Davis Thompson Sets Record with Lowest Score Ever to Win John Deere Classic

A soft golf course that generated the best scores of the week or the pressure of trying to win on the PGA Tour for the first time would not deter Davis Thompson from pursuing this moment, which he had been striving toward.

He led by two shots at the beginning. With five birdies and a six-shot lead six holes into the final round on Sunday, Thompson looked certain to win by four strokes, secure a place in the upcoming three majors, and record the lowest 72-hole score in the John Deere Classic.

“I’m just thankful it worked out. I got off to a great start today and was able to just kind of cruise on the back nine,” 64, Thompson remarked,  “Getting off to a good start was crucial, and I was just able to ride the momentum coming in.”

Thompson took a three-shot lead after making a 45-foot birdie putt on the opening hole, and nobody could get closer to him the rest of the way.

The Georgian 25-year-old broke Michael Kim’s 2018 John Deere Classic record by one stroke with a final score of 28-under 256.

Thompson stated, “I just wanted to stay aggressive.” “I knew there would be low scores out there today because the wind kind of died down and the conditions were a little soft. So I knew I was going to have to go play well. Thankfully, I made a great putt on 1 and had a great up and down on 2 and kept the ball rolling.”

With the win, he gains entry into the next three majors, beginning with the British Open at Royal Troon in two weeks. In April of next year, he will also play in the Masters.

In the John Deere Classic, Thompson became the 24th golfer to win on the PGA Tour, the most in any tournament since 1970.

Who would place second and secure the other berth at the British Open dominated the last hour. That went to C.T. Pan of Taiwan, who ended with a two-putt par from 20 feet for a 64 after birdieing the 16th and 17th holes.

But he had to work hard at it because of two kids.

Luke Clanton, a sophomore at Florida State, became the first player to reach 24 under par on the 18th hole with a 25-foot birdie putt. After completing at Stanford, Michael Thorbjornsen, who is ranked #1 on the PGA Tour University, blasted a shot from of a fairway bunker to 18 feet and made the birdie putt for a 63 to tie Clanton.

Based on the world ranking, Pan won the British Open slot in a three-way tie for second.

“Honestly going to be hectic to arrange all the travel details last minute, but it will be a good problem to have,” Pan remarked.

Clanton, on the other hand, made history by becoming the first amateur to place in the top 10 of back-to-back PGA Tour-sanctioned events since Billy Joe Patton in 1958. In both the Masters and U.S. Open that year, Patton finished as a low amateur. At last week’s Rocket Mortgage Classic, Clanton tied for tenth place.

If Clanton had been a professional, his last two weeks’ worth would have been slightly over $804,000.

“We came into the week with pretty high expectations I guess you could say after last week,” according to Clanton. “I think I kind of reached that expectation for sure. Of course you want to win. But again, to do what I did out there today was awesome.”

The winner, well, that was never in question. In addition to his opening 45-foot birdie putt, Thompson had seven birdies through ten holes, including a 30-footer on No. 5.

At last, he made a shot on the par-4 12th, and Thorbjornsen appeared to have a chance to at least tie the game. Playing the reachable par-4 14th hole, the native of Massachusetts rattled off six consecutive birdies. However, he made a good right turn and struck a large chip that was around 35 feet away. He missed a 4-foot par putt and three-putted for bogey.

Thompson finished second in the Rocket Mortgage Classic last week. Thompson is a second-year member of the PGA Tour. His aim was to maintain the current pace.

Maybe the place he stayed also had an impact.

For the past few years, a number of Georgian athletes have been renting a home close to the John Deere Classic. When J.T. Poston won the Deere two years ago, he stayed there. Sepp Straka won while residing in the residence the previous year.

This year, Straka gave up his room to Thompson and traveled with his wife and small son.

Thompson grinned and said, “I think I have to pay for the whole house, which is unfortunate.” “But I’ll gladly write the check for that.”

The value of the victory was $1,440,000. Thompson’s climb to No. 22 in the FedEx Cup rankings virtually guarantees that he will compete in all of the major events of the next year.

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