WGC Mexico Preview 2019
- Dates: February 18-24, 2019
- Where: Club de Golf Chapultepec, Mexico City, Mexico
- Par/Yards: 35-36 – 71/7,345 yards
- 2018 champion: Phil Mickelson
- Purse: $10,250,000/$1,745,000
- FedExCup: 550 points to the winner
- Format: 72-hole stroke play competition (no cut)
- Twitter: @WGCMexico
- Facebook: Facebook.com/wgcmexicochampionship
- Instagram: @WGCMexico
Five Things to Know about the 2019 WGC-Mexico Championship
- Woods’ first-ever start in Mexico: Woods, winner of a record 18 World Golf Championships in nine different locations, is set to play in his first-ever competitive event in Mexico. Two wins shy of Sam Snead’s all-time PGA TOUR record of 82, Woods is a seven-time winner of the tournament with victories in Spain, England, Ireland and the United States (San Francisco, suburban Atlanta and Miami).
- Monster field: 28 of the 30 players that qualified for the 2018 TOUR Championship and 27 of the top 30 in the current Official World Golf Ranking are in the WGC-Mexico Championship field.
- PGA TOUR in Mexico: The WGC-Mexico Championship is one of two current PGA TOUR events in Mexico along with the Mayakoba Golf Classic, which dates back to 2007. Part of the secret to winning at Club de Golf Chapultepec is properly determining the altitude’s role when choosing clubs. The lowest elevation of the Club de Golf Chapultepec is 7,603 feet above sea level and the highest part is at 7,835 feet. By comparison, Montreux Golf & Country Club, host of the PGA TOUR’s Reno-Tahoe Tournament is 5,476 to 5,952 feet above sea level. The par-3 17th holeis dubbed “The Peak” and is a central location for fans on the course.
- Mickelson’s 600th start: Defending champion Phil Mickelson returns to Club de Golf Chapultepec in what will be his 600th official career PGA TOUR start. Mickelson is in top form after collecting his 44th PGA TOUR victory two weeks ago at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am. In 2018, Mickelson defeated Justin Thomas in a sudden-death playoff in Mexico City to end a 96-event PGA TOUR winless drought.
- Ancer’s Ascension: As Mexico’s top-ranked player, Abraham Ancer will compete at the WGC-Mexico Championship for the second consecutive year. Ancer, who finished 60th in the FedExCup standings last year, became the first player from Mexico to climb into the top 100 in the Official World Golf Ranking following a T4 at the 2018 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.
- The Presidents Cup hopeful then put an exclamation point on 2018 with a victory at the Emirates Australian Open last December and is currently No. 6 in the International Team standings
WGC-Mexico Championship and the FedExCup
- The WGC-Mexico Championship is the 16th event in the PGA TOUR’s 2018-19 Season with 46 official events. Players vie to become the FedExCup champion and, new in 2018-19, the winner of the Wyndham Rewards Top 10, which honors the top10 players in the FedExCup standings at the end of the Regular Season.
- Eleven of the 12 winners of the WGC-Mexico Championship in the FedExCup era have advanced to the season-ending TOUR Championship, including a streak of 10 in a row, tied for the most of any tournament on the PGA TOUR.
- Eight of the top 10 in the FedExCup standings are scheduled to compete at the WGC-Mexico Championship: Xander Schauffele, Matt Kuchar, Gary Woodland, Marc Leishman, Charles Howell III, Justin Thomas, Phil Mickelson and Bryson DeChambeau.
- Six FedExCup champions are in the field at the WGC-Mexico Championship: Tiger Woods (2007, 2009), Henrik Stenson (2013), Billy Horschel (2014), Jordan Spieth (2015), Rory McIlroy (2016) and Justin Thomas (2017).
A look back at the 2018 WGC-Mexico Championship
- After firing a final-round 5-under 66 to match Justin Thomas (64), already in the clubhouse on 16-under 268, Phil Mickelson forced a playoff at the WGC-Mexico Championship.
- Mickelson won the sudden-death playoff on the first extra hole with a two-putt par when Thomas failed to get up-and-down from behind the green at the par-3 17th hole.
