Date: September 20, 2012
Author: Bruce Young /

WNB Classic gives chance for Australian Tour cards

The Web.Com Tour is in Midland in West Texas for the WNB Classic, the 6th to last event of the 2012 season on the renamed tour. This week s tournament is followed by four more events before the season ending Tour Championship in Dallas and so for many their task is not only to secure a position inside the top twenty five but to ensure they make it to the top 60 who will contend the Tour Championship and keep their hopes alive of a place on the USPGA Tour until the latest moment. The tournament s defending champion is New Zealander Danny Lee who won a playoff over Harris English and in the process guaranteed his place on the PGA Tour in 2012. Despite his PGA Tour status, Lee is back this week to defend as he tries to keep his game in shape for the Fall Series on the PGA Tour which follow the Tour Championship. Other Australasians to have won this event include Marc Leishman and Paul Gow although when Gow won the event in 1997 it was played at another venue. Alistair Presnell has also been runner-up in the event as have Aron Price and Mark Hensby so there is something about the Midland Golf Club that seems to suit those from down under. The Midland Country Club is a Ralph Plummer designed layout and has played host to this event since Mark Hensby s win in 2002. When Marc Leishman won in 2008 he equalled the highest winning margin (eleven shots) on the then Nationwide Tour. The Australasian contingent is large. Steve Alker, Steve Allan, Steve Bowditch, Andrew Buckle, Nick Flanagan, Scott Gardiner, Nathan Green, Bronson La Cassie, Peter Lonard, James Nitties, Cameron Percy, Alistair Presnell, Aron Price and Tim Wilkinson all get their chance. Only Percy and Gardiner are assured of their 2013 PGA Tour cards but Flanagan, Presnell, Wilkinson, Price and Lonard are within striking distance.