This is not a time of year when a whole lot of people are focused on golf. But between Jon Rahm solidifying his place among the game’s elite by winning the Race to Dubai, Tyler Duncan and Webb Simpson going to extra holes in Sea Island, and Sei Young Kim stomping on everyone’s throats to end the Race to the CME Globe, yesterday turned out to be a pretty great Sunday for all of us sickos.
He stood 6’6” and weighed 245…
Jon Rahm started Sunday with a dramatic victory at the DP World Tour Championship, the final event in the European Tour’s Race to Dubai. The temperamental Spaniard began the day tied for the lead and burst out with five birdies in his first seven holes. He proceeded to make four bogeys over his next eight, bringing his chasers back into the mix. An up-and-down birdie on the 72nd hole proved to be enough, though, and Rahm walked away with both the DP WTC and Race to Dubai titles. Leaderboard
Somehow, Jon Rahm occasionally gets forgotten conversations about golf’s young stars. But the 25-year-old phenom has been on a tear since his college days at Arizona State. He won three times in 2019, notched three top-11 finishes in majors, and ends the year ranked No. 3 in the Official World Golf Ranking. He has only two PGA Tour victories (to go with six on the Euro Tour), but he’s unquestionably primed for a big-game hunt in 2020.
- Rahm’s final-hole birdie gave him the edge over Tommy Fleetwood, who closed out the year with a win and a runner-up.
- Mike Lorenzo-Vera held at least a share of the lead for each of the first three rounds but was unable to gather any momentum on Sunday. Still, he moves to 65th in the world rankings and can make a push for the 2020 Masters.
- Rory McIlroy was -15 for his first and third rounds in Dubai, but rounds of 74 on Friday and 73 on Sunday forced him to settle for fourth.
- Bernd Wiesberger entered the week in the driver’s seat for the Race to Dubai title, but a T-28 left him trophy-less. Although he’ll be disappointed, Wiesberger’s 2019 was a career year and vaulted him to No. 21 in the world rankings.
Sunday at the RSM Classic was supposed to be the Brendon Todd show, but Tyler Duncan had different plans. Now in his third season on the big tour, Duncan had never finished better than T-5 in a PGA Tour event. That all changed this week as the Indiana native defeated Webb Simpson in a playoff for his first PGA Tour victory. Duncan birdied three of his final four holes, including the difficult par-4 18th, and then birdied the 18th again on the second playoff hole. Leaderboard
Tyler Duncan has played professional golf since leaving Purdue University in the spring of 2014. He put in time on the PGA Tour Latinoamérica or the Korn Ferry Tour, and while he never won, he came close multiple times. Strong off the tee and with his irons, Duncan has fallen short in the past mostly because of his performance on and around the greens. In a sport where 20-somethings are thought to be taking over, it’s encouraging to see a 30-year-old grinder break through.
- For the first time in a month, Brendon Todd did not win after entering an event. Todd started the day tied for the lead in Sea Island but never got things going. He settled for a fourth-place finish, still a fine way to cap off the best stretch of his career.
- Webb Simpson made just one bogey over his final 36 holes, but the former U.S. Open champion came up short in the playoff with Duncan. Webb shot rounds of 65-68-63-67 for his fourth runner-up of 2019.
- Sponsor exemption and former Vanderbilt standout Will Gordon finished T-10 this weekend. Gordon shot 68-65-70-66 for his first PGA Tour top 10.
Sei Hey Kid
The 2019 LPGA Tour season wrapped up this weekend with an event to remember. Playing for a record $1.5 million first-place prize, 60 women battled for the CME Group Tour Championship. Danielle Kang made the first Sunday charge, shooting 65 to get in at -16. England’s Charley Hull then birdied five of her final seven holes, arriving at the clubhouse one ahead of Kang. In the final group of the day, Sei Young Kim hit her approach on No. 18 to 20 feet and slid in the putt for the win. The wire-to-wire triumph is Kim’s third victory and tenth top 10 of the season.
Nelly Korda (T-3), defending champion Lexi Thompson (T-6), and Jessica Korda (T-6) all finished inside the top 10. Leaderboard
Shugo Imahira won the Dunlop Phoenix Open in Japan this weekend. The top 10 included PGA Tour regulars Max Homa (T-5), Collin Morikawa (T-5), and Cameron Champ (T-8).
This weekend at the Wishbone, an annual Linksoul event at Goat Hill Park in Oceanside, CA, Geoff Ogilvy stunned the crowd with a walk-off ace. Watch
The 2020 LPGA Tour schedule features 33 events and $75 million in prize money. Full Story from Randall Mell
Shotgun Start: Thumbs up in Dubai, Kim’s $1.5M putt, and Sea Island runs on Duncan
A worse-for-the-wear Victory Monday recording of the Shotgun Start bounces around the world of golf from the weekend while also discussing best-man speeches, football, and apple varietals. There is no crying over #ToddWatch having to be put in the garage for a few months. Jon Rahm’s Race to Dubai title in the Middle East leads to a discussion on his future and his already outrageous clip of contention. Andy explains his skill-buckets theory, which Rahm fulfills, and predicts he’ll win the Masters. On the LPGA, Sei Young Kim’s win in Naples is praised as the event of the day in a week that was full of positive PR for that tour. The Journeyman of the Day is Tyler Duncan, aka the least interesting man in the world, who took down Webb Simpson in Sea Island. Duncan’s past Indiana prep golf exploits are highlighted as well as his mundane special interests. In news, they excoriate the new branded “hole in one” that the PGA Tour is now pushing and Greg Norman’s Cybertruck purchase. Listen on iTunes, Stitcher, and Spotify.
Whether you plan to or not, we will all be eating too much food on Thursday. Make sure you have a comfy and, more importantly, stretchy shirt for the big day. Our Fried Egg t-shirts check both boxes. Grab yours in blue or grey!