A ton of golfing details on the Wyndham Championship


FedExCup Playoffs Spotlight
As the final event in the FedExCup Regular Season, the Wyndham Championship will again play a vital role in the race to the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup. In the offseason, the field size for the first Playoff event was decreased from 144 to 125 and the Wyndham Championship will serve as the final stage for players trying to move or stay inside the top 125 in the FedExCup standings.

Another key change this season was moving the points reset from the beginning of the Playoffs to after the BMW Championship (third event). This guarantees that all 30 players at THE TOUR Championship presented by Coca-Cola will have a mathematical chance at winning the FedExCup. It also means that the top five players in the FedExCup points entering THE TOUR Championship will control their own destiny – if  they win the TOUR Championship they will also win the FedExCup.

With this new structure in mind, the competition at the Wyndham Championship will intensify with each round as players fight over the final spots in the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup.

Tournament Spotlight
The Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, North Carolina has been a staple on the PGA TOUR schedule since 1938. Over the span of those previous 70 years, a superior list of golf’s greatest have won this event, including the likes of Sam Snead, Byron Nelson, Ben Hogan, Seve Ballesteros and Gary Player. Other recent winners include Davis Love III and Rocco Mediate.

No one enjoyed Greensboro more than the great Sam Snead, who set a couple PGA TOUR records that still stand today. It was in Greensboro where Snead set the TOUR record for most victories at a single event (8). No other golfer has more than six. Snead also set the TOUR record for longest time (27 years) between first and last victory in the same event (1938-1965).

2009 PGA TOUR winners in the field (as of Bridgestone Invitational/Legends Reno Tahoe):
Lucas Glover – U.S. Open
Michael Bradley – Puerto Rico Open presented by Banco Popular
Brian Gay – Verizon Heritage and St. Jude Classic
Bo Van Pelt – U.S. Bank Championship in Milwaukee
Mark Wilson – Mayakoba Golf Classic
Nathan Green – RBC Canadian Open

Player Spotlight (field as of August 10, 2009)
Lucas Glover – Three of the top four finishers from the U.S. Open at Bethpage Black will be on hand for the Wyndham Championship. Lucas Glover finished at 4-under at the U.S. Open, holding off Ricky Barnes, David Duval and Phil Mickelson.

Glover will be making his sixth appearance in Greensboro. He had made all previous five cuts. His best finish was T6 in 2006. He finished T20 in 2007 and 2008.

Glover is seventh in the FedExCup standings and will be looking to jump into the top 5 before the Playoffs begin.

Ricky Barnes – Ricky Barnes will be making his second start in Greensboro after missing the cut in 2003. Barnes has made nine of 16 cuts on TOUR this season with his best career finish coming at the U.S. Open (T2). In 40 starts on TOUR, the T2 at the U.S. Open was his first top 10 finish.

David Duval – David Duval, who finished T2 at the U.S. Open, is making his third appearance at the Wyndham Championship. He missed the cut last year and finished T14 in 1995.

Carl Pettersson – Last year, former North Carolina State golfer and North Carolina resident Carl Pettersson topped Scott McCarron by two strokes to claim his 3rd career PGA TOUR win. Pettersson moved from Sweden to Greensboro during high school and graduated from Grimsley High, located seven miles from Sedgefield Country Club, site of the tournament. Standing at 150 in the FedExCup standings, with only two weeks remaining in the Regular Season, Pettersson is in danger of missing the Playoffs.

Brandt Snedeker – In 2007, Brandt Snedeker picked up his first TOUR win at the Wyndham Championship. After battling through injuries earlier this year, Snedeker has picked up his old form with top 5 finishes in three of his last four starts (T5-AT&T National, T2-John Deere Classic, T5-RBC Canadian Open). In the past month, Snedeker has moved from No. 183 in the FedExCup standings to No. 75.

Brian Gay – Brian Gay picked up a pair of wins this season at the Verizon Heritage and St. Jude Classic. Gay is eighth in the FedExCup standings and like Lucas Glover will be looking to jump into the top 5 before the Playoffs begin.

