New South Welshman Rhein Gibson has taken a huge step towards regaining playing privileges on the PGA Tour with a four-shot victory at the Korn Ferry Tour Astara Golf Championship in Colombia.
One stroke behind Kris Ventura at the start of the final round at the Country Club de Bogota, Gibson made his first birdie of the day at the par-4 fourth hole before making his move at the turn.
A birdie at nine was followed by a monster putt for eagle at the par-5 10th, handing Gibson a handy three-shot buffer moving into the back nine.
Four consecutive pars were followed by a birdie at the par-3 15th to maintain his three-shot advantage from fellow Australian Brett Drewitt and American Brandon Harkins.
American Kevin Dougherty eagled the par-5 18th to set the clubhouse mark at 12-under par, leaving Gibson the task of playing the 72nd hole in bogey or better to secure victory.
He did far better, making his second eagle of the back nine to complete a round of seven-under 64 and a four-shot win in magnificent fashion. Gibson was understandably emotional in the immediate aftermath:
With victory, Gibson is projected to move to third on the Korn Ferry Tour Points List and with the foundation to push for one of the 25 cards to the PGA Tour handed out at season’s end. Drewitt (68, T-3) is projected to move up five spots to eighth with his third top-10 finish in just four starts in 2023.
Winner of the BMW Charity Pro-Am in 2019, Gibson has accepted a tournament invite to play the TPS Hunter Valley event at Oaks Cypress Lakes Resort next week. It will be his first start on the ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia since the 2019 Australian PGA Championship at RACV Royal Pines Resort.