The New South Welshman led at the 36-hole mark last week and had a golden opportunity to seal a PGA Tour card for the 2019 season but faltered over the weekend to finish back in the pack.
However, Drewitt hit back emphatically in the opening round this week with a run of six straight birdies around the turn to sign for a 6-under 65 and though four behind leader Chris Paisley, is just two behind second placed Ben Silverman and Cameron Tringale.
The Tour Championship is the last of four events that will determine 25 cards on the PGA tour for the 2019 season via a mini money list.
The top 25 earners at the end of this week will have playing privileges on the world’s premiere circuit in 2019, Drewitt projected to jump 25 places on that list to 39th after his opening round.
The Inverell native will need to maintain the momentum all four days if he is to have a chance to be among the qualifiers but will be pleased with this start in what is his last chance to avoid another season on the secondary circuit.
Drewitt leads the eight strong Australian challenge at the Atlantic Beach Country Club, Cameron Davis next best at T18 after a 5-under 66.
You’d ‘Brett’er believe it.September 20, 2018
Davis is already assured a card for next season on the main Tour after a third place finish at the opening of the four-event Finals series but will be looking to improve his ranking with a strong showing this week.
Curtis Luck posted a 4-under 67 to be T24 but is projected to slip precariously close to the 25th spot, down from 16th to 24th if the tournament were to finish today.
Luck has earned more already than has been required each of the last two years but it is still mathematically possible for him to miss and the next three rounds are the most important of his short career to date.
Aaron Baddeley also dropped down the money list projections despite being under par, his 3-under effort seeing him T39 in the tournament but losing nine spots on the money list from 20th to 29th.
With three days to go, it is hardly a lost cause but the PGA Tour veteran will know he needs something special if he is to be back on the top circuit in 2019.
John Senden, Cameron Percy, Stuart Appleby and Rhein Gibson all started the week outside the top 40 money earners and none are projected to move up following the opening round.
Senden is T56 in the tournament after a 2-under 68, Percy T84 after an even par 70 while Appleby and Gibson both struggled to 4-over rounds of 74 to be outside the top 100.
SIGNATURE HOLES - 16TH AT SANCTUARY COVE PALMS COURSE, QUEENSLAND:
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