SPANISH STARS RAFAEL CABRERA BELLO, JON RAHM JOIN WYNDHAM CHAMPIONSHIP FIELD
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Rafael Cabrera Bello and Jon Rahm, two of the biggest stars in Spanish golf, have accepted sponsor’s exemptions and will play the 2016 Wyndham Championship, the tournament announced today. The 77th annual Wyndham Championship is set for Aug. 15-21, 2016 at Sedgefield Country Club.
These players join former Wyndham winners Brandt Snedeker and Webb Simpson, Wake Forest alumnus Bill Haas and 2009 AJGA Haas Family Invitational winner Justin Thomas in the field.
After representing Spain in the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Cabrera Bello will fly to North Carolina to make his second Wyndham Championship appearance. A full time member of the European Tour, Cabrera Bello is fourth in the current European Tour Race to Dubai point standings trailing only Masters champion Danny Willett, Open Championship winner Henrik Stenson and world No. 4 Rory McIlroy; he is currently 27th in the Official World Golf Rankings.
Cabrera Bello still seeks his first PGA TOUR win, but he finished third at the World Golf Championships Dell Match Play, fourth at the Shell Houston Open and has two runner-up finishes in European Tour play this season. Cabrera Bello represented Europe in the 1999 Junior Ryder Cup matches when the United States captain was Wyndham Championship tournament director Mark Brazil.
“Rafa was a great player during the Junior Ryder Cup matches in 1999 – he was only 14 years old,” Brazil said. “One of the neat things about the Junior Ryder Cup matches was that the teams hung out together when we weren’t playing matches, and I got to know Rafa well that week. We all got to enjoy the 1999 Ryder Cup Brookline when Justin Leonard made the famous putt to clinch it for the United States. It’s always fun for me to see a junior golfer I’ve known for a long time become successful, and Rafa has really poured it on in the last few years. It should be fun to watch him play Sedgefield.”
Rahm is a native of Barrika, Span, and while not yet a PGA TOUR member, he is on a tear this summer. After just four events as a professional, he is already No. 142 in the Official World Golf Rankings. The 2016 Arizona State University graduate tied for second at last weekend’s RBC Canadian Open, tied for third at last month’s Quicken Loans National at Congressional Country Club and tied for 10th at the OHL Classic at Mayakoba.
With his Canadian Open runner-up finish, he collected 208 non-member FedExCup points, taking his total to 382, surpassing the points earned by the player at No. 150 in last season’s FedExCup standings (361 by Cameron Percy); that made Rahm eligible for Special Temporary Membership of the PGA TOUR. He can now accept unlimited sponsor’s exemptions for the remainder of this PGA TOUR season. A win would give him immediate TOUR membership.
Rahm is the former No. 1 amateur in the world and the only player ever to win the Ben Hogan Award as the best player in collegiate golf twice (2015, ’16). He finished tied for 23rd at this year’s U.S. Open as an amateur. Because he is not yet a PGA TOUR member, he is unranked in the FedExCup standings.
About the Wyndham Championship:
Contested annually on the Donald Ross-designed course at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C., the Wyndham Championship was founded in 1938 and is the sixth-oldest event on the PGA TOUR excluding the Majors. Tickets are available at http://www.wyndhamchampionship.com or through the tournament office at (336) 379-1570. The tournament thanks title sponsor Wyndham Worldwide, presenting sponsor BB&T and Premier Partners, Cadillac, Harris Teeter, Lincoln Financial, McConnell Golf, Sunbrella®, Technology Concepts & Design, Inc. and VF Corporation for their continued support. Additional tournament information and sponsorship information are available at www.wyndhamchampionship.com. For more information about Wyndham Worldwide, please visit www.wyndhamworldwide.com. Stay connected with the Wyndham Championship through its social media channels, including the Wyndham Championship Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram, Foursquare, Flickr and YouTube.