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2013 Web.com Tour Finals: Svoboda sports thickest skin, wins Chiquita Classic

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On a steamy Southern weekend that would be ideal for growing bananas, it was a New Yorker who came away with the second of four Web.com Tour Finals events: the Chiquita Classic, held at River Run Country Club in Davidson, NC. After a bit of a late stumble in regulation, the New Yorker triumphed on the first hole of a playoff over Will MacKenzie.

In its eventful infancy, the Web.com Tour Finals has proven itself capable of generating drama out of strange bedfellows and interesting juxtapositions of players. Last week’s Hotel Fitness Championship came down to the final hole, where injury-plagued former major champion Trevor Immelman escaped a final-nine bid from young up-and-comer Patrick Cantlay to win the first Finals event and regain PGA Tour status for the 2013-14 season.

By contrast, Chiquita Classic winner Svoboda’s career, which began on the mini tours in 2004, is finally on the rise. The St. John’s University alum grew up playing golf at Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, N.Y., which tortured the best golfers in the world as recently as the 2006 U.S. Open, so he is no stranger to intense pressure on the golf course. Svoboda finished 25th on the Web.com Tour money list in 2013. This in itself assured him a 2013-14 PGA Tour card, but his win at River Run will move him well up the Reshuffle list, which determines the PGA Tour pros that will be given the final spots in the first few full-field events of the new season and who will have to Monday-qualify for the same.

MacKenzie, who finished 40th on the 2013 Web.com Tour money list, chipped in for eagle on his final hole to break out of a five-way tie for second place. The timely shot capped a round of five-under par 67. The final three holes saw a three-shot swing between the two players, with Svoboda bogeying the par three 17th between pars on the 16th and 18th holes.

Ben Martin, who finished second on the 2013 Web.com Tour money list, finished in a tie for third at 11-under par with John Peterson. Martin shot a final-round four-under par 68 while Peterson had a one-under par 71 on Sunday. Peterson finished 30th on the Web.com Tour money list but has locked up his PGA Tour card after a top-five finish in the Hotel Fitness Championship last week.

Japanese phenom Ryo Ishikawa, who has struggled to find consistent success in the United States, finished in solo fifth place after a stellar final round of six-under par 66, leaving him at ten-under par for the tournament. It appears his way is also paved to the 2013-14 PGA Tour.

The Finals now head north, to the Scarlet Course at Ohio State University, for the Nationwide Children’s Championship. The pressure on those still on the outside of the chase for the last 25 PGA Tour cards will be multiplied and more drama is sure to ensue.

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Tim grew up outside of Hartford, Conn., playing most of his formative golf at Hop Meadow Country Club in the town of Simsbury. He played golf for four years at Washington & Lee University (Division-III) and now lives in Pawleys Island, S.C., and works in nearby Myrtle Beach in advertising. He's not too bad on Bermuda greens, for a Yankee. A lifelong golf addict, he cares about all facets of the game of golf, from equipment to course architecture to PGA Tour news to his own streaky short game.

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  1. tyler

    Sep 9, 2013 at 1:13 pm

    no what’s in the bag for Web.com winners? C’mon..

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Equipment

Spotted: Phil Mickelson testing Callaway’s mini driver

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There is some serious equipment testing going on at Pinehurst’s legendary No. 2 course before the 2024 U.S. Open starts! We spotted renowned club tinkerer Phil Mickelson on the range with a new setup. He was testing out the new Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke Ti 340 Mini Driver with a new Mitsubishi Diamana BB (Blue Board) shaft.

Phil has long been a mini driver/2-wood/strong 3-wood guy, as he was the inspiration for the Callaway “Phranken Wood” about 10 years ago. For many pros, adding a strong 3-wood or mini driver allows them to turn it over easier and add a more consistent draw to their bag off the tee without losing too much distance.

Mitsubishi’s Diamana BB is the newest mid-launch shaft in the Diamana line. The “BB” on the shaft of course references the iconic Blue Board shafts from 20 years ago and this model will have a similar smooth feel.

 

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Tour Photo Galleries

Photos from the 2024 U.S. Open

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GolfWRX is live this week from the third major of the season: the U.S. Open at historic Pinehurst No. 2.

Qualifier WITBs are the stars the the show so far — along with in-hand looks at what Tiger Woods and Bryson DeChambeau are playing.

Check back throughout the week as we continue to add more galleries.  

General Albums

WITB Albums

Pullout Albums

See what GolfWRXers are saying about the photos from the U.S. Open in the forums. 

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Equipment

Why Wyndham Clark is playing a brand-new driver and an old putter this week

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Editor’s note: This is an excerpt of an article originally filed for PGATour.com’s Equipment Report by our Andrew Tursky. Read the full piece here. 

At the top end of the bag, Clark is set to change into Titleist’s new GT2 driver during the first week it’s being made available to PGA TOUR players. On Monday, Titleist officially unveiled its new lineup of GT drivers and fairway woods, and Clark plans to become one of the early adopters of the new technology as competition begins on Thursday at Muirfield Village Golf Club.

Interestingly, Clark was relatively late to make a permanent switch into the company’s previous TSR3 driver. Although the TSR drivers first launched in 2022, Clark was back-and-forth with the 2020 TSi3 driver and the 2022 TSR3 driver until the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in 2024.

On Wednesday, GolfWRX.com caught up with Clark to get his take on the new GT2 driver, and why he’s switching so quickly.

“It’s faster (than my previous TSR3),” Clark said. “I felt like I got 2-3 mph more ball speed, which is amazing. And it has really consistent spin, which is obviously huge for what we do out here.”

…On the bottom end of the bag, Clark will likely play his first event since 2023 without an Odyssey Jailbird putter in the bag.

In case you forgot, Clark and Rickie Fowler were the trendsetters who brought the 2014 Odyssey Versa Jailbird back to the forefront of the golf market in 2023. Clark then switched into the upgraded Odyssey Ai Jailbird during the week of his win at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

This week, however, Clark is going back in time, switching into a PXG prototype mallet that he used in 2022.

Read the full piece at PGATour.com

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