The PGA Tour enters its final tournament and all eyes are on the top five who control their own destiny for the $10 million prize with the FedEx Cup finale.
But it’s worth noting a line many may not pay much attention to: Those who squeezed into the FedEx Cup’s top 30 and the last regular season championship. That’s because players who qualify for the final tournament, the TOUR Championship, automatically earn invitations to the 2017 Masters.
Nine of the final 30 players haven’t won on Tour this year, one of the most well-known ways to earn a coveted invite to Augusta. Two, Roberto Castro and Kevin Chappell, have never won on Tour, yet have used consistent play to earn a spot in the showcase event.
Others, such as Venezuela’s Jhonattan Vegas, may have served notice they’re on the rise. Vegas was far out of the running for a FedEx Cup spot until late July, when he backed up a T-4 finish in the Barbasol Open with a win at the RBC Canadian Open.
In the playoffs, he’s been a model of consistency among the world’s best, posting T-22, T-33, and T-24 finishes. This from someone with only three major championship appearances total, with two of them in 2011. Suddenly, he’s in the running for golf’s greatest purse and has secured himself a spot in the 2017 Masters.
Then, there’s a chance to see how some of the best are playing under pressure. With a win at East Lake Golf Club, any of Dustin Johnson, Patrick Reed, Adam Scott, Jason Day, or Paul Casey would guarantee themselves the prize. With $10 million on the line, how will they fare?
With so much at stake, this weekend’s tournament shapes up to be highly entertaining – and with possible clues for the 2017 Masters field!