BUD CAULEY EARNS TIMELY FIRST PRO WIN – Bud Cauley (pictured by Getty Images) collected his first win as a professional on Sunday at the Hotel Fitness Championship, the first of four Web.com Tour Finals events. The 24-year-old from Jacksonville, Fla. fired a 7-under final-round 65 to grab the title from third-round leader Colt Knost (68) by one shot. Cauley’s 2014 season on the PGA TOUR was interrupted in July when he dislocated a shoulder at the John Deere Classic. The former University of Alabama star only played one PGA TOUR event between the John Deere and the Hotel Fitness Championship (Wyndham Championship/missed cut). He became eligible for the Finals when he finished 143rd in FedExCup points. The win assured he will earn one of the 25 TOUR cards available at the Finals.
CHIQUITA CLASSIC IS 2nd of 4 FINALS EVENTS – The Chiquita Classic is next in the lineup of Web.com Tour Finals events. River Run Country Club in the Charlotte, N.C. suburb of Davidson will host the Classic for the second year in a row this week. Charlotte is home base for tournament sponsor Chiquita Brands. The Chiquita Classic will be followed by the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Championship (Columbus, Ohio) and the Web.com Tour Championship (Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.) in successive weeks.
CARLOS ORTIZ TO MISS CHIQUITA CLASSIC – Carlos Ortiz has had a change of plans and will not be playing the Chiquita Classic this week. The Guadalajara, Mexico native indicated after collecting his third win of the year at the WinCo Foods Portland Open that he would play all four Web.com Tour Finals events. Rounds of 76-77 (missed cut) at the Hotel Fitness Championship last week suggest he ran out of gas after his big week in Portland. With a T12 finish in Fort Wayne, Andrew Putnamreduced Ortiz’s Regular Season/Finals money list lead by $19,600. Heading to Charlotte, Ortiz leads Putnam by $175,366, which is less than this week’s first prize of $180,000.
CHRIS KIRK TAKES FEDEXCUP LEAD WITH ALUMNI WIN NO. 389 – Chris Kirk landed the biggest win of his career on Monday when he held off several challengers to claim the second event of the FedExCup Playoffs, the Deutsche Bank Championship. In so doing, Kirk took the lead, by 819 points over Rory McIlory and another 24 points over Hunter Mahan. The University of Georgia product’s win was the 389th time a Web.com Tour alumnus has been victorious on the PGA TOUR. Kirk graduated from the Web.com Tour in 2010 after winning twice and finishing second in earnings.
FIVE STILL ALIVE IN FEDEXCUP CHASE – Five players who earned their 2013-14 PGA TOUR privileges through the Web.com Tour last year are among the top-70 who made their way into the third stage of the FedExCup Playoffs, this week’s BMW Championship at Cherry Hills Country Club in Denver, Colo. – Brendon Todd (25th in points), Seung-Yul Noh (36th), Russell Knox (40th),Chesson Hadley (57th) and Will MacKenzie (58th).
TWO MONEY LISTS AND PRIORITY RANKING POSITIONS – Effectively, there are two money lists in play for the Web.com Tour Finals:
- Cumulative Regular Season & Finals Money – This money list involves only those 25 players who have already earned their 2014-15 PGA TOUR card via the Web.com Tour Regular Season (first 21 events). These players are competing for their priority ranking position onlyin the Finals. Their combined Regular Season and Finals earnings will determine based on where they fall in the ranking. Players in this category will be “zippered” with the players from the Finals-only money list (see below) and receive an odd-numbered ranking (1, 3, 5, 7,….45, 47, 49).
- Finals Money List Only – This money list involves all other players competing in the Web.com Tour Finals (Web.com Tour Regular Season money list Nos. 26-75, PGA TOUR/FedExCup points list Nos. 126-200, and PGA TOUR Non-Members/FedExCup points Nos. 126-200, plus PGA TOUR medical exemptions entered). These players are competing for a second set of 25 PGA TOUR cards as well as a priority ranking position. Players in this category will receive an even-numbered ranking and be zippered with those on the cumulative list above (2, 4, 6, 8,….46, 48, 50).
- Perks for Nos. 1 – The leading money winners on both lists will be fully exempt on the PGA TOUR in 2014-15 and receive an invitation to the 2015 PLAYERS Championship.
BACK PROBLEM – One of the youngest players in the Web.com Tour Finals is 22-year-old Patrick Rodgers. College golf’s most decorated star in 2013-14 was forced to withdraw from the Hotel Fitness Championship in his home state of Indiana last week due to an oblique injury, the same injury that sent him to the sidelines at the recent Wyndham Championship on the PGA TOUR. Rodgers secured his spot in the Finals via Non-Member FedExCup points. As of Sept. 2nd, he was in the Chiquita Classic field.
CORRECTIONS – There were two items in releases within the last week that should be clarified:
- Max Homa attended the University of California-Berkeley (not USC as stated) in a release dated Aug. 24th.
- The footnote about bolded and un-bolded names in a release dated Aug. 31st should have included an additional reference to “2013-14 Web.com Tour members who finished 26-75 at the end of the Regular Season” being part of the un-bolded group.
DID YOU KNOW? – Bud Cauley (age 24) became the 14th player in his 20s to win on the Web.com Tour this year (in 22 tournaments).
SOCIAL MEDIA – This week’s social media outlets are:
Twitter: @Chiquita Classic / #ChiquitaClassic
NEXT WEEK – The Web.com Tour Finals head north to Columbus, Ohio and the Ohio State University Golf Club’s Scarlet Course. Seung-Yul Noh won last year’s Nationwide Children’s Hospital Championship. The South Korean went on to win his first PGA TOUR event, the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, in April.
Source: PGA Tour