- Nationwide Tour
The Nationwide Tour is the developmental tour for the U.S.-based PGA Tour, and features professional golfers who have either failed to score well enough at that level's Qualifying School (the main tour's qualifying tournament, popularly referred to as "Q-School") to earn their PGA Tour card, or who have done so but then failed to win enough money to stay at that level. Those who are on the top 25 of the money list at year's end are given PGA Tour memberships for the next season.
The "satellite tour" was formalized by the PGA Tour in 1990, originally named the Ben Hogan Tour, sponsored by the Ben Hogan Golf Company. The first season of 1990 had 30 events, and the typical event purse was $100,000. After three seasons, Nike acquired the title sponsorship and the tour's name became the Nike Tour, which held for seven seasons (1993-99). The name was changed again to the Buy.com Tour for three seasons (2000-02). The current name is a result of the purchase of naming rights by Nationwide Insurance in 2003. In 2007 there were 32 events, one each in Australia, New Zealand, and Panama, with the remainder in the United States. All three countries continue to host events on the tour, played early in the season; Canada and Mexico have been added since 2008, and Colombia hosted an event in March 2010. The events in Australia and New Zealand are co-sanctioned by the PGA Tour of Australasia. Purses in 2010 range from $500,000 to $1,000,000, about one-tenth of the level on the PGA Tour.
Rules and results
All Nationwide Tour tournaments operate similar to typical PGA Tour tournaments in that they are all 72-hole stroke play events with a cut made after 36 holes. The cut on the Nationwide Tour is for the top 60 players and ties, unlike 70 for the PGA Tour. The fields are usually 144 or 156 players, depending on time of year (and available daylight hours). For the aforementioned international events, the joint tour will split players spots with the Nationwide Tour for proper sanctioning. As with the PGA Tour, the winner of the tournament will get a prize of 18% of the total purse.
Since this tour is a developmental tour, players are usually vying to play well enough to gain status on the PGA Tour. The main ways of having status for the Nationwide Tour are to finish in a group of the top 50 golfers at qualifying school after the top 25 and ties, those who finished between 26th and 60th on the previous year's money list, and those who were formerly fully exempt on the PGA Tour in the recent past. Around 14 open qualifying spots are given during the Monday of tournament week, and those who finished in the top 25 of a Nationwide event are automatically exempt into the next tournament. If a Monday morning qualifier wins an event, they will earn full-exempt status for the remainder of the season. Past PGA Tour winners aged 48 and 49 can play on the Nationwide Tour on an increased basis to prepare themselves for the Champions Tour.
Since 1997, a player who wins three tournaments in one year on the Nationwide Tour receives an immediate promotion to the PGA Tour for the remainder of the year and for the following year. This "performance promotion" (sometimes informally referred to as a "battlefield promotion") has occurred nine times:
- 1997: Chris Smith (USA)
- 2001: Heath Slocum, Chad Campbell & Pat Bates (USA)
- 2002: Patrick Moore (USA)
- 2003: Tom Carter (USA)
- 2005: Jason Gore (USA)
- 2007: Nick Flanagan (AUS)
- 2009: Michael Sim (AUS)
The Nationwide Tour is one of the 10 tours on which Official World Golf Rankings points are available, and one of only two developmental tours that offer ranking points, the other being the Europe-based Challenge Tour.
The table below shows the Nationwide Tour's 2011 schedule. The numbers in parentheses after winners' names show the player's total number of wins on the Nationwide Tour including that event. No one accumulates many wins on the Nationwide Tour because success at this level soon leads to promotion to the PGA Tour.
Date Tournament Location Winner OWGR
Notes Feb 27 Panama Claro Championship Panama Mathew Goggin (3) 14 Mar 6 Pacific Rubiales Bogotá Open Colombia Brenden Pappas (n/a) 10 Official money, unofficial win -
tournament shortened to 36 holes by weather
Mar 27 Chitimacha Louisiana Open Louisiana Brett Wetterich (3) 14 Apr 17 Fresh Express Classic at TPC Stonebrae California Daniel Chopra (3) 14 May 1 South Georgia Classic Georgia Ted Potter, Jr. (1) 14 Won as a Monday qualifier May 8 Stadion Classic at UGA Georgia Russell Henley (am) (1) 14 Won as an amateur May 22 BMW Charity Pro-Am South Carolina Garth Mulroy (2) 14 Jun 5 Melwood Prince George's County Open Maryland Steve Wheatcroft (1) 14 Jun 12 The Rex Hospital Open North Carolina Kyle Thompson (3) 14 Jun 19 Preferred Health Systems Wichita Open Kansas Mathew Goggin (4) 14 Jun 26 Mexico Open Mexico Erik Compton (1) 14 Jul 17 Chiquita Classic Ohio Russell Knox (1) 14 Jul 24 Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational Ohio Harris English (am) (1) 14 Won as an amateur Jul 31 Utah Championship Utah J. J. Killeen (1) 14 Aug 7 Cox Classic Nebraska J. J. Killeen (2) 14 Aug 14 Price Cutter Charity Championship Missouri Steve Friesen (1) 14 Won as a Monday qualifier Aug 21 Midwest Classic Kansas James Nitties (1) 14 Aug 28 News Sentinel Open Tennessee Kirk Triplett (1) 14 Sep 4 Mylan Classic Pennsylvania Gary Christian (2) 14 Sep 18 Albertsons Boise Open Idaho Jason Kokrak (1) 14 Last player to gain entry into the field Sep 25 Soboba Golf Classic California Ted Potter, Jr. (2) 14 Oct 2 WNB Golf Classic Texas Danny Lee (1) 14 Oct 9 Children's Hospital Classic Tennessee Miguel Carballo (2) 14 Oct 16 Miccosukee Championship Florida Jason Kokrak (2) 14 Oct 23 Winn-Dixie Jacksonville Open Florida Gavin Coles (5) 14 Oct 30 Nationwide Tour Championship at Daniel Island South Carolina Ken Duke (2) 20
Career money leaders
The table shows all golfers who have earned above $1 million on the Nationwide Tour as of the 2011 season. Players in bold were 2011 Nationwide Tour members.
Rank Player Country Earnings ($) 1 Darron Stiles United States 1,614,777 2 Paul Claxton United States 1,538,215 3 Jeff Gove United States 1,411,457 4 Hunter Haas United States 1,398,873 5 Chris Tidland United States 1,338,160 6 Gavin Coles Australia 1,324,267 7 Craig Bowden United States 1,295,189 8 Kyle Thompson United States 1,286,669 9 Jon Mills Canada 1,213,138 10 Roger Tambellini United States 1,202,642 11 Fran Quinn United States 1,189,856 12 Tom Scherrer United States 1,153,933 13 Vance Veazey United States 1,151,583 14 Justin Bolli United States 1,130,843 15 Kevin Johnson United States 1,091,278 16 Jeff Klauk United States 1,081,671 17 David Branshaw United States 1,053,538 18 D. A. Points United States 1,046,630 19 Jason Gore United States 1,033,736 20 Mathew Goggin Australia 1,022,493 21 David McKenzie Australia 1,014,628 22 Joe Daley United States 1,004,571
There is a full list on the PGA Tour's website here.
Money list and Player of the Year winners
Year Money winner Earnings (US$) Player of the Year Nationwide Tour 2011 J. J. Killeen (USA) 414,273 2010 Jamie Lovemark (USA) 452,951 Jamie Lovemark 2009 Michael Sim (AUS) 644,142 Michael Sim (AUS) 2008 Matt Bettencourt (USA) 447,863 Brendon de Jonge (ZIM) 2007 Richard Johnson (WAL) 445,421 Nick Flanagan (AUS) 2006 Ken Duke (USA) 382,443 Ken Duke (USA) 2005 Troy Matteson (USA) 495,009 Jason Gore (USA) 2004 Jimmy Walker (USA) 371,346 Jimmy Walker (USA) 2003 Zach Johnson (USA) 494,882 Zach Johnson (USA) Buy.com Tour 2002 Patrick Moore (USA) 381,965 Patrick Moore (USA) 2001 Chad Campbell (USA) 394,552 Chad Campbell (USA) 2000 Spike McRoy (USA) 300,638 Spike McRoy (USA) Nike Tour 1999 Carl Paulson (USA) 223,051 Carl Paulson (USA) 1998 Bob Burns (USA) 178,664 Bob Burns (USA) 1997 Chris Smith (USA) 225,201 Chris Smith (USA) 1996 Stewart Cink (USA) 251,699 Stewart Cink (USA) 1995 Jerry Kelly (USA) 188,878 Jerry Kelly (USA) 1994 Chris Perry (USA) 167,148 Chris Perry (USA) 1993 Sean Murphy (USA) 166,293 Sean Murphy (USA) Ben Hogan Tour 1992 John Flannery (USA) 164,115 John Flannery (USA) 1991 Tom Lehman (USA) 141,934 Tom Lehman (USA) 1990 Jeff Maggert (USA) 108,644 Jeff Maggert (USA)
- List of golfers with most Nationwide Tour wins
- Professional golf tours
- Challenge Tour - the analogous tour in Europe operated by the PGA European Tour
- Gateway Tour - a third tier tour in the United States
- NGA Pro Golf Tour - another third tier tour in the United States
Notes and references
- ^ ESPN.com - sports business - "Legendary brand will soon have new owner - again" - 2003-08-12 - accessed 2010-05-26
- ^ 2008 Nationwide Tour Eligibility Requirements
- ^ Nationwide Tour Midseason Review
- ^ PG County Open victory makes Claxton first million-dollar manpgatour.com, May 27, 2007
- ^ Points reduced 25% due to only 36 holes being played
- ^ Pappas declared winner in weather-plagued Bogota
Nationwide Tour seasons Ben Hogan Tour
1990 • 1991 • 1992
1993 • 1994 • 1995 • 1996 • 1997 • 1998 • 1999
2000 • 2001 • 2002
Nationwide Tour Nationwide Tour graduates Ben Hogan Tour
1990 • 1991 • 1992
1993 • 1994 • 1995 • 1996 • 1997 • 1998 • 1999
2000 • 2001 • 2002
Nationwide Tour Men's Professional Golf Tours Principal tours Other tours carrying ranking points 3rd Tier Tours Other Tours Senior Tours
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