The PGA Tour is offering cash advances to players to make up for the loss of earnings caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
There has been no play on the world’s most lucrative golf circuit since THE PLAYERS Championship was cancelled on March 12 in response to the rapidly-spreading disease.
All subsequent tournaments through to and including the US PGA Championship at TPC Harding Park have either been suspended or cancelled, affecting a total of 11 tournaments on the schedule and wiping almost $75m off the schedule.
The earliest play could resume is May 21, with the opening round of the Charles Schwab Challenge at Colonial. However, there are no guarantees that will happen.
As a result, the tour has taken measures to look after its members.
One of those includes the option – based upon their current FedEx Cup ranking – to receive up to $100,000 of bonus earnings that will be removed from their season-ending bonuses once play resumes.
WATCH - DUMBARNIE LINKS... THE FIRST REVIEW!
They will also be able to request advances on future earnings and up to $30,000 in advance earnings for future Monday pro-am spots. The process for players to withdraw funds from their retirement plans will also be expedited.
In a memo sent to players on Friday, Tyler Dennis, the tour’s chief of operations, wrote: “Playing opportunities equate to financial opportunities, and we are concerned about the toll that cancelled tournaments are having on some of our members.”
Through the first 22 completed events, 50 players have each earned over $1million on the tour this season. The average earnings of the top 100 is $1.29m and $780,000 for the top 200. All told, 210 players have earned more than the median household income in the United States ($56,516) so far this season.
Caddies are also able to request support, with the tour allowing for a partial distribution of an endorsement programme. The Caddie Benevolent Fund will also be accepting requests.