Sep 3rd, 2015
PGA Tour GolfPunks
Words: The Brigadier Photography: Getty Images
Oklahoma born Robert Streb started out as a Kansas State college player, and turned Pro in 2009 as soon as he had graduated. He played on the NGA Pro Golf Tour in 2010 and 2011, before progressing to the Web.com Tour in 2012.
His maiden win was at the Mylan Classic in September of that year, and he finished 7th on the money list to earn his PGA Tour card for 2013.
In his first full playing season he finished 126th in the FedEx Cup, an agonizing one spot short off the play offs, and with that fully exempt status for 2014.
2014 saw him runner-up at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, and a T-9 at the Deutsche Bank Championship, which took him to 71st in the FedEx Cup.
Streb earned his first PGA Tour win at the 2014 McGladrey Classic in October of that year, making birdies at four of the last five holes for a final round of 63, and then another in a play off for out and out victory against Brendon de Jonge and Will MacKenzie.
He completed the season with six top ten finishes, which included loosing a playoff at the Greenbrier Classic. Streb is clearly a player who knows how to get in the mix, and over the line, even though he fell just short at the Greenbrier.
Victory at the McGladrey qualified him for a Masters debut this year, which was also his first Major appearance. He missed the cut with a costly first round of 80, and an only marginally better second round of 76. But at least he had fulfilled a lifetime ambition by actually playing at Augusta.
He had opened his 2015 with a top 10 finish at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions in Hawaii, and then took some time out to become a father for the first time.
On his return to the office, he came fourth in May’s the Wells Fargo Championship, and in June was in a four-man sudden death play-off for the Greenbrier Classic, which was won by South Korea’s Danny Lee for his maiden victory.
He also qualified for the 144th Open Championship at St Andrews as he was amongst the leading 20 on the FedEx Cup points standings at the start of June.
The 28 year-old had never been to St Andrews before, and had plenty to thank Tom Watson for after carding a six-under 66 in his opening round to be the early clubhouse leader. He took full advantage of the fine early morning conditions to shoot a round that included a total of 7 birdies.
He had a practice round with Watson on the Tuesday, who was of course playing his final Open.
"I tried to get as much information as I could - he was pretty helpful," said Streb. "He's obviously had a great track record over here. I tried to arrange it last week and luckily he was nice enough to play. I live in Kansas City and he lives there as well, but I knew this week would be very busy for him. He has a lot going on.”
"Probably the best thing I got was try not to hit it too far into the green on 17. Just try to get it up there on top and take your two putts and leave."
He finished the Open -8, tied 18, for a $129,140 share of the purse, which was a good result given that it was his first time at St Andrews, and only his second Major appearance.
Whistling Straits saw his first start at the US PGA Championship, and he finished a very creditable 10th, with consecutive weekend rounds of -5.
He made the cut at the U.S. Open at Chambers Bay, but finished +7 for the tournament, tied 42nd. He still picked up a cheque for $42,926 for his week’s work, which took his career earnings to date to $5,435,070.
His career to date has an impressive trajectory, as in the last three years he has risen from 126th, to 71st to 9th in the FedEx. It looks like he’s a man on the move.
He drives the ball an average of 298 yards, which only ranks him at 38th on the PGA Tour, but his all-round ranking at 13 shows that he is a proper contender.
Outside of golf, he is a fan of “Hawaii-Five-O” and “Modern Family.” Favourite movies are “Happy Gilmore” and “Wedding Crashes.”
He likes his technology, and never leaves home without his laptop and iPod. His dream fourball is a round with his Dad, brother and Arnold Palmer.
We’re looking forwards to following his progress at the Deutsche Bank. The big beasts will all be out, so it will be interesting to see if he can make further progress in what has been a very solid year for the 28 year old.