December 27, 2000 |
Like most journeyman PGA Tour players, Esteban Toledo is accustomed to receiving minimal attention from fans. The superstars attract the huge galleries, the swarms of autograph seekers and the media requests. The other guys labor in semi-anonymity, even during a successful year such as the one Toledo had in 2000, when he finished 69th on the money list with $673,000. But Toledo got a taste of how golf's royalty must feel last month when he won the Mexican Open by four strokes.
January 26, 2000 |
Strolling the fairways at plush country clubs last week during the PGA Tour's Bob Hope Classic in Bermuda Dunes, Esteban Toledo was only a three-hour drive from his hometown of Mexicali, Mexico, but was a long way from his roots. He played with confidence, producing the types of shots seen only on the PGA Tour and finished tied for 51st--a comfortable distance from the cut line and a far cry from the Toledo of most of the 1990s who struggled to make cuts and keep his playing privileges.
December 22, 1999 |
It has been a great year for Esteban Toledo any way you look at it. On the course, Toledo won enough money to clinch a spot on the PGA Tour for a third consecutive year. In March his wife, Colleen, gave birth to a daughter, Eden. Recently, the Toledos, including 9-year-old son Nicholas, moved into a bigger house in Irvine. "I've been doing this for 15 years," said Toledo, who played in every PGA Tour qualifying tournament from 1986 to 1997. "People have seen me on the bottom.
January 29, 1999 |
About an hour before David Duval eagled the last hole to end his historic and record-tying round of 59 at the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic in front of a gallery of thousands and a television audience of millions, 36-year-old Esteban Toledo of Mexicali, Mexico, signed his scorecard for a 68 in front of his caddie and the woman who kept his score. Duval finished first and won $540,000; Toledo finished tied for 28th and won $20,850. If Duval was happy, Toledo was ecstatic.
January 22, 1997 |
Make no mistake, Esteban Toledo would rather be in Scottsdale, Ariz., this week. That's where the PGA Tour has set up camp for the Phoenix Open, a tournament with a $1.5-million purse and a national television audience. The winner will pocket $270,000. Compared to those figures, Toledo will be playing for a pittance at the Taco Bell Newport Classic, a $100,000 pro-am Friday and Saturday at the Newport Beach Country Club. But Toledo insists he's not a reluctant participant.
December 7, 1996 |
He had just finished playing 18 holes in the rain, so Esteban Toledo was soaked. His sweater stuck to his back, his shoes were caked with grass and mud and his hair was matted down. He looked as though he had just walked through a car wash. But Toledo was standing there and smiling, probably because he knew he had been a lot wetter before. When he was 8, he used to hide in the trees on the golf course in Mexicali.