The Race to Dubai has announced plans that will see players benefit from an increased prize fund, and a new qualification format.
Prize money has risen by a third from $3,750,000 to $5,000,000, and fifteen players will now compete at the DP World Tour Championship, as opposed to ten last year.
In addition, Europe’s leading golfers will no longer be required to play in two of the final three Final tournaments prior to Dubai.
They will however, be expected to fulfill their minimum overall event obligation, if they are to play in the seasons climax at the DP World Tour Championship – held at the Jumeirah Golf Estates.
The field structure for the DP World Tour Champions has changed as well. Following the new plans, the field has been extended to encompass the leading 60 players available for m the Race to Dubai at the conclusion of the Turkish Airlines Open.
This is in contrast to last years set up, where only players who finished inside the top 60 qualified - with Sergio Garcia and Erine Els missing out last year, under the previous format.
The European Tour has also altered their points system for this year, in an attempt to boost the significance of the Final Series tournaments. At the conclusion of the Perth International, prize money for The Race to Dubai will be converted into points – one Euro equaling one point.
"Theses changes are for the better." - Henrik Stenson
Each final series event will then have a points total to share between the field of 10,000,000, with the winner being awarded 1,660,000 – thus rewarding players for their performance in the later events.
Chief operating officer and director of international policy for the tour – Keith Waters, justified the changes, saying: “The European Tour always listens to its membership, and we were aware that there was some fine tuning required to the overall structure to the Final Series to make an already excellent product even better.
“We are confident that the changes we are announcing today will do just that.”
The new format seems to have been welcomed by those players aiming to lift the Race to Dubai trophy come November.
Last year's winner – Henrik Stenson backed the plans: “These changes are for the better and won’t cut anyone out if they don’t want to play all of the Final Series events.”
South African, Charles Schwartzel echoed Stenson’s comments, adding: “It looks like the Final Series moving in the right direction. are all great incentives to play.”
If the players competing in The Race to Dubai are happy with the changes, this will surely make for a more lucrative and exciting Final Series, pleasing fans and players in equal measure.
Race to Dubai: What do you make of the new system?
Would you have made any further adjustments or were things fine as they were? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.