Tuesday 12 December 2017

Harrington sets his sights on FedEx title

PADRAIG Harrington and Graeme McDowell felt the earth move earlier this week -- and now they want to be fast movers in the Barclays which starts at Plainfield County Club in New Jersey today.

The two Irishmen were aware of tremors arising from an earthquake measuring 5.9 on the Richter Scale which struck Northern Virginia on Tuesday. There were no reports of damage or injuries, and the tournament schedule was unaffected.

Harrington scraped into the first of the lucrative FedEx play-offs as No 124 of 125 qualifiers, but was in typical early-week bullish mood.

He needs a high finish to ensure he moves forward in the series which concludes with the top 30 in the rankings playing in the final event, the Tour Championship at East Lake in four weeks' time.

"I know I need to finish top 30 to go forward but in actual fact, I'm of the opinion that I'm just like every other guy: in order to win the FedEx Cup, you're going to have to win one of the first three events, and the last event," he said.

"I'm not in as good a position, but I've got nearly the same chance as anybody else of winning this outright. So I just need to perform a little bit quicker than other guys."

Harrington can take hope from the experience of Heath Slocum, who came from 124th in the rankings in 2009 to win the Barclays and shoot to the No 3 spot.

McDowell, who launched his new G-Mac Charity Foundation in New York on Tuesday, missed the cut at the US PGA championship, and resumes after a week off.

"Obviously I am bringing less than ideal form into the FedEx and have my work cut out to play all four events. But once I get things going again, and I know I will, I can get properly stuck in for this last part of the season," said McDowell.

The new G-Mac Foundation is being set up to provide funds for children's medical research.

The Barclays,

Live, Sky Sports 3, 8.0pm

Irish Independent

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