|Wyndham Championship - August 17, 2009
Sedgefield Country Club
Par: 35-35—70Yards: 7,118
Winner's FedExCup Points Share: 500
Purse: $5.100,000Winner: $918,000
2008 Champion: Carl Pettersson (259, -21)
Wyndham Championship is Last Event to
Qualify for PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup
The Wyndham Championship marks the conclusion of the PGA TOUR Regular Season and the last chance for players to qualify for the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup, which begin next week at The Barclays outside New York in Jersey City, NJ.
The top-125 points earners qualify for The Barclays. Heading into the Greensboro, NC, event, Andres Romero holds down the 125th position, three points ahead of David Mathis. Ryan Palmer (324 points) is in 127th place, followed by Todd Hamilton (321), Chris Riley (320) and Cliff Kresge (318).
A year ago, Carl Pettersson shot four rounds in the 60s, including a 6-under weekend, to defeat Scott McCarron by two strokes. Pettersson is in risk of missing the Playoffs. The Sweden native is 151st in FedExCup points list.
Wyndham Championship Notes
As the final event in the PGA TOUR Regular Season, the Wyndham Championship again plays an important role in the race to the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup. In the off-season, the field size for the first Playoff event was decreased from 144 to 125 and the Wyndham Championship will serve as the final stage for players trying to move or stay inside the top 125 in the FedExCup standings.
The Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, NC, has been a staple on the PGA TOUR schedule since 1938. Over the span of those previous 70 years, a superior list of golf’s greatest have won this event, including Sam Snead, Byron Nelson, Ben Hogan, Seve Ballesteros and Gary Player. Other recent winners include Davis Love III and Rocco Mediate.
Three of the top-four finishers from the U.S. Open at Bethpage State Park’s Black Course will be on hand for the Wyndham Championship. Lucas Glover finished at 4-under at the U.S. Open, holding off Ricky Barnes, David Duval and Phil Mickelson. Glover joins Barnes and Duval in this week’s field. Glover will be making his sixth appearance in Greensboro. He has made the cut in his previous five starts. His best finish was a tie for sixth in 2006. He tied for 20th in 2007 and 2008.
David Duval is making his third appearance at the Wyndham Championship. He missed the cut last year and tied for 14th in 1995.
Last year, former North Carolina State golfer and North Carolina resident Carl Pettersson topped Scott McCarron by two strokes to claim his third career PGA TOUR win. Pettersson moved from Sweden to Greensboro during his high school years and graduated from Grimsley High, located seven miles from Sedgefield Country Club, site of the tournament. Standing at 151st in the FedExCup standings with only one week remaining in the Regular Season, Pettersson is in danger of missing the Playoffs.
At the 2007 Wyndham Championship, Brandt Snedeker picked up his first TOUR win when he won the Greensboro tournament. After battling through injuries earlier this year, Snedeker has picked up his old form with top-five finishes in three of his last four starts—ties for fifth at the AT&T National and RBC Canadian Open and a tie for second at the John Deere Classic. In the past month, Snedeker has moved from No. 183 in the FedExCup standings to No. 75.
Kyle Stanley, an All-America first team member from Clemson University, was recently named the 2009 Ben Hogan Award winner after his sophomore season, the top honor a collegiate golfer can earn. Stanley is a native of Gig Harbor, WA, who set 18 Clemson records during his freshman campaign and was named the 2007 ACC Freshman of the Year and Player of the Year. Stanley was a member of that year’s U.S. Walker Cup team. Stanley made his debut as a professional at the Travelers Championship in June, where he tied for 19th.
E NOTES FROM THE PGA TOUR
This is the final week of the PGA TOUR’s Regular Season and a close battle is being waged to finish among the Top 125 and qualify for the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup. All but two players ranked 110th to 140th are entered this week seeking a place in next week’s The Barclays. Those two are Tom Watson (123rd) and Andres Romero (125th). Only 80 points separates 110th from 140th — that equates to a solo ninth place finish.
Four players have made dramatic improvements in the FedExCup race over last year led by Y.E. Yang who finished 145th in the Regular Season last year and is seventh this year. Jason Dufner has climbed 131 spots (172nd to 41st) while Zach Johnson has improved 109 places (112th to 3rd) and Angel Cabrera 105 spots (131st to 26th).
This week’s Wyndham Championship will be the 70th playing of the TOUR’s stop in Greensboro.
The Wyndham Championship has a history of producing international winners with 12 players hailing from 10 different countries emerging victorious in Greensboro.
With his second-place finish last week, Tiger Woods became the first player to reach $90 million in career earnings. Woods now has $90,042,539 in his career.
There have been five first-time winners this year, but no rookies. The last time the TOUR went an entire year without a rookie winner was 1998. In fact, it’s only happened five times in the last 40 years—1970, 1978, 1981, 1986 and 1998.
With his victory last week, Y.E. Yang became the eighth multiple winner this season. That’s the most since 2001 when nine players won two or more events.
Quite a field has assembled in Central Oregon this week for the JELD-WEN Tradition. The 78 competitors have combined to win 101 major championships on the two Tours and 764 wins.
This week’s field will also feature an array of team captains. Current Presidents Cup International Team Captain Greg Norman will be competing along with past Presidents Cup Team Captains Hale Irwin and Gary Player. The field also includes eight former Ryder Cup Team Captains — Ben Crenshaw, Mark James, Tom Kite, Bernhard Langer, Tom Lehman, Hal Sutton, Lanny Wadkins and Tom Watson.
Greg Norman will be looking for his first Champions Tour victory this week and his record in Champions Tour majors would indicate that he’s close to breaking back into the winners circle. Norman has five Top-5 finishes in Champions Tour majors and seven Top-10 efforts in eight starts.
What a nice run Dave Schultz is having. In his last three starts, Schultz has finished T3-T2-T5. He’s 40-under over that stretch and has jumped from 157th on the money list to 19th in three weeks.
Much like Dave Schultz, Chad Collins has enjoyed a nice stretch as well. He’s finished T2-T2 in the last two events to climb from 53rd on the money list to 14th.
Yet another player on a hot streak is Blake Adams. Adams’ streak of 24 consecutive rounds of par or better ended Sunday with a final-round 73 at the Price Cutter Charity Championship. Adams is currently fourth on the money list.