FARMINGTON The Siegfried and Jensen Utah Open golf tournament will have an interesting cast of characters when play begins today at Oakridge Country Club.
The 54-hole tournament begins this morning at 7:30 and will conclude late Sunday afternoon.
Defending champion Clay Ogden will be back as will several other former champions, including Pete Stone (2006), Greg Buckway (2004), Steve Friesen (2003), Boyd Summerhays (2002), Kim Thompson (2001), Steve Runge (1997), Jay Don Blake (1988) and Jimmy Blair (1981).
Also back will be Tony Finau and Gipper Finau, the teenage phenoms who turned professional last year and have been living in Florida. They will join top Utah junior golfers Jordan Herzog, Brandon Kida, Joe Parkinson and Patrick Fishburn. In all, 26 amateurs are in the field of 160.
How about Utah Jazz guard Kyle Korver? He'll be playing in a group with tournament sponsors Mitch Jensen and Ned Siegfried.
The tournament will also feature a bunch of folks from the Summerhays clan. Besides Boyd, his uncle Bruce, a veteran of the Champions Tour will be playing the tourney for the first time in nearly two decades along with two of Bruce's sons, Joseph and Bruce Jr.
Bruce Summerhays lives nearby and has enjoyed a successful career on the Champions Tour, winning close to $9 million and three tournaments.
At the age of 64, Summerhays has recently retired from full-time play on the Champions Tour and has a week off before playing in the Wal-Mart First Tee Open at Pebble Beach the last week of August. He had to get a release from the Champions Tour to play in the Utah Open.
"I wasn't planning to play in the Utah Open," he said. "But playing in the Utah Open, here at Oakridge Country Club and with a few of the young kids, will give me a good warm-up before heading back out on the Champions Tour."
Although he played the Utah Open as many as 20 times, it is one of the few events in Utah that he never won. He still feels he has a chance.
"My intention with any tournament is to win," he said. "Realistically a 64-year-old shouldn't have much of a chance, yet, I'm playing good golf right now and if I can keep it under par each day who knows? This will be really fun for me and I'm looking forward to it."
His son Joseph is coming off a big win at the Salt Lake City Open last Sunday and Boyd Summerhays is always a threat to win. He's won three tournaments this year and lost in playoffs for two others, including the Salt Lake City Open.
Other players to keep an eye on this week include Garrett Clegg, Steve Schneiter, Zach Johnson, Todd Tanner, Brett Wayment and Dustin Pimm.
After Saturday's play, the field will be cut to the low 60 players plus ties.The benefitting charity is Special Olympics of Utah.
E-mail: [email protected]