The PGA Tour moves from Mexico to North Carolina for the 20th edition of the Wells Fargo Championship.
After a year at TPC Potomac, the tournament returns to its permanent home, the Quail Hollow Club which hosted the 2022 Presidents Cup last September.
The field will be headlined by three-time Fargo champion Rory McIlroy, who makes his return after a missed cut at the Masters and a controversial withdrawal at Harbour Town.
McIlroy will be joined by several former Wells Fargo winners such as Max Homa (2019, 2022), Jason Day (2018) and Rickie Fowler (2012).
Other marquee names include Justin Thomas, Patrick Cantlay, Tony Finau, Matt Fitzpatrick, Xander Schauffele and Collin Morikawa, among others.
As we do each week, what follows is a round-up of information and historical data to get you prepped for a weekend of golf in Charlotte.
2023 Wells Fargo Championship
This week’s Primer is powered by Titleist Golf Store at Amazon.
PGA Tour: At-a-Glance
Name: Wells Fargo Championship
Title Sponsor: Wells Fargo
Tour Debut: 2003
Original Name: Wachovia Championship
Dates: May 4-7, 2023
Where: Charlotte, NC
Course: Quail Hollow Club
Distance: Par 71, 7538 yards
Format: 72-holes, Stroke play
Field: 156 Players (36-hole cut)
Winning Share: $3,600,000
FedExCup/OWGR Pts: 500/63
Defending Champion: Max Homa
How to Follow the Wells Fargo Championship
TELEVISION: Thu-Fri: 2-6 p.m. (GOLF); Sat-Sun: 1-3 p.m. (GOLF), 3-6 p.m. (CBS)
PGA TOUR LIVE: Thu-Fri: 6:45 a.m.-6 p.m. (ESPN+); Sat-Sun: 7 a.m.-6 p.m. (ESPN+)
Watch on ESPN+
PGA TOUR RADIO: Thu-Fri: 12-6 p.m.; Sat-Sun: 1-6 p.m.
(PGA TOUR Radio on SiriusXM and PGATOUR.com/liveaudio)
LINKS: Website | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook
Wells Fargo Championship History
The Wells Fargo Championship is a relatively young tournament, with the inaugural tournament (then called the Wachovia Championship) teeing off in 2003.
Traditionally held in early May as part of the Tour’s swing through the southeastern states that are contested between the Masters and the U.S. Open, the first event winner was David Toms, who at 10-under par, won by two shots. Each of the next three editions were decided in overtime.
Notable champions include Vijay Singh, Jim Furyk, Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, Jason Day and Max Homa.
McIlroy is the only three-time winner – taking the 2010, 2015 and 2021 titles. In that 2010 victory, McIlroy made the cut on the number and then exploded on the weekend, shooting 66-62 to win by four strokes over Phil Mickelson (watch).
History: Tournament Names
- Wells Fargo Championship (2011-23)
- Quail Hollow Championship (2009-10)
- Wachovia Championship (2003-08)
History: Recent Winners
2022: Max Homa (-8)
2021: Rory McIlroy (-10)
2020: Canceled COVID (-19)
2019: Max Homa (-15)
2018: Jason Day (-12)
2017: Brian Harman (-10)
2016: James Hahn (-9)
2015: Rory McIlroy (-21)
2014: J.B. Holmes (-14)
2013: Derek Ernst (-8)
2012: Rickie Fowler (-14)
History: Tournament Records
3 – Rory McIlroy (2021, 2015, 2010)
267 (-21) Rory McIlroy (2015)
Rewind: 2022 Wells Fargo Championship
With regular tournament host Quail Hollow Club being prepped for the fall’s Presidents Cup, the Tour faced an unfamiliar course in this edition of the Wells Fargo Championship.
It ended up not mattering for Max Homa. Despite brutal conditions for much of the week, the 2019 Wells Fargo champion came out front again, reaching 8 under for the week to win by two strokes over Matt Fitzpatrick, Cameron Young and Keegan Bradley.
Played at Maryland’s TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm, the then 31-year-old Cal-Berkeley product notched his fourth career victory, including his second of the 2022 PGA Tour season.
Finishing four strokes back in solo-fifth was three-time Wells Fargo champion Rory McIlroy. The popular four-time major champion began the final round six strokes behind Bradley and got himself into range when he played the first ten holes in 3-under. McIlroy played 1-over from there, with a birdie and two bogeys.
Final Top-5 Finishers
Pos-Player-To Par (Final Rd)
1. Max Homa -8 (-2)
2. Cameron Young -6 (-4)
2. Matt Fitzpatrick -6 (-3)
2. Keegan Bradley -6 (+2)
5. Rory McIlroy -5 (-2)
Wells Fargo Championship Field
The top-ranked player in the field is three-time Fargo champion Rory McIlroy, who sits No. 3 in the Official World Golf Rankings.
The 34-year-old superstar, though, enters off two straight missed cuts in stroke play events (The Masters and The Players). In five 2023 stroke-play starts, the Northern Irishman owns just a single top-20 finish (T2 at Bay Hill).
Tony Finau bounced out of a mini malaise last week with a win at the Mexico Open. It was the first top-10 finish for the Utah native since early February. A T16 (2015) is Finau’s best finish in six career starts at the Fargo.
Matt Fitzgerald also enters in strong form, highlighted by a playoff win at Harbour Town, and a top-10 finish at the Masters.
Another player in solid form is Patrick Cantlay, who’s posted six top-10 finishes, including three top-3s (3rd RBC Heritage, Genesis; T2 Shriners), in 11 starts this season.
Cantlay’s partner, Xander Schauffele, has also been posting some solid results of late, including three straight top-10s highlighted by a pair of top-5s.
Jordan Spieth is also enjoying a superb PGA Tour 2023 season thus far with four top-5 finishes in his last five stroke-play starts, highlighted by a playoff loss at the Heritage.
World No. 15 (gulp!) Justin Thomas won the 2017 PGA Championship at Quail Hollow but enters in very shaky form. The 15-time Tour winner hasn’t contented all season and owns just two (backdoor) top-10 finishes on the 2023 campaign.
Defending champion Max Homa also enters Charlotte in suspect form, having posted a T43 at Augusta and MC at Harbour Town.
This year’s field also includes 2012 Wells Fargo winner Rickie Fowler, who enters in much better form. A fixture in the world top-10 for years, Fowler endured a career changing slump, starting in late 2019 and lasting through 2022. He is now ranked a respectable 53rd. The 34-year-old fan favorite enters off seven top-20 finishes in his eight most recent starts, highlighted by a pair of top-10 finishes (Texas and Phoenix Opens).
Another top name teeing it up this week is Collin Morikawa. The 25-year-old Californian started the season in top form with back-to-back top-3s (2nd Kapalua, 3rd Torrey Pines) but has been up and down the rest of the way.
Other marquee names include Sam Burns, Viktor Hovland, Cam Young, Tyrrell Hatton, Jason Day and Tom Kim.
Top-10 Betting Favorites
1. Rory McIlroy (8/1)
2. Patrick Cantlay (12/1)
3. Cam Young (16/1)
3. Tony Finau (16/1)
3. Xander Schauffele (16/1)
6. Jordan Spieth (18/1)
6. Viktor Hovland (18/1)
8. Justin Thomas (20/1)
9. Collin Morikawa (22/1)
9. Max Homa (22/1)
9. Matt Fitzpatrick (22/1)
Full Field & Odds
Carey Hoffman contributed to this report.