The ongoing total war between the PGA Tour and the LIV Golf puts everything in the background. Insiders, media and enthusiasts are all focused on the events, now in court, which are changing the world of professional golf.
But the Caddies are part of this world, and not with a marginal role.
What is the situation of a caddy on the PGA Tour? First of all, it must be taken into account that the costs are borne by him, and clearly vary according to the number of tournaments and their location (the PGA Tour calendar is spread over the entire territory of the United States, including the islands).
Having said that, how is their compensation structured? It starts from a fixed. Brennan Little, a 25-year tour caddy veteran, gives us a yardstick: "I think that, for those who start, $ 2,000 a week is a correct average, given that everything is based on negotiations with the player, and after a few years the increases are triggered"
There is also a variable part. "There are bonuses at the end of the year. It always depends on the player ... but we are talking about figures ranging from 7% to 10% " The caddy, on average, receives between 7 and 8% of what the player collects each week.
10% applies in case of victory. What is certain is that it all depends on the player's performance, the first and fundamental variable. Then there is the case of the accident, which can be more or less long. In such cases the caddies usually find an agreement to bring the bag to other players, but even here the first variable increases its weight even more.
The caddy enters "in the running", once the season has begun, it is not an optimal situation. Also because the expenses remain and accumulate. Michael Bestor, currently on Kevin Streelman's bag, quantifies them.
"Usually, on the PGA Tour we talk about about $ 50,000 a year, while if you work on the Korn Ferry Tour (as Bestor did), the amount should be halved" "If a player gets to collect between $ 100 and $ 200 thousand, taking 7% is hard he gets to cover the expenses."
As for the LPGA Tour, Bestor estimates that his colleagues receive compensation equal to one-fifth of those made on the men's Tour. Moving on to the side of the League led by Greg Norman, he helps us to frame the situation Carlos Ortiz, one of the players who has chosen to play with LIV Golf.
The Mexican player, who is part of Team Fireballs GC led by Sergio Garcia, participated in the events in Portland and Bedminster. "I haven't played in London, but the last two tournaments have been incredible" "The way they treated us, the way they treated the Caddies ...
they were treated like people, like normal people" "They can eat with us and enter the locker room, things they can't do on other tours" "I believe these gestures are important" "The stirrup was amazing, they do whatever it takes for you" "I, as a player, like all of this a lot, and I think the fans like it too."
Colyn Byrne, the Caddy who works with Louis Oosthuizen, talked about the first tournament, played at the Centurion Club: "For us, the tournament equivalent to hitting a jackpot has always been the one in Sun City (the big resort located in South Africa)" "It was a real pleasure trip, but this was before" "This week, Sun City has been far exceeded" "Speaking to Greg Norman and his staff, it was all a What can we do for you?" “They want to help us and put us at ease.
It's nice to be part of this " In turn, Craig Connelly, who carries the bag for Martin Kaymer, said: "From a Caddy's point of view, it's the best event I've ever seen" "At the Ryder Cup they make you feel very special, you arrive at the hotel and everything is exaggerated, you don't need a credit card, there are no expenses" "This week (at Centurion, NDR) was just like Ryder" "They flew me from Glasgow and at Heathrow there was a driver waiting for me" "They took care of us from London to the U.S.
Open " "And if I have to go to another LIV event, they'll let me fly there at their expense." Word of Caddy. Indeed, of Caddies.