The PGA Tour plans on returning to action with the Charles Schwab Challenge on June 11-14 at the Colonial Golf Course in Fort Worth, TX. The event will feature a number of new safety rules in place to combat the coronavirus. For one, there will be no spectators allowed at the event, though there will be full tv coverage. The following are some of the new rules implemented by the PGA Tour that will remain in place for the foreseeable future.
No Corporate Events
This means no more pro-ams and no “back door” for corporate sponsors to still view the event in person. Given how lucrative these relationships are and how important they are for both sponsorship, funding, and charitable reasons, this shows that the PGA Tour is taking the pandemic seriously.
Testing Players and Caddies
All players and caddies will be tested prior to traveling to Fort Worth, and again on their arrival. In addition, players and caddies will also have their temperatures checked throughout the event. In addition, media and staff will also undergo testing and social distancing will be enforced. The PGA Tour has emphasized that it will not take away resources from local communities, though remain hazy on how they plan to do this. Namely, they are committed to not tying up local labs with testing for pros and caddies and plan to contract ahead of time in order to find labs that can manage the extra testing.
Private Travel and Accomodations
The PGA Tour has also chartered private flights for golfers to the event to limit exposure, with all passengers tested before boarding. In addition, the players and caddies will not be allowed to bring family to the event and will stay in a designated hotel. The hope is to create a sort of controlled island or “bubble” for the PGA Tour which can be easily monitored. However, players aren’t required to travel by chartered plane, raising questions as to whether this could be a source of infection.
Players Testing Positive
Players testing positive or who present symptoms will be forced to drop out from the competition and quarantine for 10 days. However, the PGA Tour will not publicize if any player tests positive and appears ready to allow any playing partner to continue playing provided they test negatively.