The one who has dominated the story has been the PGA Tour, due to its status as the best circuit in the world, and therefore its greatest impact, and because it was the great fishing ground from which the ranks of the LIV were nourished.
But perhaps the circuit most affected by the schism created with the appearance of the Saudi super league has been the European Tour, for some time now the DP World Tour for commercial reasons.
DP World Tour, story
What was sold as the Strategic Alliance between PGA and European, announced in November 2021 in response to the launch a month before LIV, has ended up being perceived by many as a submission, the conversion of a circuit that previously tried to compete directly with the North American structure in its hotbed.
There are two measures that have caused the most rejection among DP members. The first, announced at the beginning of this season, is that the top ten finishers in the 'Race to Dubai', the old Order of Merit, who do not already have a PGA card will obtain one at the end of each course.
The second, recently made official, is the creation of a new category of exemptions that reserves up to five spots in DP World Tour tournaments in 2024 for those players who lose their PGA card this year. A category that will have priority over those that give access, for example, to those events to players from the Challenge Tour, the second European division.
The feeling that remains is that the DP World Tour is willing to let its greatest talents go every year, and to receive in return the 'leftovers' of the PGA, as gratitude for the multimillion-dollar investment made by the latter in its audiovisual production company, which allowed to alleviate a complicated financial situation after the pandemic.
Many have expressed their discomfort. The Englishman Eddie Pepperell, with more than a decade of experience in the European ecosystem, considers it “a disaster”, and several Spanish players also complain about the new dynamic in conversation with AS.
One of them is Alejandro Del Rey, who this year is playing his first season with a full card in the elite of the Old Continent. The 25-year-old from Madrid believes that “it is not good news”. “In the end there are five less places for those in the Challenge and the school.
Even fewer opportunities. You are removing ten good players from the tour and adding five who have not been good enough to keep the PGA card. In the end we have little to say and those at the top decide, but it is a bit sad,” he confesses.
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