- Mickelson’s 43rd victory came in his 578th career start at the age of 47 years, 5 months, 12 days, marking the oldest winner of a World Golf Championships event.
- *Phil Mickelson 69-68-65-66—268 (-16)
- Justin Thomas 72-70-62-64—268 (-16)
- Rafa Cabrera Bello 66-67-69-67—269 (-15)
- Tyrrell Hatton 70-68-64-67—269 (-15)
- Kiradech Aphibarnrat 66-69-71-65—271 (-13)
- Brian Harman 68-67-68-68—271 (-13)
- *Phil Mickelson won the sudden-death playoff with a par at the first extra hole (par-3 17th).
A closer look at the field
- Nineteen countries will be represented at the WGC-Mexico Championship this week with the United States leading the way with 27 players in the field, followed by England with 11.
- Twenty-eight of the top 30, and 46 of the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking are scheduled to compete.
- Past winners of the WGC-Mexico Championship in the field include Phil Mickelson (2018, 2009), Dustin Johnson (2017, 2015), Tiger Woods (2013, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2003, 2002, 1999) and Patrick Reed (2014).
- Fourteen players will make their WGC-Mexico Championship debut this week, with three making their first start in a World Golf Championships event (Jake McLeod, Eddie Pepperell, Aaron Rai).
Additional player notes Phil Mickelson
- Making his 600th official start on the PGA TOUR; recently passed 500 official made cuts on TOUR at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am
- Winner of three World Golf Championships (2009 Mexico Championship, 2009 HSBC Champions, 2018 Mexico
- Championship); looks to join Dustin Johnson (five) and Tiger Woods (18) as the only players with four or more WGC titles
- Looks to join Tiger Woods as the only players with three or more Mexico Championship victories. Here’s a look at multiple winners of the event:
- Seven-time winner: Tiger Woods (1999, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2013)
- Two-time winners: Ernie Els (2004, 2010), Dustin Johnson (2015, 2018), Phil Mickelson (2009, 2018)
- Has a T2 (Desert Classic) and a win (AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am) in his last four starts
- 80-time PGA TOUR winner is making first competitive start in Mexico
- Qualified for the WGC-Mexico Championship by virtue of advancing to the 2018 TOUR Championship
- His seven tournament victories came in Spain, England, Ireland and the United States (San Francisco, suburban Atlanta and Miami)
- Making first start in the WGC-Mexico Championship since 2014, where he finished T25
- Holds record for most World Golf Championships (18); Has won in nine different locations: Arizona, California (Carlsbad and San Francisco), Florida, Georgia, Ohio, England, Ireland and Spain
- Making third start of the season following a T20 (Farmers Insurance Open) and T15 (Genesis Open)
- Competing in the WGC-Mexico Championship for the second consecutive year as Mexico’s highest-ranked player.
- Arrived in 2018 at No. 260 in the Official World Golf Ranking; returns this week at No. 61
- Finished 60th in the final 2017-18 FedExCup standings after collecting five top-10s on the season
- Became the first player from Mexico to crack the top 100 in the Official World Golf Ranking with a T4 at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in November
- Won the Emirates Australian Open in November and has two top-fives in nine PGA TOUR starts this season
- Currently No.6 in the International Standings as he looks for his first Presidents Cup berth
- Making his WGC-Mexico Championship debut
- Has four wins in last 10 starts worldwide, including two FedExCup Playoffs events
- Has three top-10s in four PGA TOUR starts this season and a T15 at the Genesis Open
- In three previous starts in the WGC-Mexico Championship, has two top-fives, both at Club de Golf Chapultepec (2018/runner-up, 2017/T5)
- Holds course record at Club de Golf Chapultepec following his third-round 62 in 2018
- Four top-fives in six starts on the PGA TOUR in 2018-19, including a solo runner-up at the Genesis Open and a pair of thirdplace finishes (Sentry Tournament of Champions, Waste Management Phoenix Open).
