Preview: Golfweek’s 2014 Senior Amateur Championship

The No. 1 hole at PGA West at La Quinta in Palm Springs.

Golfweek’s 2014 Senior Amateur Championship

  • When: April 13-15
  • Where: PGA West, La Quinta, Calif., Stadium Course and Nicklaus Tournament Course
  • Registration: Open through April 5 (click here to register) or until the field is full.
  • Of note: This is a Golfweek 1000-point event and a certified World Amateur Golf Ranking tournament.

• • •

Golfweek takes its second national ranking tournament of 2014 to PGA West, where senior Doug Pool and super-senior Ted Smith will try to defend their 2013 titles. The 54-hole event will feature two rounds on the Stadium Course and one round on the Nicklaus Tournament Course. The Stadium Course, ranked No. 7 among Golfweek’s Best Courses You Can Play in California has played host to the PGA Tour Q-School finals in alternating years.

Pool, who won the Senior Amateur title in both 2012 and 2013, is looking to take home his third consecutive trophy. “I’m really looking forward to being closer to home and winning this tournament again,” said Pool.

Ranked No. 44 in the nation after playing just one event in 2014, Pool, a Las Vegas resident, is an odds-on favorite to defend.

In the Super Senior Division, Ted Smith from Wilkinson, Ind., who is ranked No. 33, is in the midst of a comeback after heart valve surgery.

“It’s always major when your heart is involved,” Smith said before going in for surgery. “My doctor said everything else is fine and after surgery I should be able to pick up right where I left off.”

That means trouble for the rest of the field. Smith won 12 times in 2013 and is poised to be back on top after his strong showing at the Corkscrew and SOS Spring Classic.

In the Legends division, 2013 saw Bob Wernick from Rancho Mirage, Calif. finished with a one-stroke victory over Walt Martin of Oakton, Va. Both are returning this year to once again battle it out for the top spot.

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