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Golf On Tour: Three Popular Australian Professional Golfers Make it to the Big Show and Will Play on the PGA Tour in 2013
After twenty seven tournaments on the Web.Com Tour in 2012 twenty five players have earned their tour card to play on the PGA Tour in 2013. Included in the twenty five are three Aussies, Cameron Percy, Scott Gardiner and Alistair Presnell.
Congratulations to all three and for Scott and Alistair it will be the first time that they will have full playing rights on the PGA Tour. Cameron finished in 13th place, Scott in 15th place and Alistair in 23rd place.
Full playing rights do not mean you can play in every event. The higher up the ranking you finish the more opportunities to play in more tournaments. In 2013 there will be thirty seven tournaments on the schedule and the three Aussies will be able to enter between 18 to 24 tournaments depending on their ranking and how they start the season.
As there is a re-rank after six events in 2013 it would help if you can get off to a fast start and jump ahead of the others in front of you. So how did the three earn their cards and what journey did they take to achieve the “dream” that all tour professionals strive for.
Cameron Percy turned professional in 1998 and played on the Australasian and Asian Tours. He has played the PGA Tour before in 2010 when he finished 8th in 2009 on the Web.Com Tour. So take note that it took him just over ten years to achieve that as a professional.
In the early days of his professional career he found success on the secondary Australian Von Nida Tour where he won the Tasmanian Open in 1997 and 1998, Victorian PGA Championship 2005 and the Queensland PGA and Masters in 2006.
In his first full season on the Web.Com Tour in 2005 he played in twenty tournaments made the cut in twelve and won a total of US$68,658.00 (Rank 73rd). Not enough to cover expenses.
Take note that in 2010 he lost in a playoff to Jonathon Byrd who holed-in-one on the 4th hole of a playoff at the Justin
Timberlake Shriners Hospital for Children Open. It nearly helped Cameron retain his playing privileges for 2011.
Below is a chart of his progress from 2005 until the present. Cameron is now in the veteran class and he has a game that is suited to the conditions in the USA where he has the length and now the experience to compete and do well.
I first saw Scott Gardiner play in the Australian Amateur at Lake Karrinyup in 1997. He lost in the semi finals on the 20th hole to the eventual winner Kim Felton. Scott I observed played aggressively and quick. No fuss and a very solid golfer and a nice guy on and off the course.
I have followed his career from that time and after representing Australia in the Eisenhower World Amateur Team Championship in 2000 he turned professional.
He played the Australian tour and also in Europe from 2001 to 2003. He personifies the tour battler who grinds away at it while others with less perseverance and grit give up the dream.
Scott played mainly on the Australian tour in 2003 and 2004 and as the first two tournaments of the Web.Com Tour started in Australia and New Zealand and it gave the locals a chance to get a foothold on that tour.
The chart below shows how Scott has stuck to the task even when he missed out at the final tournament to get his US PGA Tour card by the smallest of margins.
After a decade of working his butt off Scott has realised his dream of playing on the PGA Tour and I will not be surprised if he contends on a regular basis next year. He has served his apprenticeship and has paid his dues now he has the opportunity to reap the benefits.
Alistair Presnell turned professional in 2004 and played on the Australian and Asian tours in the early days.
After gaining his Asian Tour card with his father accompanying him to Tour school they arrived back home in Australia and shortly after his father passed away.
It was a huge loss for Alistair and his family and his golf game struggled the rest of that year.
In 2009 the 2nd tournament of the Web.Com Tour was played at the Moonah Golf Course and Alistair played excellent golf shooting 9 under to beat the veteran Peter O’Malley for his 1st major professional title and get playing rights on the Web.Com Tour for the rest of the year.
Unfortunately three missed cuts in the last five tournaments of that year lead to him finishing 28th on the order of merit and missing out on the 25 PGA Tour cards given out each year. He finished 2nd to Michael Sim in the 2009 Australian Order of Merit which gave him starts in the World Golf Championship at Doral and the HSBC Championship in Shanghai.
A tied 6th at Doral gave him his largest career pay check to date of US$214,300.00.
The Chart below shows he has been consistent and although only winning once on the Web.Com Tour he does perform well at the next level as his tied 27th at this year’s US Open showed.
Although not a prolific winner Alistair gets himself into contention frequently and at thirty three years of age is about to peak as a golfer.
All three golfers have score averages that both Lawrie and I believe guarantee success on the PGA Tour. It is Pro Tour Golf Colleges scoring code of 12-4-2 which translates to averaging 12 pars, 4 birdies, 2 bogies adding up to a two under score of 70.
And if we look at the scoring averages of Cameron Percy (69.97), Scott Gardiner (69.76) and Alistair Presnell (70.61) it confirms why we design the training at Pro Tour Golf College to drive our student’s scoring average towards 12-4-2.
It doesn't get simpler than that!
David Milne and Lawrie Montague - Pro Tour Golf College
Your Success On Tour is Our Business