- In search of first World Golf Championships title; Best finish in a WGC stroke-play event is a T2 at the 2017 HSBC Champions
- 2017-18 PGA TOUR Player of the Year won his first start of the 2018-19 season at THE CJ CUP @ NINE BRIDGES for his fifth PGA TOUR victory
- Has won three of the last seven majors
- Finished T48 in his only start at Club de Golf Chapultepec in 2017; Did not compete in 2018 due to injury
- Making first start on TOUR since the Sentry Tournament of Champions (24)
- Only three playoffs have been required to decide the WGC-Mexico Championship winner: 2018, Phil Mickelson def. Justin Thomas; 2005, Tiger Woods def. John Daly; 1999, Tiger Woods def. Miguel Angel Jimenez
- Seventeen of 19 WGC-Mexico Championships have been decided by two strokes or fewer, including the last eight
- Seven players have made a World Golf Championships event their first PGA TOUR win: Darren Clarke (2000 Dell
- Technologies Match Play), Craig Parry (2002 FedEx St. Jude Invitational), Kevin Sutherland (2002 Dell Technologies Match
- Play), Henrik Stenson (2007 Dell Technologies Match Play), Ian Poulter (2010 Dell Technologies Match Play), Shane Lowry (2015 FedEx St. Jude Invitational), Russell Knox (2015 HSBC Champions)
World Golf Championships-Mexico Championship
- The PGA TOUR, on behalf of the International Federation of PGA Tours, announced in June 2016 that the World Golf Championships tournament held in Miami since 2007 would relocate to Mexico City and be renamed the WGC-Mexico Championship, beginning in 2017.
- The move is the result of a seven-year agreement through 2023 with Grupo Salinas, a collection of companies based in Mexico City primarily involved in retail, television, telecommunications and other businesses. Grupo Salinas is overseen by founder and chairman Ricardo Salinas and his son, Benjamin.
- Launched in 2017, The First Tee of Mexico was the first chapter unveiled outside of the United States.
- The tournament and its title sponsor Grupo Salinas helped start The First Tee of Mexico in 2017 and continues to support the organization’s mission to grow the game of golf throughout Mexico and make the game more accessible.
- The organization has 87 total members spread throughout three chapters located in Puebla, at The Boys and Girls Club of Rosarito and La Paz.
Eligibility for the WGC-Mexico Championship
- The top-ranked native-born Mexican player from the Official World Golf Ranking, as of February 18, 2019.
- The top 50 players, including any players tied for 50th place, from the Official World Golf Ranking as of February 11, 2019.
- The top 50 players, including any players tied for 50th place, from the Official World Golf Ranking as of February 18, 2019.
- The top 30 players from the final 2018 FedExCup Points List.
- The top 10 players from the FedExCup Points List as of February 18, 2019.
- The top 20 players from the final 2018 European Tour Order of Merit.
- The top 10 players from the European Tour Order of Merit as of February 11, 2019.
- The top 2 players from the final 2018 Japan Golf Tour Order of Merit.
- The top 2 players from the final 2018 Australasian Tour Order of Merit.
- The top 2 players from the final 2018 Sunshine Tour Order of Merit.
- The top 2 players from the final 2018 Asian Tour Order of Merit.
- If there are less than 72 players entered through the categories listed above, then the next highest ranked available players from the Official World Golf Ranking as of Monday, Feb. 18, 2019 will become eligible as required to fill the field to 72 players.
About Club de Golf Chapultepec
- Club de Golf Chapultepec is one of the country’s most popular courses. U.S. Open winner Willie Smith started work on the design during the Mexican Revolution and the course was completed in 1921.
- Since the inception of the Mexican Open in 1944, the golf course was the host venue 14 times prior to 1972 when Percy Clifford, the designer of dozens of Mexican golf courses, completely renovated the course.
- The course today bears little resemblance to the original layout, and instead provides a more challenging, playable, and modern design.
- After the renovation, the course hosted the Mexican Open an additional four times. Featuring a 7,345yard, par-71 course, Club de Golf Chapultepec last held the Mexican Open in 2014, which is now part of PGA TOUR Latinoamérica.
- Over the course of 18 past editions played there, the club members witnessed Mexican Open wins by stars such as Al Espinoza (1944, 1945, 1946 and 1947), Roberto De Vicenzo (1951, 1953 and 1955), Ben Crenshaw (1981) and Jay Haas (1991).
