With the 2015 FedEx Cup PGA golf playoffs set begin this week on August 27, 2015, here is a list of PGA golfers who have won the FedEx Cup and the $10 million bonus that comes with the win. It does seem kind of absurd for the PGA Tour to hand out a $10 million bonus to the player who wins the FedEx Cup but that’s what the golf organization has done each year since the FedEx Cup was introduced in 2007.
To make the FedEx Cup playoffs, PGA golfers have to accumulate enough points during the season to be in the top 125 when the playoffs start. The FedEx Cup playoffs consist of four tournaments beginning with The Barclays, followed by the Deutsche Bank Championship, the BMW Championship and the season ending Tour Championship over four consecutive weeks.
At The Barclays, the top 125 players in the points standings compete. The next week the top 100 players in points compete at the Deutsche Bank Championship. Both The Barclays and the Deutsche Bank Championship have cuts but in third playoff at the BMW Championship only the top 70 players in points compete and there is no cut. For each of those three playoff tournaments players get five times the points they got for regular season tournaments based upon where they finish and all points are counted.
For the final playoff event at the Tour Championship, only the top 30 players in points compete and all the points are reset based upon where each player is ranked at the start of the Tour Championship. The top ranked player in points gets 2,000 points (down from 2,500 in the past) and the points keep declining until the 30th ranked player gets around 200 points. Any one of the 30 players could then win the FedEx Cup and the $10 million bonus based upon how they play in the Tour Championship, but obviously the higher ranked players going in have the best chance.
2007 – Tiger Woods wins $10 million bonus
When the FedEx Cup playoffs started in 2007, Tiger Woods was still at the top of his game. Tiger entered the 2007 playoffs having won five times on the PGA Tour that year including the 2007 PGA Championship. Tiger then went on to win both the BMW Championship and the Tour Championship in the playoffs to claim the first $10 million bonus.
2008 – Vijay Singh wins $10 million bonus
In 2008, Vijay Singh entered the FedEx Cup playoffs having won just one tournament during the season. But then Vijay won both The Barclays and the Deutsche Bank Championship in the playoffs and he finished high enough in the Tour Championship to claim the $10 million bonus. Camilo Villegas won both the BMW Championship and Tour Championship in 2008 but Vijay beat him out for the top prize based upon accumulated points.
2009 – Tiger Woods again wins $10 million bonus
In 2009, Tiger Woods was still playing great golf and even though he did not win a major that year, he entered the FedEx Cup playoffs having won five PGA tournaments in 2009. Tiger then won the BMW Championship and finished high enough in the Tour Championship tournament to beat out Phil Mickelson for the $10 million bonus.
2010 – Jim Furyk wins $10 million bonus
After not having won the PGA Tour since 2007, Jim Furyk won twice in 2010 entering the FedEx Cup playoffs. Furyk then won the Tour Championship to finish with enough points to claim the $10 million bonus prize. After his Tour Championship win, Jim Furyk would not win again on tour until he won the RBC Heritage in April of 2015.
2011 – Bill Haas wins $10 million bonus
Bill Haas won the 2009 Viking Classic on the PGA Tour (the first tournament of that season) which counted towards the 2010 season for his only win that season entering the 2011 FedEx Cup playoffs. Haas then went on to win the Tour Championship and claim and the 2011 $10 million bonus. Bill Haas has won six times on the PGA Tour in his career.
2012 – Brandt Snedeker wins $10 million bonus
In 2012, Brandt Snedeker won the Framers Insurance Open in late January for his only win on tour entering the FedEx Cup playoffs. Snedeker then went on to win the Tour Championship and the 2012 $10 million bonus. In February of 2015, Brandt Snedeker won at Pebble Beach for the second time in his career which was seventh win of his career to date.
2013 – Henrik Stenson wins $10 million bonus
In 2013, Henrik Stenson had not won a PGA Tournament since 2009 when the Fed EX Cup playoffs started but then he won both the Deutsche Bank Championship and the Tour Championship to claim the $10 million bonus. Stenson has four PGA Tour wins in his career but he really made two of his wins count with the $10 million bonus in 2013.
2014 – Billy Horschel wins $10 million bonus
Billy Horschel entered the 2014 FedEx Cup playoffs win-less on the season and having only won once on the PGA Tour in his career (2013 Zurich Classic of New Orleans). Horschel then won both the BMW Championship and the Tour Championship to claim the $10 million bonus. Many people felt that Billy Horschel’s win in the 2014 FedEx Cup playoffs showed the absurdity of the format the PGA uses to hand out its $10 million bonus.