PGA Tour top 30 all in contention for $11m payday!
The 2014 PGA Tour season is all but over but for one final event: the Tour Championship. And, what an event it is!
The top 29 FedEx Cup points scorers from the season (Dustin Johnson will sit this one out) go head to head over four rounds for the FedEx Cup and a $11.44 million payday.
There’s plenty to play for at the East Lake Golf Club as the Tour season reaches its climax. Keep reading for our preview of the 2014 Tour Championship.
Huge under-par scores expected
The Tour Championship has been hosted by the East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta since 2004 and last year the course ranked as the second easiest par 70 of the year.
Both the outward and inward nines are par 35s and the course averaged 69.383 in 2013. Last year’s field averaged a six-year high 69.1 per cent of the greens in regulation and Henrik Stenson’s winning aggregate of 13-under 267 also set the new standard with the new putting surfaces.
By merely reaching the final Tour event of the season, the 30 qualifiers are already secure in the knowledge that they are exempt into the first three majors of 2015 as well as the WGC Cadillac Championship.
The favourites for the Tour Championship
It takes a special kind of payer to four-putt twice in one tournament and still record a top ten finish. Norther Ireland’s Rory McIlroy is precisely that special kind of player and managed to record a T8 finish at the BMW Championship last weekend despite some very un-Rory like mistakes on the 12th green.
His only previous start at East Lake was in 2012 when he finished T10 but the 25 year old has a strong chance of lifting the FedEx Cup and that massive cheque by finishing in the top three this weekend.
McIlroy is the 18/5 favourite to win the Tour Championship, and should you fancy him to fall apart, he can be backed at 23/20 to finish 11th or worse.
Last time Jim Furyk won at East Lake he also won the 2010 FedEx Cup and the American is arguably the man to beat this weekend.
If you’d backed the 44 year old each-way in his last seven events you’d have got a payout on four occasions and he recorded his fifth top 10 finish in seven starts last weekend at the BMW Championship.
Furyk needs to win the tournament and hope Chris Kirk and Billy Horschel finish outside the top three. While a Tour win has been elusive his form is terrific and he looks good value at 10/1.
Another American in excellent form is Rickie Fowler. His T4 at the BMW was his seventh top ten finish in his last eight events and the youngster is now up to 9th in the FedEx Cup standings.
His putting has been particularly good in recent weeks and that could be the key to success this weekend at 12/1.
Some outsiders to consider in the betting
Quite how Morgan Hoffmann has made the final event of this year’s PGA Tour, perhaps only he knows!
He has been outside the qualification places in each of the three FedEx Cup play-offs so far and his performances in each tournament have been enough to lift him up the rankings into the field for the next event.
Hoffmann finished with a stunning 62-63 at the BMW Championship to finish in third place and a victory could still see him win the huge prize, although he needs other results to go his way. It would be a fairytale finish to the season but he looks great each-way value at 45/1.
Chris Kirk has moved himself into pole position for the Cup and the $11 million payday after his win at the Deutsche Bank Championship. Such are the odd rules of these events that he can mathematically win the Cup by finishing last in the field and despite recording just one other top 25 finish in his last nine starts.
A win would guarantee the title and a top five finish could well be enough. Kirk is available at 35/1 to win the Tour Championship.
Check out all our pre-tournament odds on the 2014 Tour Championship over at our main site now! We’ll also have in-play live betting throughout the tournament, which tees off at 12pm UK time on Saturday, September 11th.