Jenkins Wins in Sudden Death Playoff
By: Keith Johnson, Tournament Director
Photo: Ryan Renz
On September 24th-26th, Cumming, GA saw a gathering of competitors, including World Champions and USDGC Champions, competing in the 5th Annual Forsyth County Open just north of Atlanta. The event was also the finale of the Georgia's Super Six Series. World Champions Ken Climo, David Feldberg, Avery Jenkins, Eric McCabe, Brad Hammock and Phil Arthur, along with reigning USDGC Champion Nikko Locastro, were all shooting at a $6000 added cash pro purse with a guaranteed 1st place prize of $2000.
The event was held on the "Supersized Max" Central Park Par 60 layout. The Forsyth County Parks crew at Central Park, Dan Kaufman and Forsyth County Outdoor Manager, Matt Pate, made sure the park was in top notch shape with beautifully mowed fairways and greens. The wooded areas were raked of the fallen leaves, leaving the course looking outstanding. Players were very appreciative of the park's beauty. With temperatures in the mid-90's, 10-15 degrees above normal, tournament staff made sure the competitors stayed refreshed and hydrated with ice cold water provided at the course.
Unfortunately the weather didn't cooperate with the final round. Only the Recreational and Intermediate divisions were lucky enough to play their entire event rain free due to an early tee time. The heavy rain started at noon, 40 minutes prior to the Open groups' tee times, and continued through the afternoon leaving a drizzle for the few remaining holes of the event. A rarely missed 19 ft putt by Climo forced him into a 3 way playoff for the Open title.
The playoff began on a 305 ft hole, slightly uphill. Jenkins drive rested 16 ft from the pin, Climo placed his drive under the basket, and Feldberg hit the branches of the guardian tree by throwing it a little too high and wide. His effort at the 39 ft putt to continue in the playoff sailed wide right. Feldberg was out of the running. Jenkins and Climo moved on to the second hole, which was a 670 ft hole. The first 300 ft required a slight left turn of the disc and then a straight shot to the pin with OB lining both sides of the fairway. Jenkins threw a good shot around the corner setting him up for a clean approach to the basket. Climo's shot sailed a few feet wide and caught a tree on the right side wood line and kicked OB. His approach - while on line - was a bit high catching some upper limbs down the fairway leaving him 100+ ft away. Jenkins' second shot was about 35 ft left pin high, forcing Climo to make the next shot for any chance to continue. He missed slightly left leaving Jenkins to layup under the basket to seal the victory and claim the $2000 first place prize!
Around 40 spectators braved the rainy conditions on Sunday and were treated to watching several of the top 30 players in the world battle for the 5th largest 1st place payout so far in 2010. This Event ranked only behind the World Championships, US Open, Japan Open and the $50,000 Vibram Open in terms of having the highest ranked and rated players in the world all in one place.
As tournament director, I would like to thank the Forsyth County Parks department for their work on the course, along with Series and Event sponsors Innova Champion Discs, Solstice Disc Sports, The Alpharetta Visitors and Convention Bureau, the Hilton Garden Inn/ Alpharetta (Host Hotel), Wes Campbell, Greg Campbell, DiscCaddie, EDGE, Maui Jim, Keen, Al Sandidge, David Walls, Michael Burton Colors, John Biscoe, Matt Flynn, John Inman, ADGO - and last, but most definitely not least, my wife, Dawn, and daughter, Lorelei, for their unending assistance and support during all the events.
Event results: http://www.pdga.com/tournament-results?TournID=9704