Incredible turnaround for Hahn at Wells Fargo

After eight straight missed cuts, James Hahn secured victory via a playoff

James Hahn wins Wells Fargo Championship
James Hahn wins Wells Fargo Championship
(Image credit: Getty Images)

It was a case of zero to hero for James Hahn at the Wells Fargo Championship. The American had missed eight straight cuts before securing victory via a playoff against Roberto Castro.

James Hahn might have won the Wells Fargo Championship in regulation play, he needed just a par on the final hole to set a mark that wouldn’t be matched. But he three putted for a bogey and let Roberto Castro back in, after he had dropped shots on the 16th and 17th holes.

Castro made a par and forced the tournament into extra holes but was unable to keep his game steady in the playoff. His tee shot on the 18th found the creek on the left hand side before his third hit a spectator on the head and ended in a shoe. He could only make bogey from there and Hahn had the title sewn up.

"I was worried he was going to be laid out when we got up there," Castro said of the spectator. "He'll ice it down and he'll be OK, I hope. But I felt bad about that."

3 Talking points from the Wells Fargo Championship

1 – This victory marks an incredible turnaround for Hahn. The 34-year-old had missed eight straight cuts on Tour and was beginning to doubt his game. But he had a long talk with his caddy before the tournament and came into the event with a different mindset.

"It was going bad for a while," Hahn said. "Just didn't have the confidence, didn't believe in myself. I felt like I was putting in the work but wasn't getting any reward for it. ... You're playing bad and you're missing cuts and there's nothing funny about that." He’s now earned over $1.3 million and earned a two-year exemption on the PGA Tour.

2 – Both Rory McIlroy and Phil Mickelson enjoyed excellent final rounds of 66 at Quail Hollow, but both were left to consider what might have been.

McIlroy bogeyed his 1st and 18th holes on Sunday and finished two back. "Anytime you walk off the golf course and shoot 66, you can't be too disappointed," McIlroy said. "But I think in the circumstances, having a feeling like I had a chance on the back nine to post a number for the guys to at least think about it and I didn't."

Mickelson also finished two shots back and was left to rue a quadruple bogey eight on the home hole on Saturday. "I hit a lot of good shots over the weekend, but unfortunately one bad hole yesterday kind of cost me," he said.

3 – It wasn’t such a good last day for Justin Rose and Rickie Fowler. Rose played brilliantly from tee to green but just couldn’t get the putter working. “I couldn't have hit the ball better," Rose said. "I couldn't have asked for more opportunities today. Really felt like that was one of the most quality rounds of golf I played in a long time and just made nothing out of it. Putter was ice-cold today and incredibly disappointing because of that."

Justin Rose swing sequence:

Rickie Fowler had led through 54 holes but fell away with a closing 74. He missed a short putt on the first and that set the tone for the day. "I didn't get out of the gate swinging well off the tee, kind of fought that a little bit through the round," he said. "So yeah, obviously it sucks. It's disappointing knowing where my game was at coming into today. I felt really good about being in the final group and getting the job done."

Wells Fargo Championship Quail Hollow Club, Charlotte, North Carolina May 5-8 Purse $7,300,000, par 72

1    James Hahn (USA)    70    71    68    70    279    $1,314,000 2    Roberto Castro (USA)    71    66    71    71    279    $788,400 3    Justin Rose (Eng)        70    70    69    71    280    $496,400 T4    Rickie Fowler (USA)    71    68    68    74    281    $287,438 T4    Andrew Loupe (USA)    65    71    74    71    281    $287,438 T4    Rory McIlroy (NIR)    73    69    73    66    281    $287,438 T4    Phil Mickelson (USA)    69    70    76    66    281    $287,438 8    Lucas Glover (USA)    71    70    70    71    282    $226,300 T9    Fabian Gomez (Arg)    75    69    69    70    283    $204,400 T9    Danny Lee (NZ)        72    71    73    67    283    $204,400

Note: Player score in bold signifies Titleist ball usage

Fergus Bisset
Contributing Editor

Fergus is Golf Monthly's resident expert on the history of the game and has written extensively on that subject. He is a golf obsessive and 1-handicapper. Growing up in the North East of Scotland, golf runs through his veins and his passion for the sport was bolstered during his time at St Andrews university studying history. He went on to earn a post graduate diploma from the London School of Journalism. Fergus has worked for Golf Monthly since 2004 and has written two books on the game; "Great Golf Debates" together with Jezz Ellwood of Golf Monthly and the history section of "The Ultimate Golf Book" together with Neil Tappin , also of Golf Monthly. 

Fergus once shanked a ball from just over Granny Clark's Wynd on the 18th of the Old Course that struck the St Andrews Golf Club and rebounded into the Valley of Sin, from where he saved par. Who says there's no golfing god?