Story By: Erin Zollars
Photos By: Sol Tucker
Today kicked off the Pro Am portion of the Quicken Loans Open with Tiger Woods and Rickie Fowler getting out on the course and getting their first round of golf action open at the TPC Potomac course that will feature them as the top two players that people are coming to watch, the question is will Tiger make it through the cut and into the weekend in a course he has yet to see under the realignment?
The tournament which began in 2007 is in its final year and will be replaced by a new tournament that Quicken Loans will sponsor in Detroit that will have no direct relationship with the TGR Foundation that has spearheaded the event since its inception that also included a trip to Congressional along the way.
The biggest note is that Woods has only played in this event seven times due to injury in 12 years, but big difference is that he won both of the events in 2009 and 2012 at Congressional, a course that he is very familiar with. Many of the players her have always been challenged by this course and it has had a lackluster draw since its inception and actually dating back to the days of the old Kemper Open.
So what is the biggest take away going into tournament play? Perhaps another first timer? The tournament features only three of the top 25 in the world ranking. That includes Rickie Fowler (No. 8), who has a personal endorsement with Quicken Loans. Mark O’Meara won the Senior Players Championship at the new design in 2009. Woods never has played the TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm in competition. The strength of field is projected to tie for the weakest this year on the PGA Tour (except for the tournaments held opposite the World Golf Championships).
QUICKEN LOANS NATIONAL
Site: Potomac, Md.
Course: TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm. Yardage: 7,107. Par: 70.
Purse: $7.1 million. Winner’s share: $1,278,000.
Television: Thursday-Friday, 3-7 p.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday-Sunday, 1-2:45 p.m. (Golf Channel); 3-6 p.m. (CBS Sports).
Defending champion: Kyle Stanley.
Last week: Bubba Watson won the Travelers Championship.
FedExCup leader: Dustin Johnson.