Hoag Hospital stepped in as the new managing operator of the only PGA Tour event in Orange County.

This year, for the first time, Hoag is also title sponsor as the tour comes to Newport Beach March 8-10.

With the Murphy-Hoag connection, it seems fitting that an Irish golfer sticks the first tee in the ground in a new era for the Hoag Classic as Darren Clarke (Northern Ireland) will be the featured speaker at the event’s annual breakfast March 5 at Newport Beach Country Club. Clarke cemented his place in golf lore with a U.S. Open championship in 2011.