The Turkish Airlines Open by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism represents the final opportunity to qualify for the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai and the statisticians have been out with the calculators working out who needs to do what at both ends of the Race to Dubai.
This week marks the third leg of the four-tournament Final Series and players who have played all three events so far – the BMW Masters, WGC – HSBC Champions and this week’s Turkish Airlines Open by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism – will be awarded a Race to Dubai points bonus of 20% of their total official money earned in these three events.
At the start of the Final Series 23 players, being those ahead of Thorbjorn Olesen who was the highest ranked player not eligible for all three events, were eligible for the bonus and of these, 15 have played all three events and will therefore have the 20% bonus points added to their Race to Dubai total come Sunday night.
The eligible players are:
1. Henrik Stenson
4. Ian Poulter
6. Richard Sterne
8. Thongchai Jaidee
9. Thomas Björn
11. Peter Uihlein
12. Brett Rumford
15. Branden Grace
16. Jamie Donaldson
17. David Howell
18. Stephen Gallacher
20. Lee Westwood
22. Miguel Angel Jiménez
26. Tommy Fleetwood
29. Chris Wood
All of which could well be significant both in terms of finishing European Tour Number One and securing a share of the $3.75 million Race to Dubai Bonus Pool by finishing in the top ten at the end of the season.
At the very top of The Race to Dubai, Henrik Stenson is in pole position but with two bumper purses to conclude the 2013 campaign, with first prizes of €848,930 this week and €986,615* next week on offer, is it mathematically possible for any player down to Padraig Harrington in 67th place to still win the Race to Dubai should they win both titles.
However, should Stenson win this week in Turkey, the Race will be over unless Justin Rose or Ian Poulter finish in second place. Graeme McDowell, currently second, would not be able to catch Stenson in next week’s DP World Tour Championship, Dubai if the Swede takes the title this week in Turkey. But on the flip side, if Stenson doesn’t win, Rose or Poulter could go top of the Race to Dubai with a top two finish heading to the final showdown.
Moving down the Race to Dubai, the aim is to finish in the top 60 to qualify for the season finale. Danny Willett is the man looking over his shoulder as he lies in 60th place with 522,478 points. If he finishes last he will win 5,312, taking his total to 527,790, so that is the minimum requirement players from 61 to 81 have to pass to have a chance of making the top 60.
Therefore, depending on what the players above them do, the following players must at least hit these goals to have any chance of qualifying for Dubai.
61st – Craig Lee – needs to finish 58th or better
62nd – Garth Mulroy – needs to finish 42nd or better
63rd – Ricardo Santos – needs to finish 34th or better
64th – Paul Lawrie – needs to finish 33rd or better
65th – Steve Webster – needs to finish 32nd or better
66th – Ricardo Gonzalez – needs to finish 30th or better
67th – Padraig Harrington – needs to finish 12th or better
68th – Simon Dyson – not playing
69th – Justin Walters – needs to finish 9th or better
70th – Gregory Havret – needs to finish 8th or better
71st – Paul Waring – needs to finish 8th or better
72nd – Richie Ramsay – needs to finish 7th or better
73rd – Graeme Storm – needs to finish 7th or better
74th – John Parry – needs to finish 6th or better
75th – Eddie Pepperell – needs to finish 6th or better
76th – Liang Wen-chong – needs to finish 6th or better
77th – David Drysdale – needs to finish 6th or better
78th – Max Kieffer – needs to finish 6th or better
79th Robert-Jan Derksen – needs to finish 6th or better
80th – Morten Orum Madsen – needs to finish 5th or better
81st – JB Hansen – needs to finish 5th or better.
82nd – Anders Hansen – not playing
83rd Damien McGrane – needs to finish 5th or better
There are sure to be plenty of ifs and buts, twists and turns but essentially, every player in the field still has everything to play for as the Final Series heads towards a climax.
*DP World Tour Championship, Dubai, prize money subject to change as it is calculated on the exchange rate of the tournament week.