Michigan’s Tom Gillis tied for 9th and earned $112,800 last Sunday at the PGA Tour’s Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Classic in Orlando, FL. For the year, Gillis earned $1,238,058 ending up 72nd on the final money list. His best finish of the year took place in March at The Honda Classic where he was T-2nd and cashed in for $501,600. Gillis, a former caddie and pro shop attendant at Indianwood Golf & CC, ended his season on a strong note, picking up $436,733 in his last four PGA Tour events.
Despite his stellar season, Gillis will likely have to win a Tour event by April 7 to play in the Masters the following week. Masters qualifications include a regular Tour win, a Top 30 ranking on the PGA Tour’s 2012 money list, or being in the Top 50 leaders of the World Golf Ranking published during the week prior to the Tournament. Currently, Gillis is ranked 142nd on the World Ranking.
Hard to believe but the last PGA Tour pro from Michigan to have played in the Masters was…drum roll, please…Marshall’s John Morse in 1997. Morse, a member of the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame, drove down Magnolia Lane thanks to a solo 4th finish at the ’96 US Open at Oakland Hills.
Of course, just getting to the PGA Tour is an achievement onto itself. This Friday and Saturday will mark the last day of the second stage of Tour Q-School at six different sites. A number of Michigan players will be competing so go online to check their results. The final stage takes place in Palm Springs, CA, and ends on December 2. This will be final year where the final stage determines a ticket to the regular PGA Tour. Next year, the Q-School will advance qualifiers only to the Web.com Tour.
In Coral Springs, FL, the Champions Tour on Friday also marks the final day of its Q-School for the 2013 season. Michigan’s Lloyd Fisher and Jerry Gunthorpe are competing in a field of 78 players, including 14 former Tour winners and one former major champion, Steve Jones, who won the ’96 U.S. Open. Only the top five players will earn exempt status next year.
Image courtesy of the PGA Tour