Updated: Apr 6, 2019
IF SO, DO YOU KNOW WHAT IT TAKES?
It is the dream of many young golfers to play in the professional ranks one day. The life appears to be glamorous, exciting, prestigious and prosperous. What is not apparent is how much it takes to reach a level just to qualify to play in one of the Qualifying Schools, the first stepping stone to playing on a Tour. Even then, having reached the level where you can enter the Q School, the requirement to qualify and earn your playing rights is another step up. And if do then qualify, you will need to perform at an even higher level simply to retain your rights for the following season. And so the journey will continue.
Still interested? If so, now read just some of the qualifying requirements to earning your playing rights as a professional golfer on the world’s greatest tours?
The Qualifying School is played over two stages of stroke play as follows:
FIRST QUALIFYING STAGE (72 holes stroke play)
The First Stage is over 72 holes on two courses to which players will be allocated – they are not permitted to select a preferred venue. There will be no cut, but the Tournament Committee can withdraw any player if their playing performance does not meet the standards expected of a Tour Professional. This shall be at the sole discretion of the Tournament Committee who may take into consideration prevailing weather conditions.
FINAL QUALIFYING STAGE (90 holes stroke play)
After 72 holes there will be a cut to the leading 60 players & ties. On conclusion of 90 holes, all players making the cut will be ranked according to score. The leading 30 players & ties will be eligible for membership in Category 9 of the Sunshine Tour for the following season.
Membership of The European Tour among the golfing elite is one of golf’s most coveted prizes. To earn that right means a tough school and along the way, dreams are made and hopes dashed in equal measure. The Qualifying School is held in three stages (as opposed to the Sunshine Tour’s two) at a series of venues in the UK and Continental Europe. Every year, in the region of 1,000 golfers, all aiming for a European Tour card, enter the Qualifying School. A player progressing through all three stages will have to play 252 holes under the most intense pressure. Only the leading 25 players (plus those tied for 25th place) will earn Category 16 Membership of The European Tour for the following season. In other words, you have roughly a one in 30 chance of making it.
US PGA TOUR
US PGA TOUR qualifying has never been easy. Earning that tour card and the right to call oneself a member of the PGA Tour has always been a difficult endeavour. Beginning in 2013, it got even tougher. Click on the link below to see the extensive process now.
THE LADIES EUROPEAN TOUR (LET)
A total of 115 players battled it out over five rounds for a chance to earn playing rights for the 2019 season.
They will have advanced from the pre-qualifying stage, finished in the top 25 of the World Amateur Golf Rankings, the top 100 of the Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings, or narrowly missed out on a full card via the LET or LET Access Series.
The competitors will first play 72 holes, with two rounds on different courses, before the field is then reduced to 60 players and ties for one final round.
Following 90 holes, the leading five players will earn Category 5c membership of the LET, meaning that they will gain entry into most tournaments, while those in positions 6-25 will earn membership in Category 8.
Players who make the cut but finish in positions 26 or lower may still join the LET in Category 9b, but with limited playing opportunities.
LPGA (USA TOUR)
One of the biggest changes to the LPGA came in 2018 with the revamping of the LPGA Qualifying Tournament, the process whereby players from the United States and all over the world now compete to earn membership of the LPGA via two Stages and the Q Series
Stage I and Stage II of the LPGA Qualifying Tournament are not going anywhere. Recent college graduates, those testing the waters early and the influx of players around the world hoping to reach the LPGA will have to grind through the five-round gauntlet that is Stage I, which some consider the hardest because of the pressure and the 115–degree summer temps in the desert.
Stage II will for the most part feed into the Symetra Tour, but there will be some exceptions where the top finishers at Stage II will qualify for the Q-Series.
Q-Series consists of two weeks of golf, with eight days of tournament play on two separate golf courses at Pinehurst Resort. Scores are cumulative over the eight rounds of competition.
Q-Series helps identify the top performers. Players who finish No. 101 to 150 on the LPGA money list during the current season will qualify, along with those that finish No. 11 through 30 on the Symetra Tour money list. Players in the top 75 in the Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings will also qualify for Q-Series.
Additionally, the top five players according to Golfweek’s Collegiate Rankings will also skip Stages I and II and right into the Q-Series.
Finally, the top finishers from Stage II will round out the field. The field will be 102 players and there will be approximately 45 spots up for grabs for the 2019 season in final stage.
Now you know just how stringent the process of attaining your rights to play on a tour is, ask yourself these three key questions:
· Do you have what it takes?
· Do you know what it takes?
· How badly do you want it?
Golf is an individual sport and technically one of the most difficult sports played today. For those two reasons, you need to be aware that operates wholly in a SELF-environment:
Self-motivation Self-regulation Self-discipline
- It’s not a team sport where you can arrive at practice because a team is expecting you.
- There is no coach pumping you up for the game....fist pumps and high fives.
- You are not meeting the team in the gym to work out together or to practice.
- It is only you. - It’s lonely. - It’s tough. - It’s driven by you, from self - nobody else. - You cannot hide. - You cannot perform poorly and be saved by a team member covering for you. - It takes determination and grit. - It takes passion and energy.
- It takes sacrifice – when your friends are having a good time, you need self-discipline to prepare.
- You will fall many times, but must be ready to get up and work even harder.
So now you need to stop and think…….is this for me? Am I willing to do what it takes? If the answer is still “YES”, then have a look at this link to hear one aspiring professional golfer’s story.