TRACKING LOCALS AT THE BRITISH OPEN
This week: The 141st British Open, today through Sunday, Royal Lytham & St. Annes Golf Club, Lancashire, England.
In the field: Gig Harbor’s Kyle Stanley and Tacoma’s Troy Kelly.
World rankings: Stanley is 57th, and Kelly is 167th.
2012 earnings: Stanley has earned $2.15 million (16th on the PGA Tour), and Kelly has earned $740,444 (90th on the PGA Tour).
How they qualified: Stanley got in based on his top-50 ranking in late May. Kelly got in as a non-exempt, top-two finisher at The Greenbrier Classic this month.
Best finish at the British Open: Stanley tied for 44th (11-over-par 291) last year at Royal St. George’s. This is Kelly’s first appearance.
Best finish IN a major: Stanley’s tied-for-44th at last year’s British Open. Kelly missed the cut at the 2005 U.S. Open (10-over 150) at Pinehurst No. 2 in North Carolina.
The Skinny: Royal Lytham and St. Annes is considered the ball-striker’s paradise on the British Open circuit. Why? With more than 200 pot bunkers spread throughout the layout, precise tee shots are required more than booming drives. So can Stanley and Kelly, two long hitters, scale back? Driving accuracy has not been their strong suits – Stanley ranks 94th on the PGA Tour (60.2 percent), and Kelly is 182nd (50.9 percent). Making the cut and finishing in the middle of the pack would be feasible for Stanley, and Kelly might be content just to make it to the weekend.
TNT PICK: A late break in the forecast should help the American golfers who are not used to playing in heavy rain and wind. Still, with it being in England, go with one of its own, Justin Rose, to win his first major.
Tee times: Stanley was scheduled to begin at 11:58 p.m. (PDT) Wednesday in a group with Stephen Ames and Robert Rock. Kelly at 8 a.m. today with Anirban Lahiri and Morten Orum Madsen.firstname.lastname@example.org