Ryan Armour, Sung Kang, Abraham Ancer and Bronson Burgoon qualify for The 147th Open
Ryan Armour, Sung Kang, Abraham Ancer and Bronson Burgoon sealed spots in The 147th Open via The Open Qualifying Series USA at the Quicken Loans National at TPC Potomac.
The Quicken Loans National was the seventh event in The Open Qualifying Series, giving the leading four non-exempt players who finished in the top 12 and ties the chance to earn places at Carnoustie from 15-22 July 2018.
His maiden victory on the PGA TOUR, Francesco Molinari won in style with a stunning display of golf to equal the course record of 62 and finish on 21-under-par – eight shots ahead of the pack.
With the Italian already exempt for The Open, it was second placed Ryan Armour who took the first spot in The Open. Armour finished the day at 13-under-par following his final round of 68 at the par-70 TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm. The 42-year-old will now make his Open, and major debut at Carnoustie in two weeks.
“I'm so excited to go over to Scotland. You know, I've always thought that my game could translate over there with hitting fairways and keeping it low to the ground, so I'm excited to see Carnoustie". said Armour. “I'm fired up (to play in his first Major), especially at The Open Championship. I think that will be sinking in tonight or tomorrow morning.”
For the second year running Sung Kang secured his place at The Open at the Quicken Loans National. The Korean went six-under-par to climb 13 places on the leaderboard and take the second qualifying spot. Kang will aim to better his tied for 44th finish at Royal Birkdale in 2017. “It’s great to be back at The Open. I’ll just enjoy it. Majors are always fun" said Kang.“It was actually great (playing in The Open at Royal Birkdale in 2017). I mean, weather was so much similar to where I'm from, windy, rainy, and then it can be warm and cold. So it will probably will be the same this year" he added.
Ancer and Burgoon, like Armour, will also play in a major for the first time at Carnoustie after they obtained the third and fourth qualifying places. Ancer, who was co-leading the championship at the start of the day’s play, failed to find the form he produced on Saturday which saw him record an eight-under-par 62 to put him in contention for the title.
On Sunday, the 27-year-old Mexican signed for a two-over-par 72 to finish in a tie for fourth place with Tiger Woods, who is already exempt as a former Champion. “It's a dream come true playing The Open, I've always watched since I was a little kid. It will be an incredible experience being there this year" he said. “I've been a Tiger fan, that was the Tiger era. I've watched him win all his tournaments. It was when he just hit an iron from the tee, every single one. In 2006 (at Royal Liverpool) he just picked the golf course apart, he was absolutely flawless. If I'm not playing, I'm always watching The Open" he added.
Burgoon, playing with Woods, won his spot in dramatic fashion with a birdie at the last to finish tied for sixth (-10) alongside Beau Hossler. With Hossler already exempt through his Official World Golf Ranking invite, the qualifying spot fell to Burgoon. But the 31-year-old American faced an anxious period when Andrew Landry, possessing a higher world ranking, stood over a 12-foot putt to join Burgoon and Hossler on ten-under-par. To Burgoon’s advantage, Landry missed and the world number 408 is now set for his first taste of links golf when he takes on Carnoustie for the chance to win golf’s oldest major next month. “It’s an absolute dream come true. I can’t wait to get over to The Open Championship. I haven’t played too much links golf, but I've got a 2-iron that I hit pretty low and hard, so we'll see. Hopefully, it works out. I will love the challenge" said Burgoon.