PGA Tour
PGA - The Honda Classic Preview
From The Sports Network

DATES: Thursday, March 4th through Sunday, March 7th
SITE: PGA National Resort & Spa (Champion Course), Palm Beach Gardens, Florida
COURSE ARCHITECT: Tom and George Fazio (1981), Jack Nicklaus (1990, 2002)
PAR: 70
YARDAGE: 7,158
Hole-By-Hole:1 - Par 4 365 Yds10 - Par 4 508 Yds
2 - Par 4 464 Yds11 - Par 4 450 Yds
3 - Par 5 538 Yds12 - Par 4 427 Yds
4 - Par 4 376 Yds13 - Par 4 388 Yds
5 - Par 3 217 Yds14 - Par 4 465 Yds
6 - Par 4 479 Yds15 - Par 3 179 Yds
7 - Par 3 226 Yds16 - Par 4 434 Yds
8 - Par 4 427 Yds17 - Par 3 190 Yds
9 - Par 4 421 Yds18 - Par 5 604 Yds
35 3,513 Yds35 3,645 Yds
Annual:  38th
Television:  Golf Channel - Thursday/Friday -- 3-6 p.m. (et),
  Thursday/Friday -- 8:30-11:30 p.m. (et) - replay,
  NBC - Saturday/Sunday -- 3-6 p.m. (et)
Defending Champion:  Y.E. Yang
Runner-Up:  John Rollins
Tournament Record:  264 (Justin Leonard, 2003)
54-Hole Record:  196 (Davis Love III, 2003)
36-Hole Record:  128 (Dan Pohl, 1989)
18-Hole Record:  62 (Hale Irwin, 1979 - Inverrary G&CC)
  (Dan Pohl, 1989; Tim Herron, 1996 - TPC at Eagle Trace)
  (Jerry Kelly, Adam Scott, 2003 - Mirasol - Sunset Course)
Course Record:  64 (Luke Donald, 2008)
Total Purse:  $5,600,000
Shares:  1st Place - $1,008,000; 2nd Place - $604,800; 3rd Place - $380,800
2009 Finish
Y.E. Yang271Fredrik Jacobson276
John Rollins272Will MacKenzie276
Ben Crane274Scott Piercy276
Jeff Klauk275Four players at277
Robert Allenby276
Past Honda Classic Winners
YearWinner (Score) -- Runners-Up
2009Y.E. Yang (271) -- John Rollins
2008Ernie Els (274) -- Luke Donald
2007*Mark Wilson (275) -- Jose Coceres, Boo Weekley, Camilo Villegas
2006Luke Donald (276) -- Geoff Ogilvy
2005*Padraig Harrington (274) -- Vijay Singh, Joe Ogilvie
2004Todd Hamilton (276) -- Davis Love III
2003Justin Leonard (264) -- Chad Campbell, Davis Love III
2002Matt Kuchar (269) -- Brad Faxon, Joey Sindelar
2001Jesper Parnevik (270) -- Craig Perks, Mark Calcavecchia, Geoff Ogilvy
2000Dudley Hart (269) -- J.P. Hayes, Kevin Wentworth
1999Vijay Singh (277) -- Payne Stewart
1998Mark Calcavecchia (270) -- Vijay Singh
1997Stuart Appleby (274) -- Michael Bradley, Payne Stewart
1996Tim Herron (271) -- Mark McCumber
1995Mark O'Meara (275) -- Nick Faldo
1994Nick Price (276) -- Craig Parry
1993*#Fred Couples (207) -- Robert Gamez
1992*Corey Pavin (273) -- Fred Couples
1991Steve Pate (279) -- Paul Azinger, Dan Halldorson
1990John Huston (282) -- Mark Calcavecchia
1989Blaine McCallister (266) -- Payne Stewart
1988Joey Sindelar (276) -- Ed Fiori, Sandy Lyle, Payne Stewart
1987Mark Calcavecchia (279) -- Bernhard Langer, Payne Stewart
1986Kenny Knox (287) -- Andy Bean, John Mahaffey, Jodie Mudd, Clarence Rose
1985*Curtis Strange (275) -- Peter Jacobsen
1984*Bruce Lietzke (280) -- Andy Bean
1983Johnny Miller (278) -- Jack Nicklaus
1982Hale Irwin (269) -- Jack Nicklaus, Denis Watson
1981Tom Kite (274) -- Jack Nicklaus
1980Johnny Miller (274) -- Charles Coody, Bruce Lietzke
1979Larry Nelson (274) -- Grier Jones
1978Jack Nicklaus (276) -- Grier Jones
1977Jack Nicklaus (275) -- Gary Player
1976@Jack Nicklaus (269) -- J.C.Snead (Tournament Players Championship)
1975Bob Murphy (273) -- Eddie Pearce
1974Leonard Thompson (278) -- Hale Irwin
1973Lee Trevino (279) -- Forrest Fezler
1972Tom Weiskopf (278) -- Jack Nicklaus

