Topgolfgears Morning 9: Mother Nature leads BMW Champ | Spieth in trouble? | DJ & Paulina split?

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1. Mother Nature wins BMW Championship
It ain’t over yet, but Mother Nature has had her way with Aronomink. After a total washout Sunday, the pros will give it another go today. With more of the wet stuff expected to hit the already saturated course, there’s a real possibility the tournament could either be shortened to 54 holes or finish Tuesday, depending on how many players finish their final rounds, Monday.
  • Golf Channel’s Ryan Lavner…”The PGA Tour needs some help from Mother Nature to avoid a worst-case scenario in its third playoff event…The final round of the BMW Championship was wiped out Sunday after a steady, all-day rain further soaked an already-waterlogged Aronimink Golf Club. The course has taken on more than three inches of rain in the past 36 hours.”
  • “Tour officials are optimistic that play will be able to resume at 7:30 a.m. ET – there’s potentially a window of opportunity between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. – but the forecast still calls for moderate to heavy rain early before thunderstorms develop later in the day. Slugger White, the Tour’s vice president of rules and competition, said that Aronimink’s staff would need at least 2 ½ hours of uninterrupted work to properly prepare the course for play. He said the condition of the fairways and back nine are his “biggest concern.”
  • “Per Tour regulations, at least half of the 69-man field needs to finish the final round by Monday night to go into a Tuesday finish; otherwise, the 54-hole scores stand. White said that they wouldn’t even attempt to begin the final round if they weren’t confident that at least half the field could finish – even though next week is the lone off-week for players in the playoffs.”
Mike McAllister, PGA Tour...”Depending on how quickly the course can dry up, a window of weather opportunity exists Monday between approximately 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. ET. Even if the final round isn’t completed Monday, PGA TOUR regulations state that the tournament will extend to Tuesday if at least half the field can finish their rounds on Monday.”
  • “White did say the final round would not start on Monday if tournament officials don’t think half the field can finish. If that happens, then the tournament would revert to the 54-hole leaderboard for the final results.”
Geoff Shackelford had an interesting take/reminder…“Let’s establish three very simple facts:–Rain rarely occurs in California from May through October—When a golf tournament is played in California, it finishes in prime time for more than half the country and garners a much bigger rating, no matter who is contending–Golf is played outdoors. It is much better when rain does not interfere with the proceedings.
Ok, technically I’ve presented four simple facts.
  • “As we were reminded again last week after what has actually been a good-weather season in golf, the sport features who continue to sign up their major events on the east coast at times of year when rain can (will) be an issue. The PGA Tour set its playoffs for midwest and northeast venues, with a finish in Atlanta at a boring culmination architecturally that will be even less glamorous in 2019.”
2. Bubble anxiety
How will they even sleep?!
  • Golfweek’s Dan Kilbridge looks at the bubble…”Rose would gladly take a full rainout for his third win of the season. So would a host of guys inside the Tour Championship bubble in the projected FedEx Cup standings. Patton Kizzire (28th), Marc Leishman (29th) and Keegan Bradley (30th) would all advance to East Lake if the remainder of the BMW Championship gets called off.”
  • “Jordan Spieth began the week inside the top 30 but has since moved to 31st, as he stands T-39 through 54 holes. He’s the odd man out unless the Tour can eke out another 18 holes over the next two days. Emiliano Grillo (31st), Andrew Putnam (32nd) and Ryan Armour (32nd) would also see their seasons come to an end.”
  • “Tiger Woods would be on to Atlanta in that scenario, entering the final round projected at 24th in the points standings. Woods shared the 18-hole lead with McIlroy after a thrilling 8-under 62, but the putter has cooled off in two rounds since. He carded a bogey-free 66 Saturday and still left disappointed after missing a handful of solid birdie looks. He’s currently T-11 and five shots off the lead at 11 under.”
Also notable: If no more holes are played and Justin Rose wins, he’ll reportedly become the new World No. 1
3. Fitzmagic redux
My dear friend, John Huggan, wrote about Matthew Fitzpatrick’s determined performance to take the European Masters.
  • “He made hard work of it, but for the second straight year Matt Fitzpatrick is the Omega European Masters champion. Despite battling an unreliable long game over most of the final day-many shots finished left of their targets-the 24-year-old Englishman got himself round Switzerland’s endlessly picturesque Crans-sur-Sierre course in 67 to reach 17 under par for the week and into a playoff with Denmark’s Lucas Bjerregaard.”
