This year's U.S. Senior Open at Omaha Country Club is part of a strong Midwest flavor to the 2013 Champions Tour, which opens this weekend in Hawaii.
Besides the Senior Open on July 11 to 14, four tournaments are within a day's drive of Omaha. One is the first major championship of the season for the 50-and-over professional golf circuit, the Senior PGA Championship at Bellerive in St. Louis over Memorial Day weekend.
The next week, Des Moines' longtime Champions Tour stop moves to Wakonda Club for the Principal Charity Classic. Later in June is the new Encompass Championship in the Chicago area. North Shore Country Club in Glenview, Ill., is where Omaha's Johnny Goodman won the 1933 U.S. Open.
In August is the 3M Championship at Twin Cities Golf Club in Blaine, Minn.
Two more new events on the schedule are the Greater Gwinett Championship in April in the Atlanta area and the Calgary Golf Classic in late summer.
The 26 official tournaments are the most for the tour since 2009.
Bernhard Langer was last year's top money winner and Tom Lehman won the Schwab Cup points championship.
Roger Chapman, a journeyman pro until last year, is the defending champion of the U.S. Senior Open and the Senior PGA. Lehman won the Tradition, Joe Daley the Senior Players and Fred Couples the Senior British Open to be the other major champions in 2012.
In this year's class of tour “rookies,” once they turn 50, will be Vijay Singh and Colin Montgomerie. Their birthdays are prior to the Senior Open.
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