Given the state of the economy, you had to know it was coming: the LPGA has cut three events, leaving 31 golf tournaments on the schedule, including eleven outside the US. Total prize money has been reduced by $5 million.
That would be just one tournament for the PGA Tour, which averages more than $5.5 million per event. The LPGA, on the other hand LPGA averages just $1.76 million per tournament.
And the reduced schedule doesn’t resolve all the uncertainties. Events have been moved around from last year’s schedule, and questions remain for others. The Ginn Open doesn’t yet have a purse amount set. And no site has been named for next fall’s Samsung World Championship. The Oct. 23 LPGA event in China doesn’t have a course, either.
I haven’t read anything about the status of the Champions and Nationwide Tours, but I’ve got to believe that they’re in a similar state of flux. The PGA Tour is apparently set for this year, but individual sponsors surely will cut back on perks and amenities. Buick, for example has already announced that while they’ll honor their contracts, there wont’ be a lot of extras.
For golf fans, this all bears watching.