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The Honda Classic

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The Honda Classic is a professional golf tournament on the PGA Tour in south Florida. It was founded 45 years ago in 1972 as Jackie Gleason's Inverrary Classic,[1] and is usually the first of the Florida events in late winter following the "West Coast Swing."

The Honda Classic
The Honda Classic logo.png
Location Palm Beach Gardens, Florida
Established 1972, 46 years ago
Course(s) PGA National Golf Club,
Champion Course
Par 70
Length 7,140 yards (6,529 m)
Organized by IMG
Tour(s) PGA Tour
Format Stroke play
Prize fund $6.6 million
Month played February
Aggregate 264 Justin Leonard (2003)
To par −24 Justin Leonard (2003)
United States Justin Thomas
PGA National  is located in the US
PGA National 
PGA National 
Location in the United States
PGA National is located in Florida
PGA National
PGA 
National
Location in Florida

National Airlines was the sponsor in 1973 with Gleason and American Motors Corporation (AMC) backed it in 1981. Since 1982, American Honda Motor Company (Honda) has been the title sponsor.

Contents

Tournament historyEdit

Its predecessor, the National Airlines Open Invitational, ran for just three seasons (196971); all at the Country Club of Miami in Hialeah in late March. The Gleason tournament replaced it on the schedule a month earlier in 1972 at the Inverrary Country Club (East course) in Lauderhill, it was among the richest events on tour with an inaugural purse of $260,000 and a $52,000 winner's share.[2] The regular event was not played in 1976, as Inverrary hosted the Tournament Players Championship in late February, won by Jack Nicklaus. Gleason's nine-year affiliation ended after 1980, but the event continued at Inverrary through 1983.[1] It moved to the TPC Eagle Trace in Coral Springs in 1984 for eight editions.

From 1992 to 1995, the event was held at the Weston Hills Golf & Country Club in Weston. It then returned to Coral Springs, first at the TPC at Eagle Trace in 1996 and then at the TPC at Heron Bay from 1997 to 2002. In 2003, the event moved to Palm Beach Gardens, first at the Country Club at Mirasol through 2006, then began its current run at PGA National Golf Club's Champion Course in 2007.

Since 2007, the tournament's main beneficiary is the Nicklaus Children's Health Care Foundation, chaired by Barbara Nicklaus, wife of golf legend Jack Nicklaus.

IMG bought the tournament's management company in 2013.[3]

Player participationEdit

Some celebrated players have won this tournament, including Nicklaus in 1977 and 1978, the only consecutive winner in its history. However, the tournament had acquired a reputation for struggling to attract the top players as it moved from course to course in South Florida. Since 2007, The Honda Classic has seen a vastly improved player field, largely due to the decision to make PGA National the tournament's permanent home.

The prize money is comparable to other PGA Tour events outside of the "big nine" (the majors, the World Golf Championships individual events, The Players Championship, and The Tour Championship). The total purse was $6.4 million in 2017, with a top prize of $1.152 million (this can be contrasted to the total purse in 1981 of $300,000 (the equivalent of only $807,540 in 2017 dollars[4]). The original winner's share of $52,000 in 1972 made it one of the richest stops on tour, greater than for any of the four majors; it was more than double that of the Masters, which had a first prize of $25,000 in 1972.

Tournament hostsEdit

Years No. Venue City State
2007–18 12 PGA National Golf Club
(Champion Course)
Palm Beach Gardens   Florida  
2003–06 4 Country Club at Mirasol
1997–2002 6 TPC at Heron Bay Coral Springs
1996 1 TPC Eagle Trace
1992–95 4 Weston Hills Golf and C.C. Weston
1984–91 8 TPC Eagle Trace Coral Springs
1972–83 11 Inverrary Country Club
(East Course)
Lauderhill
  • No event in 1976, Inverrary hosted TPC.