- Elevation is a factor at Club de Golf Chapultepec. According to Shotlink mapping data, the lowest part of the course is 7,603 feet above sea level and the highest part of the course is 7,835 feet above sea level.
World Golf Championships
- The World Golf Championships are sanctioned and organized by the operational committee of the International Federation of PGA Tours, which includes the Asian Tour, European Tour, Japan Golf Tour, PGA TOUR, ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia and Sunshine Tour.
- Events in the World Golf Championships series include the Mexico Championship (Mexico City, Mexico), the Dell Technologies Match Play (Austin, Texas, USA), the FedEx St. Jude Invitational (Memphis, Tennessee, USA) and the HSBC Champions (Shanghai, China).
- World Golf Championship events are broadcast to more than 1 billion households in 226 countries and territories in 32 languages. The series as a whole has generated nearly $60 million for charitable causes since its inception in 1999.
Aon Risk Reward Challenge
- The season-long Aon Risk Reward Challenge allows players to tackle the most strategically challenging holes across both the PGA TOUR and LPGA. The PGA TOUR and LPGA player on top of the Aon leaderboard at the end of the regular season will each receive a $1 million prize. The Aon Risk Reward Challenge hole at the Genesis Open is the 315-yard, par-4 10th hole.
- Since 2014, 61% of players who have decided to go for the green off the tee, making birdie or better 30% of the time.
- Since 2014, the winners of the Genesis Open have a combined 60% going for green percentage and have found the green once (2015/James Hahn/R2). The winners are 1-under when electing to go for the green compared to 2-over par when laying up.
Significant changes for the PGA TOUR in 2018-19
- A season with a better flow from start to finish; a return of THE PLAYERS Championship to March, which kicks off a cadence of significant events over five months; and a season that concludes with the FedExCup Playoffs in August. Every week matters – four of the eight winners during the fall of 2017 qualified for the season-ending TOUR Championship (Justin Thomas, Patton Kizzire, Patrick Cantlay and FedExCup champion Justin Rose).
- The FedExCup Playoffs – which have been reduced from four to three events beginning this season and will conclude before Labor Day, allowing the TOUR to own the August sports calendar – will feature fields of 125 for THE NORTHERN TRUST, 70 for the BMW Championship and 30 for the TOUR Championship, where the FedExCup Champion will be determined.
- A simplified, strokes-based scoring system at the TOUR Championship that crowns a singular champion. Instead of a points reset at the TOUR Championship, the TOUR is instituting a strokes-based system related to the FedExCup standings through the BMW Championship. The scoring system virtually replicates the win probabilities of the current system but uses strokes instead of points – which is much easier for golf fans, and the casual sports fan, to understand. The leader through the first two FedExCup Playoffs events will begin the TOUR Championship at 10-under par. The next four players will start at -8 through -5, respectively. The next five will begin at -4, regressing by one stroke per five players until players 26-30 start at even par. With the implementation of this change, the player with the lowest total score including FedExCup Starting Strokes will be the FedExCup champion and be credited with an official victory in the TOUR Championship. Two constants include both the drama and the crowning of a deserving champion, as seen over the first 12 years of the FedExCup. Using next year’s scoring at the 2018 TOUR Championship, Justin Rose – thanks to a birdie on the 72nd hole –would have captured the FedExCup by a single stroke over Tiger Woods, Billy Horschel and Dustin Johnson.
- A $10 million Wyndham Rewards-sponsored bonus – the Wyndham Rewards Top 10 –where players will be rewarded for their outstanding play during the Regular Season, prior to the start of the FedExCup Playoffs. The top Regular Season finisher in FedExCup points through the Wyndham Championship will earn $2 million, followed by $1.5 million for the runner-up with the 10th-place finisher earning $500,000. Dustin Johnson led last year’s FedExCup standings through the Wyndham Championship, just 83 points ahead of Justin Thomas.
- Including the Wyndham Rewards Top 10, there will be a doubling of FedExCup total bonus money available to players, from $35 million to $70 million.
The WGC Mexico Preview is via PGA TOUR