Kirk Triplett recovered from each of his three bogeys in the final round, making a birdie after each one, and his final-round 69 led to a three-stroke victory over Tom Lehman at last week’s SAS Championship. Bernhard Langer and Kenny Perry tied for third. It was Triplett’s fourth career title on the Champions Tour and he has now collected multiple titles for the first time ever in a TOUR season. Triplett, who captured The ACE Group Classic in Naples earlier this year, joined Bernhard Langer (5), Colin Montgomerie (2), Kenny Perry (2) and Fred Couples (2) as the fifth multiple winner on the Champions Tour this year.
Bernhard Langer’s season earnings are now $2,842,089. He’s now just $186,215 short of Hale Irwin’s all-time record total of $3,028,304 established in 2002. (Langer pictured by Getty Images)
Hale Irwin’s first-round 68 at the SAS Championship bettered his age for the seventh time this year on the Champions Tour.
Tom Byrum aced No. 8 in the opening round of the SAS Championship. There now have been aces made in the last three Champions Tour events
Ian Woosnam won the Dutch Senior Open on the European Senior Tour last week, shooting 11-under for a five-stroke victory over three players tying for second.
World Golf Hall of Fame member Sandy Lyle won the World Hickory Open at Panmure in Scotland last week. More than 100 players competed in the event which will be held at Carnoustie next year.
Bruce Summerhays, who earned more than $9 million in his Champions Tour career, was inducted into the Utah Sports Hall of Fame last week, joining his father, Pres, a former University of Utah coach who was inducted 36 years ago. They are the first father-son team in the Hall of Fame’s 44-year history.
Last year, Michael Allen defeated Olin Browne in a playoff to win the 2013 Greater Hickory Kia Classic at Rock Barn for his second win of the year. He also won twice in 2012. Having already claimed a victory in 2014 at the Allianz Championship, Allen is seeking another win for a third consecutive year with multiple victories.
A total of 10 rookies are entered in this week’s Greater Hickory Kia Classic and should Stephen Ames, Lee Janzen, Kevin Sutherland, Billy Andrade, Jose Coceres, Marco Dawson or Doug Garwood win, they would join Scott Dunlap, Jeff Maggert, Miguel Angel Jimenez, Wes Short, Jr. and Paul Goydos as a record sixth different rookie to triumph in a single season on the Champions Tour.
Jay Haas is the Greater Hickory Kia Classic’s leading money-winner with $761,208. Haas (’05, ’09) has won the event twice and has finished among the top 10 in five of the eight years he’s played the tournament. He was also T2 in 2007. Haas currently has the leading streak of 30 consecutive rounds of par or better on the Champions Tour.
The Greater Hickory Kia Classic has several interesting activities and initiatives for this week’s tournament. Here’s a preview.
Monday: Champions Tour rules official Joe Terry and former PGA TOUR rules official and current Champions Tour player David Eger, will offer a glimpse into the life of a professional golfer and tell anecdotal stories about various rulings.
Tuesday: Ben Witter, one of the world’s premier long drive and golf trick-shot entertainers, will entertain fans with his show. Also, the Dale Jarrett Shootout, with high school golfers paired with Champions Tour players, sports celebrities and tournament VIP’s, will take place and include ladies’ high school golfers for the first time this year.
Wednesday: 59-shooter’s Chip Beck, Paul Goydos and Kevin Sutherland will attend a breakfast event moderated by Golf Channel’s Dave Marr.
All week, members of the Military, Hickory-area first responders and school teachers (and one guest) will receive free admission to the tournament. Also, players will have the chance to win Kia motor vehicles with a hole-in-one at the par-3 17th hole during the pro-am (amateurs) and final round of the tournament (professionals).
CHARLES SCHWAB CUP
Kirk Triplett earned 315 Charles Schwab Cup points for his win at the SAS Championship and moved to 6th in the season-long standings. Bernhard Langer’s T3 finish, coupled with Colin Montgomerie finishing outside of the top 10 (T19), increased Langer’s lead in the Charles Schwab Cup race. Montgomerie now trails Langer by 771 points with three events remaining and will have an opportunity to cut into Langer’s lead at this week’s Greater Hickory Kia Classic at Rock Barn as Langer is not entered in the event.
Paul Goydos moved into the top-30 on the 2014 money list after his T5 finish at the SAS Championship. He is now in 29th place with $587,288. The top 30 on the 2014 money list after the AT&T Championship earn a spot in the season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship.
4 – Four players will be participating in their 12th Greater Hickory Kia Classic at Rock Barn this week making them the only four to have competed in each one. That group includes David Eger, Bobby Wadkins, Larry Nelson and John Harris.
ON THIS DATE
10/13/85 – Mike Fetchick celebrates his 63rd birthday by winning the Hilton Head Seniors International, making him the oldest winner in Champions Tour history.
10/16/88 – Corey Pavin becomes the fifth player in PGA TOUR history to break 260 when he shoots a 21-under-par 259 to capture the Texas Open by eight strokes over Robert Wrenn.
10/19/97 – Hale Irwin collects his ninth title of the season, tying Peter Thomson’s record set in 1985 when he wins by three strokes at the Hyatt Regency Maui Kaanapali Classic.
DID YOU KNOW?
The five Champions Tour events between Bernhard Langer’s 13-stroke win at the Senior Open Championship in July and Kirk Triplett’s three-stroke victory at last week’s SAS Championship had been won either in a playoff or by a single stroke.
QUOTE TO NOTE
“The course and the conditions should dictate your shots, not where you are in the field.” – Kirk Triplett’s comment when leading the night before he won on Sunday at last week’s SAS
Source: PGA TOUR