The International (golf)
|Location||Castle Rock, Colorado|
|Course(s)||Castle Pines Golf Club|
|Length||7,619 yards (6,967 m)|
|Prize fund||$5.5 million|
|Tournament record score|
Ernie Els, 2000
Phil Mickelson, 1997
The International (styled as The INTERNATIONAL) was a professional golf tournament in Colorado on the PGA Tour. It was played for 21 seasons, from 1986 to 2006, at the Castle Pines Golf Club at Castle Pines Village in Castle Rock, south of Denver. It had the distinction of being one of two PGA Tour events not conducted at traditional stroke play, the only other exception is the match play event, the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship. The International was the only tournament to use the Modified Stableford scoring system, enacted because of the significant elevation of the venue, which averages 6,300 feet (1,920 m) above sea level.
Beginning in 2007, The International was scheduled to change dates to be played during the first full weekend of July (July 5-8, 2007 and July 4-7, 2008), midway between the U.S. Open and the British Open. Tournament officials hoped this new date would draw even more top-ranked players, such as Tiger Woods, as it would no longer be contested the week before (or after) a major championship (PGA Championship). Even with the change in dates, both tournament founder Jack Vickers and the Castle Pines GC membership were apparently not happy with the overall direction the PGA Tour was taking.
Also (according to the ticker on the FSN Final Score), the tourney has not generated sufficient sponsorship money to pay the purses. The last presenting sponsor (as shown below) was Qwest, in 2003; the last title sponsor was Sprint, in 1999.
On February 8, 2007, the PGA Tour announced the permanent cancellation of the International. This tournament was replaced by the AT&T National, hosted by the Tiger Woods Foundation, and held in the Washington, D.C. area. The new tournament uses standard stroke play rather than the Stableford scoring that the International had used.
The scoring system would return to the PGA Tour at the 2012 Reno–Tahoe Open.
The Modified Stableford system gives golfers points on each hole, based on the golfer's score relative to par. It is designed to reward players for taking chances to go for birdies (or better), as the reward for a low score on a hole is typically greater than the punishment for a poor score. The golfer's scores on each hole in his round are added. The scoring operates as follows:
- Double eagle (albatross): +8
- Eagle: +5
- Birdie: +2
- Par: 0
- Bogey: –1
- Double bogey or worse: –3
Holes in one are treated as the score relative to par; an ace on a par-3 hole would be considered an eagle and scored as +5.
The tournament was also notable for featuring multiple cuts, including a cut after the third round, and also for providing a clean slate to the survivors of that cut, so that every player on the final day started with zero, making the player with the best final day score the overall winner, regardless of the scores from the previous three days. This cut and clean slate format was featured from 1986 to 1992; beginning in 1993, the tournament changed to only a traditional cut after the second round and the final results were based on aggregate four round scores, while still featuring the Modified Stableford scoring system.
- 2006 Dean Wilson - United States
- 2005 Retief Goosen - South Africa
- 2004 Rod Pampling - Australia
- 2003 Davis Love III - United States
The International presented by Qwest
- 1999 David Toms - United States
- 1998 Vijay Singh - Fiji
- 1997 Phil Mickelson - United States
- 1996 Clarence Rose - United States
- 1995 Lee Janzen - United States
- 1994 Steve Lowery - United States
- 1993 Phil Mickelson - United States
- 1992 Brad Faxon - United States
- 1991 José María Olazábal - Spain
- 1990 Davis Love III - United States
- 1989 Greg Norman - Australia
- 1988 Joey Sindelar - United States
- 1987 John Cook - United States
- 1986 Ken Green - United States
- Fineran, John (August 8, 2006). "Differences make International unique". PGA Tour. Retrieved July 9, 2012.
- "Modified Stableford points system". PGA Tour. August 7, 2006. Retrieved July 9, 2012.
- "Records". The International. Retrieved July 9, 2012.
- Schuchmann, Joel (August 13, 2006). "Notes: Wilson wins first International playoff in ten years". PGA Tour. Retrieved July 9, 2012.
- Paige, Woody (2007-01-17). "Vickers' tourney, pro tour at odds". The Denver Post. Retrieved 2007-01-17.
- Hawkins, John (2007-02-06). "Last Stop For the International". Golf Digest. Archived from the original on 2007-02-22. Retrieved 2007-02-07.
- Associated Press (2007-02-08). "Mile High Disappointment: International Event No More". Golf Channel. Retrieved 2007-02-09.