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The Buick Open was a PGA Tour golf tournament from 1958 to 2009. In 2007, the tournament was held at the end of June, a change from its traditional spot between The Open Championship and the PGA Championship. Regardless, many prominent players used it as a "tune-up" for the subsequent major.

Buick Open
LocationGrand Blanc, Michigan
Established1958
Course(s)Warwick Hills G&CC
Tour(s)PGA Tour
FormatStroke play
Final year2009
Aggregate262 Robert Wrenn (1987)
To par−26 Robert Wrenn (1987)
Tiger Woods

For the event's first decade, the Buick Open Invitational was played at Warwick Hills Golf and Country Club in Grand Blanc, Michigan. After 1969, professional golf events in the area fell off the PGA Tour schedule and a series of pro-ams and other similarly unofficial events took place, mostly at Flint Golf Club in Flint, Michigan.

Flint native, and PGA touring professional Larry Mancour had returned to Michigan to play in the Buick Open and stayed to build the Grand Blanc Golf Club. He then added nine holes at the Flint Elks Golf Club where he remained the professional for 20 years. He rescued the Buick Open when General Motors dropped sponsorship of the tournament. With local Buick dealers Mancour started the Little Buick Open in 1969. It drew players and fans and led to the rebirth of the Buick Open in 1977.

The Buick Open officially made its return to the PGA Tour in 1977 at the Flint Elks Club, and in 1978 the event returned to Warwick Hills G&CC, where it remained until its demise.

The Associated Press reported July 28, 2009 that General Motors would end its sponsorship of the Buick Open after the 2009 tournament, in order to devote its marketing resources to cars and trucks.[1] The PGA Tour replaced the tournament with the Greenbrier Classic at The Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia.[2]

As in the 1970s, a series of pro-ams and other unofficial events now take place in Grand Blanc, with the AJGA's Randy Wise Open taking place at Warwick Hills and most pro-ams and a golf festival at the Jewel of Grand Blanc (the former Grand Blanc Golf Club).

In 2014, an unrelated tournament with the same name was started in China. The event is played on PGA Tour China.

Contents

FansEdit

The 17th hole at Warwick, a par 3, was known for having one of the rowdiest galleries in professional golf. Fans often created chants directed at particular golfers. The famed 17th hole was also known by locals as the second largest outdoor cocktail party in the world (presumably deferring to the annual Florida–Georgia college football game as the largest). Players at the tournament loved the hole because of the atmosphere it creates. "This is a great tournament to play in, it's a beer drinkers tournament," said John Daly.

Long hittersEdit

In its final years, the tournament was dominated by long hitters. Tiger Woods, Vijay Singh, Brian Bateman, and Kenny Perry combined for eight wins in its final nine years. Several other players ranked highly in driving distance finished second during that span, including Woods, Jason Gore, Geoff Ogilvy, Bubba Watson, and John Daly.[3]

