Steve Alker – file photo
New Zealand’s Steve Alker not only consolidated his one shot 36-hole lead at the Rapiscan Systems Classic in Biloxi, Mississippi but converted that lead into a six-shot victory to claim his second title on the PGA Tour Champions title.
A final round bogey free 65, followed his record equaling 62 on Saturday, a back nine of 31 today ensuring the final few holes were played in the knowledge that the victory and the US$240,000 were all but assured.
“It’s hard to work out the formula, to be honest, but I felt my game was pretty good coming in,” said Alker when asked about the margin of the victory.
“I got off to a little bit of a slow start (on Friday), but yesterday was amazing. I just turned my putting around and it clicked and I started hitting the ball better. It always nice when the week just gets better and better. It got really better quick, so it was great. Glad to be champion.”
When asked what the second win means to him Alker responded; “It’s huge, number two. I got one and it’s like, okay, how long is it going to be, you know. Just keep working at it. So it’s happened pretty quick and, as I said, my game just got better as the week went on. And putting was great and everything here was great, just kind of fit my eye, a lot of tee shots fit my eye. So as I said, worked out well.
“I think the atmosphere change has been huge for me,” added the winner when asked about the huge change in his fortunes in the last eight months. “ Just enjoying my golf more and my game’s come around at the right time. A lot of work has been put in and I just kept playing and plugging away on the Korn Ferry, so lots owed to them. Just keeping my game in shape, stayed fit and enjoy being out here, that’s the big thing.”
Alker will move to second on the Charles Schwab Championship standings with only Miguel Angel and Retief Goosen ahead of him after five events.
David McKenzie produced his best finished since August last year when he tied for 8th earning close to US$50,000 for his effort.
Below – Alker sets up one final birdie at today’s final hole – supplied caption wrong