CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. — John Cochrane has waited a long time for his first professional championship win.
After rounds of 72-69 at the TPC Eagle Trace in Coral Springs, Fla., the 56-year-old’s wait is over, capturing the PGA Club Professional Championship of Canada presented by Titleist & FootJoy.
“Not only is this is my first PGA of Canada national championship win, it’s my first win as a golf professional,” and elated Cochrane said after his final round. “Even though it was a long-time-coming, I really felt like it was my time to win.”
A PGA of Canada member for more than 20-years, Cochrane also played the PGA TOUR Canada – Mackenzie Tour for a number of years in the 1980s and 1990s.
Cochrane’s two-day total of 3-under-par saw him two shots better than Brian Hadley and Jeff Mills. Josh Fleming finished alone in fourth after a final round 67, with first-round leader Scott Allred and Philippe Mongeau rounded out the top five.
Built in 1983, TPC Eagle Trace hosted the PGA TOUR’s Honda Classic from 1984-1991 and again in 1996. The layout has some unique characteristics for a Florida golf course, including an island green, three greens surrounded by wooden bulkheads, and it doesn’t have a single palm tree on the property—a rarity in southern Florida. All four par-3s require precise tee shots as water and bunkers protect each green.
“I really like the finishing holes here at TPC Eagle Trace,” Cochrane said. “All week I’ve felt comfortable on the back nine, which helped me stay committed to hitting my shots.”
Cochrane’s final-round back-nine at TPC Eagle Trace featured four birdies, three of which came in succession on holes 14, 15 and 16.
“I felt zero anxiety out there on the back today,” Cochrane said. “I chipped in on No. 11 and also made a bunch of crucial putts as well.”
The Inter-Zone Team Championship, which is comprised of four players per zone (and three scores per team counting), was handed out on Wednesday. Team Ontario (Hadley, Gordon Burns, Billy Walsh and Ken Tarling) captured the title.
Former champions of the PGA Club Professional Championship of Canada include Danny King, Adam Chamberlain, Roger Beale, Norm Jarvis, Gar Hamilton, Bob Panasik, Yvan Beauchemin, Graham Gunn, Ken Tarling and Brian Hutton.
In addition to competing for the overall championship trophy, players in the PGA Club Professional Championship of Canada earn much-coveted ranking points with hopes of moving up on the PGA of Canada Player Rankings presented by RBC. Players who are ranked inside the top 64 following the PGA Club Professional Championship of Canada earn invites into the following year’s PGA Championship of Canada.
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