Well we know from previous articles by my co-director Lawrie Montague that it’s extremely difficult to gain a tour card on the PGA or European tours or for that matter on any of the main tours around the world these days.
And it’s even harder to keep the card!
So what does it take to retain the playing privileges for the following year? On the PGA Tour the top 125 players keep their card and on the European Tour the top 115 keep theirs.
This time of the year on every tour around the world players around that last magic number are making calculations on how much money they have to earn in the remaining tournaments to secure their card for next year.
I can save them time as I have crunched the money that is required over the last five years on each tour for the 125th and 115th on the respective tours below.
Now there are not too many jobs in the world where if you earn US$750,000.00 a year you lose your job as is the case on the PGA Tour!
With four tournaments left on the schedule, the 125th position which is referred to as the “Bubble” number has David Mathis sitting on it looking over his shoulder.
Mathis to date has earned US$587,836.00 and will need another US$163,316.00 to get to that 3/4 million dollar mark.
Right behind Mathis is Rod Pampling from Australia who is US$1,078.00 behind and breathing down his neck. And like every year it’s always interesting watching from the sideline but nerve wrecking inside the ropes!
On the European Tour where there are seven tournaments still available for those chasing spots inside the top 115. On the “Bubble” at the moment is Carlos Del Moral from Spain and right behind him is two time winner on tour Edoardo Molinari E4,197.00 in arrears.
On the flip side is the 1st stage of tour school is being conducted both in the US and Europe for those pro’s who have no playing privileges on either tour.
In Europe there are three stages same as in the US. PTGC’s Jason Scrivener has got through right on the number in Europe tied for the final spot at 1st stage so now progresses to the 2nd stage to be held in November. Well done Jason from all at PTGC.
In Europe there were 700 pro’s at 1st stage and only 25% (175) get through to 2nd stage and join other exempted pros. It is anticipated that there will be around 310 in total who have qualified for 2nd stage and again only 25% (80) will move on to the final stage.
The final stage will combine the 80 pros from 2nd stage plus those who have lost their cards from the 2012 tour and are given a second chance to regain it back at tour school. At this final stage only the top 25 plus ties earn a tour card for 2013. Those missing out will gain some status on the secondary Challenge Tour for 2013.
This is the final year that tour cards will be available at tour school in the US. From the end of next year (2013) all tour cards have to be earned from playing on the Web.Com Tour. Over the last seven years 25 cards were allotted to the Web.Com Tour and 25 cards to those from tour school.
There is no greater pressure in golf than there is at tour school. Not even trying to win tournaments come close to the intense pressure that builds up before and during the week of tour school.
This is where those who have periodized their year so they can peak their game at the right time are the ones who will trust themselves and their games in the high intensity environment which is tour school!
And for those who succeed, the rewards are huge as they should be.
David Milne and Lawrie Montague - Pro Tour Golf College