PGA Tour announces changes to scheme for points race, playoff format

Seamus Power

The new format will make the Tour Championship a victor take all event - which it usually is anyway - but rewards players at the top of the points standings by spreading out the field significantly before the first shot is taken Thursday morning. "As soon as the Tour Championship begins, any fan - no matter if they've followed the PGA Tour all season or are just tuning in for the final event - can immediately understand what's going on and what's at stake for every single player in the field".

Live coverage will begin from 6.30pm over the first two days on Sky Sports Golf, with coverage getting underway from 5.30pm on Saturday and 5pm for the final round.

There's only a pair of Par 5s on this Par 70 layout that weighs in at 7,385 yards, and with a winning score of just creeping into double figures likely, making par is often the name of the game on some of these tricky Par 4s.

Keegan Bradley, the victor of the BMW Championship two weeks ago who enters this week ranked sixth on the FedEx Cup point line, said, "It will make for interesting viewing for sure". It's just that pros at this level don't often play in net tournaments.

The Tour Championship will now feature a staggered scoring system with the top player in the playoffs beginning at -10 with scores descending to even par for the 26th through 30th spots. "So every viewer, every spectator and every player on the golf course will know precisely where they stand at any moment".

That seemed to change a year ago at this event, when Xander Schauffele won the Tour Championship at +8000. It was the second time there were two winners on Sunday.

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There's more good news for whoever leads the standings next year. The other was in 2009, when Phil Mickelson won the tournament and Tiger Woods won the FedEx Cup. Monahan said that might encourage players to enter the final regular-season event, the Wyndham Championship, to try to secure the No. 1 seed or at least improve positions going into the playoffs.

The top player in points at the end of the regular season will receive a $2 million bonus, with payouts going down 10 places to $500,000.

Almost three months after the PGA Tour ended another run outside golf-rich Washington, the PGA of America announced an agreement for the club to host the Women's PGA Championship twice, the Senior PGA Championship twice, the PGA Championship (2031) and the Ryder Cup (2036).

SportsLine's prediction model, built by DFS pro Mike McClure, has been dead-on so far in the 2018 FedEx Cup Playoffs.

All of which makes Tuesday morning's announcement at PGA Tour headquarters in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. seem all the more radical.

► Make it easy to keep up to date with more stories like this. Thomas, the reigning FedEx Cup champion, has an Official World Golf Ranking of No. 4 and is No. 5 in the FedEx Cup standings.

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