In a strange turn of events, Brooks Koepka won a regular PGA Tour event on Sunday. It was not a major championship, and yet he still decided to win...kinda crazy. The victory marks the 5th career PGA Tour victory for the scrawny American but just his second non-major championship and his first non-major since the 2015 Waste Management. Leaderboard
Koepka (-21) finished off the tournament with a final-nine 29 and a closing eagle to win by four strokes at the CJ Cup. He shot a final-round 64 and completely slammed the door on any possibility of others catching him.
If you aren’t familiar with the work of Brooks Koepka by now, then you are exactly the person Brooks was talking about during his surly press conferences. The 2018 Player of the Year has now reached #1 in the world for the first time in his career. He has won four times over the last 16 months and has only been involved in two petty tabloid stories. We all know he is a generational driver of the golf ball, and his status as the best in the world cannot be questioned.
Despite making 11 birdies during the final round and shooting 63 on Sunday, Gary Woodland finished 4 shots behind Brooks in Korea. Woodland opened the tournament with a benign 71 but finished it off with strong rounds of 67-68-63. Gary won in February at the Waste Management Open but was only able to notch two other top 10s on his way to finishing 33rd in the FedExCup playoffs. He now has two top-15 finishes over the last two events and has set himself up for a nice 2019 season.
Other Leaderboard Notes
Finishing in a tie for third was the duo of Rafa Cabrera-Bello and Ryan Palmer. Palmer fired the low round of the tournament with a final-round 62, but the dominance of Koepka was too much to run down.
Jason Day (-12) got his season off to a solid start with his first top-5 finish. We will see him tee it up again next week at the HSBC.
Adam Scott (-10) shot a final-round 63 to make something out of an otherwise forgettable week in South Korea. The Aussie shot up into a tie for 10th with the likes of Ian Poulter and JJ Spaun.
That’s Not a Buick
Danielle Kang made four birdies over her last 8 holes to close out the Buick LPGA Shanghai event in China. The popular LPGA star has not won since her 2017 KPMG Women’s PGA Championship victory, and her excitement was felt throughout the golf world. She finished the event two shots clear of seven women, which include world #1 Ariya Jutanugarn and Lydia Ko. Leaderboard
Shotgun Start: A new No. 1 (FedExCup, that is) and Brendan’s must-attend events for 2019
Andy and Brendan return from the weekend to run through the results from across the globe. We have a new world No. 1, but more importantly, we also have a new No. 1 in the 2019 FedExCup standings. Then Andy gets worked up about a promising development on Westwood Island. They also discuss an admirable candor of Danielle Kang and a curious slow-play penalty on the Senior circuit. Finally, Brendan responds to Andy’s list from last week and delivers the top five events where he wants to take the Shotgun Start on the road in the coming year. Listen on iTunes, Stitcher or Spotify
The European Tour finish at Valderrama will be delayed until Monday due to weather. Tournament host Sergio Garcia leads Lee Westwood (shoutout Andy) by 3 shots. The players have about 9 holes to play on Monday morning. Leaderboard
Woody Austin birdied the 72nd hole of the Dominion Energy Charity Classic to beat the evergreen Bernhard Langer on the Champions Tour this week. Leaderboard
Shoutout Chad Felts
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