First Global Tour, Now South American Tour?
By mustang6560 on 6/8/11
Just as I'm posting about the idea of a Global Tour, I read about the possibility of forming a South American Tour. Unlike the Global Tour, it sounds like the movers and shakers behind the South American Tour are much further along in the process.
"If you look at the top 500 in the world ranking, only 14 players are from South America and eight of those come from Argentina," said Ty Votaw, Executive Vice President, Communications and International Affairs who is spearheading the Olympic effort for the PGA TOUR. "It's a part of the world where the development of elite players is something that we see as being an opportunity."
The format and the eligibility requirements have not been finalized yet but early indications suggest the PGA Tour-branded series would include 12 to 14 events in eight different countries and it could begin as early as next year.

Despite the low popularity and limited number of courses, South America has produced several golfers who have made a name for themselves in the world of golf including two-time major champion Angel Cabrera, and PGA TOUR winners from (Argentina) Andres Romero, Camilo Villegas (Colombia), Jhonattan Vegas (Venezuela) and Carlos Franco (Paraguay). Cabrera was quoted as saying:
"I hope it succeeds," Cabrera said. "We have a lot of strong players on the PGA TOUR already, and it would be very good for South America to have this. We could develop some players. It would be good for the young players to give them an opportunity."
I would definitely like to see a South American Tour. Growing the game is always a good thing, plus having the PGA Tour as a backer will definitely help to attract local sponsors, which will in turn help grow the tour.

I do think one of the issues that will affect the success of a South American Tour is fan safety. South America is not known for being the safest place on earth so they'll definitely want to make sure the fans feel safe - not only during the tournament, but also coming and going. Another issues that could hamper tour is political corruption. The South American Tour will go belly up in a hurry if its having to pay off politicians for public support.

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photo by mrkathika

[ comments ]
JTW1 says:
It is doomed from the start, safety is the number one issue. I know I would not let my family go.
And then if a politician from any country sees a way to make a buck off it, you know they will have their slimy little hands out.
I do not see this going well for long.
Banker85 says:
what is wrong with the way it is now? there is only 1 real Tour, PGA. just like there is only one real baseball league, MLB and basketball league, NBA. its annoying to even think about.
mustang6560 says:
@Banker85- The South American Tour would be a developmental tour, it wouldn't complete directly with the PGA Tour. The NBA and MLB both have developmental leagues.
Banker85 says:
@mustang6560: the PGA tour already has that too. Its called the Nationwide Tour. "PGA Tour Driven"
mmontisano says:
@banker. you're right, but the top money winners on the South American Tour get their tickets punched to the Nationwide Tour. it's a sub-developmental tour. like the Hooter's Tour or any other mini-tour in the US. they're just trying to get more South Americans playing the game.

but i can't see it working for more than 5 years. i've met American Airlines pilots who refuse to fly there because they don't want to get kidnapped.
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