PERRY APPEARS READY TO DEFEND JOHN DEERE CLASSIC TITLE

29 06 2009

It was a bright sunny summer day at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Connecticut, the kind of weather and parkland-style golf course that Kenny Perry thrives on.

So, how better could Perry have prepared to defend his title at next week’s John Deere Classic at TPC Deere Run than to post a tournament record 22-under par 258 Sunday at the Travelers Championship?

Trailing Paul Goydos by one stroke going in to the final round, Perry laid a 7-under par 63 on his fellow competitors – including a 3-under 32 on the front nine – none of whom could stop him from amassing a three-shot margin nor keep up with him as he did.

Perry secured his victory over Goydos and David Toms with birdies on Nos. 15 and17. Perry will encounter Toms a week from now in the Quad Cities, where the former PGA champion posted his first PGA Tour victory in 1997.

It was the second PGA Tour victory of the year for Perry – who won in Phoenix earlier this season – and the 14th of his career. He shot rounds of 61-68-66-63—258 on the par 70 golf course.

After Perry won last year’s John Deere Classic, reporters asked him whether he had any new career goals. At the time, Perry, now 48, set the ambitious goal of winning 20 times before he moves on to over-50 golf on the Champions Tour.

Will he make it? If he plays the way he did over the weekend, it would seem anything’s possible.

Perry will take a break from the Tour this week before traveling to the Quad Cities to defend.

Some other top 20 finishers at the Travelers who are committed to the John Deere are U.S. Open champion Lucas Glover, Zach Johnson, newly-turned-pro Kyle Stanley, Casey Wittenberg, and Bryce Molder.

One other thing those players have in common – at one point or another each of the playing careers received an early boost as the result of a sponsor exemption from the John Deere Classic.

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