Saturday At The 2022 Senior PGA Championship

A view on the 7th at Harbor Shores at the 2022 KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship.

Saturday At The 2022 KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship

I spent Saturday at the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship at Harbor Shores Golf Club in Benton Harbor, Michigan.

At the end of the third day, Stephen Ames leads by two shots over Mike Weir and the ageless Bernhard Langer. Defending champion Alex Cejka is four shots behind in a tie for fifth.

Also lurking is PGA TOUR Champions rookie Brian Gay, who is looking for his first win on the senior circuit.

Charles Schwab Cup leader Steven Alker sits at T5 while he looks for his third win in five starts on the PGA TOUR Champions.

Miguel Angel Jimenez who sits in the second spot in the Charles Schwab Cup race is in a tie for eighth alongside Gene Saunders, Thongchai Jaidee, Shane Bertsch and Padraig Harrington.

Second round co-leader Scott McCarron posted a 3-over 74 to fall into a tie for eighteenth.

 PlayerTo ParScores
1Stephen Ames-1268-66-67 – 201
T2Mike Weir-1065-71-67 – 203
T2Bernhard Langer-1068-68-67 – 203
4Paul Goydos-969-68-67 – 204
T5Alex Cejka-868-69-68 – 205
T5Steven Alker-864-72-69 – 205
T5Brian Gay-868-68-69 – 205

The midway at the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship.

Off the fairways and greens, the PGA of America and KitchenAid have put together a really nice event, with seemingly more than enough infrastructure to handle the spectators.

Wait times at the numerous food and drink venues seemed short; I saw no lines at the porta potties. A large fleet of trolleys and buses were employed to move spectators around the sprawling and somewhat disconnected course. Helpful volunteers were everywhere.

An interesting approach to the food and beverage distribution was the use of a fleet of small food vehicles. They weren’t full size food trucks of the sort you find in parking lots, but rather more like the love child of a golf course beverage cart and a small pickup. I suppose the advantage of those was that they could be quickly redeployed to where the crowds were. They also don’t require a fleet of vehicles to resupply them. When they run low, they can just drive back to the warehouse.

Still, they were selling those ridiculously overpriced Miller Ultras that gained such notoriety at last week’s PGA Championship.

A cooking demonstration in a pavilion on one end of the midway

Sponsor KitchenAid, which is headquartered in Benton Harbor (the media center is actually in a KitchenAid research building) not surprisingly makes its presence known everywhere.

The midway area near the clubhouse and driving range has a large pavilion that features celebrity chef cooking exhibitions and demonstrations of Kitchen Aid equipment.

A tower of KitchenAid appliances near the first tee.

Elsewhere, there were stations where patrons could trade their names and emails for a chance to win KitchenAid appliances and a large children’s playground with inflatables.

The weather on Saturday at the 2022 Senior PGA Championship could not have been more perfect. The temperatures topped out in the low 70s, with sunny skies and a light breeze. In the morning it was downright cool.

Ernie Els on the 16th

Sightlines at Harbor Shores are pretty good, even where the crowds were relatively dense following stars like Bernhard Langer and Ernie Els. I have an “inside the ropes” pass, but didn’t need to use it to get a good view; there always seemed to be a nearby hillock I could stand on to look over the other spectators and get a good photo.

Grandstands on the 16th

I think that the best stretch to take in the tournament runs from the 15th to 18th holes. Those four are relatively close and offer a chance to see the end of the par five 15th, an interesting par four in the sixteenth, a short par 3 and the finishing eighteenth.

In particular, the lightly wooded between the sixteenth and seventeenth gives fairway and green views of both those holes.

Although the view are terrific, I think probably is best to avoid the stretch of holes seven through nine. They are a bit of a hike from the rest of the course, and a bottleneck forms at the top of the dune that stages the green for the seventh and tee box of the eighth.

However, that’s also where the large playground is located. If you need to go there, I suggest you catch a shuttle.

Grandstands on the 18th

More on third round leader Stephen Ames

  • This is his second-lowest 54-hole score of the season.
    • Lowest: 200 (Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai)
  • This is his fifth time leading/co-leading entering the final round on PGA TOUR Champions.
    • Is 1-for-4 converting those into victories
    • This is his first lead/co-lead entering the final round of a 72-hole event on PGA TOUR Champions.
  • Seeking his third win on PGA TOUR Champions.
    • Last win: 2021 Principal Charity Classic
  • Seeking his first senior major title.
    • Best finish in a major on PGA TOUR Champions: T3 (2018 Senior Open Championship presented by Rolex)
  • Will play in the last group of the final round for the second time this season.
    • Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai (Finished T3)
  • A win on Sunday would be the sixth victory by a player from Canada on PGA TOUR Champions.
    • Since the inception of PGA TOUR Champions in 1980, no Canadian player has won a senior major title.
  • Making his seventh start at the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship, his best finish is T15 (2014).

Bernhard Langer tees off on the first

More on Bernhard Langer

  • A win on Sunday would be his second victory of the season, matching Steven Alker and Miguel Angel Jimenez for the most on PGA TOUR Champions in 2022.
    • Won the Chubb Classic in February
  • With a win on Sunday, he would capture his 12th senior major title, extending his PGA TOUR Champions record.
    • His 11 senior major titles are two more than the second-most on PGA TOUR Champions (Gary Player, 9).
    • It would be his second win at the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship (2017).
  • With a win on Sunday, he would extend his record as the oldest winner on PGA TOUR Champions at 64 years, 9 months, 2 days.
    • He currently holds the top two spots on the list of oldest players to win on PGA TOUR Champions.
  • A win on Sunday would be his 44th victory on PGA TOUR Champions, second-most all-time.
    • Hale Irwin holds the all-time record with 45 wins on PGA TOUR Champions.
  • Charles Schwab No. 5 will play in the last group of the final round for the second time this season.
    • Won (Chubb Classic)
The First at Harbor Shores

More on Mike Weir

  • This is his lowest 54-hole score of the season.
  • Seeking his second win on PGA TOUR Champions.
    • Won the 2021 Insperity Invitational
  • Seeking his first senior major title.
    • Best finish in a major on PGA TOUR Champions: T2 (2021 U.S. Senior Open)
    • Finished T5 in his debut at the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship last year
  • Will play in the last group of the final round for the first time this season.
  • A win on Sunday would be the sixth victory by a player from Canada on PGA TOUR Champions.
    • Since the inception of PGA TOUR Champions in 1980, no Canadian player has won a senior major title.
  • Making his eighth start of the season on PGA TOUR Champions, his best finish is T15 (ClubCorp Classic).
A display of custom mixers
No golf tournament in Michigan would be complete without a display of cars. These are the new Cadillacs.
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