2015 has undoubtedly been the year of Jordan Spieth. The 22-year old Texan has burst onto the scene and become one of the most recognizable players in golf with some outstanding performances all year long. To cap off one of the most memorable seasons in recent history, Spieth claimed victory at the 2015 Tour Championship at the East Lake Golf Club to win himself the FedEx Cup.
Victory in this tournament took his total prize tally for the year to over $12 million. His most recent title also eased him back into the number one spot on the world rankings, with the record-breaking youngster proving his talent with a remarkable five wins in total throughout 2015. If any doubts still existed about the identity of the Player of the Year, Spieth settled them once and for all with this magnificent victory.
2015 Proves to be Lucrative Year for Spieth
The $12 million + he has earned in prizes for the year is a PGA Tour record, and that’s without even counting the $10 million bonus he’ll enjoy thanks to the FedEx Cup victory. After a blistering start to the 2015 season with wins at the Valspar Championship and The Masters, along with his stunning success in the U.S. Open, some critics were wondering if Spieth hadn’t lost a little of the steam he’d built up in recent times.
Indeed, he did miss the cut in the first two playoffs, leading to many fans speculating that Jason Day was the clear favorite for the Tour Championship after the Australian enjoyed success in The Barclays and the BMW Championship, not to mention his first ever major win at the PGA Championship back in August.
Day was the player who pushed Spieth out of the number one ranking spot earlier in September, but his time at the top lasted just one week as the Texan motivated himself to become the world number one once again.
Hard Work Pays off For Spieth…
A few days before the championship began, Spieth, along with his coach Cameron McCormick and caddie Michael Greller could be found out on the East Lake green preparing for the challenges to come. This practice clearly paid off as Spieth’s putting game was perfectly on point throughout the entire 4-day tournament. He also finished the weekend as the top-ranked player for strokes gained, showing that a bit of hard work can go a long way.
Like in every sport, there is a huge mental aspect to golf that fans rarely see. With the number one world ranking going back and forth between Spieth, McIlroy and Day over the last couple of months, the Texan had to steady his mind and find the determination to remain focused on the challenges at hand, rather than spending his time and energy worrying about the ranking situation.
Spieth has developed a reputation for having an attitude beyond his years and the youngster was quick to acknowledge that he had let his mind stray in the build-up to the tournament, but that he had worked hard on regaining his focus for the Tour Championship.
That level of mental determination was clear to see at East Lake. A 68 on the first day, backed up by a solid 66 on the Friday and another impressive 68 in the third round set him up for an incredible victory. On Sunday, all he needed was a very respectable 69 to finish four strokes ahead of the three golfers who tied for second place: Danny Lee, Henrik Stenson and Justin Rose.
What the FedEx Cup Vicory Means to Spieth
Spieth claimed that, for him, the victory served as “validation” of a fantastic season that had seen a few low points and plenty of highs. The young golfer admitted that some people had given up on him towards the latter half of the season, beginning with his failure to win the British Open and push for a grand slam. However, Spieth was able to find the strength to ignore his critics and focus on his game and he claims to have a much greater level of confidence in himself as a result.
Spieth is clearly aware that his career will not be a 100% success and that no player is perfect. Having experienced such contrasting highs and lows in one tumultuous year, the 22-year old is now better-prepared than ever before to deal with a life in the limelight as one of the United States’ most exciting young stars. Greller, Spieth’s caddie, revealed that the player was determined to finish this season with a victory to cap off one of the most impressive years we’ve seen in the golfing world for quite some time.
Meanwhile, despite the tournament having only just finished, Spieth’s friendly rival Jason Day is already thinking about the future. Day commented on the similarities between his and Spieth’s seasons when compared to the heights of Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson’s careers, and the Australian hopes that the pair of friends can go on to dominate the golfing world in the seasons to come.