Tarren, four others, receive 2019 Web.com Tour cards
October 14, 2018
By PGA TOUR China staff
- October 14, 2018
- The top five players on the PGA TOUR China Order of Merit received Web.com Tour cards for next season. (Zhuang Liu/PGA TOUR China)
HONG KONG — It took until the final tournament of the 2018 season—and a razor-thin margin of RMB 2,376—for Callum Tarren to win the PGA TOUR Series-China Order of Merit. His final-round 62 at the Clearwater Bay Open did the trick. Tarren needed no worse than a solo-second finish this week and for Order of Merit front-runner Charlie Saxon to tie for 24th or worse and both things happened (Saxon tied for 25th), earning Tarren full playing privileges on the 2019 Web.com Tour.
Tarren, a native of Darlington, England, in his second season on PGA TOUR Series-China, finished with RMB 1,094,600 to take over the top spot on the earnings list from American Saxon, who earned RMB 1,092,224.
After Tarren and Saxon, the third-, fourth- and fifth-place finishers were New Zealand’s Nick Voke, winner of Sunday’s Clearwater Bay Open, Japan’s Yuwa Kosaihira and South Korea’s Todd Baek. The players received their membership cards during a ceremony following the final event of the season, the Clearwater Bay Open, at The Clearwater Bay Golf and Country Club.
Tarren began his year quickly, with a tie for second at the Chengdu Championship, and it ended up being one of four runner-up finishes. Combined with the two second-place performances he had in 2016, Tarren has tied China’s Xinjun Zhang for most seconds in Tour history.
“I’m ecstatic and over the moon. I honestly didn’t have one clue what I needed to do to pip Charlie today. I just thought I would try to win the golf tournament. For me to go out to shoot 8-under 62 in the final round at Clearwater Bay is just very special,” Tarren said. “It sounds crazy, but if I perform like that at any level and keep coming second, you’re going to do well. Obviously, it would be nice to win. Hopefully there’s a win around the corner on the Web.com Tour.”
“Callum has really made an impact in his two years on this Tour, and it’s been a pleasure to watch him play so well. I think what impresses me most is his calmness on the course and just how consistent he is,” said Greg Carlson, PGA TOUR Series-China Executive Director. “To do what he did without winning speaks to how consistent and steady he is. I have always admired how he continuously put himself in position to contend for so many weeks this year. To me, that’s a sign of a great player. It was a terrific year for Callum but not terribly surprising since we knew what kind of game he had when he played here in 2016. We wish him nothing but the best on the Web.com Tour.
“Callum rose to the top,” Carlson continued, “but he had to beat a lot of talented players in order to finish No. 1. The other four players, Charlie, Nick, Yuwa and Todd, all had strong seasons as well, and it will be fun to watch how they do at the next level. I have every confidence that we’ll hear more from them in the future.”
The players who finished the sixth-through-10th positions on the Order of Merit are exempt into the finals of the Web.com Tour Qualifying Tournament in Chandler, Arizona, on December 6-9. They are Joseph Winslow (No. 6), Motin Yeung (No. 7), Jeffrey Kang (No. 8), Trevor Sluman (No. 9) and William Harrold (No. 10).
The 2019 Web.com Tour season, the 30th in its history, begins in mid-January at The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals Emerald Bay (January 13-16) followed by The Bahamas Great Abaco Classic at The Abaco Club (January 20-23). Both tournaments will begin Sunday, with the final rounds finishing Wednesday.
Beginning in 2013, the Web.com Tour became The Path to the PGA TOUR by awarding all 50 membership cards to Web.com Tour players for the following PGA TOUR season. Players can initially qualify for the Web.com Tour through the Qualifying Tournament and by securing top-five Order of Merit finishes on PGA TOUR Series-China, PGA TOUR Latinoamérica and the Mackenzie Tour – PGA TOUR Canada. PGA TOUR Series-China sent its first five players to the Web.com Tour following the 2014 season. They were China’s Li and Zhang, Australia’s Brett Drewitt, the U.S.’s Sam Chien and South Korea’s Baek. In 2015, Australia’s Bryden Macpherson, New Zealand’s Josh Geary, China’s Zhang and Dou and Canada’s Eugene Wong became Web.com Tour members. The 2016 class included Dou, Saxon, American Alex Kang, South Korea’s Taewoo Kim and Zhang.
