The Barclays has become one of the most pivotal stops on the PGA Tour and is usually the tune-up that precedes the U.S. Open major tournament. Started in 1967 as the Westchester Open, the tournament has experienced a number of name changes and corporate sponsorships over the years, before the PGA finally settled on The Barclays in 2007. This year's tournament will be held at the Ridgewood Country Club in Paramus, New Jersey, in late August and is usually well-attended by New York-area residents who are looking for a taste of professional golf in their backyards. Staying true to its history, many golfers and fans alike have decided to gloss over the tournament's new name and call it "The Westchester" instead.
The event is the first playoff event that precedes four straight FedEx Cup events that play an enormous role in the worldwide rankings and the result of the Major championships. The Ridgewood Country Club golf course was designed in 1929 and features a compelling mixture of tough terrain, wide open fairways and obstacles that will leave golfers guessing at every turn. Perhaps the most intriguing hole on the championship course is the first, a 380-yard Par 4 with a sloping green and a large pond that sits adjacent to the fairway.
Some of the biggest names in golf history have played in this tournament, such as Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Bob Murphy and Bob Gilder. Gilder posted the tournament's best score in 1982, with a full score of 261 over the course of the event. The best to par score in history belongs to Johnny Miller, who shot an astounding -19 during the tournament's early days in 1974. The event has seen many memorable moments, such as Padraig Harrington's 65-foot Eagle putt on the 18th hole to win the 2005 title. Historically, Vijay Singh has been the most successful golfer in the tournament's history, with four trophies to his credit.
At The Barclays this year, attendees should expect a whirlwind of events as Tiger Woods tries to get back into contention for his first major championship since his return from injury, as well as the stunning string of success that Phil Mickelson has experienced over the course of 2012. With a slew of majors on the horizon, The Barclays brings out the best in its participants and is one of the most popular events on the PGA calendar.