23 May 2024 | Professional golf | Tournaments | Golf Australia |

How to follow the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship

by Jimmy Emanuel

The KitchenAid Senior PGA takes place at Harbor Shores.

The run of major championship golf continues, this time with the over-50s getting their turn. Here is all you need to know about the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship where 14 Australians, a trio of Kiwis and a Fijian will be among those teeing it up in Michigan.

The great Peter Thomson was a winner of this title back in 1988.


PRIZEMONEY: US$3.5 million

LIVE SCORES: www.srpgachampionship.com

TV COVERAGE: The KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship is live on Fox Sports, available on Foxtel and Kayo.

*All times AEST.

Round One: Friday 3am–6am (Fox Sports 503/Kayo)

Round Two: Saturday 3am–6am (Fox Sports 503/Kayo)

Round Three: Sunday 3am–9am (Fox Sports 507/Kayo)

Final Round: Monday 5am–8am (Fox Sports 505/Kayo)



Age: 50

The lowdown: One of the new crop of Aussies on the PGA TOUR Champions this year, Allan has experienced some mixed results since turning 50, with the Victorian first trying his hand at senior golf at home in Australia before earning his card in America at Q School.

Fifth at the Invited Celebrity Classic, which was one of four top-25 finishes in 2024, the 2002 Australian Open winner still works incredibly hard at his game and his ball striking and fitness should help with the increased test of a major.


Age: 56

The lowdown: A nine-time PGA TOUR winner, Appleby made his living with an incredibly high standard of ball striking and a putter that could catch fire at any moment.

Finishing in the top-25 four times this season, Appleby’s lead-in form bodes well for his chances this week, with the Cohuna native finishing tied 11th last start at the most recent senior major (Regions Tradition) and joint runner-up at the Insperity Invitational in his previous appearance.


Age: 50

The lowdown: Earning his card at the qualifying school earlier this year and gaining instant success on the PGA Legends Tour at home, Bransdon makes his senior major debut this week in Michigan.

Already with a top-10 on his record from seven starts, and two more inside the top-25, Bransdon is a well-travelled professional who continues to compete on the Challenger PGA Tour of Australasia and is in the upper echelon for driving distance on the PGA TOUR Champions.


Age: 57

The lowdown: A prolific winner at home on the PGA Legends Tour, and four-time Order of Merit champion, Burns is a much loved fixture of Australian golf who relishes the rare chances he gets to ply his trade overseas.

Played this event in 2021 and missed the weekend action, but his form over the summer would suggest a better showing for Burns and his dart like iron play.


Age: 55

The lowdown: The winner of the 2005 U.S. Open doesn’t play much in America these days, but remains a joy to watch in every facet of the game that made him one of the purest strikers of the golf ball when he first emerged and nearly claimed The Open at St Andrews.

Campbell played all four rounds at Harbor Shores two years ago, and while he hasn’t shown much in the States this year, the Kiwi has always been a mercurial player who can catch lightning in a bottle for a week as he did at Pinehurst nearly 20 years ago.


Age: 50

The lowdown: After falling just short of a full card at qualifying, everyone’s favourite Twitter follow has earned a number of starts at pre-qualifying, including this week at Harbor Shores.

From his four starts this year, Chalmers has recorded three top-15 finishes and while known throughout his career as one of the finest putters in the game, Chalmers competing regularly on the PGA TOUR until turning 50 and working hard on his body means his distance is a distinct advantage.


Age: 53

The lowdown: One of the players to truly thrive post turning 50, Green is a regular presence on the PGA TOUR Champions, although the Victorian is still chasing a first victory on the biggest stage for over-50 golfers.

Already this year Green has amassed six top-25s from nine starts, while he is one of the Aussie contingent with previous experience at Harbor Shores from his missed cut back in 2022.


Age: 50

The lowdown: Arguably the golfer to have travelled more miles to conduct his profession than any other, although Gary Player would like a word, Hend has remained active, and more importantly competitive, on the Asian Tour into his fifth decade.

Hend is a proven winner around the world and as the first non-American to lead the PGA TOUR distance statistic will be having plenty of short clubs into the greens this week. A genuine smoky who could get himself some status with a win.


