European Tour Plans To Debut Playoffs Similar To PGA's Tour FedExCup
Following the success of the PGA Tour FedExCup playoffs, "expect the European Tour to announce in the coming weeks its own playoff-type series, to debut in 2013," according to Alex Miceli of GOLFWEEK. The four-event series "will conclude in Dubai." Euro Tour CEO George O'Grady said, "We won't copy the model. But we'll have what I call a more European version of the thing so Dubai is the finale, with a higher points-scoring basis on the last few tournaments." Miceli notes details are "yet to be finalized, but O'Grady is targeting the BMW Masters in Shanghai, China; the HSBC Champions in Shenzhen, China; and an inaugural event in Turkey for the run-up to the traditional tour finale in Dubai." Golfer Lee Westwood said, "You can see how successful the FedEx Cup has been over here, so why wouldn't we try and emulate it in Europe?" (GOLFWEEK, 10/5 issue).
HEALTHY COMPETITION: Golf Channel's "Morning Drive" yesterday discussed what the PGA Tour will look like in '13-14 with the "wraparound schedule." Golf Channel's Damon Hack asked, "Will the fans be interested in October and November when football is in full throttle? Because that's one of the big questions that the Tour has to wonder. Will 12 months of golf be better than nine months of golf?" Golf Channel's Jerry Foltz: "The whole purpose of the PGA Tour playoffs for the FedExCup was to make golf relevant once football started. ... I don't know if they're expecting big audiences. I know our numbers last year were up on all the fall series events." Golf Channel's Gary Williams said, "It's not so much about how much traction you can maintain up against football, but if sponsorship is available and it's out there, it's your obligation as a business to do the best you can for the members." Foltz added, "I promise you they can envision a 52-week schedule when there's an official PGA Tour event going on somewhere every week of the year" ("Morning Drive," Golf Channel, 10/3).