March Madness has come to the links thanks to a familiar crowd-pleaser and Jupiter Island resident.
In the final round of the 2018 Arnold Palmer Invitational in Orlando, Tiger Woods came from behind tied for tenth to finish 5th with -10. This finish in Orlando is his second top five consecutive finish in the past two weeks setting him up to be the favorite for the upcoming Masters at Augusta April 5th.
If he wins the Masters it would be his fifth green jacket launching him into a rarified atmosphere with Jack Nicholas. Nicklaus won six Masters with his last coming at the age of 46. Tiger is 42. Ranked 149th in the world, Woods has not won a major since 2008 and hasn’t won the green jacket since 2005.
Woods set an amazing career in motion in 1997, when he became the youngest man and the first African American to win the U.S. Masters. Additionally, Woods is only the second golfer (after Nicklaus) to have achieved a career Grand Slam three times.
Woods won another 13 majors and was named the PGA Player of the Year 10 times over the next 12 years, but he struggled to regain his top form after personal problems surfaced in 2009 along with a debilitating back injury. After multiple back surgeries and a spinal fusion, he is now pain-free and back in winning form…just in time to save the sport of golf.
Tiger’s last win came in 2013 at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. It was his eighth win at that event, and far from his only win in 2013. In fact, Woods won five times, eventually capturing the Player of the Year award. In the previous season, Woods had three wins, which were his first victories in three years at the time.
Woods is returning to action after missing nearly the entire season with another back injury. Woods was arrested in May while driving under the influence in Jupiter. The cause was a toxic mix of prescription medications. The golfing great has faced his demons and appears to have conquered them. He is a true inspiration to all his fans both in the galleries on the course and in front of the TV at home who love a good come-back.
Rory McIlroy won the Arnold Palmer Invitational with an amazing 18 sinking five birdies in the last six holes for a final round 64. He’s a four-time major champion with his last win in 2016.