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January 11 2012

7:11 PM

FedExCup Update: Stricker's quick start

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Stan Badz/PGA TOUR
Steve Stricker is off to a quick start with his victory at Kapalua.
FEDEXCUP: Current standings | Expert picks | Breakout players | First-timers | More By Chris Dunham, PGATOUR.COM Probably the last player who needed a FedExCup boost in Maui got just that with his victory at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions. Steve Stricker, who has won multiple events each of the last three years came out of the gates quickly and took the early points lead. He earned 500 points for his victory. To compare, Stricker didn’t reach the 500-point milestone until the 2011 Masters -- his seventh start of the season. Stricker went on to win two events later in the 2011 season and enter the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup at No. 2 in the standings. We’ll know in a few short months just how beneficial this quick start is to the man called "Mr. September." START TO FINISH: In the FedExCup era, no one who has won the season-opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions has gone on to finish better than 10th in the final FedExCup standings. Stricker has three top-10 finishes (2nd/2007, 3rd/2009, 7th/2010) in the five-year history of the FedExCup and will look to buck this trend. Here’s a list of the recent winners at Kapalua’s Plantation Course and their final FedExCup standings: 2007: Vijay Singh, 10th 2008: Daniel Chopra, 102nd 2009: Geoff Ogilvy, 13th 2010: Geoff Ogilvy, 14th 2011: Jonathan Byrd, 27th 2012: Steve Stricker, ?? A CHANCE TO BUILD: This week's field features 20 of 27 players who teed it up at Kapalua. That's a second opportunity to get a FedExCup head start before many of last year's top players open their 2012 seasons. ROOKIE DEBUTS: The PGA TOUR’s 2012 rookie class makes its debut this week at the Sony Open in Hawaii. It
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Cauley
took no time for the class of 2011 to make a major impact last season. Jhonattan Vegas won the year’s third event at PGA West and backed it with another top-three finish at Torrey Pines. Bud Cauley and Nationwide Tour money leader J.J. Killeen are among the rookies in this week’s field. Click here to read about five rookies who could have a major impact on this year’s FedExCup race.
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