Fred Couples is 60, but the World Golf Hall of Famer enters the Hoag Classic at Newport Beach Country Club on March 6-8 as a strong favorite to win in the 50-plus PGA Tour Champions, considering his travel arrangements and history playing in the event.
A Newport Beach resident, Couples won the tournament twice (2010 and 2014) and finished as runner-up in 2013, along with three other Top10 finishes, including a 3-under 69 in the final round last year to tie for 10th at 6-under 207 on the 6,601-yard, par-71 course.
“Yeah, for sure, I really like (the golf course),” Couples said. “I’ve won twice, but I feel like everyone likes it. We get great crowds, huge galleries for us.
“I live half a mile away, so I can ride my bike or walk or drive my car,” he said. “But the course makes it fun and I think we all like it. That’s the key thing. The players love it (in Newport Beach). It makes me feel good because I live here and they all want to live here. They’re all far away, but they all want to live in Newport.”