It’s all go for January after the R&A and USGA published their finalised Rules of Golf. So what’s coming in? Steve Carroll outlines the changes.
Race to Dubai extended until 2017
The Race to Dubai has resonated so positively with players and fans since it was introduced in place of the Order of Merit in 2009 that European Tour officials announced on Tuesday the event was to be extended to the 2017 season.
The past four years has seen four former world number ones earn the title of European Number One, with Lee Westwood, Martin Kaymer, Luke Donald and Rory McIlroy each proving their worth on the global stage.
European Tour executive George O'Grady said on the tour's official website, "We have announced today extending The Race until 2017 and I've said many times that this is the perfect venue to finish our year. The climate is excellent, the facilities here are superb, and the welcome from everyone here in Dubai is simply outstanding.
“It was 25 years ago that I came to Dubai for the first time for the first Dubai Desert Classic. Since then, we have helped to grow the game here and throughout the whole of the UAE while, in addition, we are also hugely supportive of Dubai's bid to win the right to host Expo 2020."
He continued: "They have rewarded us with an incredible growth of courses alongside the facilities they provide for all our players.
"Thanks to the leadership and vision of DP World, the tremendous contribution of everyone at Jumeirah Golf Estates, and the continued commitment of our partners, the future of The Race to Dubai is exceptionally positive."
When the next Race to Dubai rolls around it will once again conclude with the exciting season-ending finale played at Jumeirah Golf Estates, which will be loaded with an incredible – and increased – Bonus Pool of US$5 million.
There will also be at least one staging of the championship on the complex’s Fire course between 2014 and 2017.
Such is the seriousness that the Race to Dubai event has garnered that another symbol of commitment has been announced by the European Tour and Jumeirah Golf Estates, in which the European Tour will establish an International Office within the new clubhouse, operational by the staging of the 2014 tournament, as well as acquiring a property within the grounds of what is destined to become one of the world's pre-eminent residential communities.