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Welcome to our guide on losing your PGA Tour card. Whether you’re curious about the process or seeking advice, we’ve got you covered. Let’s dive in and explore this topic in detail.
How Do You Lose Your Pga Tour Card?
If PGA Tour golfers don’t perform well and end up ranking outside the top 125 in the FedEx Cup standings, they risk losing their tour card.
This generally occurs when a golfer’s performance falters, causing them to miss multiple cuts throughout the season. Missed cuts result in zero earnings or FedEx Cup points for that particular event. If a player continues this pattern, they won’t garner enough revenue or points to be counted among the top 125 golfers during the regular season.
The exact number of points needed to secure a spot within the top 125 fluctuates every season, as it depends on factors such as the total number of participating golfers and individual performance trends. For instance, during the 2021-22 season, a golfer needed 361 FedEx Cup points to stay within the top 125 and maintain their tour card, whereas, in the previous season, the threshold was at least 440 points.
However, not all golfers who rank outside the top 125 are at risk of losing their cards. Certain players might have exemptions that permit them to continue competing despite a less-than-stellar season.
For example, a golfer who wins a PGA Tour event receives a two-year playing exemption, ensuring their place in the upcoming seasons. Winning prestigious tournaments like the Tour Championship, World Golf Championship, Arnold Palmer Invitational, or Memorial Tournament extends this exemption to three years.
Moreover, a major championship win, such as at the US Open or The Masters, grants golfers a five-year playing exemption on both the PGA Tour and the DP World Tour (European Tour), providing them with several seasons free from the stress of possibly losing their cards.
Finally, any golfer who secures a spot within the top 125 in the rankings post-FedEx Cup Fall events is guaranteed a PGA Tour card for the next season. This full-status card allows them to compete in any official PGA Tour events they choose.
What does it take to keep PGA Tour card?
The PGA TOUR has officially announced several changes in eligibility criteria for the 2024 season. These adjustments, which are primarily centered on the top 50, top 70, and top 125 players in the FedExCup, align with the reversion to a calendar-year FedExCup season in 2024. The changes incorporate elements such as Designated and Full-Field events and the newly restructured FedExCup Fall. These modifications were outlined in a memo to the TOUR membership on Tuesday.
The first 70 players on the 2022-23 FedExCup Playoffs and Eligibility Points List will be eligible for the first of three FedExCup Playoffs events, the FedEx St. Jude Championship. They will also secure an exemption into all Full-Field TOUR events for the subsequent year. Qualification for the Playoffs also guarantees that a player will retain his card for the next season.
The first 50 players post the FedEx St. Jude Championship will move on to the second Playoffs event, the BMW Championship, and secure their spots in all Designated and Full-Field events for the upcoming year. The Designated events comprise eight competitions next year that will include 70-80 players and offer higher FedExCup points and prizes.
The leading 30 players following the BMW Championship will be eligible for the season finale TOUR Championship. Qualification for this event is a significant achievement that also provides a two-year exemption on TOUR.
Players who end up outside the top 70 in the FedExCup will participate in the FedExCup Fall to safeguard their playing rights. At the end of the 2023 season, the first 125 players on the FedExCup Fall Points List will keep their cards and gain exemption into all Full-Field events in 2024, including THE PLAYERS Championship. Players ranked between 126 and 150 on the FedExCup Fall Points List will continue to have conditional TOUR status.
Players falling outside the top 70 in the FedExCup will maintain their points from the Regular Season and compete in the Fall to remain within the top 125. Players ranked between 51 and 70 in the FedExCup at the end of the Playoffs will also retain their points for the Fall and vie for positions in 2024’s early-season Designated events.
Who is losing their PGA Tour card?
English golfers Matt Wallace and Danny Willett will participate in the next season of PGA Tour, courtesy of the ascension in their FedEx Cup rankings due to player departures to LIV Golf. Despite challenging seasons, these two, along with Austin Smotherman, Justin Lower, Doc Redman, and Kelly Craft, managed to reclaim their PGA Tour status.
Can Tiger lose his tour card?
Securing lifetime membership on the PGA Tour can be achieved by a player simply winning 20 PGA Tour events throughout their career. Upon reaching this milestone, they earn permanent PGA Tour status and can never lose it unless they willingly resign their membership. The only restriction being that if they don’t participate in at least 15 PGA Tour events in a season, they might lose their voting rights.
In 2022, the PGA Tour amended its lifetime membership qualifications by removing the stipulation that required players to have served on the PGA Tour for 15 seasons in addition to accumulating 20 official wins.
However, being a PGA Tour lifetime member doesn’t necessarily grant a player automatic entry to all tournaments. Based on the PGA Tour’s priority order, which dictates the admission of players into most open PGA Tour events, lifetime members fall under Category No. 17.
They are ranked behind recent winners of each of the four majors, PGA Tour event winners, among other categories. Moreover, specific tournaments like the majors, World Golf Championships events, invitationals, and a few others have their unique entry order that prioritizes other criteria over the PGA Tour’s priority order system.
How many PGA Tour players keep their card each year?
“The most straightforward route to secure status and participate on the PGA Tour is through the FedEx Cup standings. Annually, the top 125 players in terms of points are granted a card for the subsequent season.
Players who have won a PGA Tour event in the past two years or those who rank among the top 25 or top 50 in the PGA Tour’s all-time earnings also receive year-long exemptions and access to the tour.
Since not all top 125 players participate each week, there are chances for other professional golfers to compete on the PGA Tour.
For starters, players who ended up between the 126th and 150th positions in the previous season’s standings receive limited status, which guarantees them entry in specific tour events. Additionally, the tour introduces new professionals each year from its feeder tours.
From 2023, the top 30 players from the Korn Ferry Tour – the primary developmental tour of the PGA – along with the top performing college golfer will be granted cards for the next season and access to events. Other feeder tours like the PGA Tour Latinoamerica and PGA Tour Canada have similar arrangements.
The DP World Tour – the leading golfing tour in Europe – has a ‘strategic alliance’ with the PGA Tour. This enables the top ten European players, who don’t already possess cards, to compete on the PGA Tour.
Sponsor exemptions provide another avenue for professional golfers to gain entry into events. These exemptions function similarly to wildcards in tennis tournaments, allowing tournament sponsors and hosts to invite a handful of players who haven’t qualified yet.
Monday qualifiers present the final opportunity for professionals to gain access to events. As the term implies, these qualifiers are held on the Monday preceding a Thursday tournament start, with a limited number of the lowest-scoring participants securing entry into the Thursday’s event.
To summarize the number of PGA Tour pros, it’s challenging to establish a precise figure. Currently, 215 golfers are listed as having competed this year in the FedEx Cup rankings. However, given the varying qualification paths and the emergence of new stars, this figure is always fluctuating.”
Losing your PGA Tour card can happen due to poor performance, failing to meet certain criteria, or finishing outside the top 125 in the FedEx Cup standings.