If watching Darren Clarke, “the peoples champion” hoist the Claret Jug at Royal St. Georges last month wasn’t thrilling enough, I had the good fortune of watching the very talented Jordan Spieth, 17, of Dallas, Texas win the 2011 U.S Junior Amateur at the par-72, 7,111-yard Olympic Course at Gold Mountain Golf Club.
Speith earned a 6-and-5 victory over Chelso Barrett, 16, of Keene, N.H and entered the record books by becoming just the second golfer in the 64-year history of the championship to claim more than one title. He also won in 2009. Tiger Woods won three consecutive Junior Amateur titles from 1991 to 1993. No doubt we’ll see Speith’s name gracing leader boards for many years to come. Staying with the juniors, Skyler Finnell of Carmel, Calif. shot a 2-under-par 70 to win his first American Junior Golf Association victory. Catherina Li of Kent, Wash. also claimed her first AJGA victory with a 5-under-par total of 211.
The AJGA Junior was a 54-hole stroke play event conducted by the American Junior Golf Association at Centennial Golf Club in Medford, Ore. The tournament field featured 107 boys and 33 girls from twelve states and six countries. Congratulations to all.
Another regular Northwest fixture which draws the region’s best professional golfers was The 24th Annual Rosauers Open held at the Lilac City’s Indian Canyon GC in mid-July. This event was won by previous winner and Manito Golf & Country assistant pro Corey Prugh who carved out an impressive final round 8 under par 63 that included an ace, seven birdies and an eagle on the closing hole to win the championship by two strokes over Broadmoor GC PGA Professional Tim Feenstra.
Other notable results include Pro Golf Discount’s Ryan Benzel and Chris Griffin who tied for 15th and Portland GolfTEC’s Ben Weyland tied for 10th place. Finally, our neighbors to the north in Vancouver B.C. hosted one of the strongest fields in 10 years as the world’s elite (minus McIlroy) competed for the RBC Canadian Open at Shaughnessy Golf & Country Club in Vancouver. Sean O’Hair battled to win his fourth major in a one hole playoff with Kris Blanks; however, Abbotsford native and home town favorite Adam Hadwin earned low Canadian honors scratching out a fourth place finish tied with Aussie Geoff Ogilvy.
So what can we look forward to in August?
The PGA Champions Tour returns to TPC Snoqualmie in Aug. 26-28 where fans will have the opportunity to watch Bernhard Langer defend his 2010 Boeing Classic title. The legendary German had a career year in 2010; however, Langer has struggled this season to overcome a nagging thumb injury, which might prove the greater challenge. Also, look for newcomer Kenny Perry to join the fray this year.
The Boeing Classic will also host its first Military Appreciation Day on Championship Sunday, Aug. 28. Military and their families will receive free admission into the tournament and will be hosted in a hospitality tent. For more information or to purchase tickets online, please visit www.BoeingClassic.com or purchase tickets at the Boeing Classic admissions gate during tournament week Aug. 22-28, 2011.
LPGA’s Safeway Classic & “Peter’s Party”!
Japan’s Ai Miyazato and the world’s best women golfers return to Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club Aug. 15-21 to compete for the $1.5 million purse. The premium tournament will also serve as a final opportunity for players to earn a playing spot to contest the Solheim Cup to be held in Ireland Sept. 23-25.
The Rose City is also hosting The Umpqua Bank Challenge, a three-day exhibition-style golf tournament set for Aug. 28-30 at Portland Golf Club hosted by PGA TOUR professional and Portland-native Peter Jacobsen.
The Umpqua Bank Challenge will include The Regence Pro-am on Sunday and the main field competition on Monday and Tuesday, where twelve PGA TOUR professionals will pair into six two-person teams and play for a purse with proceeds benefiting The Children’s Hospital at Legacy Emanuel and the “I Have a Dream” Foundation-Oregon. This is your chance to get close and personal with the likes of Arnold Palmer, Bernhard Langer and Fuzzy Zoeller, just to name a few. For more information, please visit www.umpquabankchallenge.com.
During the final week of August and into Labor Day, if you want to experience three days and 54-holes of net, stroke play championship-caliber golf, The 15th Annual Golf World Pacific Amateur Golf Classic, held in Bend and hosted by the Central Oregon Visitors Association, should be the ticket. For more information, please visit www.pacamgolf.com
My tweet of the Month!
@Y_E_Yang YE Yang
“Next tournament is Bridgestone. I learned that I don’t really like the combo of Links and foul weather. Nor does my game.”