Cape Town - World No 6 Francesco Molinari is set for a few more weeks of golf as he looks ahead to the end of the European season.
The Italian is preparing for this week's WGC-HSBC Champions
Tournament at Sheshan International in Shanghai, where victory would
seal his position at the top of the Race to Dubai rankings.
"Because of the way I play the game, tough courses suit me," the 35-year-old told hsbcgolf.com.
"It's great to be leading the Race to Dubai and I want to try to win
in Shanghai to get me closer to finishing the year as the European No 1.
I'm quite tired after the run I've had, so I'll take the next week off
to prepare properly for the final event in Dubai.
"I'll then have a seven-week break so I can put the clubs away and
spend some time with the family at home in London. I haven't had much
time to sit down and reflect on the season so far, but there's a real
sense of achievement."
A 'sense of achievement' is somewhat of an understatement.
After struggling in the first half of the season, Molinari kicked
into gear at the European PGA Championship, which started a superlative run.
He followed the victory up with a runner-up finish at the Italian Open,
went on to win the Quicken Loans Invitational by seven strokes and then
held off a charging Tiger Woods at The Open to win his first major.
As if that wasn't enough, Molinari went on to become the only
European to win all five of his matches in a winning Ryder Cup campaign
at Le Golf National.
"When they are not playing well 90 percent of the golfers on tour will tell you it's just around the corner," he reflected.
"I really believed that, but in reality you never really know. Early
in the season I wasn't playing very well and it was frustrating because I
felt I'd improved last year as a player but I wasn't seeing the scores
or the results.
"Winning at Wentworth definitely gave me a boost of confidence that
carried into the summer. After that I went on to win the Quicken Loans
event on the PGA Tour in America and then it was like a snowball effect
leading to the Open at Carnoustie and the Ryder Cup in France."