Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, United States: The PGA Tour has unveiled a revamped tournament schedule for next season, providing an exciting change for players and fans as they are able to engage in – and better follow – a cadence of events highlighted by significant championships every month and culminating with the FedEx Cup Play-offs in August.
In addition to the noteworthy changes, the Tour will play three events in Asia for a second consecutive season – the World Golf Championships-HSBC Champions in Shanghai, China, the CIMB Classic in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and The CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges on Jeju Island, South Korea.
Highlights from the new schedule:
- As previously announced, two new tournaments have been added, though now the dates have been confirmed: the 3M Open at TPC Twin Cities (July 1-7), which becomes the first PGA Tour Champions tournament to transition to the PGA Tour; and the Rocket Mortgage Classic (June 24-30), the first PGA Tour tournament to be held in Detroit.
- The FedEx Cup Play-offs will feature three events, instead of four: The Northern Trust, August 5-11 (125-player field); the BMW Championship, August 12-18 (70 players); and the Tour Championship, August 19-25 (30 players). TPC Boston will continue as a Play-offs site every other year, rotating with the New York City area as host of The Northern Trust starting in 2019.
- The Houston Open and A Military Tribute at The Greenbrier are moving to the fall and will be played next as part of the 2019-20 schedule.
- The RBC Canadian Open is moving from its traditional spot in late July to June 3-9, leading into the US Open.
- The Puerto Rico Open returns to the schedule following its cancellation this year due to the devastation of Hurricane Maria. Puerto Rico is slotted for February 18-24, the same week as the World Golf Championships-Mexico Championship.
- As previously announced, The Players Championship moves from May to March (11-17) and the PGA Championship moves from August to May (13-19).
- Also announced previously is the final World Golf Championships event of the season, until now staged in Akron, Ohio, will be held July 22-28 at TPC Southwind in Memphis as the World Golf Championships-FedEx St Jude Invitational (replacing the FedEx St Jude Classic).
“We are extremely pleased with the way the schedule has come together, particularly with the number of changes that were involved and the strength of the partnerships required to achieve this new look,” said PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan.
“It’s been our stated objective for several years to create better sequencing of our tournaments that golf fans around the world can engage in from start to finish. And by concluding at the end of August, the FedEx Cup Play-offs no longer have the challenge of sharing the stage with college and professional football. This will enhance the visibility of the FedEx Cup Play-offs and overall fan engagement with the PGA Tour and the game as a whole.”
Monahan credited the Tour’s largest partner, FedEx, umbrella sponsor of the FedEx Cup, and title sponsors for their crucial role with the revamped schedule. “Our 10-year extension with FedEx last May and the long-term agreements we have in place with a significant number of title sponsors were critical in allowing us to make these changes to the schedule,” he said. “Our thanks to these tremendous partners for their flexibility and support during this process, as we feel strongly that elevating the FedEx Cup Play-offs will also heighten interest in all tournaments on our schedule.”
The season also features venue changes for several tournaments, including the first two FedEx Cup Play-offs events. The Northern Trust returns to Liberty National Golf Club in Jersey City, New Jersey, where it was last held in 2013, while the BMW Championship returns to Medinah Country Club near Chicago for the first time since 1966.
The three rotating Major championships add historical notes to the schedule. Coinciding with the PGA Championship’s first May dates since 1949 will be its debut at Bethpage Black on New York’s Long Island. The Open Championship, meanwhile, will be held at Royal Portrush (July 15-21), marking its return to Northern Ireland after nearly 70 years. And the US Open (June 10-16), last held at Pebble Beach Golf Links in 2010, returns next year when the club celebrates its 100th anniversary.
Finally, Hamilton Golf Club in Hamilton, Ontario, will host the RBC Canadian Open for the first time since 2012. Counting the RBC Canadian Open, the Tour will host nine international tournaments in eight countries (Canada, China, Dominican Republic, Malaysia, Mexico, Northern Ireland, Puerto Rico and South Korea).