2024 Results

One week removed from St. Patrick’s Day, the Irish energy remained on Padraig Harrington’s side in California.

Harrington, 52, rebounded from a potentially devastating double bogey at the 16th hole of Sunday’s final round at the Hoag Classic Newport Beach, closing with birdies on Nos. 17 and 18 at Newport Beach Country Club for his seventh career PGA TOUR Champions title. Harrington closed in 2-under 69 for a winning total of 14-under 199, one stroke clear of Thongchai Jaidee, who matched Harrington’s final-round score after trailing by one into Sunday. Miguel Angel Jiménez finished third, two back of Harrington.

With this victory, Harrington moves from No. 31 to No. 5 on the Charles Schwab Cup standings, as he eyes his first season-long title on PGA TOUR Champions.

Harrington’s final three holes Sunday were nothing short of theatrical. After a two-putt birdie from 8 feet at the short par-5 15th, he hooked his tee shot left at the par-4 16th, forcing a chip-out and then hitting his third into a greenside bunker. It led to his second double bogey of the day (he made 5 at the par-3 fourth), moving him one back of Jaidee and Jiménez at the time.

But the Irishman’s resilience was on display as he drained a 20-foot birdie putt at the par-3 17th to draw even with Jaidee into the par-5 18th hole, one clear of Jiménez, who made bogey at 17. The Spaniard’s eagle chip at 18 checked up 20 feet shy; Jaidee’s eagle chip raced over the green, and he chipped back to a couple feet. Harrington found the greenside bunker in two shots and blasted to 8 feet, setting up a putt for the win.

Harrington’s birdie putt caught the left edge and curled into the cup, eliciting a hearty fist pump that would be a worthy addition to any Champions Tour highlights compilation.

“Throughout my career, the best thing I do is when my back’s to the wall,” Harrington said afterward. “When I have to do something, I’m at my best, and I’m at my absolute worst when I’ve got an easy shot.

“I stood on the tee shot there (on 16) … there was no trouble, and it was the easiest tee shot in the world … when I’m overconfident, I’m not great. I’m much better when I’m in trouble. That’s just my personality. I wish it was different, and sometimes it’s nice to win easy, but even after 16, I knew I was playing well, I knew I was hitting the ball well. I could finish strong.”

Harrington turned 50 in August 2021 and has quickly established himself as one of the Champions Tour’s players to beat, even though he still relishes the chance to compete on the PGA TOUR and DP World Tour (he’s headed to next week’s Texas Children’s Houston Open on TOUR, as well).

Harrington has embraced the game’s power era in recent years, staying diligent with speed training to maintain a distance advantage on the Champions Tour and also keep up with his younger peers at the game’s elite levels. In 37 career Champions Tour starts, he has recorded 21 top-five finishes; he won four times in 2022 and twice in 2023. He also made the cut in three major championships last year – the PGA Championship, U.S. Open and The Open. His process is working.

Could Harrington be on his way to another multi-win season? It’s early, but things seem to be shaping up that way.

“I thought I played really well; I drove it great all day, (just) kept leaving myself downhill putts,” Harrington said. “I was delighted there on the last hole, that it was 8 feet uphill, I said, ‘Thankfully.’ The greens really were tricky in the wind … I feel like I’m playing good. When I’m hitting the ball well, it allows me more time to go home and practice on my wedge play, because I get a lot of wedges … it’s never easy with all the wedges, but that’s for me the focus, especially out here, is just being really good with my wedges.

“This is a perfect golf course (for me) … I can open my shoulders, hit my driver most of the time, and it gave me a big advantage this week, especially in the wind today.”

Steven Alker remains atop the season-long Charles Schwab Cup standings through five events, with the top four rounded out by Stephen Ames, Joe Durant and Ricardo Gonzalez.

View the Final Results from the 2024 Hoag Classic