Why The PGA Tour Is King: Comparing Professional Golf Tours

Two days after the PGA Championship finished, the Telegraph have reported that the PGA Tour is in the market to buy the European Tour.

So why would the ever-global European Tour want to sell to it’s cross-Atlantic big brother?

The 2013 European Tour schedule stops at more than 20 countries right across the globe bringing with it endless endorsement, sponsorship, TV and fan interaction and possibilities.


The PGA Tour travels to just three countries for its sanctioned/co-sanctioned events.


So, again, why would the European Tour want to sell? For the same reason as any other business in the world, money.

Whilst European golf is on a high with recent Ryder Cup and major success, the money brought in and paid out by the PGA Tour dwarfs the European Tour, and all other Tours.

Here’s a look at the money paid out by the game’s most prominent Tours so far this year:


$212,930,823. That is how much money PGA Tour players have earned this year. Amazingly, that is actually more than all the other major Tours combined:


The average, or individual, numbers show a similar trend. Here is a look at the average money made by a player on the PGA Tour this season compared to the other Tours:


If my college Stats professor is reading this, fear not Dr. Steven, I will also use the median to display the data given. Here is a look at the median money made by players by Tour:


The ‘median player’ on the PGA Tour makes almost seven times as much as the comparative player on the European Tour.

Finally, here is a peek into the bank account of the 50th ranked player, by 2013 earnings, on each of the Tours shown:


So clearly, if you are good enough, and you are male, there is really only one Tour to play on. This explains why Lee Westwood, Rory McIlroy, Ian Poulter, Justin Rose and Luke Donald have all flocked to the US to play on the PGA Tour.

In terms of millions, here’s a look at the number of millionaires created by Tour just based on 2013 earnings (i.e. $1,000,000+ in earnings already in 2013):


So when you are reading the Telegraph’s piece on a possible European Tour takeover by the PGA Tour, understand why it is that they are in a position to consider such a move, and why the European Tour may be wise to listen.


About jamieonsport

My name is Jamie and I have been addicted to sports since I was 6. As a method of self-prescribed medication for the illness, I thought it would be good to detail my thoughts on the sporting world. So welcome to the workings of my inner-monologue. Join in, ignore, share, laugh, cry, be offended, be inspired, take my ranting however you will, but thanks for checking in.
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