Las Vegas' Nick Watney defends in San Diego January 28, 2010 (UPDATED Jan 29) –One of the reasons Nick Watney moved to the Las Vegas Golf Region a few years ago was to be closer to his coach, Las Vegas resident Butch Harmon, who operates the Butch Harmon School of Golf at Las Vegas golf course Rio Secco Golf Club. The closeness to Harmon allows Watney, who is the defending champion of this week's Farmers Insurance Open on the PGA Tour, to improve more quickly. Before the start of the event, Watney also talked about how Tiger Woods gave him some great on-the-course piece of advice. Las Vegas Golfer Scott Piercy led after round one at -8. LIVE RESULTS.

"I (have been) lucky enough to play a couple practice rounds with Tiger, and he pulled me aside one time and said, for him, what he tries to do is if he can say that he's improved December 31st, if he's a better player than he was January 1st, it's a successful year," Watney told the media prior to the Farmers, which is being played at Torrey Pines in San Deigo. "That really struck a chord because he's the best ever. So that's my goal, to try to improve this year and use last year as a stepping stone or a springboard to keep moving forward. My expectations are to keep improving, then hopefully the wins will come in." Watney works with Harmon at his school and according to Harmon, the two spend quite a bit of time on the simple things which will create more consistency.

"Nick has come a long way as a player in the last couple of years, and a big reason for his success is the way he's swinging the driver," Harmon says in the February 2010 issue of Golf Digest. "When Nick was in college at Fresno State, and even after he turned pro seven years ago, he was a very handsy player. Because he had such great rhythm, when he timed everything just right, he played pretty well. But when his timing was off, he would struggle. He needed better swing mechanics, and that's what we've been working on."

Click for Rio Secco and the World Famous T-Mates Harmon operates his school in Las Vegas, and contrary to what some golfers believe, the School is open to all golfers, not just the best players in the world. Schools are available where golfers can work directly with Butch and his talented staff, and learn the same tips and secrets that he shares with the best players in the world including Watney, Phil Mickelson, and Natalie Gulbis, among others. Click now to view the official website of the Butch Harmon School of Golf and learn how to reserve a school with Harmon, who has been voted as the best instructor for 10 years running in a poll by his peers published in Golf Digest.

Also, you can click to the official website of Rio Secco Golf Club, a Rees Jones Las Vegas golf course that is also the home of the Wendy's 3-Tour Challenge and the WAC Championships. You can reserve your online Las Vegas golf tee times online at this resort Las Vegas golf course as well. For any golfers looking to play golf in Las Vegas on Super Sunday, Feburary 7, there is a very good rate of $125 currently available for the course, and also includes breakfast. The official website covers all of the details. Rio Secco is also home to the beautiful T-Mates, female caddies who make the round more enjoyable.

In 2009, Watney birdied the final hole to beat John Rollins and earn his second career PGA Tour victory. Watney also won the 2007 Zurich Classic of New Orleans. Watney earned more than $3.2 million in 2009 and finished 12th in the FedEx Cup standings. Earlier this season he finished 16th at the SBS Championship in Hawaii. "It's nice to come back," said Watney about returning to Torrey Pines. "It's the first time I've been back since last year … even coming in here, the last time I came in (the media center) I was just very, very excited and elated. It's nice to get back on this golf course, and like I said, I'm really looking forward to getting back into the swing of competitive golf and getting the week started."–By Brian Hurlburt. Photo from, and quotes from transcripts.


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