Mark Calcavecchia – In the second round at the RBC Canadian Open, Mark Calcavecchia set a TOUR record by making nine consecutive birdies beginning at the 12th hole (his front-nine) and ended with a par at the third hole. The previous TOUR record of eight was held by Bob Goalby, Fuzzy Zoeller, Dewey Arnette, Edward Fryatt, J.P. Hayes and Jerry Kelly. Omar Uresti made nine consecutive birdies on the Nationwide Tour in the 1994 Shreveport Open.

Kyle Stanley – Kyle Stanley, an All-America first team member from Clemson University, was recently named the 2009 Ben Hogan Award winner after his sophomore season. The top honor a collegiate golfer can earn, the award is presented annually to the top men’s collegiate golfer taking into account all collegiate and amateur competitions.

A native of Gig Harbor, Washington, Stanley set 18 Clemson records during his freshman campaign and was named the 2007 ACC Freshman of the Year and Player of the Year. Stanley was a member of that year’s United States Walker Cup Team.

Stanley made his debut as a professional at the Travelers Championship in June. Stanley played in four PGA TOUR events as an amateur, making his first cut at the U.S. Open and finishing 53rd. He made the cut in his first three TOUR events as a professional (T19-Travelers Championship, T34-John Deere Classic and T65-U.S. Bank Championship).

Justin Thomas – Justin Thomas, a 16-year-old from Goshen, KY, claimed more than just a win at the American Junior Golf Association’s FootJoy Invitational earlier this year at Sedgefield Country Club.
For the first year, a sponsor’s exemption to the Wyndham Championship was granted to the winner of the FootJoy Invitational champion. Thomas made the most of this opportunity, as three late birdies helped him turn a two-shot deficit into a two-shot victory at the FootJoy Invitational and a spot in his first PGA TOUR event. Thomas has two other AJGA wins on his resume.

Rookie Watch
Jeff Klauk – Son of longtime TPC Sawgrass superintendent Fred Klauk; best finishes were solo fourth at The Honda Classic and T4 at the U.S. Bank Championship; No. 59 in FedExCup standings through the Legends Reno-Tahoe Open.
Scott Piercy – Two top-10s and sits 71stin FedExCup points.
James Nitties – Australian rookie has totaled two top-10s.
Webb Simpson – Wake Forest All-American posted top-10s in first two starts as a PGA TOUR member — T9 at the Sony Open in Hawaii and T5 at the 50th Bob Hope Classic hosted by Arnold Palmer.
Bill Lunde – Rookie finished T6 at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.
Matt Bettencourt – 2008 Nationwide Tour Player of the Year challenged at the Memorial Tournament, finishing T5; T10 at U.S. Open was first career start at a major championship.

Hospitality Sellout
The Wyndham Championship announcement in late July that it had sold out its corporate hospitality packages for the tournament. The tournament added four skyboxes, chalets and tents at the 18th hole for this year and they all sold out also. As of the last week in July, individual hospitality tickets were still available.

120-130 in the FedExCup Standings (as of Bridgestone Invitational/Legends Reno Tahoe)
120 Joe Ogilvie
121 Tom Watson
122 Charles Warren
123 Andres Romero
124 David Mathis
125 Ryan Palmer
126 Todd Hamilton
127 Chris Riley
128 Cliff Kresge
129 Brendon de Jonge
130 Nicholas Thompson

Course Spotlight
In its first 4 years, the Greensboro event was played at both Sedgefield Country Club and Starmount Forest Country Club. In 1942, it was held solely at Starmount Forest, before being cancelled in 1943 and 1944 due to World War II. From 1945 until 1976 the tournament was played at either Starmount Forest or Sedgefield. From 1977 until 2007, the tournament moved to Forest Oaks Country Club.

In 2008, the tournament returned to its roots by playing at Sedgefield Country Club for the first time since1976. In its first year back, Carl Pettersson set the tournament record with a 259. Jesper Parnevik set the previous mark of 265 in 1999 at Forest Oaks Country Club.

