by Randy Roberts
Well, here we are again. I hope you all enjoyed the PGA Tour's short offseason. If you're a returning reader, thanks for joining us again in 2013. If you're new to the site, welcome.
If you're like me you're excited to see what Michael Thompson has in store for 2013. As his wife Rachel Thompson explained on her most recent blog post, this will be a shortened season due to the restructuring of the PGA Tour season. Michael is in good shape to begin with due to finishing in the top 70 on the money list in 2012. The top 70 from the previous year gets access to all of the invitational tournaments the following year, thus providing more opportunities to improve position on the money list. If you haven't already, you should go read Rachel's blog. In it she talks about some of the nuts and bolts of the business side of golf and talks about what they were up to during the offseason. It's a good read and she's pretty funny too.
From a PGA Tour press release, here's some of the details about the changes made for the 2013 season:
2013 PGA TOURWhat's in store for this week?
• For the first time in the FedExCup era, the 40-tournament official money schedule will give the season a definitive end at the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola, the fourth event in the FedExCup Playoffs. The 2013-2014 PGA TOUR Season officially begins three weeks later with those tournaments that formerly made up the Fall Series; those events begin awarding full FedExCup points.
• Year seven of the FedExCup includes 36 events before the Playoffs, one less than 2012 due to the Mayakoba Golf Classic moving to its own unencumbered fall date in the 2013-14 PGA TOUR Season.
• The CIMB Classic and World Golf Championships-HSBC Champions become official events on the PGA TOUR (official victory, full FedExCup points, official money; winners qualify for Hyundai Tournament of Champions).
• For the first time, the Web.com Tour becomes the path for the PGA TOUR’s 50 new membership cards. The top 25 players on the money list for the Web.com Tour Regular Season will earn cards but must play the Finals for positioning. The Web.com Tour Finals will determine an additional 25 cards, based on cumulative earnings in those events, as well as the positioning of all 50 cards.
Michael is playing at the Sony Open which is being held at the Waialae Country Club in Honolulu, Hawaii. This will be his third time playing the event. Last year he finished T-6th, which was one of his best finishes of the year.
Michael is teeing off at 11:50 local time (2:50 PST) and will be grouped with Bart Bryant and Colt Knost.