Heavy slate of major events in SoCal in 2003
Southern California has been a hotbed for golf with major PGA and LPGA championship events held annually. It has been the site for multiple championship events and two of L.A.’s greatest moments in sports, as compiled by the Sports Council in 1995. At no. 46 is Ben Hogan’s great 1948 double-win at Riviera Country Club in the L.A. Open and the United States Open; Ken Venturi’s sensational final round of 63 to win the 1959 L.A. Open at Rancho Park rated as no. 62.
Major PGA championships held in Los Angeles include the 1948 Open at Riviera and three editions of the PGA Championship held at Hillcrest Country Club in 1929, Riviera in 1983 and 1995.
The major PGA event in the area is the Nissan Open, the current edition of the Los Angeles Open tournament which began in 1926. In 2003, Mike Weir won a playoff from Charles Howell III to earn his second title of the season.
Two PGA Champions Tour events were held in the area in 2003: the SBC Classic at Valencia Country Club from March 10-16 (Tom Purtzer, champion) and the Toshiba Senior Classic at the Newport Beach Country Club from March 17-23 (Rodger Davis, champion).
The annual LPGA tournament in Los Angeles is the Office Depot Championship, hosted by Amy Alcott, at El Caballero Country Club in Tarzana from April 4-6, 2003. Annika Sorenstam won by four stokes over Se Ri Pak, Pat Hurst and Heather Bowie, who tied for second.