Shell Oil Company President Marvin Odum, right, and Houston Golf Association President Steve Timms, left, flank youngsters who helped announce a Community Impact number of $2,236,977 from the proceeds of the 2014 Shell Houston Open.
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Bruce Crampton (1975)
The Woodlands CC
- September 30, 2003
The field scoring average of 68.554 at last week's Valero Texas Open is lowest on the PGA TOUR since the 1991 Chattanooga Classic played to an average of 68.445.
Hank Kuehne broke his own TOUR record with a one-tournament Driving Distance average of 343.6 yards last week in Texas. Kuehne originally set the mark at 337.0 at the 2002 B.C. Open.
You might look for a first-time winner this week at the Southern Farm Bureau Classic. In five of nine seasons that this event has been considered an official victory, a first-timer has walked off with the top prize -- Brian Henninger (1994), Ed Dougherty (1995), Willie Wood (1996), Cameron Beckman (2001) and Luke Donald (2002).
While winning is the ultimate reward on TOUR, consistency can also be rewarding. If THE TOUR Championship were held today, 12 of the 30 players in the field would not have a victory this season. On the other hand, eight winners this year would be left out of the Top 30 money winners.
With only five weeks left to secure a place in the Top 125, 2002 Q-School grads hold down nine positions among that group. The group is currently 9 of 38 (23.7%), but trail the Nationwide Tour grads who are 6 of 15 (40%).
While you need to do just about everything right to shoot a TOUR-record 254 for 72 holes, one thing Tommy Armour III did exceptionally well was putt. In fact, he made a remarkable 58 of 60 putts from 10 feet or less
(96.7%) at last week's Valero Texas Open.
Tom Purtzer currently leads the Champions Tour in Driving Distance with a 297.1 average. He's no stranger to hitting the long ball, though. He also led the PGA TOUR in that category in 1990 and finished among the Top 10 eight times during his career.
With his second Champions Tour victory of the season last week, Craig Stadler increased his earnings to $885,278 in only 12 starts. He's won more in those 12 starts than he did in any year on the PGA TOUR. His best season was 1991 when he collected $827,628.
Who leads the Champions Tour in Top-10 finishes this year? Go to the head of the class if you said Tom Jenkins. His 14 are one more than Gil Morgan and two more than Allen Doyle and Jim Thorpe.
James Oh became the 16th Monday qualifier in Nationwide Tour history to go on to victory last week with his triumph at the Mark Christopher Charity Classic. At age 21 years-5 months-27 days, Oh also became the youngest winner in Tour history, supplanting David Duval who was 21-9-0 when he won the 1993 Wichita Open.
This week's tournament site, the Bayonet Course on the Monterey Peninsula, was the hardest course on Tour in each of the past two seasons. It played to a stroke average of 75.421 last year and 74.663 in 2001. The stretch of holes 11-14 all ranked among the toughest 50 holes on Tour last year.
He didn't enter his first tournament until mid-June, but Jason Bohn has quickly made up for lost time. In his 14 starts since that first outing, Bohn is 106-under par and is eighth on the money list. He has a win and two playoff losses to his credit in that stretch.
Tommy Armour III's win last week at the Valero Texas Open was the 135th by a former Nationwide Tour player on the PGA TOUR.