American odds-on favorite for rookie award

Brandt Snedeker, FedEx Cup, Wyndham Championship
Jonathan Ernst/WireImage.com
Snedeker shot a 9-under 63 during his final round to claim a two-stroke victory at the Wyndham Championship

COOLUM, Australia (AP) — Brandt Snedeker"s outstanding first year on the U.S. PGA Tour has seen him cash checks worth US$2.8 million (1.91 million), win a tournament and finish in the top 10 in five others.

That"s made the 26-year-old American an odds-on favorite for the tour"s rookie-of-the-year award after being the highest-placed first-year player on both the money list (17th) and the FedEx Cup points standings (9th).

Not that he"s heard anything one way or the other.

"I have no clue, I thought it would have happened by now,"" Snedeker said Tuesday at the Australian PGA. "I keep hearing different dates, and hopefully before too long we"ll hear. I think I"ve won it but I"m not 100 percent sure till it comes out.""

Snedeker never had a chance to vote - even for himself. He spent two weeks in Japan after an eight-week layoff following the Tour Championship and will have spent three weeks in Australia before flying home after next week"s Australian Open in Sydney.

"I didn"t get it (the rookie award balloting) before I came out,"" Snedeker said. "I"m hoping my fellow tour players will eke me in. It would be a great honor.""

And if he loses by one vote? "I"m sure I"ll be kicking myself later,"" he said, laughing.

Snedeker flew into the Sunshine Coast for a few practice rounds on the Hyatt Regency resort course after a week on the Great Barrier Reef off the resort town of Port Douglas in north Queensland.

Snorkeling and fishing - a few coral trout on the end of the hook among others - put him in a pleasant frame of mind.

"I had a blast, I was happy and sad to come here,"" Snedeker said. "It was great to see the Great Barrier Reef. I wish I had a couple more days to go up there and snorkel, but with my skin complexion I wouldn"t have lasted too long.""

His time away from golf gave Snedeker a chance to reflect on his first year on tour, including a win at the Wyndham Championship and a third at the Buick Invitational.

In 29 tournaments, he finished 13 times in the top 25 and made 23 cuts.

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