Since 2014, PGA TOUR Series-China, in a joint effort between the PGA TOUR and the China Golf Association along with Tour operator Shankai Sports, has had 32 different winners from nine countries and regions (Australia, Canada, China, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, New Zealand, South Korea, Thailand and the United States).
Final PGA TOUR Series-China Order of Merit Top 10
Callum Tarren (England)
Charlie Saxon (U.S.)
Nick Voke (New Zealand)
Yuwa Kosaihira (Japan)
Todd Baek (South Korea)
Joseph Winslow (U.S.)
Motin Yeung (Hong Kong)
Jeffrey Kang (U.S.)
Trevor Sluman (U.S.)
William Harrold (England)
2019 Web.com Tour Members Via PGA TOUR Series-China
Callum Tarren this season
Although Tarren is still winless on PGA TOUR Series-China, the PGA TOUR Series-China Player of the Year continued his remarkably consistent play, recording three runner-up finishes and nine top-10s in his 14 2018 starts. His second-place performances came in the season-opening Chengdu Championship, a playoff loss at the Kunming Championship, a one-shot loss to amateur Yechun Yuan at the Qingdao Championship, and a solo-second showing at the season-ending Clearwater Bay Open. In 27 career tournaments, Tarren has six runner-up showings and has been a top-10 performer in more than half of those appearances (14). Remarkably, Tarren is also 27 for 27 in made cuts in his Tour career, his worst 2018 finish a tie for 41st at the Changsha Championship.
Charlie Saxon this Season
Saxon had a remarkably similar season in 2018 to his breakout, Rookie of the Year 2016 campaign. He posted two wins and had six additional top-10 finishes this year compared to two wins and six other top-10 finishes in 2016. Saxon’s 2018 victories came at the Changsha Championship and the Guilin Championship. He just missed capturing three wins in succession when he tied for second at the weather-shortened Haikou Championship the week after Changsha. Saxon never had a chance in the final round to make up his two-shot deficit when officials canceled the final round. Saxon did not miss a cut in 2018 and 38 of his 55 rounds were under par, and he is the PGA TOUR Series-China all-time money leader.
Nick Voke this Season
No player in PGA TOUR Series-China history has accomplished more in such a short time than Voke in 2018. The New Zealander played in only five events, not playing his first tournament until the Suzhou Championship in early September. In those five starts, Voke had three wins, a tie for fourth and a tie for 16th, just missing on a seven-figure earnings’ season, finishing with RMB 987,500. He won the Qinhuangdao Championship in a playoff over Steve Lewton. In his next start, at the Macau Championship, he came from off the pace with a final-round 66 to win by two strokes. He closed his season in style winning the Clearwater Bay Open in Hong Kong by three shots. Of his 20 rounds, 16 were under par and 13 of those were in the 60s—with low 18-hole scores of 65 coming at the Suzhou Championship (final round), the Macau Championship (third round) and the Clearwater Bay Open (first round).
Yuwa Kosaihira this Season
In his rookie PGA TOUR Series-China season, Kosaihira played in all 14 events and played on the weekend in all of them. He is the first PGA TOUR Series-China player from Japan to move on to the Web.com Tour. Kosaihira’s best 2018 finishes were a pair of runner-up showings, at the Yantai Championship and the Zhuhai Championship. Thirty-seven of his 54 rounds were under-par, 42 of them at par or better. Kosaihira hovered just outside the top five on the Order of Merit for six consecutive weeks after taking over the No. 6 position in mid-July. He stayed in that slot until he moved to No. 3 after his runner-up showing at the Zhuhai Championship, the season’s second-to-last tournament.
Todd Baek this Season
Baek became a two-time PGA TOUR Series-China winner when he captured the Haikou Championship in May to go with his 2014 Chateau Junding Penglai Open title the first time he advanced from this circuit to the Web.com Tour. Baek added an additional four top-five finishes plus a tie for 10th at the Macau Championship to move him into the top 10, to No. 7, in career money-winners on PGA TOUR Series-China (RMB 1,196,620). Baek has never missed a cut in his two seasons in China, withdrawing from two events due to injury.