PGA Tour Latinoamerica Overview
Wednesday, July 28th, 2021
The PGA Tour Latinoamerica is one of six that is operated and managed by the PGA Tour and provides aspiring professional golfers a well-organized place to hone their skills in an effort to advance their careers. The top finisher on the Tour qualifies for full exempt status on the Korn Ferry Tour; which itself is a stepping stone to full PGA Tour status, while those that finish in spots two through five earn conditional exempt status.
Tour History and Purses
It was founded in 2012 as the Tour de las Amẽricas but was renamed a year later when the PGA Tour took over operations. The Tour holds tournaments in several countries in both North and South America; including Colombia, Argentina, Mexico, Ecuador, and the United States.
Purses for the tournaments range from $150,000 to $175,000 with the winners earning between $16,000 and $31,500 and points in the Official World Golf Rankings. However; the money really isn’t sufficient to support the expenses required to travel and pay a caddy; so the purpose of playing on the PGA Tour Latinoamerica is to get to the Korn Ferry Tour and ultimately the PGA Tour.
The PGA Tour Latinoamerica Schedule
Typically, the schedule consists of between 16 and 18 events and is split into two swings, with tournaments running from March to May and October to December. Most players compete in all of the events; with very little difference in earnings between those competing for the valuable top five positions on the points list that determines a promotion to the next level.
Due to Covid-19, the 2020 and 2021 seasons were combined with a shortened schedule of 8 events taking place from March 2020 to July 2021. The leader in the points standings was Brandon Mathews, who finished the season with two victories and $74,534 in earnings; earning a promotion to the Korn Ferry Tour; where the top 25 players in the upcoming season will move on to the PGA Tour with fully exempt status.
Several familiar names, including some PGA Tour winners; cut their teeth on the PGA Tour Latinoamerica including Nate Lashley, Corey Conners, Hank Lebioda, Harry Higgs, and Bronson Burgoon. Although it can be a long road to the ultimate destination of golf; the minor league circuit offers an opportunity for players to learn what it takes to succeed at professional golf against large fields of talented competitors.