Barnes staying positive
US Open runner-up Ricky Barnes is tired but determined to compete strongly at this week’s Travelers Championship.
US Open runner-up Ricky Barnes may be tired after his exertions at Bethpage Black but he is determined to get back on the course and compete at this week’s Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Connecticut.
The 28-year-old was a record-low 36-hole leader in New York at the second major of the year, led by six shots early in the third round and was a one-shot 54-hole leader before a dramatic mid-round collapse during the final 18 holes handed Lucas Glover the title.
Barnes rallied to seal a tie for second place with David Duval and Phil Mickelson, two shots behind Glover, and he is determined to concentrate on the positives from his US Open experience rather than dwell on the negatives in his final round.
“I woke up this morning, and I felt the same as I did last night where I’ll take the good things that happened last week, and still be really satisfied with a second-place finish,” Barnes said on Tuesday.
“I know at times I had the lead and I did have the 36- and 54-hole lead but, at the same time, second in the US Open, not expecting that much going into it…
“If you had told me that at the beginning of the week, I would have been super stoked. Obviously, especially coming into the next few events that I knew I was in, it’s a good stepping stone.”
Barnes’ next objective is to turn a good week at Bethpage into a solid first full year on the PGA Tour six years on from turning professional following his 2002 US Amateur Championship success.
“I just want to get out and play. If you’re playing well, why not keep playing?” he said.
“And I think (it was) a great US Open. Great to be back. Obviously playing on a high stage in majors, but this is a full year. It’s not just one week out here.
“So I need to keep competing and would love to get into the final group here again this week.”
Despite starting just three days after the US Open, the Travelers has attracted a strong field with three of the world’s top-10 players in Sergio Garcia, Vijay Singh and Kenny Perry.
The line-up also includes defending champion Stewart Cink and the new US Open champion Glover, who on Tuesday night got his first taste of the big time that goes with being a major winner when he made an appearance on the Late Show With David Letterman.
Asked on Monday night in the wake of his maiden major victory if he would still be playing the Travelers, Glover replied: “Yeah, I’ll be there. Absolutely.”
Cink defends the title he won last year by a stroke after holding off final-round challenges from Tommy Armour III and 2007 winner Hunter Mahan.
There is small European contingent in Connecticut aside from Spain’s Garcia with English trio Brian Davis, Greg Owen and Justin Rose teeing off as well as Sweden’s Fredrik Jacobson, Daniel Chopra, Mathias Gronberg and Jesper Parnevik.
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