Sam Snead won five of his eight Greensboro titles at Sedgefield Country Club.

Last season’s scoring average of 68.753 at the Wyndham Championship was the lowest on TOUR for 2008.

PGA TOUR Season Stats (as of Bridgestone Invitational/Legends Reno Tahoe)
So far this season, there have been four winners in their 20s, 24 winners in their 30s and seven winners in their 40s. The youngest winner is Dustin Johnson (24 years, 7 months, 4 days) at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, while the oldest is Kenny Perry (48 years, 4 months, 23 days) at the FBR Open. During the 2008 PGA TOUR season, there were 15 winners in their 20s, 24 winners in their 30s and nine winners in their 40s.

There have been five first-time winners on the PGA TOUR this season (Perez, Yang, Casey, Van Pelt and Green) and all five are in their 30s.

There have not been any rookie winners on TOUR so far this season. The last season that a rookie failed to capture a win was in 1998, the year that Steve Flesch won PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year honors. Actually, since 1979 there have only been three seasons (1998, 1986 and 1981) where a rookie failed to capture a victory.

Charity Spotlight
As the PGA TOUR makes its stop in the Piedmont Triad for the 2009 Wyndham Championship, the tournament is proud to support the charities listed to below:

Victory Junction Gang Camp
Founded by Kyle and Pattie Petty, in honor of their son Adam, Victory Junction Gang Camp proudly opened its doors in June of 2004. After participating in a motorcycle ride to Camp Boggy Creek in Florida in 1999, the Petty family felt inspired to build a camp in North Carolina. The Victory Junction Gang Camp enriches the lives of children with chronic medical conditions or serious illnesses by providing life-changing camping experiences that are exciting, fun, and empowering, in a safe and medically sound environment. Victory Junction Gang Camp operates solely on the donations of corporations, organizations and individuals. Children that attend Victory Junction would not otherwise be able to attend a camp because of their medical needs. Victory Junction is a year-round camp that serves children, ages 7 to 15, with a variety of health issues. During the summer the camp offers week-long disease-specific sessions with up to 125 kids per session. During the fall, winter and spring the camp offers family weekends with up to 32 families per weekend.

The International Civil Rights Center and Museum
Over 45 years ago, four young students from North Carolina A&T State University sat down at the “whites only” lunch counter in the F. W. Woolworth’s store on Elm Street in Greensboro – and started a nationwide trend of sit-ins. Their action was meant to draw attention to the challenges that African Americans faced in gaining equality in everyday life. The International Civil Rights Center and Museum is dedicated to the memory of not only those young men who started a national phenomenon and played an integral role in the civil rights struggle of the 1960s, but is also the time in our history. The museum will provide future generations with an opportunity to learn about a tumultuous time in our nation’s history – at one of the pivotal places of the civil rights movement.

Boys and Girls Club of Greater High Point
Incorporated in 1998, the Boys and Girls Club of Greater High Point began operations in January of 1999. The mission is to inspire and enable all young people, especially those from disadvantaged circumstances, to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens. Any boy or girl age six through 18 can be a member of the Boys & Girls Clubs, with absolutely no other requirements for membership. Annual membership dues are set at $2 so that any young person can join regardless of socioeconomic background. More than 80 percent of club members live at or below the poverty level, more than 70 percent come from single parent households, and more than 80 percent do not belong to or use the services of other youth agencies. These demographics represent the youth and the issues that the Boys & Girls Clubs programs are designed to impact.

The Crosby Scholars Community Partnership
The Crosby Scholars Community Partnership works to provide middle and high school students and their families in the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County area prepare for success in college and success in life. By requiring students to maintain a certain level of academic achievement, to stay drug free, to give back to the community through volunteerism, and to provide leadership development training, financial aid counseling and job shadowing experiences, the Partnership has been working for over 10 years to provide a better future for the students selected for this program. The partnership provides assistance to over 2,000 students every year.

