Race to Dubai: What you need to know


The European Tour's season-finale DP Tour Championship takes place at Jumeriah Golf Estates in Dubai this week, which culminates in the final stop in the Race to Dubai. Here's what you need to know.

Now in it's 9th edition, the DP World Tour Championship is the final of eight Rolex Series events that have taken part throughout the season, and has been played on the Greg Norman designed Earth Course at Jumeirah Golf Estates since its conception.

The field is made up of the top 60 players in the rankings of the Race to Dubai, but due to the absence of Rory McIlroy and Henrik Stenson, who have between them won the last five Race to Dubai titles, Paul Waring and Ian Poulter have made it in to the field thanks to top 20 finishes at the Nedbank Golf Challenge last week. 

Technically, only three players still have the ability to win the Race to Dubai, with Tommy Fleetwood currently commanding the top position over Justin Rose and Masters Champion Sergio Garcia.

However, there is a big end of season bonus awaiting players who make it in to the top 10 in the Race to Dubai rankings, with anyone in the top 45 still having a chance to take a share in the five million dollar Race to Dubai bonus bool.

Making up the top 10 in the standings at the moment are; Tommy Fleetwood, Justin Rose, Sergio Garcia, Jon Rahm, Tyrrell Hatton, Ross Fisher, Rafa Cabrera Bello, Alex Noren, Branden Grace and Francesco Molinari. 

Race to Dubai: Quick Facts

The Course: The Earth Course at Jumeirah Golf Estates Dubai was designed by Greg Norman and opened in 2009. The par 72 course is 7706 yards long, and has been the setting for the DP World Tour Championships every year for the past eight events. The course record of 62 was set by Justin Rose in 2012. 

Rolex Series: While the tournament and season end is in its 9th edition, this is the first year of the highly successful Rolex Series, which have taken part in seven different countries and were won by Alex Noren, Tommy Fleetwood, Rafa Cabreara Bello, Jon Rahm, Tyrrell Hatton, Justin Rose and Branden Grace.

Defending Champion: Matthew Fitzpatrick is the DP World Tour Championship defending champion, becoming the youngest Englishman to claim three European Tour titles with victory last year, besting Tyrrell Hatton by a single shot. 

Prize Fund: $8,000,000

The Hero Challenge

Before the main event kicks off on Thursday, the third distinct Hero Challenge event took place on Tuesday (14th November) evening at the DP World Tour Championship Beach Party. The one-hole shooutout event was contested bewteen 8 players, and Haotong Li took home the title after defeating Alex Noren in the final. 

In a new format for the fourth edition of the event, eight European Tour stars were faced with an island green at the Nasimi Beach Club in the Atlantis, The Palm resort for a nearest-the-pin shoot-out. Li dispatched of World No.5 Jon Rahm and Thomas Pieters, while Noren took out both Rafa Cabrera Bello and Ian Poulter. 

The Shanghai player, who has one European Tour title to his name having won on home soil last year, held his nerve under the floodlights and he opened with 25 points, which Noren couldn’t match, before both players hit it within the inner circle on the second shot. Noren could not rack up the requisite points with his final attempt and Li was crowned champion.

“It was great,” said Li. “It was such a great event against good players and I really enjoyed it. I hope that I can play with Alex again this Sunday in the main tournament!”

DP World Tour Championship: Who's in the field?

Although last year's Race to Dubai winner Henrik Stenson had to pull out of the event through injury, defending DP World Tour Champion Matthew Fitzpatrick is in the field - and the World No 31 hasn't finished worse than T15 in his last eight starts. 

Joining Fitzpatrick at Jumeirah Golf Estates for the season's final event are 13 of the World's top 30 players, including World No.5 Jon Rahm, World No.6 Justin Rose and Masters Champion Sergio Garcia, the current World No.11. 

Branden Grace's victory at the Nedbank Golf Challenge last week propelled him in to the top 10 of the Race to Dubai rankings, and he is among a further 21 of the year's other European Tour winners in the field this week. 

The full field can be found by clicking here 

Who could still win: Scenarios

Tommy Fleetwood: Theoretically, the Race to Dubai leader just needs to finish ahead of both Rose and Garcia to guarantee he stays a top of the rankings and takes home.  As long as Rose doesn't finish in the top five and Garcia doesn't win, Fleetwood will lift the trophy on Sunday. 
Last five results: T10-T23-T20-T6-T25

Justin Rose: The 2007 Race to Dubai Champion is currently 256,737 points behind Fleetwood in the Race to Dubai, but comes in to the event in incredible form having won the WGC HSBC Champions and the Turkish Airlines Open in successive events (and he also set the course record here of 62 in 2012). A win would guarantee his second Order of Merit title, but as long as Fleetwood doesn't top the tournament leaderboard, second place could also guarantee him victory. Can't finish worse than solo fifth.
Last five results: 1st-1st-T10-T2-T10

Sergio Garica: At 1,051,405 points behind Fleetwood, Garcia would need to win his fourth event of the year this week to have a chance at clinching both trophies. However, Fleetwood would also have to finish outside of the top 20 and Rose outside of solo fourth.
Last five results: 1st-T30-MC-T10-T12

How to watch 

Tuesday 14th: 7.30pm to 9pm - Hero Challenge (Sky Sports Golf & European Tour Social Media) 
Wednesday 15th: 11am to 12pm - Live on the Range show (Sky Sports Golf)
Thursday 16th: 8am to 1pm - Day one (Sky Sports Golf)
Friday 17th: 8am to 1pm - Day two (Sky Sports Golf)
Saturday 18th: 7.30am to 1pm - Day three (Sky Sports Golf)
Sunday 19th: 7am to 12.30pm - Final round (Sky Sports Golf)

The Rolex Series Winners So Far

➤ Branden Grace: Nedbank Golf Challenge 
➤ Justin Rose: Turkish Airlines Open
➤ Tyrrell Hatton: Italian Open 
➤ Jon Rahm: Irish Open supported by the Rory Foundation
➤ Rafa Cabrera Bello: Aberdeen Assett Management Scottish Open
➤ Tommy Fleetwood: HNA Open De France
➤ Alex Noren: BMW PGA Championship