Justin Rose continued his march to the summit of the European Tour’s Race to Dubai rankings with his second victory in a row at the Turkish Airlines Open.
The Englishman, who came from eight shots behind to win the WGC-HSBC Champions in China by two shots last week, is now within touching distance of Race to Dubai leader Tommy Fleetwood after securing a thrilling one shot win at the Regnum Carya Golf & Spa Resort.
Rose’s points tally for the season is now just under four million points, putting him 134,839 points behind Fleetwood with only two events left in the season.
The result means that the Race to Dubai is now closer than ever before heading into the season climax later this month when the top 60 ranked players meet at the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai, which takes place at Jumeirah Golf Estates from November 16-19.
Nick Tarratt, Director of the European Tour International Dubai office, said: “Congratulations to Justin Rose on completing back-to-back victories covering a World Golf Championships and then a Rolex Series event. Things are really heating up at the top of the Race to Dubai rankings and we’re poised for an exciting finish so I’m sure the fans will be in for a treat at our season finale in Dubai.”
Rose began the final day in Antalya two shots off the pace but a solid front nine put him in a four-way tie for the lead at the turn.
Birdies on 15 and 16 meant that he was tied for the lead with playing partner Nicolas Colsaerts at 17 under going in to the final hole of the tournament and when both men put their approach shots close, it was a matter of who could hold their nerve.
In the end it was Rose who sunk his putt to secure back-to-back wins for the first time in his career.
“It's like a bus, you wait ages for one and then two turn up at once,” said Rose, who now has his eyes firmly set on finishing at the top of the European Tour for the second time in his career.
“It's exciting to be within touching distance but I didn't quite fully anticipate being so close to Tommy. I'm banking on trying to freshen up and continue my good form and momentum in Dubai.
“If I win there, then Tommy is going to have to play some good golf next week and in Dubai to beat me, and if he does, hats off to him. I just know I need to go and play well in Dubai and that's been my mentality from the outset and it not going to change.”
Meanwhile Colsaerts’ tied runner-up finish sees him leapfrog from 49th to 24th place in the Race to Dubai rankings. The Belgian’s season total has reached 1,181,562 points and he’s in good form ahead of a sixth DP World Tour Championship appearance later this month.
South Africa’s Dylan Frittelli also made significant strides up the rankings after joining Colsaerts in second place at the Regnum Carya Golf & Spa Resort, moving from 39th to 18th place in the rankings after picking up 515,302 points.
Another man who has almost certainly secured a tee-time at the Jumeirah Golf Estates’ Earth course for the season finale is Eddie Pepperell. The Englishman finished the Turkish Airlines Open in a tie for sixth place to pick up 192,731 points and move up ten places from 45th to 35th spot in the Race to Dubai rankings.
The man he finished tied for sixth alongside with, Thailand’s Kiradech Aphibarnrat, has broken in to the top 20 in the rankings. He’s now in 19th place after claiming 192,731 points for his efforts.
Shane Lowry was tied for the lead heading in to the final round of the Turkish Airlines Open but ended up finishing in eighth place to pick up 134,091 points and move from 62nd to 49th spot in the rankings. He’ll now be banking on a strong finish at next week’s Nedbank Golf Challenge in South Africa to secure his spot in Dubai for the season finale.
However it’s still the Englishman Tommy Fleetwood who remains at the head of the Rankings with 4,114,088 points, whilst Rose is now in second with a season-tally of 3,979,249 points and Sergio Garcia in third spot on 3,184,581.