Golf: Daniel Hillier books spot on DP World Tour – New Zealand Herald

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Kiwi golfer Daniel Hillier. Photosport
Daniel Hillier has ensured there will be two Kiwi golfers with fulltime status on the DP World Tour next season after booking his spot today.
Hillier’s maiden European Tour card was assured after coming seventh in the Challenge Tour’s overall season rankings following the final event in Mallorca, Spain.
The top 15 on the season standings earned their card and Hillier did so after finishing in a tie for 23rd in the season-ending Rolex Challenge Tour Grand Final event.
Hillier will join Ryan Fox on the tour and it comes after the European tour revealed it will offer US$20,000 at the start of the season for rookies.
The DP World Tour announced last week it will pay US$150,000 against players’ earnings and US$1,500 to other players if they miss the cut as part of a new schedule announced that boosts prize money.
The tour said prize money would be US$144.2 million, not including the four majors and the World Golf Championship in Texas.
The four Rolex Series events — Abu Dhabi, Dubai, the Scottish Open and BMW PGA Championship — get US$1 million increases to $9 million, with the season-ending DP World Tour Championship having a US$10 million purse.
The tour also said US$6 million from a bonus pool would be distributed among the leading eight players in the DP World Tour rankings at the end of the year.
The changes reflect alliances Europe has established with the PGA Tour and tours in South Africa and Australia amid new competition from Saudi-funded LIV Golf.
Most significant is an “Earnings Assurance Program” that provides US$150,000 to full members that count against tournament earnings. It is similar to what the PGA Tour announced for this season, with a few changes.
The U.S. tour is offering US$500,000 up front for rookies and players who earned their card back from the Korn Ferry Tour. Everyone else will be paid the difference if they don’t earn $500,000 in the season.
The European tour is offering US$20,000 at the start of the season for rookies, Challenge Tour graduates and those who make it through qualifying school. Everyone else will get paid the difference if they don’t earn US$150,000 at the end of the season.
“For us to be able to offer our members record prize funds and enhanced earning opportunities is massive, particularly when global economies are still feeling the effects of the pandemic and with the new challenge of rising inflation significantly putting pressure on costs in all facets of our business,” said Keith Pelley, the chief executive of the European tour.
He said the overall prize fund is some $50 million more than two years ago.
The new season begins Nov. 24-27 — one week after the current season ends — with consecutive weeks of co-sanctioned events in South Africa and Australia. The Australian PGA Championship is the same week as the Joburg Open, while the Australian Open is the same week as the South African Open.
It will be the first time the Australian Open is co-sanctioned by Europe, while the Australian PGA was on the European schedule from 2015 through 2019. Neither event has been held since 2019 because of the pandemic.
Also new to the European tour — officially the DP World Tour because of its umbrella sponsorship — are tournaments in Singapore, Japan, Thailand and Korea.
That puts the 39 tournaments in 26 countries on five continents.
– With AP
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