Last year: Molinari closed with a 2-under 69 at Carnoustie for a two-shot victory, making him the first Italian to win a major. He became only the second player to play the final round with Tiger Woods and win a major.
Notes: This is the first British Open held at Royal Portrush since Max Faulkner won in 1951. … Royal Portrush is the only links outside Scotland or England that has held the British Open. … Rory McIlroy set the course record of 61 when he was 16 playing the North of Ireland Amateur. … Graeme McDowell is the only Ulsterman in the field who grew up at Portush. He was a member at the adjacent Rathmore Golf Club’s Valley Links, which Royal Portrush owns. … Demand is so high for this Open that for the first time in tournament history, all tickets had to be purchased in advance. It sold out 11 months ahead of time. An additional 15,000 tickets made available in April were also sold quickly. … If an American wins, it will be the first time since 1982 that Americans won all four majors. … Dustin Johnson is the only player with a mathematical chance to replace Brooks Koepka at No. 1 in the world.
Last week: Dylan Frittelli won the John Deere Classic.
Notes: John Daly is in the field. He was denied a cart by the R&A for the British Open, but has been approved for a cart at PGA Tour events until the end of 2019. This is his first PGA Tour event since he was approved for a cart last fall. … The winner receives a spot in the PGA Championship, but not in the Masters. … Scott Piercy at No. 112 had the best world ranking of the four winners of the Barbasol Championship. … Billy Horschel, Joel Dahmen and Corey Conners are the only players from the Barbasol Championship last year to make it into the British Open. … Dylan Frittelli was bogey-free on the weekend of the John Deere Classic. He became the first PGA Tour winner to go bogey-free over the last 36 holes since Hideki Matsuyama at the 2016 HSBC Champions. The last player to do that at the John Deere was Ryan Moore in 2016. … Daly joins David Toms, Mike Weir and Y.E. Yang as former major champions in the field. … Kentucky native Kenny Perry is playing.
Next week: WGC-FedEx Invitational and Barracuda Championship.
DOW GREAT LAKES BAY INVITATIONAL
Site: Midland, Mich.
Course: Midland CC. Yardage: 6,599. Par: 72.
Purse: $2 million. Winner’s share: $243,048 per player.
Last week: Sei Young Kim won the Marathon Classic.
Notes: The inaugural event starts on Wednesday. … This is stroke play for two-player teams over 72 holes. … European Solheim Cup captain Catriona Matthew is playing with her vice captain, Suzann Pettersen. … Cristie Kerr is playing with Lexi Thompson. … Players have been encouraged to announce their teams on their social media channels. That included Tiffany Joh’s “prom-posal” to Jane Park to showcase their longtime friendship. … Jennifer Kupcho will be playing with close friend Maria Fassi. Both deferred LPGA Tour membership until they finished college, and they staged a memorable duel that Kupchol won at the Augusta National Women’s Amateur. … Sei Young Kim became the fourth multiple winner on the LPGA Tour this year, joining Sung Hyun Park, Jin Young Ko and Brooke Henderson. … Joh, Kupcho, Linnea Strom, Pavarisa Yoktuan, and Marijo Uribe all finished among the top 12 at the Marathon Classic and earned spots in the Women’s British Open.
Next week: The Evian Championship.
KORN FERRY TOUR
PINNACLE BANK CHAMPIONSHIP
Site: Omaha, Neb.
Course: The Club at Indian Creek. Yardage: 7,581. Par: 71.
Purse: $600,000. Winner’s share: $108,000.
Defending champion: David Skinns.
Points leader: Xinjun Zhang.
Last week: Nelson Ledesma won the TPC Colorado Championship.
Next week: Price Cutter Charity Championships.
PGA TOUR CHAMPIONS
Last week: Retief Goosen won the Senior Players Championship.
Next week: Senior British Open.
Charles Schwab Cup leader: Scott McCarron.
Last week: Bernd Wiesberger won the Scottish Open.