Champions Golf Tour
CHAMPIONS - Wendy's Champions Skins Game Preview
From The Sports Network

DATES: Saturday, January 16th and Sunday, January 17th
SITE: Royal Kaanapali Golf Course (North Course), Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii
COURSE ARCHITECT: Robert Trent Jones Sr (1962), Robin Nelson (2006)
PAR: 71
YARDAGE: 6,700
Hole-By-Hole:1 - Par 5 519 Yds10 - Par 4 454 Yds
2 - Par 3 190 Yds11 - Par 4 424 Yds
3 - Par 4 421 Yds12 - Par 4 362 Yds
4 - Par 4 373 Yds13 - Par 4 390 Yds
5 - Par 4 474 Yds14 - Par 4 405 Yds
6 - Par 5 460 Yds15 - Par 3 202 Yds
7 - Par 4 324 Yds16 - Par 4 437 Yds
8 - Par 3 185 Yds17 - Par 3 155 Yds
9 - Par 5 485 Yds18 - Par 4 440 Yds
--------------------------
37 3,431 Yds34 3,269 Yds
 
Annual:  23rd
Television:  None
Defending Champion:  Ben Crenshaw/Fuzzy Zoeller
Runner-Up:  Jay Haas/Greg Norman
Tournament Skins Record:  14 Skins (Chi Chi Rodriguez, 1988, Ray Floyd, 1995)
Tournament Money Record:  $530,000 (Ben Crenshaw and Fuzzy Zoeller, 2009)
Total Purse:  $770,000
Shares:  Holes 1 through 6 are worth $30,000 each
  Holes 7 through 12 are worth $40,000 each
  Holes 13 through 17 are worth $50,000 each
  Hole 18 is worth $100,000
 
2009 Finish
PlayerScorePlayerScore
Crenshaw/Zoeller 13SkinsLanger/Player1 Skin
Haas/Norman 4SkinsNicklaus/Watson0 Skins
 
Past Wendy's Champions Skins Game Winners
YearWinner (Score) -- Runners-Up
2009Crenshaw/Zoeller (13 Skins) -- Haas/Norman
2008*Peter Jacobsen/Fuzzy Zoeller (6 Skins) -- Nicklaus/Watson
2007Jack Nicklaus/Tom Watson (9 Skins) -- Player/Haas
2006Raymond Floyd/Dana Quigley (10 Skins) - Nicklaus/Watson
2005Jack Nicklaus (11 Skins) -- Craig Stadler
2004Tom Watson (10 Skins) -- Arnold Palmer
2003Lee Trevino (6 Skins) -- Hale Irwin
2002Hale Irwin (11 Skins) -- Jack Nicklaus
2001*Hale Irwin (7 Skins) -- Jack Nicklaus
2000*Gary Player (4 Skins) -- Tom Watson
1999Hale Irwin (7 Skins) -- Raymond Floyd
1998Raymond Floyd (11 Skins) -- Hale Irwin
1997Raymond Floyd (8 Skins) -- Jack Nicklaus
1996Raymond Floyd (8 Skins) -- Jim Colbert
1995Raymond Floyd (14 Skins) -- Jack Nicklaus
1994Raymond Floyd (8 Skins) -- Arnold Palmer
1993Arnold Palmer (6 Skins) -- Chi Chi Rodriguez
1992Arnold Palmer (7 Skins) -- Chi Chi Rodriguez
1991Jack Nicklaus (10 Skins) -- Lee Trevino
1990Arnold Palmer (8 Skins) -- Jack Nicklaus
1989Chi Chi Rodriguez (4 Skins) -- Gary Player
1988Chi Chi Rodriguez (15 Skins) -- Gary Player

* - Won in Playoff

Note:Formerly called Senior Skins Game (1988-2002), ConAgra Foods Skins Game
(2003).

Most Money Won, One Year:  Floyd/Quigley ($530,000 - 2009)
Most Money Won, One Hole:  Floyd/Quigley ($410,000 - 2006)
Most Money Won, 1st Nine:  Nicklaus/Watson ($270,000 - 2008)
Most Money Won, 2nd Nine:  Floyd/Quigley ($510,000 - 2006)
Most Skins Won, One Year:  Chi Chi Rodriguez, Raymond Floyd (14 - 1988, 1995)
Most Skins Won, One Hole:  Jack Nicklaus, Floyd/Quigley (9 - 1991, 2006)
Most Skins Won, 1st Nine:  Jack Nicklaus (8 - 1990)
  Jack Nicklaus/Tom Watson (8 - 2006, 2008)
Most Skins Won, 2nd Nine:  Hale Irwin (11 - 2002)
Most Consecutive Skins:  Hale Irwin, Jack Nicklaus (11 - 2002, 2005)
Most Consecutive Holes without a Skin:  10 (1991)

