Matt Kuchar and Harris English won the Franklin Templeton Shootout by a mile, posting a 14-under 58 on Sunday in the final-round scramble to break the tournament course record. Kuchar and English fired a three-day total of 34-under to run away from the field by seven strokes.
“It was a fun week,” Kuchar said. “This is one of my favorite events of the year. I wish we could (play) more team events. I realize during the year that’s difficult but to mix up the formats and have a partner here is just a lot of fun. It’s nice to perform well.”
English replaced the injured Brandt Snedeker at the last minute.
“It’s such a relaxing event,” Harris said. “It’s really cool being part of this event.”
Retief Goosen and Freddie Jacobson finished second, despite a closing 61.
“It was unbelievable, quite an exhibition,” Jacobson said. “Both guys were putting well and they’re solid ballstrikers, so we knew we had to pick up the pace. But they played so well, there’s not much you can do about it.”
Other fun tournament facts:
- FORMAT: Round 1: Modified Alternate Shot; Round 2: Better Ball; Round 3: Scramble
- The 34-under-par 182 by Harris English and Matt Kuchar bettered the low 54-hole score since the event moved to the Tiburon Golf Club at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Resort. The previous low was a 33-under-par 183 by Brad Faxon and Scott McCarron in 2001.
- The seven-stroke margin also broke the tournament record of six strokes set in 1989 by David Duval and Fred Couples.
- With rounds of 60-58 on the weekend, the team of Harris English and Matt Kuchar matched the best final 36-hole total in tournament history. The record was established in 1990 by Fred Couples and Raymond Floyd (61-57).
- The back nine was the difference in the event for the winning team. English and Kuchar were a combined 24-under-par on the back nine and their three rounds included three eagles and 18 birdies. At one point on Friday, they were 1-over-par after five holes. However, from that point on, they were 35-under for the final 49 holes.
- Ironically, two of the players who were on teams which finished first and second were originally not slated to play. Harris English was a late addition when Brandt Snedeker had to withdraw with a leg injury, while Freddie Jacobson was added as Retief Goosen’s partner when Boo Weekley withdrew following a family issue.
- Harris English became the 10th player to win in his debut in this event and was the first to do so since Keegan Bradley and partner Brendan Steele won here in 2011.
- Harris English has certainly enjoyed recent success in event’s run by the Greg Norman Production Company. Four weeks ago he won the OHL Classic at Mayakoba in Mexico run by the company.
- Defending champions Sean O’Hair and Kenny Perry rebounded from their 3-under-par 69 on Saturday, closing with a 12-under-par 60 to finish fifth overall.
- Host Greg Norman and partner Jonas Blixt finished T8.
(AP Photo/Dania Maxwell)