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PGA Championship: Rory McIlroy has winning history at Quail Hollow

Rory McIlroy plays his shot during a practice

Rory McIlroy plays his shot during a practice round prior to the 2017 PGA Championship at Quail Hollow Club on Aug. 8, 2017 in Charlotte, N.C. Photo Credit: Getty Images / Mike Ehrmann

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — As history appears to have Jordan Spieth in its sights this week, what with his chance to become the youngest ever to have won all of golf’s four major championships, the geography is all about Rory McIlroy.

McIlroy is as pleased as anyone could be that the PGA Championship is being held, starting on Thursday, at Quail Hollow Club, where McIlroy has won two PGA Tour events, including his first, and once shot 61.

“I don’t know, there are just certain courses that you can see yourself score on,” McIlroy said, referring to the 2010 Quail Hollow Championship and 2015 Wells Fargo Championship (he also tied for first in the 2012 Wells Fargo and lost a playoff to Rickie Fowler). “It gives you that feeling. You don’t really have to have your best game and you still feel like you have a chance to win, and that’s sort of how it feels here.”

The course has been lengthened for the major championship, which should not present a problem for him because his driving was exceptional at the WGC Bridgestone Invitational. He knows he needs to work on his short irons and wedges, “but the course is playing so long I don’t know how many short irons and wedges we’ll have into greens this week.”

A first: Shorts for practice

In a late-summer concession to the golfers, the PGA of America altered the dress code this week and allowed players to wear shorts during practice rounds. Many of them took advantage.

“Everybody is razzing each other a little bit,” defending champion Jimmy Walker said. “I think there are some guys who look really good in shorts and some guys who don’t look really good in shorts. There’s a lot of untanned legs. You can tell those Florida boys. You know they’ve been down there soaking up the sun.”

Overall, though, Walker said, “I think it’s pretty cool.”

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