Tiger Woods will return to Orlando for his 19th appearance at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in March.
The tournament released this statement on Thursday:
"On Thursday, fan favorite, former Orlando resident and No. 13 Tiger Woods committed to his 19th appearance in the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard, seeking a PGA TOUR record ninth win in the prestigious invitational tournament March 4-10 at Bay Hill Club & Lodge in Orlando, Fla.
Woods, 43, already shares the record (with Sam Snead) for the most wins in a single TOUR event with his eight victories at the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard (and the newly-named World Golf Championships-FedEx St. Jude Invitational). He won at Bay Hill for the first time on the Championship Course in 2000 – to begin a run of four straight victories – and his last in 2013 when he shot 13-under 275 on the Championship Course for a two-stroke victory over Justin Rose, who is the current No. 1-ranked player in the world.
“I always love playing at Bay Hill,” said Woods. “I have such great memories of Arnold and am happy to be back for the 19th time. Of course, it would be great to win and set a new record, especially here, but that’s for me to do on the course. I made a little run at it last year and am hoping I can put myself in position again.”
Last year, Woods returned to Bay Hill for the first time since that 2013 title after a series of injuries, including a bad back that required multiple surgeries, kept him on the sidelines. He finished tied for fifth place with a 10-under-par 278 aggregate total. It marked just the second time that Woods had finished in the top-10 at Bay Hill without winning. He was T-9 in 1997, his debut in the event as a pro. He competed in 1994 as an amateur and missed the cut; he hasn’t missed the cut since then.
Woods was ranked 389th in the world at the start of the 2018 edition. Since then he added an 80th career PGA TOUR win at last year's TOUR Championship and is currently 13th in the Official World Golf Ranking.
His best finish so far this season is a T15 at last week’s Genesis Open.
In 70 competitive rounds on the Championship Course, Woods has a stroke average of 68.428. His career earnings in the tournament total $7.6 million."