ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Graeme McDowell summed up his 2016 schedule with an economy of words - “cluster.”
But the Northern Irishman’s victory last week at the OHL Classic at Mayakoba helped clarify the early portion of the docket, with his year now beginning at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions in January.
“I was probably going to start my year at CareerBuilder [Challenge] and then Torrey Pines. I'm committed to play Dubai, the Desert Classic, so that frees me up,” McDowell said on Wednesday at the RSM Classic.
McDowell’s bigger concern going into next year was maintaining his status on the European Tour, but his victory in Mexico will allow him to play in Dubai in January and perhaps another Middle East start, likely the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship.
He will return to Europe in May to play the BMW PGA Championship followed by the Irish Open and also plans to play the Scottish Open and French Open instead of the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, which will be played the same week.
The bigger concern, however, will be the back half of the season when everything will be condensed by the addition of the Olympics to the schedule.
“U.S. Open, week off, French Open, Scottish Open, British Open, Canadian Open, PGA Championship. I have five in a row there I believe,” he said.
And the Olympics?
“I'm factoring in not being in the Olympics right now. One of the spots is definitely taken [by Rory McIlroy], and Shane [Lowry] is playing pretty good in the other spot,” he said. “It's off my radar right now. If it comes back on my radar, I'll be there.”