The 2012 PGA Tour Season Kicks Off With The Hyundai Tournament of Champions
The 2012 PGA Tour season kicks off this weekend with the Hyundai Tournament of Champions at the Plantations Course at Kapalua in Hawaii. The annual kickoff event is open to 40 players who won in 2011 but only 28 have decided to make the early January trip to Hawaii.
(Jonathan Byrd won here in 2011 and is back to defend his title. Photo: Orange & White)
Two of the top ten players in the world will tee it up this week. Steve Stricker (6th) and Webb Simpson (10th) can grab an early victory over this abbreviated field. Simpson will look to continue his stellar play from last year when he won two events, earned over $6,000,000 in prize money and finished second in the FedEx Cup standings by just a few points. Stricker, who also won twice in 2011, finished fourth here last year. He will look to shake off a rough finish to 2011 and get going in the right direction early on. Stricker and Simpson may be in the top ten but most eyes will be focused on Keegan Bradley. The 2011 PGA Tour Rookie of the Year, Bradley won two the HP Byron Nelson Championship and the PGA Championship both in a playoff. He is the only 2011 major champion to tee it up this week and will hope he can make his sophomore season as memorable as his rookie year.
Hyundai Tournament of Champions Groups To Watch
3. Steve Stricker & Gary Woodland: Stricker is the highest ranked player in the field and a veteran who is always cool under pressure. Gary Woodland won the Transitions Championship last year and since I was recently on the Golf Club Radio Show with him, I'll have my eyes on him.Continued on the next page