The G4D (Golf for the Disabled) Tour has unveiled its eight-tournament 2023/24 schedule today, with a revamped format that introduces both Gross and Net tournaments for the first time, to ensure that golfers across a wider spectrum of disabilities can compete for glory.
To select the fields for each tournament, both the Gross and Net World Rankings for Golfers with a Disability (WR4GD) will now be used. In a further change for the new season, the leading eight male and two female players from each ranking will be invited to compete – ensuring that female golfers with a disability are represented at each event. The expanded schedule spans eight tournaments in five different countries and will visit Africa for the first time at the Magical Kenya Open.
For Gross players, they must have a WHS or equivalent handicap of equal to or less than 3.4 for males, 7.4 for females or recognised professional status. Net players must have a WHS or equivalent handicap of equal or less than 14.4 for males and 18.4 for females. In G4D, it is common to find players in the Net rankings with a wider diversity of impairments.
Speaking about the changes to the schedule and format, Tony Bennett, President of EDGA, said: “In G4D, elite performance is only sometimes about low scores. It is always about achieving one’s potential and requires consistently executing a complex blend of physical, sensory, cognitive, and emotional skills. All G4D players have quantifiable limitations in one or more of these skills that they work hard to negate to produce their best golf. With this adjusted trajectory for the G4D Tour, we aim to showcase that golf is a game for everyone and whatever challenges must be faced, the player pathway is available to all.”
The G4D Tour was launched in 2022 as a partnership between the DP World Tour and EDGA, formerly the European Disabled Golf Association. The G4D player pathway aims to cater for everyone with a disability who wants to play golf and for many, the G4D Tour is seen as the pinnacle of competition with competitors playing on the same course, in the same week, as the leading Tour professionals on the DP World Tour.
Due to the European Tour group’s ongoing financial support, EDGA has been able to raise awareness, confirm eligibility, organise tournaments, and deliver golf development and coach education worldwide. This has seen the number of golfers with disabilities in the World Rankings increase by 32% from 2022, with players from 46 countries represented - up from 33 the previous year.
Keith Pelley, Chief Executive of the DP World Tour, said: “With one in six people globally having some form of disability, and the physical and mental health benefits of golf well established, encouraging more people into this great game has never been more important.
“By using the established handicap system at several events next season, players with greater impairments can now compete on the G4D Tour. I firmly believe that golf has the potential to be the most inclusive sport in the world and this change further realises this ambition. By boosting female participation in our events, we also want to help inspire more women with a disability to get out there and try golf. These exciting modifications also further align the G4D Tour with the aims and structure of the Paralympic movement, and we hope this will help pave the way for golf to finally enter the Paralympics.”
G4D player Erika Malmberg, from Sweden, said: “The opening up of the G4D Tour events is a huge motivation for both the Net and female players. Suddenly playing in these events is a much more realistic goal to aim for. It’s a really big step for all of G4D.”
G4D player Tony Lloyd, from England, added: “This change to the G4D Tour is groundbreaking yet again. It opens the Tour up to people who might not have had the chance to be able to compete before. I played with some excellent new players this year and the EDGA events are getting stronger and stronger and providing an excellent talent pipeline for the G4D Tour. There are more people coming through and it’s phenomenal to see and be part of it. I plan to play more events next year and with this incentive, I am sure many players at EDGA events will be aiming to get one of those coveted places at a G4D Tour tournament.”
About the DP World Tour
The DP World Tour is the main men’s professional golf Tour of the European Tour group.
Our 2024 global schedule features a minimum of 44 tournaments in 24 different countries across three distinct phases of the season: five ‘Global Swings’ from November 2023 to August 2024; the ‘Back 9’ from September 2024 to October 2024; and the ‘DP World Tour Play-Offs’, comprising two consecutive Rolex Series events in November 2024.
Overall, the 2024 season features five Rolex Series events – the premium category of events on the DP World Tour - and four Major Championships, all of which count towards the Race to Dubai Rankings in partnership with Rolex, the Tour’s season-long competition which concludes at the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai.
DP World, the leading provider of global smart end-to-end supply chain and logistics solutions, has been the title partner of the DP World Tour since the start of the 2022 season, the Tour’s 50th season following its formation in 1972.
About the European Tour group
The European Tour group is the overarching corporate brand which administers: the DP World Tour, the Challenge Tour, the Legends Tour and the G4D Tour and, along with the PGA of America, is the Managing Partner of golf’s greatest team contest, the Ryder Cup.
Established in 1972, the European Tour group is committed to ‘Driving Golf Further’ through our guiding principles of being innovative, inclusive and global.
Innovative: We are driving innovation in golf through the creation of award-winning content, pioneering tournament formats and the use of the latest technology and inventive fan engagement. We are committed to attracting new audiences whilst respecting the tradition of our sport.
Inclusive: We are committed to include all who share a love for the game of golf. We are passionate about a closer collaboration with the women’s game, golf for the disabled and promoting the many physical and mental health benefits of playing golf.
Global: Since 1972, players from 38 different countries have won tournaments on our main Tour, while our live broadcast reaches more than 490 million homes in more than 150 countries every week, generating in excess of 2,200 global broadcast hours for each event. We also enjoy the support of many of the world’s leading business brands with DP World, Rolex, BMW, Emirates, Fortinet and Hilton as Official Partners.
The European Tour group has Strategic Alliances with the PGA TOUR, the Sunshine Tour and Challenger PGA Tour of Australasia. Those Strategic Alliances, combined with partnerships with the Japan Golf Tour Organization (JGTO), the Korea Professional Golfers’ Association (KPGA), and the TATA Steel Professional Golf Tour of India, provide global pathways for players from across the world to compete internationally on the DP World Tour, the main men’s professional golf Tour of the European Tour group.
We ensure we have a positive long-term impact on the courses, countries and the communities we visit through ‘Golf for Good’, the umbrella name for the European Tour group’s commitment to ‘Driving Golf Further’ in an environmentally and socially sustainable way.
About the Rolex Series
The Rolex Series is the premium category of events on the DP World Tour, comprising five tournaments in 2024, staged in a variety of world-class golfing locations around the globe, each with a minimum prize fund of US$9 million.
Showcasing innovation, enriched media, content and broadcast coverage, and a superior event experience for both fans and for the world’s top players, the list of Rolex Series Champions includes some of golf’s most distinguished names.
The Rolex Series was launched in 2017, coinciding with the 20th anniversary of Rolex’s enduring partnership with the European Tour group.
In 2024, the Rolex Series comprises; the Hero Dubai Desert Classic (January 18-21), the Genesis Scottish Open (July 11-14) the BMW PGA Championship (September 19-22), the Abu Dhabi Championship (November 7-10) and the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai (November 14-17). The latter two events comprise the DP World Tour Play-Offs and feature the leading 70 and 50 players from the Race to Dubai respectively.