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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 13 November 2018

Race to Dubai top 5: Best buddies Francesco Molinari and Tommy Fleetwood lead pack

Here, we look at the revised top five in the season-long standings, with only three events remaining

Francesco Molinari of Italy leads the Race to Dubai standings. AFP
Francesco Molinari of Italy leads the Race to Dubai standings. AFP

American Xander Schauffele won at the WGC-HSBC Champions in China on Sunday as the battle for the Race to Dubai title hots up.

Here, we look at the revised top five in the season-long standings, with only three events remaining.

Francesco Molinari (4,709,921)

The Italian is the overwhelming favourite for a first Race to Dubai crown having enjoyed an incredible summer. Molinari triumphed at the European Tour’s flagship event, the BMW PGA Championship, in May, before landing a first major with a supreme display on Sunday at the British Open in July – alongside playing partner Tiger Woods. Finished tied-6th at the US PGA Championship, although struggled to a tied-43rd finish in China.

Tommy Fleetwood of England tees off during the second round of the WGC-HSBC Champions golf tournament in Shanghai. AFP
Tommy Fleetwood of England tees off during the second round of the WGC-HSBC Champions golf tournament in Shanghai. AFP

Tommy Fleetwood (3,502,538)

The Englishman sits as the closest challenger to best buddy Molinari, and knows already how to get the job done. Fleetwood is the current European No 1 having held off Justin Rose to seal the crown in Dubai last November. Like last season, he began the year with victory in Abu Dhabi, before finishing tied-6th in Dubai and then second at June’s US Open. Was joint-second at this month’s Alfred Dunhill Links, and tied-7th in China.

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Read more:

Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship presented by EGA has been elevated to Rolex Series status

Xander Schauffele beats Tony Finau in a play-off to clinch WGC-HSBC Champions title

FBM Ladies Open to kick off 2019 Ladies European Tour season

Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship changes dates to accommodate football’s 2019 Asian Cup

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Patrick Reed finds himself third in the Race to Dubai despite playing only 10 European Tour events. AFP
Patrick Reed finds himself third in the Race to Dubai despite playing only 10 European Tour events. AFP

Patrick Reed (3,268,511)

The American finds himself third despite playing only 10 European Tour events. However, Reed’s rude health in the marquee tournaments has lifted him to his current position: he broke his major duck with victory at the Masters in April, before finishing fourth at the US Open. Another top 10 arrived in Germany in July, while the tied-7th in China last time out – he held the first-round lead – confirmed a timely return to form.

Xander Schauffele poses with the trophy after winning the WGC-HSBC Champions golf tournament in Shanghai. AFP
Xander Schauffele poses with the trophy after winning the WGC-HSBC Champions golf tournament in Shanghai. AFP

Xander Schauffele (3,092,488)

The American’s star continues to rise as he moved into the Race to Dubai’s upper echelons. Schauffelle has managed it despite playing the least amount of events (8) of anyone in the current top 11. That has been made possible by standout performances in some of the circuit’s most prominent tournaments, namely tied-6th at the US Open and tied-2nd at the British Open. Won in China, his first victory on the European Tour.

Alex Noren recorded a top-20 finish in China on Sunday. AFP
Alex Noren recorded a top-20 finish in China on Sunday. AFP

Alex Noren (2,833,225)

The Swede has become one of the most consistent performers in world golf, as reflected in his Race to Dubai ranking. Noren finished third at the WGC-Dells Technologies Match Play way back in March, then was tied-3rd at the flagship BMW PGA Championship in May before winning the French Open in July. Both those events form part of the Rolex Series. Recorded a top-20 finish in China on Sunday.