WinnersEdit

Year Player Country Score To par Margin
of victory
Runner(s)-up
Buick Open
2009 Tiger Woods (3)   United States 268 −20 3 strokes   Greg Chalmers
  John Senden
  Roland Thatcher
2008 Kenny Perry (2)   United States 269 −19 1 stroke   Woody Austin
  Bubba Watson
2007 Brian Bateman   United States 273 −15 1 stroke   Woody Austin
  Jason Gore
  Justin Leonard
2006 Tiger Woods (2)   United States 264 −24 3 strokes   Jim Furyk
2005 Vijay Singh (3)   Fiji 264 −24 4 strokes   Zach Johnson
  Tiger Woods
2004 Vijay Singh (2)   Fiji 265 −23 1 stroke   John Daly
2003 Jim Furyk   United States 267 −21 2 strokes   Briny Baird
  Chris DiMarco
  Geoff Ogilvy
  Tiger Woods
2002 Tiger Woods   United States 271 −17 4 strokes   Fred Funk
  Brian Gay
  Mark O'Meara
  Esteban Toledo
2001 Kenny Perry   United States 263 −25 2 strokes   Chris DiMarco
  Jim Furyk
2000 Rocco Mediate   United States 268 −20 1 stroke   Chris Perry
1999 Tom Pernice, Jr.   United States 270 −18 1 stroke   Tom Lehman
  Ted Tryba
  Bob Tway
1998 Billy Mayfair   United States 271 −17 2 strokes   Scott Verplank
1997 Vijay Singh   Fiji 273 −15 4 strokes   Tom Byrum
  Russ Cochran
  Ernie Els
  Brad Fabel
  Naomichi Ozaki
  Curtis Strange
1996 Justin Leonard   United States 266 −22 5 strokes   Chip Beck
1995 Woody Austin   United States 270 −18 Playoff   Mike Brisky
1994 Fred Couples   United States 270 −18 2 strokes   Corey Pavin
1993 Larry Mize   United States 272 −16 1 stroke   Fuzzy Zoeller
1992 Dan Forsman   United States 276 −12 Playoff   Steve Elkington
  Brad Faxon
1991 Brad Faxon   United States 271 −17 Playoff   Chip Beck
1990 Chip Beck   United States 272 −16 1 stroke   Mike Donald
  Hale Irwin
  Fuzzy Zoeller
1989 Leonard Thompson   United States 273 −15 1 stroke   Billy Andrade
  Payne Stewart
  Doug Tewell
1988 Scott Verplank   United States 268 −20 2 strokes   Doug Tewell
1987 Robert Wrenn   United States 262 −26 7 strokes   Dan Pohl
1986 Ben Crenshaw   United States 270 −18 1 stroke   J. C. Snead
  Doug Tewell
1985 Ken Green   United States 268 −20 4 strokes   Wayne Grady
1984 Denis Watson   Zimbabwe 271 −17 1 stroke   Payne Stewart
1983 Wayne Levi   United States 272 −16 1 stroke   Isao Aoki
  Calvin Peete
1982 Lanny Wadkins   United States 273 −15 1 stroke   Tom Kite
1981 Hale Irwin   United States 277 −11 Playoff   Bobby Clampett
  Peter Jacobsen
  Gil Morgan
Buick-Goodwrench Open
1980 Peter Jacobsen   United States 276 −12 1 stroke   Billy Kratzert
  Mark Lye
1979 John Fought   United States 280 −8 Playoff   Jim Simons
1978 Jack Newton   Australia 280 −8 Playoff   Mike Sullivan
Buick Open
1977 Bobby Cole   South Africa 271 −17 1 stroke   Fred Marti
1970–76: No official tournaments
Buick Open Invitational
1969 Dave Hill   United States 277 −11 2 strokes   Frank Beard
1968 Tom Weiskopf   United States 280 −8 1 stroke   Mike Hill
1967 Julius Boros (2)   United States 283 −5 3 strokes   Bob Goalby
  R. H. Sikes
  Bert Yancey
1966 Phil Rodgers   United States 284 −4 2 strokes   Johnny Pott
  Kermit Zarley
1965 Tony Lema (2)   United States 280 −8 2 strokes   Johnny Pott
1964 Tony Lema   United States 277 −11 1 stroke   Dow Finsterwald
1963 Julius Boros   United States 274 −14 5 strokes   Dow Finsterwald
1962 Bill Collins   United States 284 −4 1 stroke   Dave Ragan
1961 Jack Burke, Jr.   United States 284 −4 Playoff   Billy Casper
  Johnny Pott
1960 Mike Souchak   United States 282 −6 1 stroke   Gay Brewer
  Art Wall, Jr.
1959 Art Wall, Jr.   United States 282 −6 Playoff   Dow Finsterwald
1958 Billy Casper   United States 285 −3 1 stroke   Ted Kroll
  Arnold Palmer

Unofficial events in the 1970sEdit

Flint Elks Open

Lake Michigan Classic

Vern Parsell Buick Open

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "AP Source: GM to End Sponsorship of Buick Open". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-07-28.[dead link] (Defunct prior to 7/10)
  2. ^ "Greenbrier Classic Announcement". Bloomberg. 2009-08-05. Retrieved 2009-08-05.
  3. ^ "Buick Open Winners". Archived from the original on 2012-09-07. Retrieved 2008-06-23.

External linksEdit