Cromwell, Connecticut. The PGA Tour is planning some drastic changes as the Saudi-funded LIV Golf series tries to poach its best players. The moves include a significant reduction in the number of entries that are completely released each season and the addition of a lucrative three-stop series of international events for top performers. And all of this means more changes to the frequently updated FedEx Cup.
Under the current system governing the FedEx Cup, the top 125 players who finished the season’s points race qualified for the first playoff tournament, the top 70 in the standings advanced to the second round, and finally the top 30 players qualified for the first playoff tournament. elite tour. A championship where the winner receives $18 million from a $75 million bonus pool.
Four sources confirmed golf week details of some imminent major changes. Beginning at the end of the 2022-2023 season, only the top 70 FedEx Cup points players will qualify for the first playoff tournament, FedEx St. Jude Championship. A week later, the top 50 players in the standings will advance to the BMW Championship, while the traditional top 30 will advance to the Tour Championship in East Lake.
In addition, the 50 players who qualify for the BWW Championship will also be qualified for the lucrative three-tournament series taking place overseas in the fall of 2023. These tournaments are expected to be held in Asia, Europe and the Middle East in succession. weeks with wallets of at least $20 million each.
Only the 70 players who qualify for the playoffs will retain their playing privileges for the next season, which begins in January 2024, when the PGA Tour departs from and returns to the current composite season based on the calendar year. . “The rest of the fall event series,” said one industry source familiar with the details.
Under the new system, players who do not make the top 70 and do not qualify for the playoffs will compete in a series of internal tournaments in the fall that will determine their status and priority for the following season. The aim of the changes is to reward the top players on the PGA Tour, many of whom were offered guaranteed offers by LIV Golf, and to reduce the number of players who can keep playing status despite underwhelming results.
Details of the plan were presented to the Tour council on Tuesday evening in Connecticut. A spokesperson for the PGA Tour declined to confirm details of planned changes to the golf week.