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Hotel Fitness golfers to battle heat as well as the course

There are 131 players competing this week at Sycamore Hills

Wednesday, August 28, 2013 - 5:51 pm

Will the heat or the pressure determine the best golf scores this week?

Play starts at 7:30 a.m. Thursday in the first Hotel Fitness Championship at Sycamore Hills Golf Club. There are 131 players trying for the $180,000 first prize out of a $1 million purse.

The top 25 players on the Web.com Tour have already earned PGA Tour cards for next year, and another 25 cards will be awarded at the completion of the four-tournament finals. The four tournament standings will also determine the PGA Tour eligibility positioning for next season.

Along with the top 75 players from the Web.com Tour, players who finished in positions 126-200 on the PGA Tour are also allowed to participate in this tournament.

The summer's hottest temperatures in Fort Wayne are expected the rest of the week.

"In the summer I lose 3 to 5 pounds a week,'' said 2008 Masters champion Trevor Immelman. "You do the right stuff from the point of getting the calories back in and the electrolytes back in. You learn that from getting used to it.''

Tickets are $25 per round or $65 for a weekly grounds ticket.

The better-known players in the field include Immelman, 2009 U.S. Open runner-up Rickey Barnes, 2009 Presidents Cup player Sean O'Hair, 2009 The Barclays champion Heath Slocum, three-time PGA Tour winner Chris DeMarco and Web.com regular-season winner Michael Putnam. There are 27 former PGA Tour winners and 31 former Foreign Tour winners.

Players have traveled from as far as South Africa, Japan, Brazil, Sweden, Scotland, Argentina and New Zealand.

All four rounds will be broadcast on the Golf Channel.