PGA Tour payouts are ‘ridiculous’ and ‘so damaging’ – Johnston

DP World Tour winner Andrew ‘Beef’ Johnston believes the monetary bonuses being handed out by the PGA Tour is “so damaging” for the sport.

Last month, the PGA Tour’s Player Equity Program doled out substantial sums to various players with the aim to deter their high-profile stars from contemplating a move to LIV Golf, with Tiger Woods clinching the top payout worth $100 million.

These financial incentives have been distributed among the PGA Tour’s elite in an effort to counteract the allure of Saudi-backed LIV Golf with the speculation regarding the next potential defector seemingly never ending.

Jon Rahm shocked the golfing world with his recent switch despite his previous opposition to joining, and served as sign that any player could be open to joining Greg Norman and co if the deal was right.

“I’m starting to wonder how the PGA Tour differs from LIV Golf,” Johnston wrote in Today’s Golfer. “I remember when LIV arrived on the scene and Jay Monahan said his Tour prided itself on being a meritocracy with clear paths for the players and them rewarded for their performances.

“Fast forward to today and we’ve got the Player Equity Program handing out huge sums to players because they stayed loyal. $100m for Tiger, $50m for Rory, $30m each for Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth.

“Basically, it’s the PGA Tour saying, ‘Here’s a load of money from us for not taking a load of money from them’. It’s madness, man. Everything has just become about rewarding the top end of the game and it’s come about because of the divide. It is so damaging for our sport.”

Despite Johnston’s beliefs that the game as the elite level is not in a good spot, he does recognise this isn’t the players fault and rather the other people involved in the game.

“I don’t blame the players – they have no control over the funds,” continued the Englishman. “But I’m struggling to see how the PGA Tour’s equity scheme, or the ridiculous Player Impact Programme is any different from LIV paying their players huge sums of money.

“Even the tournaments are becoming similar. The Signature Events are limited field, no-cut events with these enormous purses. Sound familiar?

“The PGA Tour claimed they took away the cut to guarantee the big names would be there for the whole tournament but that’s bullsh*t. How often does Rory miss a cut anyway? It’s all about money and the sponsors, not the fans.”

The PGA Tour’s next event is this week at the Wells Fargo Championship where there is a $20,000,000 prize fund.

Share this article
What's in the bag
Swing Sequence

Brian Harman Swing Sequence

By Jonathan Craddock, PGA Professional, Pete Cowen Academy The 2023 Open...

Wyndham Clark Swing Sequence

By Jonathan Craddock, PGA Professional, Pete Cowen Academy One of the...

Related articles

Lowry leads by two at The Open following tough second round

Ireland’s Shane Lowry holds a two-shot lead at the midpoint of...
2 days ago

Dubai-born Rayhan Thomas set to tee it up at International Series England

Dubai-born golfer Rayhan Thomas is set to tee it up at...
2 days ago

Major debutant Dan Brown cards stunning bogey-free 65 to lead The Open on day one

In the fading light, Major debutant Dan Brown sank a birdie...