PGA Tour Commissioner Says Coronavirus Vaccine ‘Is A Choice’ For Golfers

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ORLANDO, Fla – PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said Thursday he was not considering requiring players, officials or spectators to be vaccinated against the coronavirus, as they seek to slowly bring back more fans as the tournaments continue into 2021.
“I think vaccination is a choice, and I would apply the same logic and care to that that we have with all other subjects, and that is to try to do our best to educate our members about vaccination and the advantages and disadvantages associated with it, ”Monahan said on a conference call with reporters. But in the end, it’s an individual decision. ”

The Tour has already announced that most of its events through February will have no spectators, with the exception of the Waste Management Phoenix Open. Traditionally the busiest event on the PGA Tour, it will likely have fewer than 10,000 fans per day in 2021.

A vaccination rollout has just started in the United States, with more doses expected in the coming months. Monahan, who is encouraged by recent developments, said he didn’t think it was his right as commissioner to mandate players to take him.

“I don’t see it that way,” Monahan said. “As exciting as it is, I think there is still a lot to learn and we need to know. But I would say at this point we won’t be able to make vaccination mandatory, and that’s how we look at it at this point.

“I think the most important thing is to understand the cadence and the different phases that are going to happen and then how that applies to the way we currently operate without these protocols and how we continue to reintroduce more fans. ”

The PGA Tour lost 13 events over the spring and summer to the pandemic, and returned in June without spectators or pro-ams. At this point, only the Bermuda Championship and the Houston Open have had spectators – with the Houston event allowing 2,000 per day.

Pro-ams, who are a major source of income for local tournament organizations, were allowed to return from the Wyndham Championship in August, and a small number of corporate guests were allowed.

“I hope that when we return to Florida [in March at the Arnold Palmer Invitational] that we can continue down the path we’ve been on – where we play pro-ams, we have our corporate hospitality program and our title sponsors can use a platform to boost their business and we are reintroducing them. fans safe. ”

Monahan also announced Thursday that NBA star Steph Curry will join forces with Jack Nicklaus in 2022. “Eat. Learn. Play ”by Curry. The foundation will be one of the beneficiaries of Golden Bear’s annual PGA Tour event, the Memorial, which will see Workday become its new main sponsor. It’s a 10 year contract.

Curry, who plays for the Golden State Warriors and is an avid golfer, sought to get involved in the PGA Tour and there were tentative plans for him to host a tournament in San Francisco at Harding Park – where the PGA Championship has been played. in August. Workday was to be the primary sponsor.

The company, however, has moved on to the Nicklaus Memorial Tournament, which loses Nationwide as a main sponsor after the 2021 event. Workday’s involvement would begin in 2022.

“Coming out nationally has created an opportunity with one of the top PGA Tour events alongside Jack Nicklaus,” said Monahan. “It has been very obviously attractive to Workday and has resulted in this long-term commitment. ”

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