The inspiration from the eight-time Arnold Palmer Invitational winner clearly helped motivate DeChambeau. After bogeying the opening hole of the final round, the 2020 US Open champion didn’t drop another shot, eventually finishing 11-under for the tournament — one shot ahead of Lee Westwood.
“I came here as an amateur, he (Palmer) gave me an invitation and I loved this golf course the minute I arrived. I loved the atmosphere and I love the fans. I loved what Mr. Palmer did with this place and what he’s done and his legacy he’s left here.”
Changing the sport
While DeChambeau’s win was memorable, it probably won’t be what people remember from this tournament in coming years.
Since returning from golf’s break last year 40 pounds heavier and with a faster swing, DeChambeau has pushed the boundaries of the sport.
His ability to drive the ball further — he led the PGA Tour last season by a considerable distance — helped him claim the first major of his career last year and has tamed some of golf’s toughest challenges.
And he once again showed how his added strength has proved a cheat code, delighting fans with his ridiculous show of power on the sixth hole over the tournament.
While players usually have to go around the lake at Bay Hill, Florida, DeChambeau attacked the obstacle head on, driving the ball 370 yards on Saturday.
“He can overpower a golf course, so it’s fun to watch, I think,” Westwood said.
“I thought we had a good battle. I don’t think anybody was going to shoot 68 or 67,” Westwood said. “It was a day for playing sensible and hanging on and grinding out the pars.”