News & ToursAugust 21, 2009

Drivable Par 4 Pumps Up the Tradition

SUNRIVER, Ore. -- The drivable par 4 came to the Champions Tour Friday.

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The trend popularized the last couple of years by USGA set-up man Mike Davis was alive and well on the 15th hole at Crosswater Club in the second round of the Jeld-Wen Tradition.

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"That caught me off guard," said Loren Roberts. "I had no idea they were going to do that. [Our group] commented that it's become an epidemic now, drivable par 4s."

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A 396-yarder on the scorecard, it measured 279 yards. After playing as the fourth-hardest hole in the first round with a 4.103 scoring average, it was the easiest hole Friday with a 3.485 average. Gene Jones and Mike Reid made eagles, and there were 32 birdies, 33 pars and one bogey.

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Brad Bryant, who shot a 72 to maintain his lead at 10-under, hit a 3-wood to the back fringe to set up a birdie on No. 15. Larry Mize put his tee shot in the left fringe but three-putted from 25 feet for a par. John Cook drove it into the right greenside bunker  and had to scramble to make a par. The hole was into the wind for Roberts, who laid back and set up a birdie with a wedge from 65 yards.

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Cook was a fan, despite his disappointing par. "I like that idea," said Cook. "Why not give us a chance sometimes? Have some fun."

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*--Bill Fields *

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