  • “It took only one extra hole to settle matters. Having birdied the 402-yard par-4 18th from eight feet to make it to extra holes, Fitzpatrick repeated the feat half an hour later-this time from 15 feet-to clinch his fifth European Tour victory and the €418,660 first prize. He also became the first repeat winner of the event since Seve Ballesteros in 1977-’78.”
  • “All of which will go at least some way to making up for not qualifying for what would have been a second Ryder Cup appearance in France later this month. Needing a victory at the Made in Denmark event last week to claim the final automatic spot in the 12-man squad, Fitzpatrick could do no better than finish T-7.”
4. Spieth in trouble?
Spieth could find himself in a tough, and potentially expensive, position if the BMW Championship doesn’t go another round-or if it does, and the Texan plays poorly.
  • Golf Channel’s Nick Menta…”The 2015 FedExCup winner is currently projected 31st in the playoff standings through 54 holes at Aronimink, with only the top 30 advancing to the Tour Championship at East Lake.”
  • “As the Associated Press pointed out earlier this week, a tour policy requires pros to play at least 25 events in a season or to add a new event that they haven’t played in the last four. Spieth made only 22 starts last season and did not add a new event to his schedule this season.”
  • “His appearance at the Ryder Cup will get him to 24 starts, but he’ll need to qualify for the Tour Championship to avoid running afoul of the policy.”
  • “Per an ESPN.com report, “If he fails to qualify and comes up short, it is unclear what would happen. No player has violated the policy, but the tour’s regulations stipulate that he could receive a major fine (believed to be $20,000) or a suspension.”
5. Football coach Furyk
Golfweek’s Forecaddie looks at the U.S. Ryder Cup captain (a diehard Pittsburgh Steelers fan) through the prism of football coachdom.
  • “So do speeches at these things, preferably of the motivational variety. Furyk is hard at work on his words of wisdom for the squad, and, given that he’s a football fanatic, TMOF wondered if Furyk’s style will be closer to player’s coach or disciplinarian.”
  • “More Pete Carroll or Tom Coughlin?…”Players, for sure,” Furyk told TMOF. “I’m not sure in the Ryder Cup the disciplinarian thing would quite fly, but these are my peers too. I’ve played alongside these guys for so long, not only played with them but (coached) as a vice-captain. I’m a lot older than most of them, but I’d say players coach for sure.”
6. Rumor mill: DJ & Paulina Edition
Do we care? Should we care? Is it our business?
Probably. Probably not. No.
  • Nevertheless, as this newsletter is an ear toward the conversations of the golf world, this is a golf-related topic being discussed at the Maxims, Barstool Sports, and Big Leads of the world: Paulina Gretzky has removed all images of her and Dustin Johnson from her famed Instagram, leading many to draw the conclusion that she is no longer together with DJ.
No official word from anyone, of course.
7. A Swedish flavor at the Ladies French
BBC Report…”Sweden’s Caroline Hedwall carded a bogey-free final round of nine-under par 62 to win the Ladies French Open by two shots.”
  • “The lowest round of the week handed Hedwall a sixth Ladies European Tour win and first since 2012….South Africa’s Stacy Lee Bregman shot a five-under 66 in her final round to finish second.
  • Scotland’s Carly Booth finished tied for 11th, five shots off the pace, after a final round of level-par 71.”
8. Identical twins for the win!
How about this? A pair of identical Danes led their team to WATC title.
  • Golfworld’s Ryan Herrington…”Denmark had played in the World Amateur Team Championship 24 previous times but never won the biennial competition that pits the countries of the world in a stroke-play event. But on Saturday at Ireland’s Carton House Golf Club, all that changed thanks to the standout play of a pair of identical twins: Nicolai and Rasmus Hojgaard.”
  • “With nine holes to play in the 72-hole tournament, Denmark, the United States, Spain and New Zealand were all tied for the team title at 34 under par. The 17-year-old Hojgaard then made eight birdies between them on the O’Meara Course to beat the Americans by one stroke, the closest finish in the WATC since 1968.”
  • “Nicolai finished the day with a seven-under 66 while Rasmus shot a 67. Their teammate, John Axelsen, shot a non-counting 69 in the play-three-count-two format. The Danes’ final score was a 39-under 541 total.”
9. A Nicklaus-designed (mini) golf course

Neil Sagebiel at Armchair Golf Blog had this bit.

  • “The Gold Cub Mini Golf Course, a Jack Nicklaus design, opened recently in Jupiter, Florida…”We went through the same thought process in the design as we would on a full-sized course,” said Nicklaus Design Associate Chad Goetz via WPTV. “We hope the result is something very different than the typical miniature golf experience, and one that is enjoyable for golfers and nongolfers alike.”
One can assume a left-to-right bank shots are favored…

 

GolfWRX Morning 9: Mother Nature leads BMW Champ | Spieth in trouble? | DJ & Paulina split?

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