Chapman (Gross): Donatoni takes home another Super-Senior title
READING, Pa. â€“ Don Donatoni, the two-time reigning Super-Senior Player of the Year, added to his argument for a three-peat on Wednesday at Berkshire Country Club (par 71, 5,909 yards). He fired an even-par 71 and took home the Frank H. Chapman Memorial Cup (Gross) Super-Senior title in convincing fashion.
On a day that contradicted everything about the Philadelphia regionâ€™s current summer conditions, Donatoni utilized his newly-modified putter to card four birdies and 11 pars and to finish three shots clear of a 41-player field. He also won in 2013.
â€śIt's great to win one major. It's even better to win two,â€ť said Donatoni, who recently won the Warner Cup (Gross) Super-Senior title at Little Mill Country Club. â€śI did it in 2013 when I swept everything, and if I continue to play the way Iâ€™ve been playing this year, Iâ€™d say my chances are decent at doing it again. Wherever the chips fall, they fall, and theyâ€™ve been falling in my favor again this year.â€ť
Chips werenâ€™t the only thing falling on the day for the Malvern, Pa. resident. On No. 12 (par 5, 481 yards), his third hole, Donatoni hit a big drive to the left-center of the fairway. He muscled his 3-wood 245 yards short of the green and flopped a wedge to six feet for birdie. He wasnâ€™t done there.
Birdies on Nos. 1 (par 5, 470 yards) and No. 2 (par 4, 270 yards) put Donatoni on the path toward victory. The short par 4 second (270 yards) included a perfect 58-degree wedge and a long 20-footer for a crucial red number.
â€śI just felt good today. With the competition the way it is, you need to come out here and make shots,â€ť said Donatoni. â€śIf you do, there will be good results. All I try to do is come out here and play to my strengths.â€ť
One of the 67-year-oldâ€™s newest strengths may be his club that recently went on an â€śemergency missionâ€ť: an Odyssey mallet putter.
â€śJust yesterday, I had my putter tweaked in Ardmore. When I used to set it down, the heel was in the air and I felt like I had to manipulate my stroke,â€ť said Donatoni. â€śToday was the first time I tried the new alignment and I just felt much more confident form the first stroke I took today on the green. It helped me make some critical putts on some very critical greens.â€ť
Donatoni faces his next test at the Brewer Cup, which will be played July 13-15 on the Weyhill Course at Saucon Valley Country Club. But until then, he says he will step back and enjoy his success while he can.
â€śI donâ€™t want to look ahead and I want to enjoy this one, as well as my Warner victory. I look forward to the next event and to tee it up with the guys and go out and have fun,â€ť Donatoni said. â€śBut if Iâ€™m fortunate to go out on top â€¦ even better.â€ť
Frank H. Chapman, a Whitemarsh Valley Country Club member, served as the Associationâ€™s secretary-treasurer for 23 years. He died on June 7, 1955 at the age of 88. The Gross tournament, now in its ninth year, is held in his honor.
Golf Association of Philadelphia