Dubai (UAE): Race to Dubai leader and USPGA Champion Martin Kaymer will go into the final round of the Race to Dubai tomorrow (Thursday) just four days away from what would be his perfect year.
The 25 year-old German currently leads the Race to Dubai from Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell. And with a Major title and the Ryder Cup under his belt, Kaymer is just one step away from his career dream.
“When I turned pro, I had three goals,” he said after playing in the Rolex Pro Am over the Earth course at Jumeirah Golf Estates yesterday (Tuesday). “The first was to win a Major. The second was to win the Ryder Cup and the third was to be European Number One.
“I’ve already done two-thirds so if I can win the Race to Dubai and be the new European Number One then I will have done it all in one year.”
And what about becoming World Number One, the position currently held by defending Dubai World Champion Lee Westwood? The German smiled as he replied: “If I win this week then I may also become number one in the world but that all depends on how Lee plays.”
Despite now being out of the running to stay as European Number One, Westwood believes either Kaymer or McDowell deserve to be his heir apparent. “The form the two lads have shown… they are the most prolific winners on Tour along with Miguel (Angel Jimenez) this year, so they deserve to be in that spot and have a chance to win the Money List,” he said.
“Obviously I’m disappointed not to be able to win The Race to Dubai but I’m not going to lose sleep over it. I’d have liked to have had a chance to defend the European crown this week – it would have made it more exciting for everybody I guess; the more people involved in the actual race. But I think I can sit back and have a slight grin being World Number One.”
While Westwood will be all out to defend his Dubai World Championship in style, the two contenders for the Race to Dubai title have prepared for the final event of the season in differing fashions. McDowell went in pursuit of prize money in Hong Kong last week in an attempt to close the gap on the German, while Kaymer spent some down time back in Germany.
“It’s been a long season and I was beginning to feel it. I think I slept for four days, for twelve hours every day,” he added. “I just tried to spend some time with my friends and I did some other sports, as well.”
Kaymer, who confirmed he will remain loyal to The European Tour and will not join the PGA Tour in 2011, is under no illusions as to the challenge that lies ahead in a tournament that offers total prize-money of $7.5 million and a Bonus Pool to the final top 15 in The Race to Dubai of a further $7.5 million.
“To have a chance to win The Race to Dubai, to become the best player in Europe – it’s probably the biggest week of my career so far. I played six rounds her last year and I will play another nine holes on the back nine – then I think I should be prepared.”
Caption: A symbol of The European Tour’s success in 2010 – George O’Grady, Chief Executive The European Tour, Graeme McDowell of Northern Ireland, Louis Oosthuizen of South Africa, Martin Kaymer of Germany and World Number One Lee Westwood of England prior to the start of the Dubai World Championship on the Earth course, Jumeirah Golf Estates. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
Copyright Notice – 2010 Getty Images
Credit – Getty Images
For further information: Alan Ewens, Dubai World Championship Media Centre. Tel: +97150 4514188