Woods Wins On Familiar Courses

The International Herald Tribune has an article on Tiger Woods’ increasingly picky schedule. As has been noted in this blog before, a majority of his wins have come on a very few courses.

The reporter writes:

Woods will be going for his fifth title at the Arnold Palmer Invitational starting on Thursday. He opened his 2008 season by winning the Buick Invitational for the sixth time. He also has six victories in the Bridgestone Invitational, and six more at the World Golf Championship that now goes by the name CA Championship.

He has four green jackets from the Masters, four Wanamaker Trophies from the U.S. PGA Championship.

Woods, perhaps more than any other golfer, is a creature of habit.

He has won 63 times in his U.S. PGA Tour career, yet he has trophies from only 24 tournaments. Vijay Singh has a far more diverse record, winning 31 times at 23 different tour events.

And more:

Consider another statistic that illustrates how his schedule works in his favor. Woods has won 52 times at the 17 tournaments tentatively on his 2008 schedule (that doesn’t include two victories at Doral in Miami, which has been merged into a WGC).

One thing about Woods as he gets older — he doesn’t add events, only subtracts.

To all of this, I’ll add that it looks even worse when you consider his major wins. Six of his thirteen majors have come on two courses: August and St. Andrews.

Woods is all about winning—and winning majors in particular—so his strategy makes perfect sense. I just wonder if he doesn’t manage to outsmart himself at some point. When he eclipses Jack and Sam Snead, will critics point to this as a blot on his record?

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7 thoughts on “Woods Wins On Familiar Courses”

  1. I think you have to keep in mind that six of those 13 wins at August and St. Andrew—are beyond his control.  He was playing great the week those majors hit those courses.  You could argue that he would have won on any course on those weeks.

    Reply
  2. Golf Blogger:

    Good point and perhaps I could buy that argument at St. Andrews.  I played it this past summer—poorly I might add—and escaped with a 84.  But I think if you win at Augusta, you could win that week on ANY course in the world. 

    Also, if the arguement is true, why doesn’t it apply to other golfers too?  For example, Phil Mickleson visited Winged Foot for nine days on three sperate occasions before the Open—and he still lost.

    Regardless of the course, you still have to beat the field that week.  Is there anyone out there that would honestly bet a paycheck against Tiger?  I’d even let you pick the course. 

    I can see both sides, it’s a great discussion.

    Reply
  3. True, of course they were saying all week that Tiger didn’t like Bayhill (recently).  I agree, he likes some course more than others.  But, I would still take Tiger against the field on any course in the world.

    Reply

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