June 29, 2014
By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
- Ben Martin will be playing in his first Open Championship. (Rob Carr/Getty Images)
BETHESDA, Md. -- Shawn Stefani, Ben Martin, Charley Hoffman and Brendan Steele got an added bonus on Sunday.
All four earned spots at Royal Liverpool next month thanks to the new Open Qualifying Series. They were the top four finishers not otherwise exempt for the Open Championship among the top 12 at the Quicken Loans Championship.
Steele and Andres Romero actually tied for fifth on Sunday at Congressional and neither was exempt. But Steele earned the spot beacuse he had a higher Official world Golf Ranking.
Stefani, Martin and Steele will be making their first appearances at the Open Championship while Hoffman will be returning for the first time since 2011.
"I tried not to really think about it," said Martin, who tied for third on Sunday. "... I'm pretty excited to be finally be heading over there. It will be a new experience and learning experience, I'm sure. I've never played any golf over there. I didn't have that on the schedule yesterday, so it's in the schedule now, so that's a good thing."
"Looking forward to getting over there and seeing how the course is playing," said Stefani, who lost in a playoff to Justin Rose.
The OQS continues next week at The Greenbrier Classic with another four spots available among the top 12 finishers. The top player among the top five and ties at the John Deere Classic will also earn a spot.