A lot has changed since Laura Davies won the Jamie Farr Toledo Classic. About the only thing that's the same is that the name has changed so many times through the years that it's back to being the Jamie Farr Toledo Classic again.
Something else that hasn't changed is Laura Davies. When she won the Farr in 1988 at the old Glengarry Country Club, she hit driver-driver on the par-5, dogleg-right 11th hole, which played at about 500 yards, reached the very front of the elevated green, and two-putted for a birdie.
On Thursday, Davies stood alone at the edge of the upper fairway on the 18th hole at Highland Meadows, patiently waiting for the group ahead to clear the green, her playing partners already crossing the bridge over Ten Mile Creek. A quarter of a century later and it's still driver off the deck.
"I had to try for it," she said. "It was 239 [yards] to the front. I just didn't quite catch it."
The ball bounded right onto some mounds near the driving range, she caught an awkward downhill lie for her chip, and could do no more than par in for a 68.
That equals Davies' best round of the 2012 season, although a double bogey at the 16th hole when her second shot ricocheted off a tree wouldn't allow her to enjoy it too much.
"It did sort of ruin the round, although I luckily got one shot back with a nice birdie at 17," she said. "But when you reach a certain point under par you don't ever want to go backward, especially on a course that gives up a lot of birdies."
She picked up six of them during her round and at times it was like the 48-year-old was turning back the clock. She has 20 LPGA Tour wins, although none since 2001. She owns 81 worldwide victories, five of them coming as recently as 2010. She is the all-time point leader in Solheim Cup history. She is Great Britain's most accomplished female golfer, certainly of her era and maybe of all eras, and among its most decorated citizens.
So here she is all these years later, still hitting driver off the deck, still duking it out with the best players in the world, still tossing the occasional 68 onto the scoreboard. And with no plans of slowing down.
"I wouldn't be out here if I didn't still love the competition," Davies said after pulling within four shots of first-round leader Pernilla Lindberg on a dreary, damp day at the Meadows. "There's nothing else I'd rather do than being out here competing and trying to beat these young kids."
But it isn't easy, which is maybe not so much a reflection of her skills as it is the improved depth of the ladies' game.
"The standard is so much higher, so much better than when I first came out here," said Davies, who won the '88 Farr with three rounds of 69 and a 70 mixed in.
"You look at that tournament, which certainly was a while ago, and others back then and there might be two or three people at 3-under, one at 4, maybe another at 5-under. Now there are 15 players at 3-under and that might not be close to the lead.
"I remember once I finished 25-under and won the Irish Open by 17 shots. Now, you finish 20-under and you might need some luck to get into a playoff. The standard of play has changed dramatically. You have to grow with it. I think I have despite not winning as much. I'm still hitting it well; I just haven't scored as well the last few years."
But she's not looking back when there is so much reason to look forward.
Davies, a native of Coventry, is proud of the show being put on back home during the Summer Olympics. She regrets, though, that her sport has not been involved in that worldwide competition.
"We got close a few times," she said. "I thought it was going to happen with the Atlanta Games [in 1996] putting the golf at Augusta National. But it never happened. It's a shame. But that's changing."
Indeed, golf will return as an Olympic sport for the first time in more than 100 years at Rio de Janeiro in 2016.
A lot of young LPGA players are truly excited.
So is at least one older golfer.
"I'm going to try," Laura Davies said.
She'll be only 52 years old, after all. And she'll still be gripping and ripping that driver.
Contact Blade sports columnist Dave Hackenberg at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 419-724-6398.