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan
Richards drew 18-time PGA Tour Champions winner Jay Haas, Campbell played with 2006 Players champion Stephen Ames and French played with six-time Champions Tour winner David Frost on rounds at Pebble Beach and Poppy Hills.
The team with Richards and Haas made the 36-hole cut and went on to finish 14th overall and seven among groups that included First Tee players, finishing at 17-under-par 199.
The teams with Campbell and French shot 7-under 137. Campbell’s team was 24th among First Tee girls players and French’s group tied for 35th among First Tee boys.
K.J. Choi was the overall professional winner. The next PGA Tour Champions event is the Constellation Furyk & Friends next week at the Timuquana Country Club.
Schedule change at Torrey
The PGA Tour has made a smart move to avoid a huge NFL football day and at the same time give exposure to the Advocates Pro Golf Association Tour.
The Tour announced on Tuesday that the Farmers Insurance Open at the Torrey Pines South Course in La Jolla, Calif., will start on Wednesday Jan. 26 and conclude on Saturday Jan. 29, with prime-time viewing on the East Coast.
The Friday and Saturday rounds will be scheduled to finish around 8 p.m., on CBS. Golf Channel will air the first two rounds.
That Tour will avoid having the final round of one of its top West Coast events conflicting with the NFL’s conference championship games that day. But it also will free up Golf Channel to air the second round of the APGA Farmers Insurance Invitational, with will be 36 holes and played at the Torrey Pines North Course on Jan. 29 and the South Course on Jan. 30.
It will mark the first time that an APGA event is aired live on Golf Channel. The APGA is a professional tour designed to give minority players access to professional tournaments and is receiving financial support from the PGA Tour.
“There is tremendous interest and momentum on the APGA Tour as we continue our mission to prepare African Americans and other minority golfers to compete and win at the highest level of professional golf,” said APGA Tour CEO Ken Bentley in a statement.
The PGA Tour and Rocket Mortgage has extended their title sponsorship for the event in Detroit, through 2027. One of the tournament’s charitable components is the Changing the Course initiative, which tries to bridge the digital divide in Detroit by making data-driven investments in technology, internet access and digital literacy training to Detroit area residents. … The Tour and CDW Corporation, a leading multi-brand provider of information technology solutions, announced an extension of their marketing relationship in which CDW is the official technology solutions advisor of the PGA Tour and PGA Tour Champions. ShotLink, the TOUR’s real-time data collection and scoring system, will continue to be powered by technology and insights from CDW.
Wrapping up Ryder Cup
U.S. Ryder Cup captain Steve Stricker all but took his name out of the running to guide the team against in Rome in 2023 — despite a captain’s record of victories last week at Whistling Straits and the 2017 Presidents Cup by combined scores of 38-20. “I don’t think it’s going to happen. It’s mapped out and there’s guys in positions to be the next captains,” Stricker said. “It was an unbelievable experience, don’t get me wrong. I’m glad it’s over.” … Dustin Johnson of the U.S. and Sergio Garcia of Europe won the inaugural Nicklaus-Jacklin Awards, created this year for players who best embody the spirit of when Jack Nicklaus conceded a short putt to Tony Jacklin to conclude the 1969 Ryder Cup in a tie. … Ian Poulter joined Colin Montgomerie as the only players to never lose in singles at the Ryder Cup in at least seven appearances. … The top-seven players in the world competed at Whistling Straits last week. They combined for a 21-3-4 record.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Event: Sanderson Farms Championship, Thursday-Sunday, Country Club of Jackson (Miss.).
At stake: $7 million purse ($1.26 million and 500 FedEx Cup points to the winner).
Defending champion: Sergio Garcia.
TV: Golf Channel (Thursday-Sunday, 4-7 p.m.).
Area players entered: Jonas Blixt, Lanto Griffin, Zach Johnson, Patton Kizzire, Russell Knox, Tyler McCumber, Trey Mullinax, J.T. Poston, Sam Ryder, Hudson Swafford, Jared Wolfe.
Notable: Garcia had weekend rounds of 66-67 and beat Peter Malnati by one shot. … Also playing are Adam Hadwin, Charley Hoffman, Sungjae Im, Si Woo Kim, Harold Varner and Will Zalatoris.
Event: ShopRite LPGA Classic, Friday-Sunday, Seaview Country Club, Bay Course, Galloway, N.J.
At stake: $1.75 million purse ($315,000 to the winner).
Defending champion: Mel Reid.
TV: Golf Channel (Friday-Sunday, 1-4 p.m.).
Area players entered: Reid, Marina Alex, Chella Choi.
Notable: Reid, a native of England who has moved to Atlantic Beach, shot 64 in the second round and went on to beat Jennifer Kupcho by two shots.
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