Winning, not $10-M, the motivation for Snedeker

Posted at 09/23/2012 8:20 PM | Updated as of 09/23/2012 8:20 PM

ATLANTA - American Brandt Snedeker is in prime position to cash in on a $10 million payday in Sunday's final round at the Tour Championship but he says his sole motivation is to win the tournament.

Snedeker, one of five players who began this week knowing that victory on Sunday would also secure the season-long FedExCup playoff title and its lucrative bonus, was tied for the lead with Britain's Justin Rose after Saturday's third round.

"My first goal for this week is achieved, and that is to have a chance going into Sunday," the fast-talking Snedeker told reporters after surging into contention with a flawless six-under-par 64 at East Lake Golf Club.

"As rookies out here, you always look at that money list ... wondering what's going on. Now that I've been out here for a while, I realise you don't play for money, otherwise you'll be 80 to 125 every year on the money list.

"You play to win championships and the money comes with that, which is great. I'm going out there to win a golf tournament tomorrow, and whatever comes of that, is great."

The 31-year-old clinched his third PGA Tour title at the Farmers Insurance Open in January and earned himself a wildcard pick on the U.S. Ryder Cup team for next week's matches against Europe after making a strong start to the FedExCup playoffs.

"It's definitely taken a weight off my shoulders," Snedeker said of his selection as a Ryder Cup rookie. "There was a lot of pressure the first two weeks after the playoffs.

"I answered the bell. I played great. I think the BMW (Championship) was a little bit of a letdown," he said of his tie for 37th in the third of the four playoff events.

"I was still playing pretty good, but after being named to the Ryder Cup team, I didn't get back into the swing of things, so last week's break was great to kind of get refreshed."

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Snedeker described his third-round 64 in breezy conditions on a fast-running layout as one of his best displays this year and he has targeted something similar for Sunday.

"I actually won't look at the leaderboard all day," he said with a smile. "My goal tomorrow is to shoot as low as I possibly can. If that's 63, it's 63. If it's 72, it's 72.

"Whatever it is, it's going to be everything I've got on that golf course tomorrow. The biggest thing tomorrow is going to be how patient you can stay because this golf course eats guys up that don't stay patient.

"With all the extra stuff that goes with the FedExCup and the Tour Championship, there are so many reasons to get antsy."

Snedeker's main rivals on Sunday for the FedExCup title are world number one Rory McIlroy and second-ranked Tiger Woods.

Any of the three would clinch the $10 million bonus by winning the Tour Championship. McIlroy was tied for fourth after Saturday's third round, three shots behind Snedeker and Rose, with Woods a further stroke back. (Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes; Editing by Gene Cherry)