The Tour Championship (stylized as the TOUR Championship) is a golf tournament that is part of the PGA Tour. It has historically been one of the final events of the PGA Tour season; prior to 2007, its field consisted exclusively of the top 30 money leaders of the past PGA Tour season.
|Established||1987, 33 years ago|
|Course(s)||East Lake Golf Club|
|Length||7,346 yards (6,717 m)|
|Tournament record score|
|Aggregate||257 Tiger Woods (2007)|
|To par||−23 Tiger Woods (2007)|
Starting in 2007, it was the final event of the four-tournament FedEx Cup Playoffs, with eligibility determined by FedEx Cup points accumulated throughout the season. From 2019 onward, the FedEx Cup was reduced to three events, and the Tour Championship is now held in late August rather than mid-September.
While originally followed by the PGA Tour Fall Series (for those competing for qualifying exemptions in the following season), a re-alignment of the PGA Tour's season schedule in 2013 made the Tour Championship the final event of the season.
From 1987 to 1996, several courses hosted the event. Beginning in 1997, the event alternated between Champions Golf Club in Houston and East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta; since 2004, East Lake has been the event's permanent home.
From its debut in 1987 through 2006, the top 30 money winners on the PGA Tour after the penultimate event qualified for the event. It took place in early November, the week after the comparable event in Europe, the Volvo Masters, which allowed players who are members of both the PGA Tour and the European Tour to play in both end of season events. After the Tour Championship, the money list for the season was finalized. There were, and still are, a number of additional events between the Tour Championship and Christmas which are recognized by the PGA Tour, but prize money won in them is unofficial. Also, because this tournament's field is not as large as other golf tournaments, there is no 36-hole cut; all players who start the event are credited with making the cut and receive some prize money.
In 2007, the Tour Championship moved from November to mid-September, where it ended the four-tournament FedEx Cup Playoffs. As in past years, 30 players qualified for the event, but the basis for qualification was no longer prize money. Instead, FedEx Cup points accumulated during the regular PGA Tour season and then during the three preceding playoff events determined the participants. Beginning in 2009, the assignment and awarding of points assured that if any of the top five FedEx Cup point leaders entering The Tour Championship won the event, that player would also won the FedEx Cup. Therefore, it still remained possible for one player to win the Tour Championship and another player to win the FedEx Cup. For example, Tiger Woods won the 2018 Tour Championship but finished second in the FedEx Cup, while Justin Rose won the FedEx Cup despite finishing the tournament tied for fourth, because Woods entered the Tour Championship 20th in overall points while Rose was 2nd.
2007 was also the inaugural year for the Tour's Fall Series, which determined the rest of the top 125 players eligible for the following year's FedEx Cup, which made the event no longer the final tournament of the season. However, starting in 2013, the Tour Championship was the final tournament of the PGA Tour season; seasons begin in October of the previous calendar year. Since 2007, those who qualified for the Tour Championship earned a Masters Tournament invitation. For 2020, players who qualify for the Tour Championship will be invited to the Sentry Tournament of Champions, a byproduct of tournament cancellations from the coronavirus pandemic.
Hole 18 at East Lake Golf Club is a par 3, which has been criticized as lacking drama for fans. The PGA Tour announced in 2016 that it would be reversing the nines at East Lake for the Tour Championship so that play would finish on a more exciting par 5 hole.
Beginning in 2019, the tournament adopted a new format so that its winner would also be the FedEx Cup champion. Similar to the modern pentathlon's final event (the cross-country run with shooting contest) and Nordic combined skiing's Gundersen method of scoring, the player with the most FedEx Cup points at the start of the tournament will earn the #1 overall seed starting at 10 under par. The second seed will start at −8, the third seed at −7, and so on down to the fifth seed at −5. Seeds 6–10 will begin at −4; seeds 11–15 will begin at −3; and so on, down to seeds 26–30 who will start at even par. The handicap system will ensure the FedEx Cup champion is the player who wins the Tour Championship.
For purposes of the Official World Golf Ranking, the seeding format will be ignored. All players start at zero and the gross score of the four rounds, without regards to the seeding adjustment, will determine the winner for purposes of the ranking system. Scores without the seeding adjustment will be used to calculate points allocation.
Calamity Jane trophyEdit
The Calamity Jane is a sterling silver commemorative putter given to the winner of the Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club. The putter is an exact replica of Bobby Jones' original putter. The putter/trophy has been given to the winner of the Tour Championship since 2005 and each winner before that year was also given one.
Winner's exemption rewardEdit
From 1998 to 2018, the Tour Championship winner, if not already exempt by other means, received a 3-year PGA Tour exemption. Starting in 2019, the Tour Championship winner is directly awarded the FedEx Cup and receives a 5-year PGA Tour exemption.
