Top 30 players in the FedExCup officially qualify for Cadillac Championship
Doral, Fla. – With one week remaining in the 2014-15 PGA TOUR season, the top 30 performers in the FedExCup will square off to crown the FedExCup champion at the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola. Players who reach the season finale gain entry into several of golf’s biggest events in the 2015-16 season including the first three major championships (The Masters, U.S. Open and the Open Championship), as well as the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship. Based on this FedExCup qualification criteria, several of golf’s biggest names and rising stars are now officially qualified for the Cadillac Championship when it returns to Doral on March 2-6, 2016.
The top three in the FedExCup standings are three of the game’s biggest stars. Australian Jason Day and Americans Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler rank 1, 2 and 3 in the standings, respectively. Combined with No. 11 Rory McIlroy, the four 20-somethings have each won multiple tournaments on TOUR this season. The last time four or more players, all 27 or younger, won multiple TOUR events in one year was 1997 when Tiger Woods, David Duval, Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els and Justin Leonard all won. Day, Spieth, Fowler and McIrloy are all part of a recent youth movement that has risen to the top of the golf world.
Day’s breakthrough season has included five victories, his first major title at the PGA Championship and a climb to No. 1 in the FedExCup standings and Official World Golf Ranking. The five-time winner joins just four others – Tom Watson (1980), Nick Price (1994), Vijay Singh (2004) and Tiger Woods (1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2013) as the only players to have won five or more times in a season since 1980.
The 27-year-old won in February at the Farmers Insurance Open in a four-man playoff. He appeared to be heading into contention at the U.S. Open at Chambers Bay, but vertigo symptoms from an inner-ear infection kept him from playing his best down the stretch. Day finished the event T9. In his next tournament, The Open Championship at St. Andrews, his birdie putt at the final hole finished one rotation from going in and putting him in a playoff. He came back the next week, however, to win for the second time of the season at the RBC Canadian Open.
After a T12 at the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational, Day’s breakthrough win at a major championship came with a dominant victory at the PGA Championship. Day’s victory at Whistling Straits followed six top-five finishes in major championships in the last four years. The win moved him to No. 2 in the FedExCup standings.
At his next start at The Barclays, the first event of the FedExCup Playoffs, Day fired rounds of 63 and 62 on the weekend for a six-stroke victory and took over the No. 1 spot in the standings from Jordan Spieth. He finished T12 at the Deutsche Bank Championship, but further cemented his position at No. 1 in the FedExCupby returning to winning form at the BMW Championship. Day claimed his seventh career PGA TOUR win in his 170th PGA TOUR start at the age of 27 years, 10 months and 8 days. In doing so, he took over the No. 1 spot in the Official World Golf Ranking, becoming the third player in as many weeks to claim the coveted top spot. Prior to his win at the RBC Canadian Open six starts ago, Day was ranked ninth.
In four starts at the Cadillac Championship, Day has yet to record a top-10 finish.
Spieth’s year began with top-10 finishes at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am and the Northern Trust Open. His first win of the year came in a playoff at the Valspar Championship, which moved him into the top 10 in the FedExCup standings at No. 7.
With runner-up finishes in his following two starts at the Valero Texas Open and the Shell Houston Open, Spieth won his first major championship at the Masters Tournament at 21 years of age. The four-stroke win over Justin Rose and Phil Mickelson was the fifth wire-to-wire victory in tournament history. With the win, Spieth (21 years, 8 months, 16 days at the time) added his name to several records, including becoming the second-youngest winner of the Green Jacket in the tournament’s 79-year history behind Tiger Woods (21 years, 3 months, 14 days) and his 18-under-par 270 total matched Woods’ record-setting 1997 performance. The win put Spieth at No. 1 in the FedExCup standings, where he would remain until Day’s win at The Barclays.
At Chambers Bay in June, Spieth posted a 1-under 69 Sunday to move out of a four-way tie for the 54-hole lead and into the record books, becoming just the sixth player to win the Masters Tournament and U.S. Open in the same season. The victory made Spieth the youngest player to win two career majors since Gene Sarazen in 1922. He also became just the second player since 1940 to win four times on the PGA TOUR before the age of 22.
Spieth won in his next start at the John Deere Classic in a playoff with Tom Gillis, and he came up just one stroke short of the aggregate playoff at The Open Championship in his quest to take home the first three major championships of the season (T4).
With a victory at the Deutsche Bank Championship, the second event of the FedExCup Playoffs, Fowler’s second win of the 2014-15 PGA TOUR season moved him into the top five in the FedExCup standings. Fowler’s other victory came at THE PLAYERS Championship in one of the more memorable finishes in recent history. He finished birdie, eagle, birdie, birdie to shoot a final-round 66 and finish at 12-under-par, earning a spot in the three-hole aggregate playoff with Kevin Kisner and Sergio Garcia. Fowler finished the three-hole playoff tied with Kisner at 1-under through those three holes with scores of par, birdie, par. With Garcia eliminated (par-par-par), Fowler and Kisner advanced to sudden-death at the 17th hole, where Fowler’s tee shot landed 4’ 8” from the cup. Kisner’s par and Fowler’s birdie gave the 26-year-old his second-career PGA TOUR win.
In regulation, Fowler played holes 15, 16, 17 and 18 at TPC Sawgrass in a 5-under-par total of 11 strokes. The four-hole score of 11 set a new low on the final four holes at THE PLAYERS Stadium Course for a single round in tournament history. Fowler also become the first winner on the PGA TOUR to play holes 15-18 in 5-under in the final round of any event since the PGA TOUR began tracking hole-by-hole scores in 1983.
All 30 players in the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola field who are now qualified for the Cadillac Championship:
The Cadillac Championship field annually consists of the very best players from around the world. While most tournaments on the PGA TOUR consist of 15-25 of the top 50 players in the Official World Ranking, the Cadillac Championship traditionally has no less than 45-50 of the top 50. It is a given that fans attending the Cadillac Championship will see players like 2015 champion Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day, Rickie Fowler, Bubba Watson, Sergio Garcia, Adam Scott and Jordan Spieth in the field.