Thursday, March 08, 2018 1:00 am
Site: Palm Harbor, Fla.
Course: Innisbrook Resort (Copperhead Course). Yardage: 7,340. Par: 71.
Purse: $6.5 million. Winner’s share: $1,170,000.
Television: Today-Friday, 2-6 p.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday-Sunday, 1-3 p.m. (Golf Channel), 3-6 p.m. (NBC Sports).
Defending champion: Adam Hadwin.
Last week: Phil Mickelson won the Mexico Championship for his third World Golf Championships title.
FedEx Cup leader: Justin Thomas.
Notes: Tiger Woods makes his debut in the Valspar Championship as he tries to ready his game for the Masters. It is his third tournament in the last four weeks. ... Rory McIlroy also is playing at Innisbrook for the first time. He skipped the World Golf Championship in Mexico last week. ... Bill Haas is playing for the first time since he was a passenger in a car accident that killed family friend Mark Gibello on Feb. 13 in Los Angeles. ... Woods has played all but nine tournaments on the current PGA Tour schedule, excluding opposite-field events. ... The Valspar Championship is the final week for players to move into the top 64 in the world and assure themselves a spot in the Dell Match Play. ... Woods last played Innisbrook in 1996 when it was the JC Penney Mixed Team Classic. He and Kelli Kuehne finished third. ... Henrik Stenson is making his PGA Tour debut this year. He last played in America last September at the BMW Championship outside Chicago. ... Jordan Spieth is playing Innisbrook after missing last year. He won in 2015 and tied for seventh in 2013, which gave him special temporary membership. ... Thomas is not playing this week. He is getting his wisdom teeth removed.
Next week: Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill.
Site: Newport Beach, Calif.
Course: Newport Beach CC. Yardage: 6,584. Par: 71.
Purse: $1.8 million. Winner’s share: $270,000.
Television: Friday, 6-8 p.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday-Sunday, 5:30-8 p.m. (Golf Channel).
Defending champion: Jay Haas in 2016.
Last week: Steve Stricker won the Cologuard Classic.
Schwab Cup leader: Jerry Kelly.
Notes: Stricker won for the first time on the PGA Tour Champions. He is playing the Valspar Championship on the PGA Tour this week. ... Kelly finished second at the Cologuard Classic to move back to the top of the Schwab Cup standings. ... Bernhard Langer tied for 54th, the first time he has gone consecutive events outside the top 25 in three years. ... This is the eighth straight year that four players have won the opening four events on the PGA Tour Champions schedule. ... The Toshiba Classic was not played last year because it was transitioning from a move back to the spring. Haas won in the fall of 2016. At 64, he will be the oldest defending champion. ... The PGA Tour Champions takes two weeks off after the Toshiba Classic.
Next tournament: Rapiscan Systems Classic on March 23-25.
HERO INDIAN OPEN
Site: New Delhi
Course: DLF Golf & CC. Yardage: 7,417. Par: 72.
Purse: $1.75 million.
Television: Today-Friday, 12:30-2:30 a.m., 4-7 a.m. (Golf Channel); Sat, 2:30-7 a.m. (Golf Channel); Sunday, 3-7:30 a.m. (Golf Channel).
Defending champion: S.S.P. Chawrasia.
Last week: George Coetzee won the Tshwane Open.
Race to Dubai leader: Shubhankar Sharma.
Notes: With his tie for ninth at the Mexico Championship, Sharma stays atop the Race to Dubai over Tommy Fleetwood. Sharma moved to No. 66 in the world, and needs a good week to lock up a spot in the Dell Match Play. ... Fleetwood moved to a career-best No. 10 in the world with his tie for 14th in Mexico City. ... This is the final week to qualify for the Dell Match Play in two weeks in Texas for the top 64 in the world ranking. Among those on the bubble who are playing the Indian Open are Julian Suri, Joost Luiten, Emiliano Grillo and Anirban Lahiri. ... Lahiri won in 2015. S.S.P. Chawrasia has won each of the last two years. ... The tournament dates to 1964 when Peter Thomson won at Delhi Golf Club. The European Tour co-sanctioned it in 2015. ... Payne Stewart won his first professional tournament at the Indian Open in 1981.
Next tournament: World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play on March 21-25.
EL BOSQUE MEXICO CHAMPIONSHIP
Site: Mexico City.
Course: El Bosque CC. Yardage: 7,701. Par: 72.
Purse: $650,000. Winner’s share: $117,000.
Defending champion: Matt Atkins.
Last tournament: Ben Taylor won the Club Colombia Championship.
Money leader: Sungjae Im.
Next tournament: Chitimacha Louisiana Open on March 22-25.