10 Notes to Know: August 26, 2019

August 26, 2019
Justin Ray
  1. Rory McIlroy won the Tour Championship and became the second player to win the FedExCup multiple times, joining Tiger Woods. After all the hand-wringing about the new staggered-start format, Rory went ahead and posted the best traditional 72-hole score for the week by three strokes.
  1. Rory put on a show with his driver, leading the field for the week in strokes gained off-the-tee. In the final round, McIlroy gained 1.4 strokes off-the-tee, while 54-hole leader Brooks Koepka lost 2.2 to the field in the same statistic – a swing of more than 3.5 shots.
  1. McIlroy also won the Vardon Trophy, the season-long scoring average title handed out annually. McIlroy is the third player to win the Vardon Trophy three or more times at age 30 or younger, joining Woods and Tom Watson.
  1. Rory won the biggest individual payday in golf, a staggering $15 million bonus for taking first prize. When combining those winnings and his regular PGA Tour earnings, McIlroy made $17,704 per hole for the season.
  1. McIlroy finished the season averaging 2.55 strokes gained total per round, best on the PGA Tour. In fact, since that statistic has been kept (since 2004), it’s the best season average by any player not named WoodsTiger had three seasons where he posted a better average (2006, 2007 and 2009).
  1. This was Rory’s 17th PGA Tour win. At age 30, that is the third-most by any player on Tour over the last three decades by players that age or younger. Only Woods (54) and Phil Mickelson (18) had more wins that young in that span.
  1. Koepka lost a 54-hole lead on the PGA Tour for the first time since the 2016 AT&T Byron Nelson. The world’s number one player had converted his previous four opportunities, but three bogeys and a double derailed his chances. On the 72nd hole, Brooks missed a birdie putt that was worth a $1 million difference in the bonus he would take home (the difference between a T-3 and T-4 finish).
  1. Jin Young Ko became the first player with four wins this season on the LPGA Tour, taking the CP Women’s Open by five strokes. Ko did not drop a single shot all week, becoming the first player to win an LPGA event without making a bogey since Inbee Park in 2015.
  1. Erik Van Rooyen birdied the 72nd hole to win the Scandinavian Invitation by one stroke over Matthew Fitzpatrick. It was the first career European Tour win for Van Rooyen, and the 150th win all-time on the European Tour by a player from South Africa.
  1. Fitzpatrick, who finished birdie-birdie, was looking for his sixth career European Tour win. Fitz, age 24, would have become the youngest player to win six times on the European Tour since Woods in 1999, and the youngest European player to get to those six wins since Jose Maria Olazabal in 1989.