American Professional Golfer
Robert Garrigus Speaker Profile
Robert Garrigus (born November 11, 1977) is an American professional golfer. He won the 2010 Children's Miracle Network Classic, to guarantee exempt status on the PGA Tour through the end of the 2012 season.
In 1995, Garrigus helped Crescent Valley High School to a 4A state championship by finishing T-9. Garrigus attended Scottsdale Community College later in 1995. Garrigus turned professional in 1997, and is currently a member of the PGA Tour. He was a member of the Nationwide Tour in 2002, 2004 and 2005. He finished tied for 9th in Q-School in 2005 to earn his PGA Tour card for the first time. He has also played on the NGA Hooters Tour and the Gateway Tour. Garrigus is noted for using a putter only 28.5 inches in length, about six inches shorter than a standard putter. In addition, Garrigus led the PGA Tour in driving distance in both 2009 and 2010. He currently lives in Scottsdale, Arizona.
His father, Thomas, won a silver medal in trap shooting at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City.
At the 2010 St. Jude Classic in Memphis, Tennessee, Garrigus, playing in the final group, had a three-shot lead going into the 72nd hole, a long par four. He pulled his tee shot into the water hazard which flanks the hole's left side. After taking a penalty drop, he hit his third shot towards the green, but it was too far left, caught a tree and fell straight down. He punched out to the fairway and hit his fifth shot onto the green, within 35 feet of the hole. He two-putted from there, resulting in a triple bogey 7. A three-way sudden-death playoff with Lee Westwood and Robert Karlsson then began. On the first hole they played, the 18th, Garrigus's drive carried too far and came to rest against the trunk of a tree, right of the fairway. He chipped out and hit his third shot to 12 feet. His par putt lipped out and he made bogey. Karlsson and Westwood both made par, eliminating Garrigus, who finished tied for second place. The playoff was eventually won by Westwood, who birdied the fourth sudden-death hole.
Garrigus atoned for his near-miss at Memphis in the final tour event of the season, the Children's Miracle Network Classic in suburban Orlando, Florida. Needing a high finish to make sure of his tour card for 2011, he entered the final day 13 under par, five shots behind long-time leader Roland Thatcher and one behind first-round leader Chris Stroud. Thatcher had reached 21-under in his third round,
before a double bogey, bogey finish. After a fast start, with five birdies in his first seven holes, Garrigus caught Thatcher, who had parred his first seven holes, turning the rest of the tournament into a virtual two-man battle, although several other contenders lurked within striking distance. Thatcher extended his lead with three birdies around the turn, before a bogey on twelve, as Garrigus in the group in front birdied thirteen, moving the pair level again. After Thatcher bogeyed sixteen, Garrigus held the solo lead in a tournament for the first time since Memphis. A further two-shot swing on the 17th, where Garrigus made birdie-3 to Thatcher's bogey-5, followed by a final-hole par, sealed his first professional win, by three strokes. With the victory, Garrigus earned an exemption on the PGA Tour through the end of the 2012 season. Prior to the tournament, Garrigus was 179th on the Tour, which would have meant a loss of his Tour card. Thatcher finished second while Stroud salvaged a seventh, still good enough for a full season tour card for 2011.
Overcame substance abuse
Immediately after finishing his final round in Orlando, Garrigus spoke openly in a television interview on The Golf Channel, about his triumph over substance abuse, his subsequent improved play, and his joy at closing out the tournament victory, to make up for his struggles at the Memphis tournament earlier in the season
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