Rickie Fowler is no stranger to Olympia Fields. He won the iconic venue in 2007 when he played for Oklahoma State.
Naturally, he’s still fighting there this year.
After opening with a 4-under 66 on Thursday, Fowler sits one behind Rory McIlroy and Brian Herrmann in the BMW Championship.
The ex-cowboy needs to put in a good performance this week to cement his place in Atlanta for the Tour Championship.
Fowler, currently ranked 12th in the FedEx Cup rankings, had East Lake on his mind since the beginning of the year. Only the top 30 finishers from the BMW Championship advance to the Tour Championship.
“You don’t necessarily have to win, but you have to play well and have some good finishes to get to Eastlake,” Fowler said.
“Being able to lock it in before the playoffs says a lot, especially for a year where the win is tied up. I can do it.” That’s it. ”
Fowler was in the midst of a seven-year winning drought before winning the Rocket Mortgage Classic in early July.
However, he turned things around in 2023 with eight Top 10 finishes and 16 Top 25 finishes.
We’ve come close to winning several times this year, and this week is no exception. At one point, the 34-year-old shared the lead with McIlroy and Herman. However, Fowler teeed into the water on the right side of the 17th fairway and hit a bogey. This put him back to 4 under par.
But he’s still in contention and wants to get more involved in the Ryder Cup debate. Play enough in the next three days and Fowler would make a pretty good case for captain Zach Johnson.
But in the short term, Fowler is focused on Atlanta. He’s already in action next week, but that doesn’t mean he won’t be fighting for more wins at Olympia Fields. A win for Fowler would jump up the FedEx Cup rankings and move up the starting point of the handicap tour championship.
Savannah Lee Richardson is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. You can follow her on her Twitter @SportsGirls Follow us on Instagram @savannah_leigh_sports for more golf coverage.be sure to check @_PlayingThrough too.