Valspar Championship Tournament Notes

Valspar Championship Logo2016 Valspar Championship Tournament Notes
Dates: March 7-13, 2016
Where: Palm Harbor, Fla.
Course: Innisbrook, A Salamander Golf & Spa Resort (Copperhead)
36-35—par 71/7,340 yards
Field size: 156
2014 champion: Jordan Spieth
Purse: $6,100,000 ($1,098,000/winner)
FedExCup: 500 points to the winner
Format: 72-hole stroke play
Twitter: @valsparchamp

How Jordan Spieth won the 2015 Valspar Championship

  • Beginning the final round a stroke off Ryan Moore’s 9-under 204 lead, Jordan Spieth posted a 2-under 69 Sunday to join a playoff with Patrick Reed and Sean O’Hair.
  • On the third extra hole, No. 17, Spieth sank a birdie putt from 28 feet, 2 inches to emerge victorious with his second career PGA TOUR title.
  • At the age of 21 years, 7 months and 19 days, Spieth became the youngest winner of the Valspar Championship and fourth different player to win twice or more on TOUR before his 22nd birthday.

More on Jordan Spieth

  • The 22-year-old Spieth returns to the event which opened many doors for him in 2013. By virtue of his T7 finish at the 2013 Valspar Championship, Spieth earned Special Temporary Membership for the remainder of the PGA TOUR season. Later that year, he became the youngest winner on TOUR since 1931 with his victory at the John Deere Classic, tied for most top-10s on TOUR (nine), played in all four FedExCup Playoffs events, was a Captain’s selection for the U.S. Presidents Cup team and was voted PGA TOUR Rookie of the Year.
  • Spieth will be making his fourth start at the Valspar Championship; 2013/T7, 2014/T20, 2015/1st.
  • The 2014-15 PGA TOUR Season proved to be epic for the Dallas native. In addition to his win at the Valspar Championship, he collected major championship victories at the Masters and U.S. Open. He also won his second John Deere Classic title and ended the season with a win at the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola en route to winning the FedExCup title, PGA TOUR Player of the Year honors and the No. 1 position in the Official World Golf Ranking. Spieth also went 3-2-0 in his five matches in his second consecutive Presidents Cup.
  • In five starts this season, Spieth finished T7 in his first start at the World Golf Championships-HSBC Champions and won in his second start at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions. At last week’s WGC-Cadillac Championship, he finished T17.\
  • Spieth clutch on the Copperhead Course — World No. 1 Jordan Spieth is known for making clutch shots on the golf course. Some of his most impressive shots have come at the Valspar Championship:
    • In 2013, Spieth chipped-in for birdie on No. 17 in the final round, ultimately finishing T7 which was good enough to earn Special Temporary Membership.
    • In 2015 en route to his win:
      • He made a 17-foot putt from off the green at No. 18 for birdie to move within one shot entering round three.
      • In the final round, he tied the lead with a 31 foot, 8 inch putt for birdie-4 at No. 14 to reach 10-under.
      • On No. 18 during the final round, he hit his second shot short of the green and had to get up and down from the rough to join a playoff at 10-under. He hit his third shot to 11 feet, 8 inches and made the pressure putt to join the playoff.
      • He sank a putt from 28 feet, 2 inches on the third playoff hole for birdie-2 to defeat Patrick Reed and Sean O’Hair

Field notes

  • 13 of the top 30 in the current FedExCup standings, including No. 4 Russell Knox, No. 6 Justin Thomas, No. 8 Kevin Na, No. 9 Graeme McDowell and No. 10 Jason Dufner.
  • Eight of the top 30 in the Official World Golf Ranking including No. 1 Jordan Spieth, No. 7 Henrik Stenson and No. 10 Patrick Reed.
  • 20 major championship winners in this week’s Valspar Championship field, combining for 30 major championship titles, including World Golf Hall of Fame Member Vijay Singh. Singh, a 34-time winner on the PGA TOUR, including the 2004 Valspar Championship, will be making his 11th start at Innisbrook.
  • Nine past champions of the Valspar Championship in this week’s field, including seven of the last eight. Jim Furyk (2010) is recovering from wrist surgery.
  • Three FedExCup champions in this week’s Valspar Championship; Jordan Spieth (2014-15), Bill Haas (2011) and Vijay Singh (2008).
  • Seven winners of PGA TOUR events this season in this week’s Valspar Championship field; Peter Malnati (Sanderson Farms Championship), Justin Thomas (CIMB Classic), Russell Knox (WGC-HSBC Champions), Graeme McDowell (OHL Classic at Mayakoba), Jordan Spieth (Hyundai Tournament of Champions), Jason Dufner (CareerBuilder Challenge) and Vaughn Taylor (AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am).
  • Notable sponsor exemptions include two-time major champion Martin Kaymer, 18-year-old Austin Connelly of Canada and world No. 11 Danny Willett of England. Coming off his T3 finish at the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship, Willett is poised to make his first start in this week’s Valspar Championship, third start on the PGA TOUR in the 2015-16 season and 21st start on TOUR. In his first start this season, Willett also finished T3 at the WGC-HSBC Champions.
  • There are currently nine exempt former University of Georgia collegians on the PGA TOUR, and a current Bulldog, Lee McCoy, a senior All-American, will play Valspar on a sponsor exemption.

Additional field notes

  • Henrik Stenson, the seventh-highest ranked player in the world and winner of the 2013 FedExCup title, will be making just his fourth start of the 2015-16 PGA TOUR Season this week. He finished T47 at the CIMB Classic, T11 at the World Golf Championships-HSBC Champions and is coming off a T28 at last week’s WGC-Cadillac Championship. In an impressive, first start in the Valspar Championship last year, Stenson finished fourth, just one shot out of the playoff between Jordan Spieth, Patrick Reed and Sean O’Hair. Stenson is in search of his fifth career PGA TOUR title and first since the 2013 TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola.
  • World No. 10 Patrick Reed will make his third start in this week’s Valspar Championship. En route to last year’s playoff at Innisbrook, Reed fired a bogey-free, 5-under 66 to get to 10-under 274. In eight starts this season on the PGA TOUR, Reed has already amassed four top-10 finishes, highlighted by a runner-up finish to Jordan Spieth in defense of his Hyundai Tournament of Champions title.
  • South Africa’s Branden Grace is poised to make his second start at the Valspar Championship. He missed the cut in 2014. The world No. 12 claimed four top-10 finishes last season as a non-member, earning him Special Temporary Membership. From that category, he finished inside the top-125 on the FedExCup points list as a non-member, earning him membership to the PGA TOUR for the 2015-16 season. Grace’s career-best finish on the TOUR, solo-third, came at the 2015 PGA Championship. In four starts this season on TOUR, his best is a T5 at the WGC-HSBC Champions.

Tournament notes

  • Seven of the last eight winners of the Valspar Championship have all finished the season of their win inside the top 30 in FedExCup standings, highlighted by Jim Furyk (2010) and Jordan Spieth (2015) winning the FedExCup the year of their win at Innisbrook Resort.
  • Before missing last year’s event, Brian Gay was the only player to compete in each of the first 14 Valspar Championships. His best finish is a T4 in 2007.
  • K.J. Choi (2002 and 2006) and Retief Goosen (2003 and 2009) are the only multiple winners of the Valspar Championship and both are in this year’s field. Choi nearly won for a third time, finishing runner-up to Jim Furyk in 2010. No player has yet to successfully defend his title at the Valspar Championship.

SOURCE: PGA TOUR

 

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