PALM HARBOR, Fla., Nov. 11, 2012 – Laura Davies, who has won tournaments around the world, added one more victory today to her ever-growing list of triumphs. The LPGA Tour veteran of Great Britain won the ISPS Handa Legends Tour Open Championship by two shots over Beth Daniel.
Davies carded rounds of 70-71 for a 5-under total of 141 to edge out Daniel and Barb Moxness of Edina, Minn., both at 3-under 143. The event was staged on the par-73 Island Course at Innisbrook, A Salamander Golf & Spa Resort.
Now with 82 worldwide victories, Davies captured a winner’s check for $30,000 in her debut on the Legends Tour — the tour for LPGA Tour members age 45 and over. The big-hitting Brit owns 20 LPGA victories and is closing in on points that would make her eligible for the World Golf Hall of Fame.
“You’ve got to hit it straight [here] and it’s not a golf course I would have thought I would have done any good on,” said Davies. “It’s a really tight golf course. But as it turns out, I controlled my game, hit a lot of irons – only used driver three times each day – and it worked out. It’s a precision golf course.”
Davies got off to a hot start with birdies on two of her first four holes, which gave her a shot of confidence early in her final round today.
“That got me settled because I was a little bit nervous,” she said. “I hit a couple of poor shots in the middle of the round, but overall I think I played solid.”
Davies took bogey on the par-five 10th hole when her 6-iron left her with “an impossible shot,” but she rallied with two birdies on the back to hold off Daniel and Moxness, who gave chase for the lead. Daniel posted a final-round score of 2-under 71, while Moxness carded the low round of the tournament with a five-under score of 68.
Daniel got to three under through 12 holes, but took bogeys on Nos. 13 and 14. The Hall of Famer birdied No. 15 to get back to 3-under-par for the tournament. She birdied three out of five par-5 holes to take advantage of her length in today’s final round.
“You always feel like you’re chasing Laura Davies as long as she hits it,” said Daniel. “I think this course was playing at about par-69 for her out here today.”
Moxness took double-bogey on the fourth hole. She also missed some putts on the back nine, but today’s final-round 68 charged her up the leaderboard for a solid finish in the Legends Tour’s season-ending event.
“Overall, I’m really happy with the way I played,” said Moxness. “And having Laura Davies here is fantastic. The better players we have out here, the more people are going to notice us.”
Tied at one-under 145 was the trio of Jane Crafter (73) of Australia, Rosie Jones (72) of Atlanta, and last year’s tournament winner Michele Redman (72) of Plymouth, Minn.
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About Innisbrook, a Salamander Golf & Spa Resort
Operated by Salamander Hotels & Resorts, Innisbrook is situated on 900 wooded acres of rolling hills in the St. Petersburg/Clearwater area on Florida’s Gulf Coast, and is located just 25 minutes from Tampa International Airport. Recently and completely renovated, the resort features 72 holes of championship golf, 608 spacious guest suites and rooms, four restaurants and three bars, the Innisbrook Golf Institute, 11 tennis courts, the new luxury Indaba Spa with 12 treatment rooms and state-of-the-art Fitness Center, six heated swimming pool complexes, a nature preserve, and three conference halls with 65,000 square feet of meeting space. Part of Salamander’s Grand Golf Resorts of Florida portfolio, Innisbrook hosts an annual PGA TOUR event at its famed Copperhead Course, and the LPGA-supported ISPA Legends Tour Open Championship, held annually at the equally challenging Island Course. For additional information call 727.942.2000 or visit www.innisbrookgolfresort.com.
About Grand Golf Resorts of Florida
Three of Florida’s grandest golf resorts have united under the management of Salamander Hotels & Resorts. Grand Golf Resorts of Florida features Innisbrook Resort near Tampa, Reunion Resort in Orlando, and Hammock Beach Resort in Palm Coast. The collection includes 1200 luxurious villa-style accommodations, and 162 holes of golf designed by Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Tom Watson and Larry Packard that form the Legends of Golf Trail, which traverses 200 miles between the resorts and across the Sunshine State. All three properties are members of Preferred Hotels & Resorts. For more information, visit www.grandgolfresorts.com or call (888) 770-6501.
About Girl Scouts of West Central Florida
Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place. Girl Scouts of West Central Florida (GSWCF) serves nearly 24,000 girls and 10,000 adult members in Citrus, Hernando, Hillsborough, Marion, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk and Sumter counties. Did you know that more than 53% of all women business owners are Girl Scout alumnae? For more information on how to join, volunteer, reconnect or donate to Girl Scouts of West Central Florida, visit www.gswcf.org or call 800-881-4475.
About The Legends Tour
The Legends Tour is the Official Legends Tour of the LPGA. The tour began in 2000 by LPGA professionals to showcase the talents of some of the greatest women’s golfers of all time. The Legends Tour has more than 100 members, including 10 LPGA and World Golf Hall of Fame members. Legends Tour players have over 650 combined LPGA Tour victories, including 65 major championships. In its 11 seasons, The Legends Tour has awarded more than $9 million in prize money and helped raise more than $11 million for charity. The Legends Tour has hosted events in Arizona, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Indiana, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Wisconsin, Japan and Australia. For additional information on The Legends Tour, log on to www.thelegendstour.com .