Patrick Reed, the Race to Dubai leader, will be under pressure to win the DP World Championship which starts on Thursday. Image Credit: Supplied photo

Dubai: Patrick Reed, the 2018 Masters winner, is in pole position in the Race to Dubai as the DP World Tour Championship gets under way at Jumeirah Golf Estates on Thursday.

Reed sits 460 points ahead of second-placed Tommy Fleetwood, but with 2000 points on offer for the winner of the tournament, any of the leading 60 available players on the Race to Dubai Rankings, plus Joost Luiten in 72nd position, can mathematically still break into the reckoning to win the season finale and win the Race to Dubai.

American Reed has been in fine form of late, finishing in a share of third at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth Club in October and a share of tenth at The Masters last month. His familiarity with the Earth course, where he has had three top-10 finishes in four starts including a share of second place two years ago, should stand him in good stead.

Fleetwood has finished second and third in the Race to Dubai since he won the title in 2017 and finds himself in with another chance this year having posted two second-placed finishes at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship and the Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open – both Rolex Series events.

Meanwhile, Collin Morikawa, who won the US PGA Tour Championship in August and is third in the Rankings, has burst into the limelight this year with a first major title at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco and an additional victory on the PGA Tour at Muirfield Village in Ohio.

The 23-year-old Californian is excited ahead of his debut and is looking forward to playing more European Tour events in 2021. ‘‘It’s wonderful to be here and the Earth course is beautiful,” he said after the Pro-Am on Tuesday. “There’s some really tricky greens out here and the fairway bunkers are pretty penalizing so you’ve got to hit the ball really well, keep it in the fairway and then go on from there.

“It would mean a lot to win this week and take the Race to Dubai and it would be huge for my career to be able to ‘check off’ another tournament and milestone. Hopefully I can come out on Sunday as the winner.”

Adding to the mix are the likes of modern day Ryder Cup legends Ian Poulter, Graeme McDowell and Martin Kaymer, and past DP World Tour Championship winners Matthew Fitzpatrick, Danny Willett and Henrik Stenson and the 2020 European Tour season is set to go out with a bang.

Attendance will be for invited guests only. Golf fans can follow the action on the Dubai Sports channel in the UAE or by tuning into their local network as well as staying up to date with all of the action at and on the European Tour’s social media channels.