photo courtesy Visit Napa Valley
The Safeway Open returns to Napa, California and the Silverado Country Club this September 26-29. The tournament will be the 3rd event of the nascent 2019-2020 PGA Tour and will feature some of the game’s best golfers. In their way will be the forbidding North Course, redesigned by Robert Trent Jones, Jr. in 1966 and lengthened to modern standards in 2010. The Safeway Open represents a perfect opportunity to pick up points and build momentum heading into the new PGA Tour season.
2018 Champion Kevin Tway
Last year’s tournament seemed a straightforward affair when Brandt Snedeker held the 54-hole lead. Snedeker needed only to maintain his composure and play conservative golf to seal a 10th PGA Tour victory. Instead, Snedeker fell apart on the final 9 holes, hitting 3 bogeys and finishing the round 2 over. Ryan Moore hit 3 birdies on his final holes to tie Snedeker, with Kevin Tway hitting 2 birdies on his final 2 holes to join the leaders. In the resulting playoff, Snedeker’s collapse continued when he was eliminated on the first playoff hole with a par. Moore and Tway would match each other again on the second hole before Tway won with a birdie on the 10th hole. The win was Tway’s first and made him and father Bob Tway the eighth pair of father and son champions, though Tway has some distance to go if he’s to match his father’s haul of 8 PGA Tour victories.
Tway will face a strong field as he tries to defend his title. Several heavyweights will make their season debuts this weekend, including the always dangerous Justin Thomas. European Ryder Cup captain Francesco Molinari also will make his debut and looks to build on a strong 2019 season. Brendan Steele, winner in 2016 and 2017, will look to become the first 3-time winner. Phil Mickelson begins his 28th PGA Tour in Napa and shows no signs of stopping anytime soon, with 2 wins in the past 2 years. Other contenders include Bryson DeChambeau, Abraham Ancer and Patrick Cantlay. Many fans will also be interested to see how former NFL player Tony Romo fares when he tees up on a sponsor exemption.
Television coverage is provided exclusively by the Golf Channel. The coverage on Thursday and Friday is from 5-9pm ET, while Saturday and Sunday coverage is presented 6-9pm ET. The tournament is also streaming on PGA Tour Live with coverage of select groups. Radio coverage is provided by PGA Tour Radio on SiriusXM and PGATour.com/liveaudio.