Top Contenders in the Field
Player2000200120022003200420052006200720082009
Fuzzy Zoeller------T-3---------------WonWon
Ben Crenshaw---------------------------Won
Gary PlayerWon4th------------T-32nd3rd3rd
Jack Nicklaus3rd2nd2nd3rd3rdWon2ndWon2nd4th
Tom Watson2nd---------Won3rd2ndWon2nd4th
Loren Roberts---------------------3rd3rd---
Fred Couples------------------------------
Nick Price------------------------------
Sports Network Selections

Pick to Win - Fred Couples and Nick Price
Darkhorse - Gary Player and Loren Roberts
 
Last Week's Pick to Win - November 17-20 - Q-School (Chip Beck)- Finished T-24
Last Week's Darkhorse - November 17-20 - Q-School (James Mason)- Finished T-52
 
NOTES:
The Champions Tour begins the 2010 season in the Aloha State this week with the 23rd annual Wendy's Champions Skins Game. Four teams will make up the tournament, led by defending champions Ben Crenshaw and Fuzzy Zoeller. Zoeller has captured the event the last two years, winning in 2008 with Peter Jacobsen. Other pairings include: Jack Nicklaus and Tom Watson, Gary Player and Loren Roberts, and Fred Couples and Nick Price. This is the sixth consecutive time that the legendary twosome of Nicklaus and Watson will be playing together.

The eight players competing this week have combined to win 43 major championships on the PGA Tour - Nicklaus (18), Player (9), Watson (8), Price (3), Crenshaw (2), Zoeller (2) and Couples (1). The players also have combined to win 24 Champions Tour major titles - Nicklaus (8), Player (6), Watson (5), Roberts (4) and Zoeller (1).

Last year, Zoeller and Crenshaw won 13 skins and $530,000 to earn the victory at this event. Greg Norman and Jay Haas won a playoff for the final skin and walked away with four skins and $190,000. Bernhard Langer and Player finished third with one skin and $50,000, while Nicklaus and Watson did not earn a single skin. The 12th hole was worth eight skins and $300,000 and that's where Crenshaw and Zoeller cashed in big. Zoeller drained a five-foot birdie putt to give his team a total of nine skins and $330,000. Zoeller and Crenshaw earned the victory at the 17th hole when Zoeller sank another five-foot birdie putt to win four skins and $200,000. Their total of $530,000 would be impossible to catch.

In 2008, Zoeller and Jacobsen parred the first playoff hole to win this event. That par gave the duo six skins and $320,000. Nicklaus and Watson, who won this event in 2007, ended alone in second.

In 2007, Watson drained a 20-foot birdie putt on the 11th hole to walk off with seven skins, $260,000 and the win with Nicklaus at this event. Including Saturday's opening nine, Nicklaus and Watson collected nine skins and $320,000 for the title.

In 2005, Nicklaus, playing his first competitive round in nine months, recorded 11 skins and a career record payday of $340,000 to defeat Craig Stadler, Watson and Palmer.

Nicklaus will be competing in his 20th Champions Skins Game this week. The Golden Bear is the all-time skins winner with 104 and ranks first in money earned with $2,430,000. There have been only five eagles in Champions Skins Game history and Nicklaus has four of them. He and partner Watson both recorded eagles in 2004.

During the mid 1990s, six-time winner Floyd dominated this event, winning five straight years from 1994-98 and finishing second in 1999. Floyd ranks second to Nicklaus in skins and earnings.

Lee Trevino, who won this event in 2003, is the only player to record a hole- in-one in Skins Game history (the PGA Tour edition in 1987). Chi Chi Rodriguez and Player hold the record for the fewest skins won by a champion of this event. In 1989, Rodriguez won with four skins over Player, while Player turned the tables on Watson in 2000.

This is the third Skins Game at Royal Kaanapali Golf Course, following seven years at Wailea Resort and 11 at Mauna Lani on the Big Island of Hawaii. The first Skins Game was played in 1988 at Turtle Bay Golf Club on Oahu, and the second in 1989 at La Quinta, California. The North Course at Royal Kaanapali hosted a Champions Tour event from 1987-2000 before it moved to Oahu.

The Champions Tour remains in Hawaii next week for the Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai, where Bernhard Langer will defend the first of his four titles from 2009.

01/12 16:56:35 ET

As of January 12, 2010, at 04:56 PM ET