Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines serves as a warm-up for 2021 U.S. Open
With the 2021 U.S. Open set to return to Torrey Pines Golf Course in five short months, the seaside La Jolla track will get a dress rehearsal this week during the $7.5-million Farmers Insurance Open.
San Diego’s PGA Tour stop annually attracts one of the best fields outside of the major championships, and while fans can’t be on site this year due to COVID-19 restrictions, those watching on TV will see a field loaded with talent – many using it as a chance to prep for the season’s third major championship in June. The field includes 23 of the top 50 players in the Official World Golf Ranking, led by World No. 2 Jon Rahm, who won the event in 2017.
Also traversing the fairways of Torrey’s North and South Courses will be San Diego native Xander Schauffele (6), four-time major winner Rory McIlroy (7), 2018 Masters champion Patrick Reed (11) and young guns Vicktor Hovland (14) and Matthew Wolff (15).
Speaking of major champions, the field includes 14 players who have combined to win 26 majors. Also included are eight past champions of the Farmers Insurance Open, none more beloved than San Diego’s Phil Mickelson.
Notably absent is Tiger Woods, as recent back surgery will prevent him from trying to win the Farmers for an eighth time and preparing for the Open on the same venue where he won his 14th major championship in 2008.
Australian Marc Leishman returns to defend his title after shooting 7-under 65 in the final round to capture the 2020 Farmers, and recalled it as a special memory that helped boost his confidence.
“I've been in that position a couple of times before, one in particular I remember, I think I was leading by 1 or 2, playing the seventh hole and after that kind of fell away. You learn from those sorts of things,” Leishman said. “I was just wanting to take all my experiences, put them in my basket, and use them all that day. I was lucky enough to play well, make some putts and came out on top. So it was a really fun day that I'll remember forever.”
Players will split their first and second rounds between the North (7,258 yards) and the longer and more difficult South (7,765 yards) courses, with the final two rounds played on the South. William P. Bell and William F. Bell originally designed both courses in 1957, and both have since undergone significant renovations, the South by Rees Jones in 2001 and the North by Tom Weiskopf in 2016.
Broadcast coverage is on Golf Channel for rounds 1 and 2 (noon-4 p.m.), with weekend coverage each day from 10 a.m.-noon on Golf Channel and noon-3 p.m. on CBS.
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