* - Won in Playoff

# - Rain Shortened

@ - Tournament Players Championship

Note:Formerly called Honda Inverrary Classic (1982-83), American Motors
Inverrary Classic (1981), Jackie Gleason's Inverrary Classic (1974-80), Jackie Gleason's Inverrary National Airlines Classic (1973) and Jackie Gleason's Inverrary Classic (1972). Inverrary Golf and Country Club served as host to the Tournament Players Championship in 1976.

Top Contenders in the Field
Y.E. Yang------------------------T-72Won
John Rollinsmc---T-62T-8mcmcT-50------2nd
Ben Crane------T-66T-48------------T-123rd
Jeff Klauk---------------------------4th
Robert Allenby---------T-40T-4T-14T-31T-5T-4T-5
Davis Love IIIT-19---T-30T-22ndT-70T-55T-13T-30T-13
Sergio Garcia------------------------T-43T-13
Rory McIlroy---------------------------T-13
Ernie Els------------------------WonT-22
Mark CalcavecchiaT-7T-2T-21T-14wdmcT-41mcT-4T-22
Steve Marino------------------------T-24T-32
Angel Cabrera------T-21------------mcmcT-32
Todd Hamilton------------WonT-34mcmcmcT-39
Woody Austin------T-30T-8T-4mcmcT-53T-30T-44
Justin Leonard---------WonT-25T-38mcmcT-30T-52
Boo Weekley------mc------------T-2T-7469th
Justin Rose---------T-57T-36T-14------T-15mc
Camilo Villegas------------------T-31T-2T-24mc
Mark Wilson---------mc---T-63---Wonmcmc
Anthony Kim---------------------T-46T-49---
Padraig Harrington---------------WonT-16T-13------
Lee Westwood------------------T-55---------
Vijay SinghT-50------------T-2------------
Paul Casey---mcT-54---------------------
Rickie Fowler------------------------------
Sports Network Selections

Pick to Win - Paul Casey
Darkhorse - Camilo Villegas
Last Week's Pick to Win (J.B. Holmes) - Finished tied for 43rd
Last Week's Darkhorse (Steve Marino) - Missed the cut
The PGA Tour heads east to Florida this week for the first of four straight weeks in the Sunshine State. First up is The Honda Classic. Eleven of the top-30 players in the world are in the field this week. The highest-ranked player is world No. 4 Lee Westwood, who is playing in this event for the first time since 2006. Westwood is joined by his fellow Europeans - world No. 6 Paul Casey, world No. 9 Rory McIlroy, world No. 10 and 2005 champion Padraig Harrington and world No. 13 Sergio Garcia. The top American player in the field is Anthony Kim, who is ranked 30th in the world. Many European Tour players are playing this week in preparation for the WGC-CA Championship next week.

