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Chasing the dream: The different paths to a Tour card
By Matt Stansfield
Many golfers who want to take their game to the next level and aspire to play golf professionally want to know what’s the best road to take.
Within Canada, the number of players choosing to cross the boarder to pursue the college route seems to increase every year. It’s an opportunity for a player to immerse themselves in a culture within the college community while gaining great coaching and tournament experience as part of the golf team. While that option will work for a large percentage of golfers, others here in Canada have chosen to stay closer to home whether that’s by way of the Canadian Tour or a local professional tour such as the Vancouver Golf Tour.
There has been talk that the Canadian Tour could potentially become the PGA Tour’s newest third-tier tour and be renamed the PGA Tour of Canada. Why should this potential take over be of interest to aspiring professional golfers across Canada and the U.S.? Well, the PGA Tour has remodeled its qualifying system and Q-school graduates will now gain their cards on the second-tier Web.com Tour. The PGA Tour of Canada could join the PGA Tour’s newly launched LatinoAmerica Tour as another option for golfers to chase their dream.
At the end of the season, the top players on the PGA Tour of Canada could be promoted to the Web.com Tour and would be that one step closer to realizing their dream of playing on the PGA Tour.
If the PGA Tour of Canada or LatinAmerica Tour seem like something you’d want to pursue, be prepared to live out of the back of your car and live on your sandwich of choice because unless you’ve secured financial backing, it’s a large investment to make if you’re not getting it done on the course week in and week out. If you’re only making $500 each event but you’ve treated yourself to more comfortable accommodation and paid the tournament entry fee, you entered red figures. Unfortunately for you, it was while looking at your bank account instead of the leaderboard.
This above scenario is why current Web.com Tour and Canadian Tour member Adam Hadwin chose to stay even closer to home and chase his dream by playing on the Vancouver Golf Tour; a local Professional tour that provides a place to play for both professionals and amateurs alike at a minimal cost. When Hadwin started playing on the Vancouver Golf Tour, he wasn’t a PGA of Canada Professional nor was he a Canadian Tour member, but he had turned professional and needed a place to play. After an initial $2000 loan, Hadwin would go on to make over $12,000 in just nine events on the Vancouver Golf Tour and has since gone on to make over $550,000 professionally.
If you’re looking to chase your dream and the college route isn’t the direction you want to go, look to the Vancouver Golf Tour or a local Professional Tour in your area and start realizing your dream of one day playing on the PGA Tour.