When: March 29 - April 1, 2018
Where: GC of Houston, Humble, Texas
Format: Stroke Play
Defending Champion: Russell Henley
TV Coverage: GOLF Channel and NBC
The PGA Tour has been coming to Houston since 1946 when Byron Nelson beat Ben Hogan. Formerly the Shell Houston Open, this years event doesn’t have a sponsor yet and is simply called the Houston Open. The tournament is annually played one week before the Masters Tournament.
Over the years the event has switched venues, but for the past decade or so, the Golf Club of Houston has served as host. The organizers try to emulate Augusta National in the course setup and players enjoy the atmosphere. Mowed down run offs and slippery greens provide a great tune up for the first major of the year.
Last year Russell Henley made 10 birdies during the final round to shoot a 65 to claim his third PGA Tour title. Henley held off third round leader Sung Kang by three strokes.
The past champions list is impressive and second to none. Byron Nelson, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, Raymond Floyd, Fred Couples, Adam Scott and Vijay Singh to name a few.
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The Houston Open tournament was also known as the Shell Houston Open, the Houston Classic, the Houston Classic International, the Michelob-Houston Open, the Houston Coca-Cola Open, the Big "I" Houston Open, and the Independent Insurance Agent Open. Since 2003, the Shell Open has been hosted at Redstone Golf Course, in Humble, Texas.
In the past, the golf tournament has been played at many of the Houston areas best courses. In the early years it was played at Memorial Golf Course, and was also played at Champions Golf Club, which is widely regarded as one of the better golf courses in Texas. As well, a couple of courses just outside the Houston city limits, Quail Valley and TPC at The Woodlands.
Over the years the Houston Open has had many great winners. Included in the list of great golfers like: Byron Nelson, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, Curtis Strange, Fred Couples and Vijay Singh. In fact, Palmer won the Shell Open twice and both Singh and Strange have won it three times each.
Georgia native Russell Henley has locked up the final spot at the US Masters after surging to a three-stroke victory at the Houston Open in Texas.
Henley wielded a hot putter to surge past a faltering Kang Sung-hoon, reeling off three consecutive birdies from the 13th hole at the Golf Club of Houston.
He carded a 65 to finish at 20-under-par 268 for his third PGA Tour victory. Kang, who needed to win to qualify for the Masters, never got his final round off the launch pad, battling to a 72.
The South Korean preserved sole second place by sinking a 15-foot par putt at the last to finish at 17-under, a stroke better than Americans Rickie Fowler and Luke List.
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