It’s officially spooky season, ladies and gentlemen. Minimal golf on television means we have to shift our focus on the weekends. What did you all do?
(Programming note: We wrote this newsletter before the Japan Skins Challenge. We’ll fill you in on all the hilarious repartee in Wednesday’s edition.)
Nice shot, Big J
Justin Thomas captured the first leg of the PGA Tour’s Asian swing with a two-shot victory at the CJ Cup. JT shot rounds of 68-63-70-67 this weekend, besting Danny Lee by two shots at Nine Bridges. After starting Sunday tied for the lead with Lee, JT made seven birdies in the final round to capture his second CJ Cup in the past three years. CJ Cup Leaderboard
If you haven’t been paying attention, Justin Thomas is on an absolute tear. The 26 year-old has eight straight top-12 finishes, including two victories this fall. A wrist injury limited the first half of his 2018-19 season, but he has come back with a vengeance. Now ranked No. 4 in the world, JT seems primed to disrupt the emerging Brooks vs. Rory narrative.
- One of the more noteworthy results of the weekend was a withdrawal. After opening with rounds of 69-75, world No. 1 Brooks Koepka pulled out of the CJ Cup with a knee injury. Brooks had a stem cell procedure on his knee last month, but remarked this week that he was pain-free.
- Danny Lee notched his first top 10 since Mayakoba last fall. The Kiwi reeled off rounds of 67-66-68-69, finishing three shots ahead of third place at Nine Bridges.
- Jordan Spieth got his 2019-2020 season off to a strong start with a T-8 at the CJ Cup. Spieth famously struggled with his weekend scoring average last season, but this Saturday and Sunday he held his own with rounds of 70 and 71.
Blast from the past
Nicolas Colsaerts turned back the clock at Le Golf National this weekend. The Belgian Bomber went 67-66-67-72 to outlast a strong field and win the French Open by one shot over Joachim B. Hansen. Colsaerts had not won since 2013, going more than 200 events without a victory. The win moves him inside the top 200 in the Official World Golf Ranking. Kurt Kitayama (4th), Martin Kaymer (T-5), Richie Ramsay (T-5), and Chris Paisley (T-8), were all top-10 finishers. Leaderboard
It was a star-studded affair on the LPGA Tour this weekend as a flurry of world-class players got in the mix in Shanghai. Jin Young Ko, Brooke Henderson, Nasa Hataoka, and Ariya Jutanugarn all finished in the top 10, but it was Jessica Korda and Danielle Kang who battled for the title. Korda started Sunday with a one-shot lead, but Kang shot a bogey-free 70 in the final round to overtake her Solheim Cup teammate. With eight top 10s coming into the week, Danielle Kang was already in the midst of a fantastic season. This win is her first since Shanghai last season and will move her inside the top 15 in the Rolex Rankings. Buick LPGA Shanghai Leaderboard
With a classic Friday-afternoon news dump, the PGA Tour announced that it had suspended Matt Every 12 weeks for violating its policies regarding “drugs of abuse.” Every released a statement explaining that he tested positive for marijuana but that he has a legal prescription for it in order to treat a mental health condition. Did he break the rule? Yes. Is it still ridiculous that you can be suspended for using a drug you’ve been prescribed? Um, yes.
Weather has forced the PGA Tour Champions to a Monday finish. Scott Parel and Tommy Tolles are tied for the lead, while Colin Montgomerie is one shot back. Leaderboard
Just the Yolk: A U.S. Open Rota? – Garrett fields a question about The Fried Egg’s ideal U.S. Open rota but ends up arguing that the course doesn’t really matter if the setup stinks.
Shotgun Start: Another JT win in Asia, Colsaerts’ party boy ways, and Matt Every suspension
A shortened Monday podcast begins with Brendan and Andy trying to record while also watching the Bears and Mitch Trubisky unravel against the Saints. But there is some solace from Saturday, where Andy’s alma mater pulled off the second biggest upset in Big Ten history. Then in golf matters, the two react to Justin Thomas winning the CJ Cup for the second time in three years and what it might mean for the upcoming year. Nicolas Colsaerts’s win at the French Open is an occasion to dig up some delightful quotes from the “Belgian Bomber.” They recall how he up and left the PGA Tour while he still had his card, his thoughts on living in America and eating the same chicken caesar salad over and over, and his partying ways in Europe that make him a favorite in the Euro Tour locker room. In news, they discuss Matt Every’s 12-week suspension for cannabis, Brooksy’s WD in Korea, and Tiger’s return to Japan. This pre-Skins Game recording means a discussion of that event will come on Wednesday’s episode. Listen on iTunes, Stitcher, or Spotify.
The dwindling daylight has us feeling blue. When you huddle up under a blanket after a long day of work, make sure you have our blue TFE logo t-shirt to keep you comfortable. Get yours today!