By Ron Patey
Jason Day broke out of the gate at the BMW Championship in a full gallop, speeding to a career-best first-round total of 10-under 61. The FedExCup standings leader, who now holds the No. 1 spot in the Official World Golf Rankings (OWGR), carried the momentum through the second round with a 63. From there, he posted a couple of weekend 69s to coast into the winner’s circle. The white-hot Aussie finished six strokes ahead of PGA Tour rookie Daniel Berger. Berger made the biggest upward FedExCup gain at the tournament, moving from 46th to 9th.
Day has won four of his last six starts and owns five championships on the season (Farmers Insurance Open, RBC Canadian Open, PGA Championship, The Barclays and now the BMW Championship). Rory McIlroy, the man Day displaced as No. 1 in the OWGR, moved up from No. 17 to No. 11 in the FedExCup race. The Northern Irishman showed positive signs that his game is rounding back into top form, finishing T4 at 14-under with Rickie Fowler and J.B. Holmes.
Next On The Tee: Tour Championship
The 30 best players through the first three FedExCup playoff tournaments are set to get down and dirty in the deep south this week. And all sorts of honors are on the line. At East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, once the home course of Bobby Jones, the players will determine the new FedExCup champion and the OWGR No. 1. Jason Day and Jordan Spieth will battle for 2015 Player of the Year honors.
Spieth, who won the Masters and U.S. Open to dominate the early portion of the campaign, is looking to shift the spotlight back onto himself. He comes into the event in good shape after a bounce-back effort in the BMW Championship, which featured a first-round hole-in-one. The 22-year-old Texan’s T13 finish at Chicago leaves him second in the FedExCup standings, despite missed cuts in his two previous playoff appearances.
Spieth and the rest of the top five — Day, Fowler (3), Henrik Stenson (4) and Bubba Watson (5) — are all in position to wear the FedExCup crown outright with a victory at East Lake. Last year’s FedExCup champ, Billy Horschel, fizzled in this year’s playoffs, going MC at The Barclays, 72nd in the Deutsche Bank Championship and T32 at the BMW. Horschel wrapped up his season 66th in the standings.
East Lake Golf Club plays 7,307 yards and is a par 70.
Favorites: Jason Day, Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler, Henrik Stenson
Players To Watch: Bubba Watson, Dustin Johnson, Daniel Berger, Zach Johnson, Justin Rose
Ron Patey covered the golf industry for 21 years as a special sections editor with Sun Media. During the past five years, Patey has been a golf writer for Examiner.com.