The PGA Tour remains in Texas this week for the Dean & Deluca Invitational in Fort Worth. Jordan Spieth defends the title at Colonial Country Club.
Jordan Spieth defends his Dean & Deluca Invitational title this week on the PGA Tour and a strong field has assembled at Colonial Country Club. Masters champion Sergio Garcia is on the start sheet, together with The Players Champion Si Woo Kim, 1996 Colonial champ Phil Mickelson and last week’s winner Billy Horschel.
Since it’s inception in 1946, this event has been played on the same course and, in terms of length, the layout has changed little over the years. When Texas native Ben Hogan won the first Colonial Invitational the course measured 7,035 yards. It can now be stretched to 7,204 yards, but it generally plays a touch shorter than that.
The course at Colonial was opened in 1936 and played host to the 1941 U.S. Open. Having welcomed the PGA Tour since 1946, this is the longest running host venue on the circuit.
Hogan dominated the early years of this event winning five times between 1946 and 1959, hence the course’s nickname of “Hogan’s Alley.” Arnold Palmer, Lee Trevino and Tom Watson have also lifted the title.
Last year, Jordan Spieth claimed a first PGA Tour title in his home state of Texas. He finished with three straight birdies to end the week three clear of Harris English.
Spieth comes into this event on the back of missed cuts at The Players and the AT&T Byron Nelson. He’ll be hoping a return to a course where he tasted victory last year will help him end his mini-slump.
The winner of the event is famously presented with a garish tartan jacket and a simply enormous trophy – as you can see from the photo of Jordan Spieth above.
The weather forecast looks mixed. It’s going to be hot but probably overcast with a chance of some rain, particularly on the weekend.
Venue: Colonial Country Club, Fort Worth, Texas
Date: May 25-28
Course stats: par 70, 7,209 yards
Purse: $6,900,000 Winner: $1,242,000
Defending Champion: Jordan Spieth (-17)
Thursday 25 – Sky Sports 4 from 9pm
Friday 26 – Sky Sports 4 from 9pm
Saturday 27 – Sky Sports 4 from 6pm
Sunday 28 – Sky Sports 4 from 6pm
Ryan Palmer – The local boy is desperate for a win at his home club. He was third in this tournament last season. Palmer was showing good form a month ago with a tied sixth in the Valero Texas Open and then a fourth place in New Orleans.
Jason Kokrak – He was fourth last week but played superbly for the first 36 holes to claim a five-stroke halfway lead. He had a top-20 in this event back in 2013.
Sergio Garcia – After winning the Masters, he’s continued to play well with top-30 finishes at both The Players and the Byron Nelson. He won this event back in 2001.
Key hole: 5th. This has played as the toughest hole on the course since stats began to be recorded some 25 years ago. At 481 yards, it’s a long par 4 made more difficult by the ditch waiting to the left and a river on the right. The approach must be supremely accurate to a long, narrow target.
Skills required: Ball-striking. Solid and accurate iron shots will be the key to success at Colonial both for position from the tee and to the tightly guarded greens. Those who can shape their shots could go low this week.