Age: 52

The lowdown: Providing one of the highlights of 2023 when he claimed the Invited Celebrity Classic after his rollercoaster career, Hensby has yet again been a consistent performer so far in 2024.

Third twice this year, Hensby was T18 at the Regions Tradition and the last time the Senior PGA was held at Harbor Shores, the PGA TOUR winner shared eighth after back-to-back rounds of 67 to close.


Age: 55

The lowdown: The tall New Zealander who makes his home in Western Australia headed for Europe upon turning 50, before the pandemic altered his plans after winning the Legends Tour qualifying school.

Four times a winner on the Challenger PGA Tour of Australasia, Long is no stranger to success in America, with two wins on the Korn Ferry Tour and his mid-field result last start in Europe suggests he could be a factor here this week.


Age: 56

The lowdown: Highly experienced on the PGA TOUR Champions, with more than 100 starts to his name, McKenzie has been solid if not spectacular from his limited opportunities so far in 2024.

A long-time player on the Korn Ferry Tour, and one-time winner, McKenzie has plenty of experience at Harbor Shores having played two Senior PGAs there previously and it is with the putter where the Victorian can be dangerous.


Age: 54

The lowdown: A two-time winner on the PGA TOUR Champions, including last year’s SAS Championship, Pampling has long held a reputation as a high quality ball striker with a capability to go very low.

Already has two top-10s this year, including earlier this month at the Insperity Invitational, the Queenslander is another of the Australasian contingent with previous experience at Harbor Shores that should help his cause this week.


Age: 50

The lowdown: Percy makes not only his senior major debut this week, but also his PGA TOUR Champions maiden appearance this week after winning the Q School but only turning 50 earlier this month.

Having picked the brain of close friend Greg Chalmers, and similarly competing on the PGA TOUR until last season, Percy knows his distance will be an advantage on the over 50s circuit and will hope his birthday luck continues after backing the winner of the Kentucky Derby at his celebrations.


Age: 53

The lowdown: A two-time winner on the regular PGA TOUR, Senden has plenty of experience already in the senior game and showed what he is capable of at the end of last month when finishing joint sixth at the Mitsubishi Electric Classic.

A straight driving and green hitting machine in his prime, the Harbor Shores layout should fit the eye of the Queenslander if he can find close to his best.


Age: 61

The lowdown: Despite being more than 10 years into his senior golf career, the World Golf Hall of Fame member continues to outwork the vast majority of professionals of any age.

A five-time winner on the PGA TOUR Champions, Singh’s best finish so far this year was a share of sixth last month, and despite being eligible multiple times has only teed it up at Harbor Shores once, limiting his course knowledge.

The Fijian still ranks highly for driving distance among the over 50s and that will be a significant advantage this week, however, as always for Vijay, a good result is dependent on the putter.


Age: 51

The lowdown: The first results of a Google search of Mick Smith will bring about details of his impressive credentials as a teaching professional, however, make no mistake the Wisconsin-based Aussie can seriously play.

A regular winner in his local PGA section, think Michael Block in the west coast, Smith makes his second PGA TOUR Champions start this week and will no doubt be keen to show what he can do on a big stage.


Age: 50

The lowdown: A journeyman who epitomises never giving up, Wright’s big moment came with a hole out at Q School to earn his way onto the PGA TOUR Champions, but bigger yet could come this week.

As one of the fresh 50 year olds, Wright is one of the longest drivers on Tour so far this year and performs well in the birdie categories that could bode well if this week offers up some low scores. A very consistent putter, Wright’s competitiveness and resilience are arguably his greatest attributes at the senior majors.


For the sixth time, The Golf Club at Harbor Shores welcomes the best players over the age of 50 in the game, with the Jack Nicklaus designed layout last hosting the event in 2022 when Kiwi Steve Alker triumphed.

Offering a mix of vegetation lined inland holes and more open parts with vistas of Lake Michigan, the course stands out for its rugged bunkering and dunes that mean players are really greeted with a flat lie or uninterrupted view of the putting surface.

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