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Tour Card Pursuit Is On

While the FedEx Cup chase heats up this week at the Deutsche Bank Championship outside Boston, the scramble for PGA Tour cards commences with the Tour Finals.

The second edition of the four-event series that replaced Q-School as the main pipeline to the PGA Tour starts Thursday at the Hotel Fitness Championship in Fort Wayne, Ind. The field includes the top 75 money winners from the Tour’s 2014 regular season and those who finished between Nos. 125-200 on the PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup points list. (It also includes a handful of PGA Tour non-members who earned enough FedEx Cup points to qualify and PGA Tour players with medical exemptions.)

Although this season’s top 25 earners from the Tour regular season have already locked up PGA Tour cards for 2014-15, they will be playing for priority position, essentially to give themselves the best chance of getting into tournaments. In a new wrinkle this year, priority will be established based on a combination of regular season and Tour Finals earnings, giving added weight to regular-season performance.

Meanwhile, 25 additional PGA Tour cards are up for grabs, to be determined by Tour Finals earnings. Several notable names will be seeking to either preserve their PGA Tour playing status or earn it for the first time, including:

  • Past major winners Ben Curtis (2003 Open Championship), Trevor Immelman (2008 Masters) and Y.E. Yang (2009 PGA Championship);
  • Multiple PGA Tour winners Jonathan Byrd, Chad Campbell, Dudley Hart, Tim Herron, J.J. Henry, Sean O’Hair, John Rollins, Vaughn Taylor and Johnson Wagner;
  • South Africans Branden Grace and Richard Sterne, both multiple winners on the European Tour;
  • Recent Stanford University standout and top-ranked amateur Patrick Rodgers;
  • Notable golf progeny Sam Saunders (Arnold Palmer’s grandson), Kevin Tway (Bob’s son) and Matt Weibring (D.A.’s son);
  • And finally, Jason Allred, who started this season with only conditional Tour status but tied for third at the Northern Trust Open after Monday qualifying. Allred subsequently posted two more top-15s on Tour and earned more than $600,000 in nine starts, but he fell just short of locking up his 2014-15 card at the recent Wyndham Championship.


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