partlycloudy
Monday July 24th, 2017 4:25PM

A week of celebrating the King awaits at Bay Hill

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The Arnold Palmer Invitational is more than just a tournament this year. It's an event.

Palmer died on Sept. 25 of heart complications. The public funeral service was held on Oct. 4, two days after the Ryder Cup. Palmer would not have wanted to distract from the Ryder Cup, and golf would not have wanted anything to distract from its most beloved figure.

But it was his tournament at Bay Hill that was always going to hold so much significance.

Palmer was always more than just a name associated with Bay Hill, even before the tournament was named after him in 2007. He owned the place. He ran the place. He played the tournament until 2004, when the 74-year-old legend hit driver off the deck onto the 18th green.

Wednesday began the celebration of the King this year when the tournament held its first opening ceremony. The PGA Tour was expecting 25 players to be on the practice range to hit a ceremonial tee shot. Instead, 60 players showed up. They hit tee shots, one after the other, right down the line, resembling a domino effect . There were so many players that they went down the line twice.

Jason Day is the defending champion. He is the last person to share a handshake with Palmer on the 18th green after his one-shot victory last year. He was the last person to share a celebratory drink with the King, which almost was a mistake.

"I felt like I was drinking a whole bottle of Ketel One, because that's obviously his favorite thing," Day said. "And I was on Golf Channel and I felt absolutely hammered. I had a drink with him and I'm going up there and I don't know what I'm saying on Golf Channel. But it was a special moment at his place, and just winning this tournament, it is such a big event for us."

This really is a week of honoring the past. The LPGA Tour returns to domestic soil to play Bank of Hope Founders Cup, a tournament that celebrates the 13 women who founded the tour in 1950. It will be held in Phoenix. The PGA Tour Champions also is in Arizona for the Tucson Conquistadores Classic. The PGA Tour used to play there, and Palmer won it in 1967.

The King left his prints everywhere.

PGA TOUR

"Those are memories you don't forget," Day said of his victory at Bay Hill last year.

Kevin Chappell appeared to have the tournament won until he missed the 18th fairway and made bogey, and Day made birdie on the par-3 17th to suddenly take the lead. Day closed it out with a bunker shot to 4 feet to save par and get that handshake with the King.

There has been no shortage of memories.

Most of them involve Tiger Woods, who won four times in a row and a total of eight times, most recently in 2013. The most memorable might have been his duel with Phil Mickelson in 2001.

Greg Norman never won at Bay Hill, thanks to Robert Gamez . It was in 1990 when Gamez was one shot behind the Shark and holed out a 7-iron for eagle and the victory.

John Daly is playing this year on a sponsor exemption. Daly had one of the most amazing scorecards in PGA Tour history when he took an 18 on the par-5 sixth hole, only to follow that up with a birdie 2 on the next hole.

Davis Love III never won at Bay Hill, but he did leave a lasting memory. It was in 1999 when Love's tee shot was plugged in the bunker on the 17th hole. He blasted out and smacked a sprinkler head out of frustration, then endured the embarrassment of seeing a valve break and water gush into the sand.

Palmer jokingly left Love a bill for the damage the next day: $3.50 for the parts, $175,000 for the labor.

Television: Thursday-Friday, 2-6 p.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday-Sunday, 12:30-2:30 p.m. (Golf Channel), 2:30-6 p.m. (NBC).

LPGA TOUR

For such a young tournament, the Founders Cup is one of the most important on the LPGA Tour because of what it represents — a tribute to the founders.

Karrie Webb won the inaugural tournament in 2011 , and the Hall of Famer won again in 2014.

The Founders Cup is the first U.S. tournament of the year and starts a stretch of three consecutive weeks through the first major, the ANA Inspiration.

Television: Thursday-Friday, 6-9 p.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday-Sunday, 7-9 p.m. (Golf Channel).

PGA TOUR CHAMPIONS

Remember these guys? The last time they played, Fred Couples won the Chubb Classic on Feb. 19. They play the Tucson Conquistadores Classic this week at Omni Tucson National, and then take another week off before playing in Mississippi.

Bernhard Langer is no longer atop the money list, but he does have a record in mind this week. He has 29 straight rounds below par, just two short of the record that Gil Morgan set in 2000.

Television: Friday, 9:30-11:30 p.m. (Golf Channel); Saturday-Sunday, 4:30-7 p.m. (Golf Channel).