Last year, Y.E. Yang birdied three straight holes on the front nine in the final round, then hung on to defeat John Rollins and win this event by a single stroke. Yang, who entered the event ranked 460th in the world, shot a two-under 68 on the final day and completed his first PGA Tour title at nine- under-par 271. He joined K.J. Choi as the only two Koreans to win on the PGA Tour. Yang went on to win the PGA Championship last year, coming from behind to defeat Tiger Woods in the final round. Yang is currently ranked 27th in the world - 433 spots higher than last year prior to this event.

Yang became the 11th player to earn his first PGA Tour win at this event, joining Leonard Thompson (1974), Larry Nelson (1979), Kenny Knox (1986), John Huston (1990), Tim Herron (1996), Stuart Appleby (1997), Matt Kuchar (2002), Todd Hamilton (2004), Padraig Harrington (2005) and Mark Wilson (2007).

In 2008, Ernie Els fired a final-round 67 to come from three strokes down at the start of the day to win this event. Els completed his 16th PGA Tour title at six-under-par 274 to beat 2006 champion Luke Donald by one shot. Els won for the first time on the PGA Tour since the 2004 WGC-American Express Championship in Ireland. Donald shot a 64 in the opening round to establish a new course record.

Geoff Ogilvy became the fifth player in tournament history to record a double eagle in 2006, when he holed out from 180 yards with an eight-iron. The other players who have double eagles at this event are: Bruce Lietzke (1980), David Sutherland (2000), Tim Petrovic (2002) and James McLean (2003).

In 2005, Harrington holed a six-foot par putt on the second playoff hole and watched as Vijay Singh's short par effort lipped out to give the Irishman his first career victory on the PGA Tour at this event. Harrington's six-shot comeback in the final round was the largest in event history.

In 2003, course records were falling at this tournament. Davis Love III set a new 54-hole mark of 196 after back-to-back 65s in rounds two and three. That same year, Justin Leonard's tournament total of 264 broke the event mark by two shots set back in 1989 by Blaine McCallister.

Jack Nicklaus is the only player to win this event two straight years (1977-78). Nicklaus, Johnny Miller and Mark Calcavecchia are the only players to win this event more than once. Nicklaus won this event in 1976 when it hosted The Tournament Players Championship.

Over the years, this event has been staged at many sites. From 1972 through 1983 the tournament was held at Inverrary Golf & Country Club's East Course, when it was titled the Jackie Gleason Inverrary Classic. Under its present name, the tournament moved to the TPC at Eagle Trace from 1984 through 1991. In 1992, the event moved to Weston Hills Golf & Country Club for four seasons, followed by a one-year return to the TPC at Eagle Trace. From 1997 to 2002, the TPC at Heron Bay was the host venue. The Country Club at Mirasol hosted the event from 2003-06 before it moved to PGA National in 2007.

The Champion Course at PGA National Resort and Spa staged the 1983 Ryder Cup matches and the 1987 PGA Championship, won by Larry Nelson. The course was also the site of 28 Senior PGA Championships and five PGA Club Professional Championships. The Champion Course was originally designed by Tom and George Fazio in 1981 and redesigned by Nicklaus in 1990 and 2002.

The last time a player shot 80 and still won a tournament on the PGA Tour was in 1986, when Kenny Knox claimed a one-shot victory at this event. Jesper Parnevik (2001) and Herron (1996) are the only wire-to-wire winners of this event. Eight players have gone on to win this tournament after sharing or holding sole possession of the 36-hole lead - Nicklaus (1977), Curtis Strange (1985), Knox (1986), Steve Pate (1991), Mark O'Meara (1995), Herron (1996), Parnevik (2001) and Yang (2009).

The PGA Tour continues its Florida swing in Miami next week for the WGC-CA Championship, as Phil Mickelson defends his title at the TPC Blue Monster at Doral against the best players in the world. The rest of the PGA Tour will be at the Puerto Rico Open, where Michael Bradley captured the 2009 event.

03/02 13:49:13 ET

As of March 2, 2010, at 01:49 PM ET