By Brian Keogh
Triple major winner Padraig Harrington wants to do a Kenny Egan and deliver a knockout punch to his rivals in the battle for the PGA Tour money title.
Ireland's golfing heavyweight begins his bid for massive $10 million FedEx Cup bonus in The Barclays at Ridgewood Country Club in New Jersey tomorrow.
And he knows that if he follows the mental advice he gave Egan before the Olympics, he can pick off a win in one of the four play-off events and grab the biggest pay off in golf.
Fourth in the FedEx Cup race and bursting with confidence, Harrington said: "To me there's a great chance of winning the Money List. I've done it in Europe and it'd be very nice to do it in the 'States. I think that's number one motivation. There's an opportunity for all us guys to do it now.
"They are big tournaments and obviously I have one eye on the world rankings. Realistically, I am just trying to win the money title, which is now the FedEx Cup.
"Anybody in the top 10 can win this FedEx Cup if they get at least one win and follow it up with another couple of good performances.
"Anybody outside that might need two wins but there's a lot to play for in that sense and I'm ready to go.
"After winning two Majors you'd kind of think I could do with a rest but there's other things to play for so that's why I'm here this week. I'm looking forward to playing the Barclays Classic.
"I remember last year how I struggled in the first couple of FedEx events and I had to pull out of the third because I was fatigued but this time round I feel better, stronger and motivated. There's lots to play for."
After the drama of his US PGA win at Oakland Hills, Harrington spent his week off sitting by the pool at White Oak Plantation North Carolina, where he is building a house.
But he also kept up to date on the progress of Ireland's Olympic hopefuls in Beijing, especially boxing hero Egan.
Harrington said: "It was an interesting week. I sat by the pool for most of it. Come Sunday I was kind of thinking I'd like to sit there for another week.
"To that extent, the FedEx Cup is a success. It's what is attracting me out here again and that was the idea of it, to get players to compete at this time of the year."
Fellow Dubliner Egan asked Harrington for advice on preparation earlier this year and gave the three-time Major winner a share of the credit for his success.
And while Harrington is playing down his role in Egan's run to the Olympic semi-finals, his midas touch looks to have paid off.
Harrington said: "Kenny wasn't afraid to ask a couple of people to make the contact with me. I love to talk, as you know, though I will mention the fact that I had a talk with the Dublin football team a few years ago and the following day they went out and lost to Carlow. It was a bit of an upset.
"I won't say I've a hundred per cent record in these things but it's great to see Kenny doing well and for me to have someone to follow. We're wishing him the best going forward.
"A couple of times in the past athletes have come and asked for advice, Kenny being one of them. He came to my house and basically was talking about how to peak; how to go to a big-time event and produce your best performance.
"He was obviously a very talented competitor himself, knew what to do but felt he probably was slightly underachieving at the big event.
"He came and we had a good day together. I went through a few things. I gave him a bit of advice and a few books to read and it's good to see it's paying off.
"Yet I won't take credit for it. Boxers put in an incredible amount of work and it's nice that he's been saying these things.
"One of the keys I put across to him at the time is his ability to do his own thing and be self-sufficient and concentrate on his own performance and not be distracted. I think he is doing that.
"I would suggest there should be only one thought in his head at this stage and that's semi-final bout and not getting drawn up into how he's done so far.
"I'm 36 years of age and I've spent probably 20 years gaining the experience I have. When you think that some Olympic athletes, some of these gymnasts for example, are asked to be worldly experienced at 16 years of age, which is an incredibly difficult thing to do.
"The only way to learn experience without actually going through it yourself is to learn from somebody else, learn from books and listening to other people.
"The great thing about Kenny, as I was at 18 years ago age, I was motivated to seek help outside of the mainstream. I started working with a sports psychologist at age 18 and at that time you didn't mention it because it might have been seen as a sign of weakness.
"The better players in all sports seek out the best possible help and try to put the best possible team behind them."
Harrington is $1,477,269 behind pace-setter Tiger Woods in the money list but with the world No 1 out of the season after knee surgery, he has a great chance of winning the FedEx Cup.
The Dubliner is effectively third in the points, race just 500 points behind Kenny Perry with 11,000 points on offer for the winner of each of the FedEx Cup events.
The player with the most points after the Tour Championship will win the FedEx Cup and $10 million of a $35 million bonus fund.
The runner-up gets $3 million, third place $2 million, fourth place $1.5 million, fifth place $1 million, and so on down to $32,000 for 144th place.
Last year, the money was placed into the players' tax-deferred retirement accounts and, not given in cash.
This year, the the top 10 finishers will now receive the bulk of their FedEx Cup bonuses in cash with the champion getting $9 million up front and $1 million in his tax-deferred retirement account.
This week: The Barclays, New Jersey
(FedExCup points to winner 11,000, Purse: $7m (€4.75 m); Winner: $1.26 m (€855,000)
Aug. 29-Sept. 1, Deutsche Bank Championship, Boston (FedExCup Pts Winner: 11,000 Purse: $7m, Winner $1.26m)
Sept. 4-7, BMW Championship, St. Louis (FedExCup Pts to Winner: 11,000 Purse: $7 Million, Winner: $1.26m)
Sept. 11 - 14 Week off
Sept. 19-21 The Ryder Cup, Louisville, Kentucky
Sept. 26-29 The Tour Championship, Atlanta (FedExCup Points: 110,000 Purse: $7m, Winner: $1.26m)
FedEx Cup standings:
1 Tiger Woods 100,000
2 Kenny Perry 99,500
3 Phil Mickelson 99,250
4 Padraig Harrington 99,000
5 Anthony Kim 98,750
PGA Tour money list
1 Tiger Woods (6) $5,775,000
2 Phil Mickelson (17) $4,576,235
3 Kenny Perry (22) $4,492,300
4 Padraig Harrington (12) $4,297,731
5 Vijay Singh (19) $3,932,531