GREENSBORO, N.C. — The final 5 weeks seems like three months to 20-year-old Joohyung “Tom” Kim, and for good purpose. The South Korean child who named himself after a cartoon prepare is on the quick observe.
He bought a uncommon PGA Tour begin within the Scottish Open due to his standing on a Korean tour factors record, hopeful of doing nicely sufficient to get a shot on the Korn Ferry Tour finals.
Now he is a PGA Tour winner who’s No. 21 on this planet and headed to the FedEx Cup playoffs, and he can most likely rely on a spot with the Worldwide workforce on the Presidents Cup.
All aboard with Tom the Practice!
“It has been a loopy month,” Kim mentioned.
He introduced his arrival on the PGA Tour on the Wyndham Championship, the place he started the match with a quadruple-bogey 8 and completed it with a 9-under 61 for a five-shot victory.
“I am actually, actually pleased for Tom,” mentioned Sungjae Im, who accomplished the rain-delayed third spherical Sunday morning with a one-shot lead and could not sustain with Kim, as a result of nobody might. Kim shot 27 on the entrance 9 that left everybody in his wake.
“He is an incredible child and to return out right here and to win on tour as a nonmember and safe your card is admittedly not a simple job and he achieved that,” Im mentioned.
Kim, who turned 20 in June, is the second-youngest winner on the PGA Tour since World Warfare II. Jordan Spieth was two weeks away from turning 20 when he received the 2013 John Deere Traditional.
The victory gave Kim on the spot membership on the PGA Tour, making him eligible for the FedEx Cup playoffs that begin subsequent week. He’s No. 34, assured of taking part in two postseason occasions and with an affordable shot at attending to the finale at East Lake.
Im had a 68 and tied for second together with John Huh (67).
Kim spent his developmental years within the Philippines and in Australia. He already had received thrice on the Asian Improvement Tour and as soon as in Korea earlier than making his American debut at age 18 within the 2020 PGA Championship at Harding Park.
As for the identify? As a younger boy, he was a giant fan of Thomas the Tank Engine within the TV collection “Thomas & Mates.”
“You are alleged to let your dad and mom identify your self and I used to be like, ‘Nope, I am to call myself Thomas.’ I liked the present as a child. I have never watched it or something, however apparently I actually liked the prepare.”
The opposite possibility — he was a giant “Toy Story” fan — would have been Buzz Lightyear. That may have labored. The child is creating fairly the excitement, and he is gentle years forward of others his age.
Kim completed third within the Scottish Open, the primary time it was co-sanctioned by the PGA Tour, and his aim was to get sufficient FedEx Cup factors to complete equal to the highest 200 so he might earn his card via a collection of Korn Ferry Tour occasions late in the summertime.
He earned particular short-term PGA Tour membership when he made the lower on the British Open. He secured a PGA Tour card final week with a seventh-place end within the Rocket Mortgage Traditional. The stress gone, not even a gap quadruple bogey rattled him.
“It has been a five-week stretch for me, nevertheless it seems like three months,” Kim mentioned. “Yeah, it has been a busy month and lots of issues have modified, for certain.”
He completed at 20-under 260.
It was lots worrying for others, even those that weren’t taking part in.
The heartbreak belonged to Justin Lower, who was poised to maneuver into the highest 125 within the FedEx Cup to achieve the postseason and safe a full card for subsequent season.
However on the ultimate gap, Decrease hit his 60-foot birdie putt just a little too agency. That left him a 6-foot par putt that might have put him inside the highest 125. He missed it to the best and was wiping away tears as he walked off the inexperienced.
“I do not actually know what I am considering. It sucks to return up this brief,” Decrease mentioned. “Clearly had some assist with the LIV guys and whatnot — I do not even know if I am allowed to say that. However I do not know. There’s positives. However proper now, it simply flat out sucks.”
The tour has suspended gamers who signed on with Saudi-funded LIV Golf, and they didn’t rely towards the highest 125 within the FedEx Cup. Decrease was the equal of No. 128 going into the ultimate occasion of the common season.
Rickie Fowler out of luck when he missed the lower on Friday at No. 123. However sufficient gamers light on the weekend that Fowler will get to increase his season for no less than one other week on the FedEx St. Jude Championship subsequent week.