Brandt Snedeker is the horse for the course at Torrey Pines. With his win on Monday, he became a two-time champion of the Farmers Insurance Open, winning both this year’s edition and in 2012.
And it was this win which may be the most impressive win of his career.
For a second, ignore the elements on the weekend in La Jolla– take a look at Snedeker’s life on the PGA Tour. He’s closed out 8 wins on the PGA Tour, 7 of them since 2011. He’s finished tournaments with final rounds of 63 and 64 to win events from behind. He won the “SnedEx Cup” in 2012 with a win at the Tour Championship. His story on Tour has clout and a lot of “moments” to pull from.
But what he accomplished on Sunday was nothing short of incredible. His round of 69 (3-under par), earned him the respect of his peers throughout the game.
Snedeker’s final round scoring was the stuff of legend. As the scoring average ballooned to 78-plus, Snedeker’s was sub-70. In fact, among players on the leaderboard within 6 strokes of the lead, no one had a score better than 74.
Final round scoring at Torrey Pines:
Rounds under par: 1 (Snedeker)
Rounds of 86 or worse: 2
— Justin Ray (@JustinRayGC) February 1, 2016
The stat lines can go on and on regarding Snedeker’s impressive round of golf. Playing almost 6 strokes over par, his score bested the field by 10. He was perfect inside 10-feet putting, making 14 out of his 14 chances. Considering his position on the leaderboard starting the final round, he needed some help.
The help he got, was in large part, the help he’d given himself.
When Snedeker posted his score on Sunday afternoon, he seemed positioned for an afternoon of television watching and staying warm. With the conditions (winds in the 40-50 MPH and rain), bogies were evident and doubles were more prevalent than they typically are. Pars were a rarity.
Snedeker’s score seemed safe, that is, until the play was called for the day.
In what seemed like the travesty of the decade, players were given a “get out of jail FREE” pass from the conditions after Snedeker had withstood it all. With a Monday finish now scheduled, the media and social waves lit up with Snedeker sympathy.
A simple look at the Monday forecast revealed that no one was awarded a pass from the weather.
As Jimmy Walker and K.J. Choi attempted to close out rounds in pursuit of Snedeker, among downed trees and similar winds, Torrey Pines got the best of the field again. Bogies came in droves and Snedeker watched.
Coming down the 18th, Choi had the chance to catch Snedeker with a birdie four. He found himself in the same position as Tiger Woods did in the 2008 U.S. Open. We all remember how that played out.
Choi wasn’t able to muster the same effort. A par on the final hole left Brandt Snedeker as the last man standing, some 22 hours after he holed his last putt.
The lighthearted Snedeker closed out his press conference in his typical jovial way.
“I love seeing that 2021 U.S. Open over there,” said the two-time Farmers champion.
I bet you are, Brandt.
“ … the most nerve wracking four hours I've had on TOUR."
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) February 1, 2016