The Safeway Classic presented by Pepsi is a 54-hole event which starts Friday at the Columbia Edgewater Country Club in Portland, Oregon. Soo-Yun Kang is the defending champion.
The course is a par-72, 6327 yards, a little shorter than average. Some of the fairways look a little tight, and the greens are supposed to be great. Other than being a bit hot, the weather looks very good for the whole weekend.
Last year’s event was a Seoul Sister Special – Kang won by four shots over Jeong Jang, with Gloria Park, Joo Mi Kim and Sung Ah Yim finishing in the top five (actually Beth Daniel tied Yim for fifth, but she is NOT Korean and mentioning her would de-rail the train of thought in this sentence...oops). Her victory was the beginning of an outstanding run of tournaments for Soo-Yun – in her final 8 events of 2005, she finished second twice (the ADT Championship, for one), had 4 Top Tens, and only once finished worse than 15th. 2006 has been another story, as she’s missed more cuts than she’s made. Best finish – tied for 24th at the Fields Open in Hawaii.
So I guess I’ll snub the defending champion again this week, though Meena Lee did her best to prove me wrong! Karrie Webb is my pick to win, with Jeong Jang and Pat Hurst my CYA picks. Thanks to Cristie Kerr, I’m now 1-3 in picking winners and 4-9 on hitting the Top Ten.