PGA Tour: The Organisation and the Tournament

The PGA Tour, not to be confused with the PGA Championship, is the organiser of the main professional golf tournaments played in the United States and Northern America. The organisation coordinates most of the flagship annual series of tournaments also known as the PGA Tour, as well as the PGA Tour Champions – for golfers aged 50 and over – and the Web.com Tour.

The organisation was originally established by the Professional Golfers’ Association of America, and the PGA tour was spun off in December 1968 to create a separate organisation for tour players, as opposed to club professionals. Originally known as the Tournament Players Division it became known as the PGA Tour in 1975.

History of the PGA Tour

Beginning in 1929, the tournament players had at various times attempted to split from the club professionals and operate independently, and the dispute came to a head during the 1960s. With an increase in revenue owing to wider television broadcasts in the late 1960s, a dispute arose between the touring professionals and the PGA of America on how to distribute the greater funds generated. While the tour players wanted larger purses, the PGA of America desired for the money to go into the development of the game at a local level.

Following the final major in July of 1968 at the PGA Championship, many top tour stars voiced their dissatisfaction over the state of the venues and the abundance of club professionals in the field. This increases tension lead to the forming of a new entity which would later become known as the PGA Tour.

Tournaments Operated by the PGA Tour

Owing to the assortment of names bearing a strong resemblance to one another, there is often much confusion surrounding which events the PGA Tour organises, and which they do not. This can become especially confusing amongst those who participate in betting online Australia as finding the correct championships can quickly lead to much frustration.

The PGA Tour DOES NOT operate:

  • Masters Tournament
  • S. Open
  • Open Championship
  • PGA Championship
  • Ryder Cup

The PGA Tour DOES operate:

  • PGA Tour – The Top Tour
  • PGA Tour Champions
  • com Tour
  • PGA Tour Latinoamérica
  • PGA Tour Canada
  • PGA Tour China

Structure of the PGA Tour Season

Three of the four majors take place within an 8 week period between June and August, and in the past this has threatened to make the last 10 weeks of the season anti-climactic as the biggest names competed less and less from that point onwards. In order to address this issue, the PGA Tour introduced a new format known as the FedEx Cup. As such, from January through mid-August,  players compete in ‘regular seasons’ and earn FedEx Cup points as well as cash prizes. At the end of this regular season, the top 125 FedEx Cup point winners are eligible to compete in the ‘playoffs’ – four events taking place from mid-August to mid-September. The field sizes for these events are narrowed down over the ensuing weeks, until the traditional top 30 compete in the Tour Championship. In order for this new system to be put in place, the PGA tour has made significant changes to the traditional schedule.

Last 5 Arnold Palmer Award Winners

Players who top the PGA Tour money list have since 1981 won the Arnold Palmer award.

2016: Dustin Johnson (U.S.), earnings: $9,365,185

2015: Jordan Spieth (U.S.), earnings: $12,030,465

2014: Rory McIlroy (Northern Ireland), earnings: $8,280,096

2013: Tiger Woods (U.S.), earnings: $8,553,439

2012: Rory McIlroy (Northern Ireland), earnings: $8,047,952