Women's professional golf is getting a boost.The East Coast Women's Professional Golf Tour will debut in January as another mini-tour option for as
Women’s professional golf is getting a boost.
The East Coast Women’s Professional Golf Tour will debut in January as another mini-tour option for aspiring LPGA players. The tour is an outgrowth of the National Women’s Golf Association tour, which was purchased by Mark Berman, who also founded the PXG Women’s Match Play Championship.
The focus of the new tour will be to offer a more economically viable and region-focused path for players in the eastern third of the country.
“Our goal is to complement the other tours rather than compete,” Berman said. “We will be attentive to the schedules, so that the players do not have to choose one or the other. At the same time, there are many players looking for tournaments. We are creating events in areas where players are currently underserved, helping them reduce start-up costs. We are committed to a tournament experience that demonstrates how valued and meaningful these players are as women and athletes, as we prepare them for the Symetra Tour and the LPGA Q-School. ”
The ECWPGT Winter Series will begin on January 17 at the Black Bear Golf Course in Orlando, Florida, and will continue with seven more events in Florida. Each event will feature $ 25,000 bags with $ 10,000 for the winner and $ 425 entry fees. The summer program will begin in late April with events coinciding with the state opening in New England, the Mid-Atlantic, Carolinas and Georgia. before culminating in the season-ending PXG Women’s Match Play at World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Florida.
Tournaments are open to Development Tour players ranked outside of the top 14 on the Symetra Tour earnings list and, on a waiting list, to fans 16 years of age and older.
To help players pay for entry fees and travel, the tour is also establishing the Golf Access Fund, which will allow the public to donate to competitors. The tour plans to cover operating costs and portfolios through sponsorship dollars.
Berman’s inspiration for helping the female development game comes from her daughter Hannah’s experience playing professionally after graduating from Jacksonville University last year. (Click here to read more about Berman’s story at Golfweek.)
“We started planning his professional hours and realized that the closest events were 12 hours away,” Berman said. “It didn’t happen overnight, but her experience led us to buy this tour, not for her but for her. I am very excited about this chapter in my career and about helping to grow the women’s professional game. “