With out a doubt, the major championships are the most compelling events on the PGA Tour, as well they should be. But I look forward to the playoffs on both the PGA and European Tours every year as well. Four great tournaments on four very challenging courses with elimination criteria and a lot of money, what’s not to like for a sports fan during The FedEx Cup Playoffs?
The FedEx Cup playoff points and end-of-year-model has been so successful for the PGA that the European Tour has adopted the equally as popular Race To Dubai championship to end the European Tour season. NASCAR modeled it’s year-ending Chase format after the FedEx model, and the LPGA has added the Race To CME Globe system.
While the Barclays, The Deutsche Bank Championship, and the Tour Championship are played on the same courses every year, The BMW Championship is on a Rota like three of the four major championships every year.
All four tournaments offer an $ 8 Million Dollar purse with the top five finishers at East Lake sharing in a huge bonus pool where the FedEx Cup Champ receives a $10 Million Dollar bonus and the fifth place finisher getting $500,000 dollars. There is a lot of money on the table for the season finale’.
The top 125 players in FedEx Cup points after the Wyndham Championship this week will get a tee-time at The Barclays next week. The winner at each of the first three events receives 2500 points with the remainder of the field getting fewer points based on their finish.
Only the top 100 players will move on to The Deutsche Bank Championship to play for the same points distribution format, and the top 70 from Boston will move on to Cherry Hills for the BMW Championship. The top 70 players moving on to The BMW will not have to face a 36-hole cut.
The top 30 players after the BMW will get tee times at East Lake for the Tour Championship where they will get a points reset. The player with the top position will start with 2500 points, the second ranked player start with 2250 and all subsequent players receiving 200 points less down to an including the tenth ranked player who starts with 600 points.
What has changed in 2014? Instead of the FedEx Cup points season starting at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions as it has in the past, the 2013-2014 wrap-around season began awarding FedEx Cup points for the first time this season.
The Wrap-around schedule used to be called the silly season and used primarily as a place for weaker players to amass enough money to get a tour card before the Q School.
The HSBC Championship which was played in China back in October was added as a World Golf Championship event which awards 550 FedEx Cup points, and Race To Dubai consideration.
Henrik Stenson won both the Deutsche Bank Championship, and the Tour Championship in 2013 enroute to winning the FedEx Cup title. The big Swede also went on to become the first player to ever win the title on both tours by winning the Race To Dubai.
To date, Tiger Woods is the only player to win The FedEx Cup title two times, the inaugural event in 2007, and once again in 2009.