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Firestone was regarded as one of the finest courses in the country and a proper championship test. The PGA Championship returned to Firestone


in 1966, when it was won by Al Geiberger, and in 1975, when Jack Nicklaus won the Wanamaker Trophy for the fourth time, fittingly on a course he had often played as an amateur growing up in Ohio.


THE WORLD SERIES MAKES ITS MARK The Rubber City Open became the World Series of Golf in 1962 and had a brilliant, 14-year run as a 36-hole, unofficial event that featured the winners of that season’s four major championships. In 1976, it became an official event with a larger field but one with strict eligibility requirements. Finally, in 1999, it became a World Golf Championships event that has been played at Firestone every year except 2002, when it was held at the Sahalee Country Club in Washington.


“The goal is to give myself a chance to win these big events. It’s what I’ve wanted to do my whole career, and for whatever reason I haven’t performed my best. But I really feel like I’ve got a good plan in place to get myself


ready for these events.” – Adam Scott


The South Course has a history of rewarding both power and accuracy, as evidenced by Nicklaus’


six victories there (the PGA


Championship, the World Series of Golf four times when it was an unofficial event, and also in 1976) and Tiger Woods’ record seven Bridgestone Invitational wins. Other powerful players who have won at Firestone include Craig Stadler, Tom Weiskopf, Tom Watson, Greg Norman and Phil Mickelson. Then again, Firestone also has produced a


wealth of champions whose strength rested on their short games and course management, evidence victories by Lanny Wadkins, Bill Rogers, Nick Price, Curtis Strange, Mike Reid and Spain’s José María Olazábal, who won twice. One of Olazábal’s wins came on the North Course in


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The Gary Player Cup, awarded to the winner of the World Golf Championships- Bridgestone Invitational.


1994, which was the year the South Course was undergoing yet another round of renovations. Firestone was the home of the long-running “CBS Golf Classic,” which featured two-man teams in a match-play, single-elimination format. The taped event featured many of the TOUR’s most popular players and it aired in winter months—holding out the promise that spring was just around the corner. On one memorable occasion, Bruce Crampton made a hole-in-one and asked Ken Venturi, who was covering the


match for CBS, what he won. Venturi asked Frank Chirkinian, who was producing and directing. “The honor on the next tee and tell him to speed it up,” growled the inimitable Chirkinian.


REMEMBER THIS? Adam Scott put on a clinic on the back nine of last year’s final round on his way towards one of his most impressive PGA TOUR victories. He made four birdies and, what was every bit as impressive, a crucial 10-foot par save on No. 15 on his way to an impeccable 65.


“I played at a very high level today given the


Tiger Woods (7)


Victories: Most


circumstances,” said Scott, whose win was his ninth on the PGA TOUR and 19th worldwide. “Not everything was perfect. I hit a few loose shots, but I was pretty sharp. It was like we’re used to seeing Tiger close out tournaments. He gets in front and just won’t let anyone in. I think the putt I made on 15 was one that is certainly a putt that he makes when he’s in position to close out a win. “I feel like you’ve got to play like a


bulldog to win a golf tournament these


days,” he added. “You can’t let up on one shot, and that’s how you win golf tournaments, because everyone is so good these days.”


SCOTT TOUGH DOWN THE STRETCH To get a sense of what Scott is talking about, consider the players he beat down the stretch: The No. 1 player in the world, Luke Donald, and Rickie Fowler, one of the game’s brilliant young stars, by four strokes; Australia’s Jason Day, who was twice runner-up in major championships last year, and Ryo Ishikawa, the 19-year-old Japanese


PGA TOUR ESSENTIAL GUIDE 2012 161


© GETTY IMAGES/ ANDY LYONS; PGA TOUR IMAGES/ STAN BADZ


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