WinnersEdit

Year Player Country Score To par Margin
of victory
Runner(s)-up Winner's
share ($)
Purse ($)
The Honda Classic
2018 Justin Thomas   United States 272 −8 Playoff   Luke List 1,188,000 6,600,000
2017 Rickie Fowler   United States 268 −12 4 strokes   Morgan Hoffmann
  Gary Woodland
1,152,000 6,400,000
2016 Adam Scott   Australia 271 −9 1 stroke   Sergio García 1,098,000 6,100,000
2015 Pádraig Harrington (2)   Ireland 274 −6 Playoff   Daniel Berger 1,098,000 6,100,000
2014 Russell Henley   United States 272 −8 Playoff   Russell Knox
  Rory McIlroy
  Ryan Palmer
1,080,000 6,000,000
2013 Michael Thompson   United States 271 −9 2 strokes   Geoff Ogilvy 1,080,000 6,000,000
2012 Rory McIlroy   Northern Ireland 268 −12 2 strokes   Tom Gillis
  Tiger Woods
1,026,000 5,700,000
2011 Rory Sabbatini   South Africa 271 −9 1 stroke   Yang Yong-eun 1,026,000 5,700,000
2010 Camilo Villegas   Colombia 267 −13 5 strokes   Anthony Kim 1,008,000 5,600,000
2009 Yang Yong-eun   South Korea 271 −9 1 stroke   John Rollins 1,008,000 5,600,000
2008 Ernie Els   South Africa 274 −6 1 stroke   Luke Donald 990,000 5,500,000
2007 Mark Wilson   United States 275 −5 Playoff   José Cóceres
  Camilo Villegas
  Boo Weekley
990,000 5,500,000
2006 Luke Donald   England 276 −12 2 strokes   Geoff Ogilvy 990,000 5,500,000
2005 Pádraig Harrington   Ireland 274 −14 Playoff   Joe Ogilvie
  Vijay Singh
990,000 5,500,000
2004 Todd Hamilton   United States 276 −12 1 stroke   Davis Love III 900,000 5,000,000
2003 Justin Leonard   United States 264 −24 1 stroke   Chad Campbell
  Davis Love III
900,000 5,000,000
2002 Matt Kuchar   United States 269 −19 2 strokes   Brad Faxon
  Joey Sindelar
630,000 3,500,000
Honda Classic
2001 Jesper Parnevik   Sweden 270 −18 1 stroke   Mark Calcavecchia
  Geoff Ogilvy
  Craig Perks
576,000 3,200,000
2000 Dudley Hart   United States 269 −19 1 stroke   J. P. Hayes
  Kevin Wentworth
522,000 2,900,000
1999 Vijay Singh   Fiji 277 −11 2 strokes   Payne Stewart 468,000 2,600,000
1998 Mark Calcavecchia (2)   United States 270 −18 3 strokes   Vijay Singh 324,000 1,800,000
1997 Stuart Appleby   Australia 274 −14 1 stroke   Michael Bradley
  Payne Stewart
270,000 1,500,000
1996 Tim Herron   United States 271 −17 4 strokes   Mark McCumber 234,000 1,300,000
1995 Mark O'Meara   United States 275 −9 1 stroke   Nick Faldo 216,000 1,200,000
1994 Nick Price   Zimbabwe 276 −8 1 stroke   Craig Parry 198,000 1,100,000
1993 Fred Couples   United States 207* −9 Playoff   Robert Gamez 198,000 1,100,000
1992 Corey Pavin   United States 273 −15 Playoff   Fred Couples 198,000 1,100,000
1991 Steve Pate   United States 279 −9 3 strokes   Paul Azinger
  Dan Halldorson
180,000 1,000,000
1990 John Huston   United States 282 −6 2 strokes   Mark Calcavecchia 180,000 1,000,000
1989 Blaine McCallister   United States 266 −22 4 strokes   Payne Stewart 144,000 800,000
1988 Joey Sindelar   United States 276 −12 2 strokes   Ed Fiori
  Sandy Lyle
  Payne Stewart
126,000 700,000
1987 Mark Calcavecchia   United States 279 −9 3 strokes   Bernhard Langer
  Payne Stewart
108,000 600,000
1986 Kenny Knox   United States 287 −1 1 stroke   Andy Bean
  John Mahaffey
  Jodie Mudd
  Clarence Rose
90,000 500,000
1985 Curtis Strange   United States 275 −13 Playoff   Peter Jacobsen 90,000 500,000
1984 Bruce Lietzke   United States 280 −8 Playoff   Andy Bean 90,000 500,000
Honda Inverrary Classic
1983 Johnny Miller (2)   United States 278 −10 2 strokes   Jack Nicklaus 72,000 400,000
1982 Hale Irwin   United States 269 −19 1 stroke   George Burns
  Tom Kite
72,000 400,000
American Motors Inverrary Classic
1981 Tom Kite   United States 274 −14 1 stroke   Jack Nicklaus 54,000 300,000
Jackie Gleason-Inverrary Classic
1980 Johnny Miller   United States 274 −14 2 strokes   Charles Coody
  Bruce Lietzke
54,000 300,000
1979 Larry Nelson   United States 274 −14 3 strokes   Grier Jones 54,000 300,000
1978 Jack Nicklaus (2)   United States 276 −12 1 stroke   Grier Jones 50,000 250,000
1977 Jack Nicklaus   United States 275 −13 5 strokes   Gary Player 50,000 250,000
1976: Inverrary hosted the Tournament Players Championship
1975 Bob Murphy   United States 273 −15 1 stroke   Eddie Pearce 52,000 260,000
1974 Leonard Thompson   United States 278 −10 1 stroke   Hale Irwin 52,000 260,000
Jackie Gleason Inverrary-National Airlines Classic
1973 Lee Trevino   United States 279 −9 1 stroke   Forrest Fezler 52,000 260,000
Jackie Gleason's Inverrary Classic
1972 Tom Weiskopf   United States 278 −10 1 stroke   Jack Nicklaus 52,000 260,000

*Weather-shortened to 54 holes
Note: Green highlight indicates scoring records.
Source:[5][6]

Multiple winnersEdit

Four men have won the tournament more than once.

2 wins

^ Nicklaus also won the 1976 Tournament Players Championship at Inverrary, which displaced the event.

Tournament highlightsEdit

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit