Former Arizona golfer Jim Furyk won his PGA Tour Champions debut Sunday at Warwick Hills Golf and Country Club at Grand Blanc Township, Mich., the site where he won the 2003 Buick Open.
Furyk shot 4-under-par 68 in the final round of the $2 million Ally Challenge to post a two-stroke victory and take home the $300,000 top prize. The victory is Furyk’s first since the 2015 RBC Heritage on the PGA Tour.
“You get just as nervous when you have opportunities to win on the Champions Tour,” said Furyk, who turned 50 in May, qualifying for the 50-and-older Tour.
“To get back in the mix, have some juices flowing and have some nerves was a lot of fun,” Furyk continued with reporters. “I settled in today. I felt better today than I did any day of the week.”
Furyk finished with a score of 14-under-par 68-66-68—202 to finish two shots in front of second-round leader Brett Quigley and two-time U.S. Open winner Retief Goosen.
A 17-time winner on the PGA Tour, Furyk became the 19th player in PGA Tour Champions history to win in his debut.
“I’m amazed. It felt pretty darn hard to do,” Furyk said. “It’s a huge boost of confidence for me. I really feel like I’ve been playing pretty well this year and I haven’t been getting much out of it.
“I hope it gives me some confidence. I haven’t been there in a while. To kind of get in there and get comfortable and settle in and hit some shots, it’s a big boost. So hopefully I can take some of that confidence back out to the PGA Tour.”
Furyk will return to the PGA Tour next week for the PGA Championship and he plans to stay on the regular Tour for the Wyndham Championship Aug. 13-16.
The Ally Challenge marked the 16th time Furyk has played at Warwick Hills and the 16th time he’s finished in the money. He finished in the top 10 eight times at the Buick Open, a tournament record he shares with Tiger Woods. He also shares the record of carding eight straight rounds in the 60s with Woods.
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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He is a former Arizona Daily Star beat reporter for the Arizona basketball team, including when the Wildcats won the 1996-97 NCAA title. He has also written articles for CollegeAD.com, Bleacher Report, Lindy’s Sports, TucsonCitizen.com, The Arizona Republic, Sporting News and Baseball America, among many other publications. He has also authored the book “The Highest Form of Living”, which is available at Amazon.