The Champions Tour’s season-ending Charles Schwab Cup tees off Thursday at the Cochise Course at Desert Mountain, one of six world-class Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Courses at the Scottsdale, Ariz., community.
Points earned in 23 official Charles Schwab Cup events played in 2012 will determine the Charles Schwab Cup Champion, culminating with the tournament that unfolds now through Sunday at the Golden Bear’s layout, a staple amongst top-100 lists since it opened for play in 1988. All 30 players to compete in the final event will receive double Charles Schwab Cup points, with the winner earning 880 points and the 30th position worth 48 points.
Golf great Jack Nicklaus made his Senior PGA Tour (now Champions Tour) debut with a win in 1990 at The Tradition, a major championship that was played on the Cochise Course at Desert Mountain from 1989 through 2001. The win placed Nicklaus among a small group of players to win their senior debut. It was Nicklaus’ first of a record four Tradition titles and record eight senior major championship victories. The Golden Bear weighed in with his comments about what many of the most recognizable and accomplished players in the game can expect this week at the course he designed.
“The land dictated what we did. We didn’t try to do anything fancy there, we just tried to build a golf course that fit well. Cochise is a fun golf course. They should play well and shoot a good score. We’ve always had a good tournament there. It’s the fun, sporty golf course.”
“The golf course has a lot of little washes through it, a lot of little tops of hills, and places to play. It’s more of a placement golf course. A lot of irons or 3-woods off the tee if you put the ball in the right position. The greens are relatively small and well bunkered, and there are islands for two greens. One’s a par-3 and one’s a par-5, so there’s some drama to it. The 18th hole fits back into the clubhouse nicely with a big rock behind the green. We put a bunker in, with a wash in front of it, and set the green along the narrow part of it. It’s a par-5, but it’s one that can be very dangerous.”
The Charles Schwab Cup, now in its 12th season, is designed to recognize the Champions Tour’s leading player, rewarding top finishes as well as week-in/week-out consistency in all official events. Players receive points for top-10 finishes and ties based on each week’s money distribution, with $1,000 earned being the equivalent of one Charles Schwab Cup point. Double points are awarded at the five major championships, as well as to the entire 30-player field at the season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship.
Tune into the Golf Channel to watch the Charles Schwab Cup unfold from 4:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. EST Thursday through Saturday, and from 3:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. EST Sunday.