The PGA Tour has announced its plans to restart next month, but what about the European Tour?
Is The European Tour Planning A Series Of UK-Based Events This Summer?
The European Tour could be set to restart this summer with a run of UK events, it has emerged.
Keith Pelley sent an email to Tour members suggesting things would look “radically different” when play returns and the reports we have heard suggest just that.
The European Tour could get underway in July with a number of UK events where players simply turn up without a practice round and play.
Golf is now allowed in England with a number of restrictions in place and this could be the catalyst the European Tour needs to get back up-and-running.
The government is also keen to get live professional sport, without fans, back from June.
The European Tour could return in two-balls and begin showing its tournaments live on Sky again.
The Tour’s next event is the British Masters at Close House from 30th July to 2nd August but that may actually come forward and be the start of this four-event stretch.
With the USPGA Championship starting on the 6th August in San Francisco and US quarantine measures in place, the European Tour will likely want to get their stretch done towards the end of July.
Pelley said in his email to members that the Tour could hold two events in one week or three events in two weeks and that is likely what we’ll see.
Eddie Pepperell confirmed on Twitter that he had heard similar reports and then spoke about it more in depth on Sky Sports.
“I’ve heard similar rumours in that there’s going to be three or four UK-based events to begin with,” Pepperell told The Golf Show on Sky Sports.
“My understanding is that they would be based at golf clubs or locations whereby there are hotels on site and it could be somewhat more manageable.
“There would be no support staff and this type of thing. That’s my understanding as of the plan at the moment. It could be a little bit inaccurate, but I think that’s somewhere in the ballpark we’re hoping to get to as a Tour.
“From my perspective that’s obviously a good thing, because I live in the UK. But also for the guys from Europe, they can travel here, deal with the quarantine period for the week or two before and then stay here for four weeks.
“It makes a lot of sense and I think it’s as good as an option as we’ve got at the moment, as we haven’t got any really great options. There’ll be some interesting scenarios potentially thrown up.”
The European Tour also sanction the US Open, taking place in September, and part-run the Ryder Cup with the PGA of America, taking place the week after the US Open from 25th-27th September.
The Masters is also taking place later this year in November, so it really does remain to be seen how the European Tour fits its tournaments around these huge US events.
The Race to Dubai finale at the DP World Tour Championship was set to take place in November but that now will surely have to be pushed back until December, early 2021 or cancelled entirely.
Whilst we know plenty about how the PGA Tour plans to restart, beginning next month with at least four fan-less events, it is much less clear on this side of the pond.
What does look likely, though, is this run of UK events where players can quarantine before starting out a run of golf where little travel, and crucially no crossing of borders, is needed.
The European Tour were asked for comment but did not want to give away any details.
“We are continuing to work behind the scenes on a variety of scheduling options but as we have consistently said, we will only resume playing when it is safe and permitted to do so,” a spokesperson said.
“Any announcements will therefore be made in due course when we have clarity on the overall situation. For all concerned, public health and well-being remains the absolute priority.”
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