Colonial wins! Sam Burns won the Charles Schwab Challenge (and the car) but the golf course won the day

Fun in the sun (Photo by K.P. Wilska)

“The winner today was Colonial,” said CBS TV commentator Ian Baker-Finch, summing up a wild and windy final round of the Charles Schwab Challenge golf tournament at Fort Worth’s Colonial Country Club. The always challenging par 70 layout gave the world’s best golfers all they could handle and then some as the prestigious PGA tour event treated local fans and a national TV audience to an exciting, wind-blown, sun-seared conclusion.

Sam Burns won the tournament, the legendary Leonard Trophy, the coveted plaid championship jacket, a check for $1.5 million and, just for fun, an ultra-cool, custom-built 1979 Schwab Firebird Trans Am – all with a 38-foot birdie putt on the first hole of a sudden-death playoff against his good friend and the world’s No. 1 ranked golfer Scottie Scheffler.

Burns and Scheffler were the last two standing Sunday after 19 holes of competition that left famed golf announcer Jim Nance nearly speechless and Baker-Finch awestruck by the punishment doled out by the golf course he battled to victory in 1989. This year, the course crushed the hopes and dreams of one golfer after another, including local favorite and 2016 champion Jordan Spieth, who finished in a seventh-place tie with four others.

Golfers were stymied by the North Texas wind – 20 miles per hour with gusts over 30 – and unnavigable greens baked to billiard-table quickness by temperatures in the mid-90s. In the end, though, Burns rolled in the winning putt from just off the 18th green as if the fabled course had been yielding flocks of birdies all afternoon.

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And, in the end, a good time was had by all as the saying goes. Throngs of fans lined Colonial’s picturesque greens and fairways for all four days of the tournament and Fort Worth scored another big-time triumph with the eyes of the world focused on the city so widely known – and occasionally dismissed – as Cowtown.

If you missed the festivities, don’t despair – photographer K.P. Wilska was on the scene, capturing compelling images each and every day. We offer a sampling in today’s gallery and slide show.