Lewis Burton Wins the 1989 National Medal-Play
Fayetteville, NC - July 1989 - Lewis Burton, a 24-year
old manufacturing sales representative from Lilburn, GA, won the $20,000
PPA National Championship. Burton fired 223, 65 under par for 144 holes
of competition to edge out his nearest opponent, Alan Quinnelly, from
Chamblee, GA, who posted a 226.
"I have dreamed about this forever," said an
excited Burton after his win.
Burton went into the final rounds with a four-stroke
lead over the field and even though he maintained that lead throughout
the four final rounds, he confessed he depended on half a pack of cherry
Rolaids and a few prayers to make that dream come true.
"I was really nervous and I prayed before every
hole." What does a Champion pray for? "I prayed for intensity,
patience, poise, and God's will."
Burton picked up a $3,000 pay check for his effort but
claimed that the money wasn't the main motivation for the outstanding
putting he demonstrated.
"It's really just the honor. I didn't even think
about the money all day. I really didn't. It just never crossed my
Burton has been in the winner's circle before, winning
the Amateur Division of the PPA Nationals in 1982 and 1983. But this
victory was the sweetest.
"When I was an amateur, I shot really good scores
but I never knew how I could do against the pros. This means a lot more
to me. Today I know that I was able to beat the best putters in the
world. At least I consider them to be the best putters in the
Greg Ward from Chamblee, GA, finished third at 227.
The fourth place finish went to Steve Wood of Abilene, TX, who putted at
229. Jeff Estep of Dayton, Ohio, who also won the $10,000 PPA National
Match-Play Classic title during the week of the Nationals, finished in a
five way tie for fifth place at 230, 58-under par.
Richard Zack of Murphreesboro, TN, overcame Mike
Harney's six stroke advantage to rob the Charlottesville, VA, putter of
first place honors in the Amateur Division. Zack posted rounds of 238,
50-under par, edging Haney by two strokes to complete what became known
as "The Zack Attack" in the Amateur Division. Zack won both
the National Medal, National Match-Play, and two Hall of Fame
preliminary tournaments this week, shutting out the winner's circle to
his amateur opponents.
In at 257, 31-under par, in the Novice Division were
both Matt Jackson of Fayetteville, NC, and Jerry Brammer of Eden, NC. An
18-hole playoff gave the win to Jackson who was a Junior Putter's of
America runner-up in 1988, winning a $500 college scholarship.
This was the 30th National Championship sponsored by
the Professional Putters Association and its host courses, Putt-Putt
Golf Courses of America.