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Thursday, September 8, 2016

The Tour Finals Are Here!

The third FedExCup Playoff event starts today, but so does the first Tour Final event. There are roughly 150 players in the field -- 75 from the Tour and 75 from the PGA, European and other Tours. And for those guys, Tour cards are on the line.

Canterbury Golf Club in Beachwood OH

The event is the DAP Championship in Beachwood OH, which is a new event in the Tour Finals. It adds an interesting twist to the Finals, because players will next go the Albertsons Boise Open in Boise ID then double back for the Nationwide Children's Hospital Championship in Columbus OH. The Tour Championship will then be held in Jacksonville FL.

As I said, the scene of the crime this week is Canterbury Golf Club in Beachwood OH, which is near Cleveland. Will it be a challenge? Well, according to
"[It's] only one of two [courses] in the United States that has hosted five of the rotating men’s ‘major’ tournaments (Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, New York being the other): the U.S. Open, PGA Championship, U.S. Senior Open, Senior PGA Championship and U.S. Amateur."
That's a pretty serious venue, if you ask me. It should give the boys something to think about.

And the field is very interesting as well. In case you haven't seen the list of players, you can check it out on this page. But I'll mention a few of the more familiar names teeing it up this week.
  • I suppose the name getting the most attention is none other than Andrew "Beef" Johnston, who's decided to try for a PGA Tour card after a breakout year on the ET. Beef could have a really profitable career over here if he can deal with the celebrity-level attention he'll draw.
  • The other most-mentioned name is Bryson DeChambeau. Bryson has struggled a bit trying to get his card, but it appears that his driver -- which seemed to desert him not long after that first T4 at the RBC Canadian Open -- may have been damaged. Cobra suggested he try a new driver head and that seems to have straightened out most of the waywardness he'd been experiencing.
  • College standout Ollie Schniederjans has already locked up a Tour card -- he finished 6th on the season money list -- but is looking to improve his status, in hopes of grabbing a ticket to THE PLAYERS next year.
  • Trick shot artist Wesley Bryan won the "battlefield promotion" a month back and is already fully exempt next year... but he'd like that PLAYERS spot as well.
  • Curtis Thompson (that's Lexi's brother) is exempt to the Tour next year but wants a PGA Tour card.
  • Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano, who you may recognize from the European Tour, also has Tour status next year... but at 64 he could use a better ranking if he doesn't get his PGA Tour card.
  • Gerina's husband Martin Piller is trying to regain his PGA Tour card, as is Arnold Palmer's grandson Sam Saunders.
  • And I wouldn't want to forget Kiradech Aphibarnrat from Thailand.
Of course, there are a number of other names you'd recognize as well. It's going to be a packed field.

The website only lists today's broadcast time, on GC at 12:30pm ET. (That's just half past noon, not after midnight.) With so many recognizable names on such a historic course, this should be a pretty good event.

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