Gonzalo Fernandez-Castaño has made giant strides and is now well placed to fight for a Bonus Pool place in The Race to Dubai
Gonzalo Fernandez-Castaño’s win at the Barclays Singapore Open has seen the Spaniard make a giant leap in The Race to Dubai rankings as he moved from 80th place right up into 15th place and into the reckoning for the $7.5 million bonus pool at next month’s Dubai World Championship presented by DP World.
Fernandez-Castaño’s first win of the year came after a play-off victory over Philippine Juvic Pagunsan following a rain-affected weekend which saw the tournament reduced to 54 holes and the play-off suspended after regular play before taking place on Monday.
Having accumulated less than €50,000 by the end of September, the 31 year old was not so long ago struggling to even get in to the top 115 in The Race Dubai. He was understandably thrilled to have sealed his place in the season-ending tournament, where he will battle it out for the $7.5 million prize fund at the Earth course, Jumeirah Golf Estates from December 8-11.
“It’s just amazing to think that a few weeks ago I was worried about having to ask for a medical extension from the Tour because of my back injury and then here I am now; 15th in The Race to Dubai and going to the Dubai World Championship,” he said.
“I wouldn’t have thought that was possible but it just goes to show how crazy this game and life can be sometimes. It is such a big tournament in Dubai that I think we all want to be there.
“The money on offer there is unbelievable and if you can do well there then the World Ranking points, Ryder Cup points and everything that comes with such an event can really help you move in the right direction.
“I will be able to really look forward to going to Dubai to end the season. Winning in Singapore has totally transformed my year and I hope that I can just keep going and playing well and continue to get better so that I have another chance to get into contention in Dubai.”
Steve Webster was another big mover in The Race to Dubai over the weekend after he moved into the top 60, occupying 59th place after jumping from 70th thanks to his tied 11th place finish at Sentosa Golf Club. His compatriot James Morrison, meanwhile, has also snuck into the cut-off point for the Dubai World Championship, his eighth place finish moving him from 78th spot to 60th in The Race to Dubai.
Complimentary tickets for the 2011 Dubai World Championship presented by DP World and held under the patronage of HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Sports Council, are available from the website www.DubaiWorldChampionship.com.