American Ryan Moore has broken a two-year winning drought after carding a flawless four under 67 to claim the PGA Tour’s John Deere Classic by three strokes.
Moore took a one-shot lead into the final round, and continued his bogey free run for a second consecutive day, notching up a total run of 46 holes without dropping a shot. His last bogey came at the 8th hole during the rain-interrupted second round on Friday.
Three front nine birdies extended Moore’s advantage as he turned for home in 32, and with no player jumping out of the pack to push him to the finish he could afford to cruise back to the clubhouse. He carded eight consecutive pars to finish at 22 under and keep playing partner Ben Martin at bay.
It is the 33-year-old’s fifth PGA Tour win and it came at an opportune time as the FedEx Cup final series starts in two weeks. He now moves into the top-25 on the FedEx Cup standings, with the leading 30 players qualifying for the season-ending Tour Championship and a shot at $10 million prizemoney.
“I was in a fortunate position this week,” Moore said. “I know there's a lot of guys in that field that are just trying to get to that first playoff event and fortunate I was in a couple position around 60th or so on the FedExCup coming in here and my sole purpose of being here was to win a golf tournament. That's what I was here for, but that's every week and that doesn't always work out that way.
“But for some reason, this week, this week I did.
“You know, for me, every win is a little different. This one was … I liked how steady it was. This is the kind of golf that I feel like I can play. Just really solid, really steady. No bogeys on the weekend.”
Moore admits after 12 years on the PGA Tour he would have expected to have more than five wins by now, but injury and some form slumps have played their part. For now, he’s more than happy to have this win and keep his playing rights for the next two years.
“I always want to win every single tournament I play. Of course I'm constantly disappointed,” Moore smiled.
“But you know, I did have a really good amateur career, but amateur golf and professional golf are two completely different animals. I fought some injuries. I've fought a lot of different stuff over the years, especially the first few years of my career.
“So honestly, even just to keep my card and stay out here for, I think this is my 12th season this year, without ever losing it, without ever having to go back down or go to Qualifying School or anything like that, I mean, honestly, that's a bit of an accomplishment these days, as tough as the competition is.
“But yeah, if you would have asked me when I was a senior in college if I would have thought 12 years into my career, would I have more than five wins, I would have said yeah. But at that point in time, I had won every tournament I played and hit it perfect every single day (laughter) a few injuries changed that over the years.”
Victoria’s Geoff Ogilvy was consistently good over the four rounds and finished at 12 under to be tied 16th and the best of the Australian contingent. The 2006 US Open Champion had just seven bogies across the four rounds, with the key being an improved performance with the putter.
Queensland’s Cameron Smith was a further stroke behind Ogilvy after recording four sub-70 rounds in what was his best finish since a T19 at the Shell Houston Open in April. Matt Jones (T27), Stuart Appleby (T40) and Rod Pampling (73) all played the weekend.