With the PGA Championship over, I thought it would be a good time to reflect and project. As the 2012 season winds down, it’s time to start gearing up for the PGA version of the Chase in Nascar, The Fed Ex Cup. The upcoming weekend will be the last opportunity for golfers with hopes of making Golf’s playoff, to gather points at the Wyndham Championship and make the field of 125 players which will begin the following week at The Barclays.
The Barclays will begin on August 23rd, and the top 125 golfers will take the field and play for an $8 Million dollar purse. The current cut line has Rod Pampling at 125 with 356 points. Some known players who are below the cut line, and will need to pick up some points at the Wyhdham are Retief Goosen, Gary Woodland, Y.E. Yang, and John Daly.
In 2013, the top 125 on the Fed Ex points list will be automatically awarded a tour card for the following season. The system for years has always been the money list was used for next year. This will be the last year for that rule, next year will begin the with the Fed Ex Cup points rule. The Barclay’s will be contested at the Bethpage State Park-Black course in Farmingdale New York.
After points are awarded for The Barclay’s, only the top 100 in points will move on to the Deutche Bank Championship which will begin at The TPC Boston in Norton Mass. on August 31, and will also have an $8 Million dollar purse. Both the Barclay’s and The Deutche Bank will have a 36 hole cut, and only the top 70 players and ties will play the weekend.
The BMW Championship gets underway on September 6th, and include only the top 70 players. It will be played at Crooked Stick Golf Club in Carmel Indiana. There is no cut and only the top 30 players will advance to the Tour Championship by Coca Cola. The Tour Championship will be played at East Lake Golf in Atlanta Georgia on September 20th. Both of these tournaments have an $8 Million dollar purse. Bill Hass is the defending FedEx Cup Champion.
The current leader in FedEx Points is Tiger Woods with 2260 points, PGA Champion Rory McIlroy, Jason Duffner, Zach Johnson and Masters Champion Bubba Watson round out the top five. With the Tour Championship marking the end of the regular golf seaason, The Wyndham Championship this weekend, will for all purposes, be the end of the golf season. The Ryder cup will follow and then what golf calls the silly season.
The Wyndham Championship is played at the Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro North Carolina, and will start Thursday morning.
The Ryder Cup week will begin on Saturday 22nd with off the course activities. The action will begin on Friday September 27th at 7AM Eastern time with Foursomes play. The US Ryder Cup Captain this year is Davis Love III, and Team Europe will be directed by Captain Jose Maria Olazabal. The Ryder Cup is contested every other year(even years), and is played between U.S. Players and European players only. The tournament sites alternate between US and Europe courses. The Ryder Cup will be played at the Medinah Country Club #3 course in Medinah Illinois.
The eight players who have secured spots on the 2012 Ryder Cup are:
- Tiger Woods
- Bubba Watson
- Jason Dufner
- Kegan Bradley
- Webb Simpson
- Zach Johnson
- Matt Kuchar
- Phil Mickelson
The problem Davis Love III will have with his four captains picks is, there are more than four very good golfers that have not made the automatic bid, and are available. The two that are the closest to the top are Steve Stricker and Hunter Mahan. Although Hunter didn’t fare to well at the PGA, he has historically played well in International competition. Jim Furyk, Rickie Fowler and Brandt Snedeker are not far down the list.
Team Europe criteria for selecting their players is a little more involved, and includes points based on earnings in Euros and World Cup Rankings. The European competition will end after the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles on August 23-26 which is played at The Gleneagles Hotel – PGA Centenary Golf Course in Perthshire Scotland.
There are two lists, The European Ryder Cup Points List, and The World Ryder Cup Points List. Currently, PGA Champion Rory McIlroy is leading on both lists. The European List fills out with Justin Rose, Graeme McDowell, Paul Lawrie and Francisco Molinari. The World List includes Luke Donald, Justin Rose, Lee Westwood and Graeme McDowell. After the Order of Merit is sorted out, Captain Jose Maria Olazabal will have two picks to fill our his roster.
The conclussion of the the regular golf season is exciting to say the least, and we have it all coming up in the next month. The pressures of players trying to get into position for next year leads to some pretty good golf. The Nationwide and Web.com tours will have automatic qualifiers for tour cards next season, and should also provide compelling golf as their seasons wrap up soon.
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