By Jay Betsill
Rory McIlory has already stated that his season was a “lost year” because he did not win any of the four majors, but after winning the season-ending DP World Tour Championship and claiming the European Tour’s Race to Dubai crown, the No. 3 ranked player in the world gave himself an ‘A’ for 2015.
McIlroy shot 6-under 66 with eight birdies to finish on 21-under 267 at the Jumeirah Golf Estates in Duabi, one stroke ahead of overnight leader Andy Sullivan. He has now won the Race to Dubai for the third time in the last four years and is the only multiple winner of the European Tour’s season-long competition.
”To be European No. 1 for the third time in four years, that was a goal of mine at the start of the year,” McIlroy said. “It was a goal of mine in the middle of the year and it was definitely a goal coming into these last few weeks …It’s the best way to finish 2015, and I can’t wait for next year.”
South Africa’s Branden Grace shot 5-under 67 in the final round to finish third followed by England’s Danny Willett, who would have won the Race to Dubai had he beaten McIlroy.
Notables in the field included Charl Schwartzel (-13, T4), Martin Kaymer (-12, T10), Patrick Reed (-12, T10), Luke Donald (-9, T13), Justin Rose (-7, T22), Louis Oosthuizen (-4, T38), Ian Poulter (-3, T42), Lee Westwood (-3, T42) and Henrik Stenson (+3, 56).
Full leaderboard here.
McIlroy will take the rest of the year off with his 2016 debut in January at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship at Abu Dhabi Golf Club from Jan. 21-24, where he will be joined by Masters and U.S. Open champion Jordan Spieth and Players champion Rickie Fowler.