|East Lake Golf Club||Atlanta, Georgia|
1999, 2001, 2003
|Champions Golf Club,
Cypress Creek Course
|1995–96||Southern Hills Country Club||Tulsa, Oklahoma|
|1993–94||The Olympic Club, Lake Course||San Francisco, California|
|1991–92||Pinehurst Resort, No. 2 Course||Pinehurst, North Carolina|
|1989||Harbour Town Golf Links||Hilton Head Island, South Carolina|
|1988||Pebble Beach Golf Links||Pebble Beach, California|
|1987||Oak Hills Country Club||San Antonio, Texas|
|2019||Rory McIlroy (2)||Northern Ireland||−18 (−5)||4 strokes||Xander Schauffele||Rory McIlroy||267|
|2018||Tiger Woods (3)||United States||269||−11||2 strokes||Billy Horschel||9,000,000||1,620,000|
|2017||Xander Schauffele||United States||268||−12||1 stroke||Justin Thomas||8,750,000||1,575,000|
|2016||Rory McIlroy||Northern Ireland||268||−12||Playoff|| Kevin Chappell
|Tour Championship by Coca-Cola|
|2015||Jordan Spieth||United States||271||−9||4 strokes|| Danny Lee
|2014||Billy Horschel||United States||269||−11||3 strokes|| Jim Furyk
|2013||Henrik Stenson||Sweden||267||−13||3 strokes|| Jordan Spieth
|2012||Brandt Snedeker||United States||270||−10||3 strokes||Justin Rose||8,000,000||1,440,000|
|2011||Bill Haas||United States||272||−8||Playoff||Hunter Mahan||8,000,000||1,440,000|
|The Tour Championship presented by Coca-Cola|
|2010||Jim Furyk||United States||272||−8||1 stroke||Luke Donald||7,500,000||1,350,000|
|2009||Phil Mickelson (2)||United States||271||−9||3 strokes||Tiger Woods||7,500,000||1,350,000|
|2008||Camilo Villegas||Colombia||273||−7||Playoff||Sergio García||7,000,000||1,260,000|
|2007||Tiger Woods (2)||United States||257||−23||8 strokes|| Mark Calcavecchia
|2006||Adam Scott||Australia||269||−11||3 strokes||Jim Furyk||7,000,000||1,170,000|
|2005||Bart Bryant||United States||263||−17||6 strokes||Tiger Woods||6,500,000||1,170,000|
|2004||Retief Goosen||South Africa||269||−11||4 strokes||Tiger Woods||6,000,000||1,080,000|
|2003||Chad Campbell||United States||268||−16||3 strokes||Charles Howell III||6,000,000||1,080,000|
|2002||Vijay Singh||Fiji||268||−12||2 strokes||Charles Howell III||5,000,000||900,000|
|The Tour Championship presented by Dynegy|
|2001||Mike Weir||Canada||270||−14||1 stroke|| Sergio García
|The Tour Championship presented by Southern Company|
|2000||Phil Mickelson||United States||267||−13||2 strokes||Tiger Woods||5,000,000||900,000|
|1999||Tiger Woods||United States||269||−15||4 strokes||Davis Love III||5,000,000||900,000|
|1998||Hal Sutton||United States||274||−6||Playoff||Vijay Singh||4,000,000||720,000|
|The Tour Championship|
|1997||David Duval||United States||273||−11||1 stroke||Jim Furyk||4,000,000||720,000|
|1996||Tom Lehman||United States||268||−12||6 strokes||Brad Faxon||3,000,000||540,000|
|1995||Billy Mayfair||United States||280||E||3 strokes|| Steve Elkington
|1994||Mark McCumber||United States||274||−10||Playoff||Fuzzy Zoeller||3,000,000||540,000|
|1993||Jim Gallagher, Jr.||United States||277||−7||1 stroke|| David Frost
|1992||Paul Azinger||United States||276||−8||3 strokes|| Lee Janzen
|1991||Craig Stadler||United States||279||−5||Playoff||Russ Cochran||2,000,000||360,000|
|1990||Jodie Mudd||United States||273||−11||Playoff||Billy Mayfair||2,500,000||450,000|
|1989||Tom Kite||United States||276||−8||Playoff||Payne Stewart||2,500,000||450,000|
|1988||Curtis Strange||United States||279||−9||Playoff||Tom Kite||2,000,000||360,000|
|1987||Tom Watson||United States||268||−12||2 strokes||Chip Beck||2,000,000||360,000|
- Since 2019, players have been allocated a starting score (relative to par) based on their position in the FedEx Cup standings. This is shown in parentheses.
- With the change of format in 2019, OWGR points have been awarded based on the lowest total strokes for the tournament rather than the winning score relative to par.
- From 1987 to 2018 the Tour Championship had its own purse. From 2019 the tournament no longer has its own prize fund, with prize money being distributed from the FedEx Cup bonus pool.
- Morfit, Cameron. "FedExCup update: Rose heads into final round as projected No. 1". PGA Tour. Retrieved July 30, 2019.
- Dusek, David. "Justin Rose Rallies to DClaim FedEx Cup Crown, $10 Million Bonus". Golfweek. Retrieved July 30, 2019.
- "PGA Tour announces changes". ESPN. March 21, 2012. Retrieved March 23, 2012.
- "East Lake Golf Club Front, Back Nines to be Reversed for Tour Championship by Coca-Cola". PGA Tour. Retrieved July 30, 2019.
- "PGA Tour making extreme changes to Tour Championship, FedEx Cup format in 2019". CBS Sports. Retrieved September 20, 2018.
- McAllister, Mike (September 18, 2018). "Simplicity the key with changes to FedExCup Playoffs finale". PGA Tour.
- "Awards". East Lake Golf Club.
- "Calamity Jane Replica". PGA Tour.
- "How it works: Tour Championship". PGA Tour. Retrieved August 19, 2019.
- Coverage on the PGA Tour's official site
- Tour Championship Overview and Past Results - Includes past winners and runners-up of tournament from 1987 to 2010
- East Lake Golf Club official site
- The FedEx Cup home page on the PGA Tour's official site