The Loop Tour to start season with scheduling twist

November 09, 2016
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Give golf credit. For a sport often accused of living in the past, the past few weeks have illustrated a new forward-thinking push across the game. The PGA Tour announced a new tour stop in South Korea starting in 2017 this past October, and followed up with a new two-player team format for the Zurich Classic. This creativeness continues with a scheduling twist to the new Tour season.

The PGA Tour's feeder circuit will begin its campaign with two events in the Bahamas, the tour announced on Wednesday. The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic will be played at Sandals Emerald Bay Golf Course starting Jan. 5, with the Bahamas Great Abaco Classic to be held at the Abaco Club the week of Jan. 19. What's noteworthy about these tournaments is both will start on Sunday, meaning a Wednesday finish. The altered week allows more television coverage for golf's top minor-league tour.

“We are excited to announce these two season-opening events in the Bahamas,” said Tour president Bill Calfee. “Minister of Tourism Obie Wilchcombe was instrumental in allowing us to bring the tournaments to life, and I’m confident that the groundbreaking nature of the tournament structure, coupled with the scenic beauty of The Out Islands, will make for a fantastic television product for our fans.”

Both events boast 132-player fields and $600,000 purses, with winners receiving $108,000.