Autism Society of North Carolina
The Autism Society of North Carolina’s primary focus is advocacy. The first statewide effort in the country to obtain services for people with autism began in North Carolina when parents involved with the Autism Society of North Carolina advocated with the legislature for funding of a comprehensive statewide clinical program for people with autism. As a result of those efforts, the Legislature provided funding for the establishment of Division TEACCH at the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Medicine in 1970. Since its inception, the Autism Society of North Carolina has also advocated for appropriate classroom and educational options for children with autism, individualized community-based programs, the inclusion of autism in developmental disabilities program funding and a variety of other measures such as increased residential and vocational options for people with autism spectrum disorders. Currently, the Society employs twelve parent advocates, including a bilingual (Spanish/English) advocate and a Director of Advocacy throughout the state.

Goodwill Industries of Central North Carolina
Since 1963, Goodwill Industries of Central North Carolina, Inc. has built partnerships within the community to meet the needs of people with disabilities and other barriers to employment. Through these partnerships and the commitment of our consumers to succeed, Goodwill Industries is able to provide vocational evaluation, training, employment and job-placement services. The sale of donated goods in Goodwill retail stores remains the greatest source of funding for the services Goodwill provides. Store sales and the community donations that drive them are crucial to Goodwill’s ability to provide quality education and training programs. Eighty-four percent of all store sales goes straight back into funding the programs and services Goodwill offers to the community. Other major sources of funding include industrial and service contract work, rehabilitation service fees, government and private grants, public support and salvage sales.

American Junior Golf Association (ACE Grant)
The goal of the ACE Grant program is to give top-flight golf opportunities to young golfers regardless of financial resources. This program helps fulfill the AJGA’s mission of developing young men and women who aspire to earn college golf scholarships through competitive junior golf. As an organization dedicated to the development of young men and women in their pursuit of college golf scholarships through competitive play, the American Junior Golf Association (AJGA) has a strong history of success. By promoting the game of golf through more than 50 junior tournaments a year and donations to grassroots golf organizations in the area of these tournaments, the AGJA continues to make a lasting impression on the future of the sport of golf. The ACE Grant program provides financial aid to juniors who have the ability to play in AJGA events but lack the financial resources.

National Multiple Sclerosis Society of Central North Carolina
The National Multiple Sclerosis Society works to help alleviate the plight of multiple sclerosis in the United States. Through local events such as the Tour to Tanglewood, the Greenway Trial 5K and Fun Run, the MS Walk and the annual Dinner of Champions, the society raises funds for research and awareness about multiple sclerosis. The Central North Carolina Chapter serves over 2100 people living with multiple sclerosis in central North Carolina. This Chapter provides a variety of programs for people with MS, their families, and medical professionals. With fundraising efforts, the Central North Carolina Chapter contributes funds to promote research that aids in the search for the cause and a cure for MS. Remaining funds raised are used to support our local programs for those with MS within the Chapter’s 15-county area. Our Chapter area includes the following counties: Alamance, Alleghany, Ashe, Caswell, Davidson, Davie, Forsyth, Guilford, Randolph, Rockingham, Stokes, Surry, Watauga, Wilkes and Yadkin.

Mackay Foundation for Cancer Research
The MacKay Foundation of Cancer Research raises money to benefit a variety of cancers, but primarily bone marrow transplant, leukemia and hematology research at Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Section on Hematology and Oncology through our four annual fundraising events. Since our first tournament held in 1994, the Bob MacKay Memorial Golf Tournament, now in it’s 15th year, the MacKay Foundation for Cancer Research has gifted over $800,000 to WFUSM, supporting important and ongoing cancer research while ensuring that new research projects have the seed funding to move forward. WFUSM has established the Bob MacKay Memorial Endowment Fund to support the Bone Marrow Transplant Program. Our mission statement: “It is our desire to make a difference in the lives of our family, friends and co-workers who have been touched by cancer.” With no paid staff and virtually no overhead, the greatest amount of the money raised will be used to ensure that our “dream” is realized – to find better and more effective cancer treatments and hopefully, one day, a cure for cancer.