PGA Tour creates special exemption for Tiger Woods to play in events for ‘lifetime achievement’

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The PGA Tour announced on Tuesday it had created a special exemption for Tiger Woods alone, allowing for qualification to certain events on its schedule.

The ‘Sponsor Exemption for Lifetime Achievement’ will allow players with 80 or more PGA Tour victories to qualify for ‘Signature Events.’

Woods is the only active player who falls into this bracket with 82 career victories. The 15-time major champion is tied for the most ever PGA Tour victories with Sam Snead.

The PGA Tour said it was implementing this to “recognize Tiger Woods in his own category.”

The changes were approved after a meeting between the PGA Tour’s Policy and Enterprises Boards in Hartford, Connecticut.

The eight ‘Signature Events’ on the PGA Tour are the marquee tournaments on the tour’s schedule, boasting increased prize money and more FedExCup points up for grabs.

FedExCup points are accrued over the year, with the top 70 players qualifying for the Playoffs at the end of the season. Last year, there was a whopping $75 million prize pool for the tournament with the winner netting $18 million.

The eight ‘Signature Events’ on the PGA Tour calendar are The Sentry, AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, The Genesis Invitational – a tournament which Woods has hosted in recent years – the Arnold Palmer Invitational, RBC Heritage, Wells Fargo Championship, The Memorial Tournament and the Travelers Championship.

Woods has previously won the Arnold Palmer Invitational eight times and The Memorial Tournament five times.

However, after suffering serious leg injuries in a car crash in 2021, Woods hasn’t been able to play golf regularly throughout each season and would therefore not typically qualify for these events.

The 48-year-old has played in only four tournaments this year: The Genesis Invitational and the three majors. He withdrew from the second round of the Genesis in February, finished 60th at the Masters and missed the cut at both the PGA Championship and the US Open.

The other change which the PGA Tour announced on Tuesday was that all ‘Signature Events’ would have a minimum field of 72 players.

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