Woods Stretches PGA Tour Winning Streak to Six

from The New York Times
October 1, 2006

CHANDLER’S CROSS, England — The tournament was over long before it finished. Tiger Woods won the American Express Championship on Sunday for the fifth time with an impressive 23-under-par 261, clinching his sixth consecutive victory on the PGA Tour.

It is the second such streak of his career; he also won six in a row in late 1999 and early 2000. He finished eight shots ahead of England’s Ian Poulter and Australia’s Adam Scott, who tied for second at 15-under-par 269.

Woods’s four-under-par 67 in the final round capped a triumphant four days and earned him $1.3 million. He started by setting a course record Thursday with an eight-under 63, and he led by at least four shots throughout the tournament, which was held at the Grove just north of London.

Woods’s victory was delayed by lightning. He was playing the par-4 eighth when a weather warning sent everyone scurrying for cover. Play resumed more than two hours later but was soon suspended again. After that delay, Woods made his only bogey of the day, at the par-4 No. 12.

One streak did not continue for Woods, who had eagled the par-5 No. 18 in the first three rounds. On Sunday, he settled for a birdie.

Woods arrived in Britain three weeks ago to a wave of publicity, but things took a disappointing turn when he was knocked out of the HSBC World Match Play on the first day and when the United States was routed in the Ryder Cup.

Neither was a PGA event, so Woods is still chasing the record of 11 victories in a row that Byron Nelson set in 1945. When asked about breaking that record, Woods did not sound overly optimistic.

“It’s still a long way away,” he said. “If you look at it, I’m barely halfway. What he did was absolutely remarkable. I’m just thrilled I’ve been able to win six in a row twice.”

Woods said he was looking forward to taking a few weeks off, and despite his recent success, he sounded a somber note about a year in which both his father, Earl, and Nelson died. Woods said he would remember this year as “a tremendous loss.”