Franklin Templeton Shootout: Tournament, format a welcome change from normal tour event

It's rare to see a round in the 50s on a Sunday at a PGA Tour event, but at the Franklin Templeton Shootout it's only natural. This tournament, hosted by golf legend Greg Norman, included three rounds where play changed format every day. Playing alongside another professional as well as the break from stroke play makes this event a favorite among Tour players.

"It's a lot of fun especially in a team event. We don't get to do that that often so that makes it a special week," said Brendan Steele, who won last year with Keegan Bradley.

Steele also noted how impressed he was with gallery support.

"The crowds are great, very supportive, lots of people out there, and people are really excited to have the tournament in Naples," Steele said. "I really appreciate Greg having us out here and all the volunteers make this tournament great."

Rookie Bud Cauley, 22, playing alongside friend Rickie Fowler, 23, were the youngest players in the field. This Shootout was the first for Cauley and he, along with many other Tour players, enjoyed this weekend's format.

"This weekend was fun. Rickie and I played a similar format at the Walker Cup in 2009, so we're a little bit used to it," Cauley said. "We didn't quite have the same success we had then, but we had a fun time."

The Shootout came to Naples in 2001, after being played at Doral in Miami for a year. This year's winners, Kenny Perry and Sean O'Hair, finished 31 under Sunday, one stroke ahead of Rory Sabbatini and Charles Howell III. Perry had great success earlier this year at TwinEagles in Naples at a Champions Tour event, taking home the ACE Group Classic championship.

O'Hair made his second start in the Shootout this year, and feels a successful atmosphere in Naples.

"To me it almost felt like a vacation this week. You know, having a few cocktail parties, go out with my wife and have a good time, come to work and have a good time with a friend of mine and play some nice golf," O'Hair said. "It was just a nice way to end the year. I just think that having the team format but also every day having a different format that you're playing, that kind of mixes it up a little bit."

O'Hair also enjoyed the course.

"There are some tight driving holes and there are also a lot of birdies out there, too," O'Hair said. "I think it's fun for the spectators, definitely fun for us. When you're playing well it just makes it that much better."

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