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Golf, AP Entertainment, AP Online TV News, AP Sports - PGA, AP Sports - Women's Golf
© Copyright 2017 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Southern Baptists wrestle with tensions over Trump election
The Southern Baptist Convention, home to prominent evangelical supporters of President Donald Trump, adopted a statement on moral leadership at the group's annual meeting that avoided pointed criticism of current political officeholders.
8:25AM ( 7 minutes ago )
Sessions vows to defend himself against 'false allegations'
Attorney General Jeff Sessions denies 'false and scurrilous allegations' about his contacts with Russian official in a dramatic appearance before the Senate Intelligence Committee.
7:20AM ( 1 hour ago )
Stay thirsty: 'Most interesting man' now pitching tequila
"The Most Interesting Man in the World" is giving up beer for tequila
7:05AM ( 1 hour ago )
Associated Press (AP)
LEADING OFF: Sabathia hurt, Rizzo up 1st, Bellinger on 1st
LEADING OFF: Sabathia hurt, Rizzo up 1st; Bellinger on 1st; Santana faces Mariners; Volquez on a roll
4:40AM ( 3 hours ago )
Sabathia leaves with injury; Young rallies Angels past Yanks
Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia exited early with a strained left hamstring, and Eric Young Jr. rallied the Los Angeles Angels to a 3-2 victory in 11 innings that snapped New York's six-game winning streak Tuesday night
4:14AM ( 4 hours ago )
US steps up security for U19 basketball tournament in Egypt
USA Basketball is stepping up the security for its team in the under-19 World Cup
2:49AM ( 5 hours ago )
AP Sports
McIlroy returning from another injury at Wisconsin major
The storms moved in overnight and kept pounding Erin Hills through the morning, closing the course for some three hours with just two practice days remaining before the U.S. Open
6:11PM ( 14 hours ago )
Tough rough: US Open conditions may rob drama from a major
Tough rough: Conditions at Erin Hills could rob drama from a major
10:39AM ( 21 hours ago )
Stricker proud of his Wisconsin grit to get into US Open
Steve Stricker happy to be at US Open in home state in Wisconsin, and wants to deliver
10:15AM ( 22 hours ago )
AP Online Golf
Clinton, Obama surprise Women in Film awards winners, guests
Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama and Sen. Kamala Harris participated in Women in Film's annual awards ceremony
5:46AM ( 2 hours ago )
Old-school typewriters attract new generation of fans
In the age of smartphones, social media and cyber hacking fears, the vintage typewriter is making a comeback with a new generation of fans gravitating to machines that once gathered dust and lonesomeness in attics and basements across the country.
3:07AM ( 5 hours ago )
Netflix theater debate hits S. Korea as 'Okja' boycott looms
South Korean filmmaker Bong Joon-ho has an answer to where the controversy over the theatrical releases of Netflix movies started: his cinematic ambition
2:13AM ( 6 hours ago )
AP Entertainment
The Latest: Trump wants apprenticeships in all high schools
President Donald Trump says he wants every high school in America to offer apprenticeship programs.
5:36PM ( 14 hours ago )
Trump making case for apprenticeships to fill jobs gap
President Donald Trump is making the case for apprenticeships to spur job creation and help put people in jobs that often go unfilled
5:36PM ( 14 hours ago )
'The Daily Show' is unveiling the Trump Twitter Library
"The Daily Show" is unveiling the Donald J. Trump Presidential Twitter Library this weekend
2:35PM ( 17 hours ago )
AP Online TV News
Cink, Cabrera Bello among 3 leaders at St. Jude
Rafa Cabrera Bello shot a 5-under 65 to join Ben Crane and Stewart Cink in a three-way tie for the lead after three rounds at the St. Jude Classic
7:30PM ( 3 days ago )
Tiger Woods told officers during arrest he had taken Xanax
Tiger Woods told officers during his DUI arrest last month that he had taken Xanax, as well as other prescription medications
10:05AM ( 3 days ago )
US Open at a new place and looking for fresh start
US OPEN '17: Dustin Johnson tries to go back-to-back as US Open heads to new course in Wisconsin
6:43PM ( 5 days ago )
AP Sports - PGA
Sharp pulls into tie for lead after 2nd round at Cambridge
Alena Sharp shot her second straight 66 to move into a share of the lead at 12-under 132 after the second round of the Manulife LPGA Classic
8:32PM ( 4 days ago )
Sharp pulls into tie for 2nd round lead at Cambridge
Alena Sharp shot her second straight 66 to move into a share of the lead at 12-under 132 after the second round of the Manulife LPGA Classic
7:29PM ( 4 days ago )
Petterson, Lee lead LPGA Classic in Cambridge, Ontario
Suzann Pettersen and Mi Hyang Lee each shot an 8-under 64 to share the first-round lead at the Manulife LPGA Classic
10:28PM ( 5 days ago )
AP Sports - Women's Golf
Southern Baptists wrestle with tensions over Trump election
The Southern Baptist Convention, home to prominent evangelical supporters of President Donald Trump, adopted a statement on moral leadership at the group's annual meeting that avoided pointed criticism of current political officeholders.
8:25AM ( 7 minutes ago )
Sessions vows to defend himself against 'false allegations'
Attorney General Jeff Sessions denies 'false and scurrilous allegations' about his contacts with Russian official in a dramatic appearance before the Senate Intelligence Committee.
7:20AM ( 1 hour ago )
Stay thirsty: 'Most interesting man' now pitching tequila
"The Most Interesting Man in the World" is giving up beer for tequila
7:05AM ( 1 hour ago )
Kim Kardashian discusses fame, missteps at Forbes summit
Kim Kardashian West admits that she's made some mistakes in her life, but the important lesson is not to repeat them
6:34AM ( 1 hour ago )
China insurance mogul said unable to work, reported detained
Chairman of Chinese insurer that bought Waldorf Hotel reported detained by regulators, hands duties to others
6:31AM ( 2 hours ago )