Lee riding high on PGA TOUR promotion

Lee riding high on PGA TOUR promotion

With a coveted PGA TOUR card now in his back pocket, Min Woo Lee has his sights set on one of Australian golf’s major tournaments, starting with this week’s Fortinet Australian PGA Championship at Royal Queensland Golf Club.

Lee arrived into Brisbane late on Monday night on the back of a season on the DP World Tour in which he finished 10th on the Race to Dubai standings.

That, in itself, would have been enough to secure Lee’s path to the PGA TOUR in 2024 but he was notified a week earlier that he had accumulated enough FedEx Cup points as a Special Temporary Member of the PGA TOUR to rubber-stamp his advancement.

A top-five finisher in each of the past two championships at Royal Queensland, Lee is now eager to add to his Vic Open triumph in 2020 and thrill his ever-expanding legion of Lee disciples.

“It would be amazing,” Lee said of the prospect of a win this Sunday.

“Any tournament you really win is unbelievable, but at home it’s probably got to be a different feeling.

“I won the Vic Open and it was awesome winning at home and I hope to do it again.”

A prodigy who once wowed Tiger Woods and whose path to the PGA TOUR seemed preordained, Lee took a circuitous route before securing a PGA TOUR card for the first time.

He flirted with Korn Ferry Tour events in South America at the start of 2019 but top five finishes at the Saudi International and the ISPS HANDA World Super 6 in Perth created an opportunity to play on the DP World Tour.

He has won twice since but is now ready to take to the States on a full-time basis.

“Obviously the PGA Tour card’s a massive thing,” said Lee, who last month won the Macao Open on the Asian Tour.

“That was on my radar from last year. I had a couple of pathways to do it, through the DP World Tour and through the tournaments in America, so really excited for that.

“I knew probably a month ago but I got the confirmation probably last week when they took me off the DP World top 10 list because I got enough points to have my card.

“I’ve known for about a month, which is pretty cool.”

With the new DP World Tour season starting just days after the last one came to a close, Lee intends to draw on the energy of the Royal Queensland galleries when he tees off on Thursday, particularly when he arrives at the Southern Comfort Party Hole.

“I’m that type of player that I love crowds and I don’t shy away from them. If there’s any partying or any good time happening, I love it,” said Lee.

“I remember I nearly had a hole in one there. I put it to like a foot last year on that front left location.

“The last couple of years have been amazing. Last year especially was unbelievable.

“Fairways were filled, which we don’t get that every week, so it is nice to be one of the top names at a tournament and get such a following.”