Back-to-Back Zach

Johnson has Magic Touch at Valero Texas Open

Zach Johnson and Golfer’s Guide publisher Mike Ratchman draw the winners to the golf giveaway at the Texas Open.Cedar Rapids native Zach Johnson, who firmly announced his presence on the PGA Tour with his win at the 2007 Masters, has quietly turned San Antonio’s La Canterra golf course into his own personal “Field of Dreams.”

Saturday Johnson flirted with a 59 en route to a course record round of 60 to vault into the lead, and eventually sealed his second consecutive Texas Open title with a 10-foot birdie putt on the first hole of a Texas-style sudden death shootout with James Driscoll on Sunday The win was the sixth of Johnson’s PGA Tour career.

With the event moving to TPC San Antonio in 2010, Johnson said his remarkable record at La Canterra will make leaving for a new venue bittersweet.

“It is bittersweet, Johnson said. “You’re exactly right. Bitter in the sense that I like this golf course. I love the character that it presents. It’s got left, right, up, down, short, long. Wind is always the element that plays a factor. And I love all that.

“But, when it comes down to it, yeah, we’re staging a golf tournament on a venue, but this next venue is supposed to be fantastic,” he continued. “It’s supposed to be more fan friendly, which is a big part of what we showcase. So I think there’s a lot of positives for next year and years to come. So it’s going to be an awesome facility. I heard the hotel is meticulous. So I’m excited. It’s bittersweet, but I can’t live in the past. I’m looking forward to the future.”

Off the course, Johnson was a good luck charm for a few tournament attendees who walked away from a Golfer’s Guide giveaway with wonderful prizes.

Carol Barter Grand Prize WinnerThe grand prize winner was Carole Baxter, who took home a year-long individual membership to one of San Antonio’s premier daily-fee golf facilities, Canyon Springs Golf Club. Valued at $3,619, the membership includes golf anytime with cart, unlimited practice balls, complimentary clinics, advantage pricing and a “Best Price Guarantee” in the pro shop and USGA handicap service.

Other prizes included one year free green fee individual golf membership at Alsatian Golf Club worth $1600, which was won by Ralph Van Cleave, a weekend for four at the Club at ConCan on the Frio River donated by Southern Golf Properties and two rounds of golf at each of the following locations courtesy of Foresight Golf: the Buckhorn, Pecan Valley, The Bandit and The Republic.

Golfer’s Guide would like to extend a sincere thank you to Southern Golf Properties, Foresight Golf, Canyon Springs, Alsatians Golf and the Club at ConCan for participating in this event.

While Johnson did bank more than $1 million with his effort in San Antonio and moved into first place in the FedEx Cup standings, his victory pales in comparison to the monumental win captured by the tournament’s fundraising department on behalf of local children’s charities.

In what is expected to be the single largest donation to children’s charities on the PGA Tour in 2009, The Valero Texas Open and Benefit for Children Golf Classic combined to raise more than $8 million or children’s charities.

Funds were raised through sponsorships sold for the tournament and the Valero Benefit for Children Golf Classic, which took place the Monday after the Tour left town. As many as 2,100 participants were registered to play at the children’s golf classic.

Golf Giveaway a big hit at the Valero Texas Open

“We’re very grateful to our sponsors and business partners for their generosity in helping us raise these funds for children’s charities,” Rich Marcogliese, executive vice president and chief operating officer, who is heading up Valero’s efforts in this year’s tournament, told the San Antonio Business Journal. “This is a great tournament, and the funds raised will help us make a difference in the lives of thousands of children.”


Please Share