In his first start of the 2013 PGA Tour season, Tiger Woods looked like his dominant self with a four shot win in the Farmers Insurance Open. Woods finished 14 under par after a final round 72. The win is Woods’ eighth at Torrey Pines, the most of any course in his career and a PGA Tour record.
The Monday finish was the Tour’s second finish not on a Sunday this year already. The season opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions was delayed three days due to wind and rain. Saturday’s third round was delayed until Sunday due to fog covering the course.
After missing the cut in his first event of the new year in Abu Dhabi, Woods returned to the states with a bang. After opening with a first round 68, Tiger fired in a seven under par 65 on day two on the easier North Course.
After the third round postponement due to fog, Woods came back on Sunday to shoot a three under 69. With a four shot lead going into the final round, it seemed as though Woods would be hard to catch.
After playing a full 18 under his belt, Woods was thrown back out to begin his fourth and final round. Tiger found himself all over the place over his first few holes, being forced to scramble to make pars. With darkness looming, Woods and playing companions Billy Horschel and Casey Wittenberg, were able to finish seven of their final 18 holes, meaning they had 11 to play on Monday.
Woods’ struggles off the tee continued, pulling drives right while leaving some left. Tigers ability to scramble and make something out or nothing helped him in the tough conditions.
With an eight shot lead and only five holes to play, Tiger ran into some problems on the par four 14th and 15th. Woods went bogey, double-bogey to see his lead fall to five. Coming to the par three 16th, Woods hit a safe shot just short of the green and two putted for his par.
After putting his drive in the fairway on the par four 17th, Woods finished the hole with a bogey five. Carrying a four shot lead onto the 18th tee, Tiger just had to make a triple bogey eight to win the tournament. Tiger made a par five on the 18th to cruise to victory.
The win is Woods’ 75th career on tour, placing him seven behind the great Sam Snead for for most all time. The win is also Woods’ seventh in the tournament.
Two players - Brandt Snedeker and Josh Tester- finished in a tie for second place at ten under par. Snedeker, the 2012 winner, came out firing early with an open round 65. After a 75 in his second round, Snedeker’s chances of a win were all but gone.
Needless to say, Torrey Pines is one of Woods’ favorite and best courses. In the previous six years he won the Farmers Insurance Open, he went on to win at least four tour events. The year he won only four times, 2008, was Tiger’s last Major championship victory as well. The 2008 US Open was held at Torrey Pines, where Tiger beat Rocco Mediate in a playoff to win.
This could be a big year on tour for Tiger. He showed signs of brilliance this weekend. While he seemed to struggle late, his early performance gives golf fans hope for another huge, dominating year for the once unflappable Woods.