27 Jun 2024 | Professional golf |

Aussies on Tour: Min Woo ready to unleash Signature move

by Tony Webeck

Min Woo Lee US Open
Min Woo Lee has no shortage of motivation heading into this week's Rocket Mortgage Classic in Detroit. Photo: Alex Slitz/Getty Images

He has played his way onto the Australian Olympic Team yet Min Woo Lee remains motivated to play his way into the lucrative Signature Events in the final weeks of the PGA TOUR season.

Just days after qualifying to represent Australia at the Paris 2024 Games in August, Lee is on debut in Detroit for the Rocket Mortgage Classic.

Currently ranked No.64 in the FedEx Cup points list, Lee needs to play his way inside the top 50 by the time of the Tour Championship to be guaranteed a spot in the $US20 million Signature Events in season 2025.

He played his way into the Arnold Palmer Invitational this year by virtue of a runner-up finish at the Cognizant Classic but has missed out on all seven of the other Signature Events played this season.

It’s a situation he intends to change in the coming weeks.

“I’m not the one to moan about it, but I guess I played every major, which is awesome and amazing. I played into them,” said Lee, who is in his first year as a full member of the PGA TOUR.

“To not like play most of the Signature Events, it was kind of hard to take a little bit.

“I know I’ve got to play better and make the cut-off line at the end of the year and get to play next year.

“Obviously it’s a new thing and all of us are trying to get into those events.”

Adding to Lee’s motivation with just six events left in the before the FedEx Cup Playoffs is a maiden Presidents Cup appearance in Canada in September.

The 25-year-old is currently one spot out of the top six automatic qualifiers for the International Team and is desperate to be part of a team he narrowly missed out on in 2022.

“I felt like I missed out last time by a small margin,” said Lee.

“I’ve been playing a lot better since not making that team two years ago.

“I know the American team is very strong and we’ve got to play very well to beat them but I’m really excited, especially the team aspect.

“I really love playing match play; being with a partner is cool.”

Another Aussie making a debut of sorts this week is Mathew Goggin.

The Tasmanian recently celebrated his 50th birthday by qualifying for the US Senior Open, joining a burgeoning group of Aussies in the senior ranks.

Goggin is among eight Aussies at Newport Country Club this week along with the Kiwi trio of Steven Alker, Michael Long and Richard Lee.

Top-10 a year ago, Sarah Kemp teams up again with Canadian Alena Sharp at the LPGA Tour’s Dow Championship, one of six Aussies in the field with teammates from a wide array of other countries.

Photo: Alex Slitz/Getty Images

Round 1 tee times AEST

PGA TOUR Rocket Mortgage Classic Detroit Golf Club, Detroit, Michigan 8:56pm Aaron Baddeley 9:51pm Tim Wilkinson (NZ) 2:32am Ryan Fox (NZ) 2:43am Min Woo Lee 3:05am Cam Davis 4:22am Harrison Endycott

Defending champion: Rickie Fowler Past Aussie winners: Cam Davis (2021) Prize money: $US9.2 million TV times: Live 10pm-8am Thursday; Live 2am-8am Saturday, Sunday; Live 1:30am-8am Monday on Fox Sports 503 and Kayo.

PGA TOUR Champions US Senior Open Newport Country Club, Newport, Rhode Island 9:31pm* Michael Long (NZ) 9:52pm* Mark Hensby 10:03pm* Stuart Appleby 10:34pm Richard Green 10:55pm Richard Lee (NZ) 2:51am* Greg Chalmers, Michael Wright 3:22am Rod Pampling 3:33am* Vijay Singh (FI) 3:43am* Cameron Percy 4:04am* Steven Alker (NZ) 4:15am* Mathew Goggin

Defending champion: Bernhard Langer Past Aussie winners: Graham Marsh (1997) Prize money: $US4 million TV times: Live 2am-7am Friday, Saturday, Sunday on Fox Sports 505; Live 2:30am-7:30am Monday on Fox Sports 506 and Kayo.

LPGA Tour Dow Championship Midland Country Club, Midland, Michigan 9:15pm Robyn Choi/Minji Kang 10:10pm Gabriela Ruffels/Esther Henseleit 10:32pm Lydia Ko (NZ)/Danielle Kang 1:52am Stephanie Kyriacou/Olivia Cowan 2:14am Hira Naveed/Sofia Garcia 2:14am* Grace Kim/Auston Kim 2:25am Sarah Kemp/Alena Sharp

Defending champions: Elizabeth Szokol/Cheyenne Knight Past Aussie winners: Nil Prize money: $US3 million TV times: 12:30pm-2pm Friday on Fox Sports 503; Live 7am-9am Sunday; Live 2am-5am Monday on Fox Sports 505 and Kayo.

DP World Tour Italian Open Adriatic Golf Club Cervia, Milano Marittima, Italy 5pm Daniel Hillier (NZ) 8:50pm* Jason Scrivener 9:50pm* Haydn Barron 10:10pm David Micheluzzi 10:30pm* Sam Jones (NZ)

Defending champion: Adrian Meronk Past Aussie winners: Greg Norman (1988), Craig Parry (1991) Prize money: $US3.25 million TV times: Live 9pm-2am Thursday on Fox Sports 505; Live 9pm-2am Friday; Live 10:30pm-2am Saturday; Live 8:30pm-1:30am Sunday on Fox Sports 503 and Kayo.

Ladies European Tour VP Bank Swiss Ladies Open Golfpark Holzhausern, Switzerland Australasians in the field: Whitney Hillier, Kirsten Rudgeley, Momoka Kobori (NZ), Kelsey Bennett, Amy Walsh

Defending champion: Alexandra Forsterling Past Aussie winners: Nil Prize money: €300,000 TV times: 10am-12pm Saturday; 9am-11am Sunday on Fox Sports 505; 8am-10am Monday on Fox Sports 503.

Korn Ferry Tour Memorial Health Championship Panther Creek Country Club, Springfield, Illinois 3:22am Rhein Gibson 3:44am Brett Drewitt

Defending champion: Paul Barjon Past Aussie winners: Brett Drewitt (2020) Prize money: $US1 million

Challenge Tour Le Vaudreuil Golf Challenge Golf PGA France du Vaudreuil, Le Vaudreuil, France 4pm Jeff Guan 9pm* Andrew Martin 9:10pm Tom Power Horan 10:30pm Hayden Hopewell 10:40pm* Connor McKinney

Defending champion: Darren Fichardt Past Aussie winners: Nil Prize money: €270,000

Epson Tour Dream First Bank Charity Classic Buffalo Dunes Golf Course, Garden City, Kansas Australasians in the field: Amelia Garvey (NZ), Cassie Porter, Maddison Hinson-Tolchard, Amy Chu, Soo Jin Lee

Defending champion: Gabriela Ruffels Past Aussie winners: Gabriela Ruffels (2023) Prize money: $US237,500

PGA TOUR Americas ATB Classic Northern Bear Golf Club, Strathcona County, Alberta 12:50am Karl Vilips 1:30am* Charlie Hillier (NZ) 5:10am* Grant Booth 5:50am* Harry Hillier (NZ)

Defending champion: Inaugural event Past Aussie winners: Nil Prize money: $US225,000

LET Access Series MoreGolf Mastercard Open Varbergs Golf Klubb, Sweden 5:17pm Belinda Ji (a) 9:41pm Hanee Song (NZ) 11:09pm Munchin Keh (NZ) 11:31pm Wenyung Keh (NZ)

Defending champion: Emily Price Past Aussie winners: Nil Prize money: €40,000

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