Champions Tour

Rod Spittle earns full Champions Tour status for 2015

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Rod Spittle (Christian Petersen/ Getty Images)

WINTER GARDEN, Fla. — It was a big day for Rod Spittle of St. Catharines, Ont., who earned full status on the Champions Tour for 2015 after finishing fifth at the final stage of Champions Tour Q-School.

The 1977 and 1978 Canadian Amateur Champion carded a 2-under 70 at Panther Lake Golf Club and finished the week at -5.

Spittle turned professional at the age of 50 in 2004 and earned a spot on the Champions Tour during the following season.  His lone win as a professional came in a sudden-death playoff at the AT&T Championship against Jeff Sluman in 2010.

Fellow Canadians Jim Rutledge of Victoria, B.C. and Rick Gibson of Calgary both shot 68s in the final round, but failed to earn fully exempt status in 2015 by a very narrow margin.

Rutledge (-4) finished in a tie for sixth place, just one stroke back of Spittle, while Gibson (-2) climbed thirteen spots to finish in a tie for 10th with Argentina’s Cesar Monasterio.

For finishing between 6-13, both players earned conditional exempt status on the Champions Tour in 2015.

Unable to earn exempt status this year were Ken Tarling (+10) of Stouffville, Ont. and Calgary’s Darryl James (+16).