PGA of America announces moving the PGA Championship to May

a tour mr. Jay Monahan who will discuss

something that has been discussed in the

news over the last several weeks and a

couple of months so Peake let's go ahead

and begin with you there has been a lot

of talk about the PGA Championship

moving to May many of our friends in

this room know that you have been

analyzing this decision for quite some

time is there anything that you can

share with us today well well thanks

Julius and thank you Jay for being here

it means a lot to us to have you here

with us and probably the worst kept

secret in golf is going to be announced

today but we at the PGA of America have

decided that starting in 2019 at

Bethpage State Park in New York that we

will move the date of the PGA

Championship to May we're unbelievably

excited about next year at Belle Reve in

2018 which will be played in August as

our hundredth PGA Championship but as we

turn the page to our 101st PGA

Championship we will be moving it to May

and we're really doing this primarily

for three reasons it's in the best

interest of the PGA Championship we feel

that it's in the best interest of the

players who play in the PGA Tour the PGA

Championship around the world and maybe

most importantly for our organization it

makes the most sense to our members such

a large percentage of our members start

and are active in their golf season in

May and for an organization whose

strategic mission is to grow this game

we just feel may is a far more powerful

day for us to contest our major

championship thank you very much

Jay I guess the question has to be asked

how's that Players Championship doing it

well Julius and Pete thank you for

having me here today it's a great honor

to be here at the PGA Championship at

Quail Hollow quill hollow as you know is

home of the Wells Fargo Championship and

Johnny Harris and the entire team here

are ready it's going to be a super week

and I know the PGA of America is ready

and again it's an honor to be here but

today is today is an exciting day we are

thrilled to announce that in 2019 the

Players Championship will move to the


March couple with the PGA Championships

moved to May these two significant

changes we think will greatly enhance

the professional golf calendar our

thanks to the PGA of America and I thank

Pete I also want to thank Paul Levy

Suzie Whaley Jim Richerson the entire

Board of the PGA of America because this

decision and this partnership allows us

both to reach our long-term objectives

while delivering incredibly compelling

golf to our fans around the world and I

want to stress that we expect these

moves will help us to grow our fan base

as we move forward with these changes

and we think that's very important and

as Pete said and the best interest of

this game Jay thank you very much before

we go to Q&A Pete can you talk a little

bit about the analysis the PGA of

America went through during this this

time sure Julius and we really felt it

was important for us as an organization

to seize this opportunity I go back four

years ago and I'm looking at Paul and

Suzy and Jim and our CEO Darryl crawl

and we've started these conversations

about what would be the long-term impact

of golf in the Olympics on the PGA

Championship we are huge proponents of

the Olympic movement in golf we think

it's wonderful for golf here and around

the world and my role right now is CEO

of the PGA of America I'm proud to be

the chairperson of the International

Golf Federation we support Gough and the

Olympics we love golf and the Olympics

but looking at it from our very PGA of


prism what would be the impact of having

to potentially change the date every

four years as golf stays in the Olympics

on the PGA Championship so that started

the process Jay was well aware that we

were going through that analysis

thinking about that quite frankly part

of the logic of announcing Harding Park

in 2020 as a PGA Championship site is

because it afforded us the flexibility

to potentially change that date maybe to

plate in February maybe to play into

March in May or in August we'd like that

and then I'll I'll wind the clock back

about a year where Jay and his team came

to visit us at PGA of America

headquarters and said hey we know you're

going through this process if we would

consider moving the Players Championship

back do you think the Oregon

datian would consider moving the PGA

Championship to a may date and we said

well Jay that's great information to

know give us some time and we underwent

a full-blown analysis that quite frankly

has taken the better part of eight to

ten months weighing the pros and cons of

August versus May August has worked it's

working wonderfully this week it'll work

so well next year at Belle Reve we've

had great drama great television ratings

the way carrie hague sets up our golf

courses we go to some of the very best

golf courses in the world but we kept

coming back to the fundamental

unavoidable reality that the landscape

in august is changing

it's changing because of the olympics

it's changing because of contemplated

change alterations to the FedExCup that

j can talk about more eloquently than I

can and then we started to look at may

we said you know what the PGA

Championship historically has been

played in nine of twelve months so we

haven't been wed to a to an August state

what would it mean to follow the Masters

in terms of the major championship golf

calendar as I said when I opened up my

comments what would it mean for our

membership to be able to talk about get

golf ready in PGA Junior League golf and

all the great grow the game initiatives

that PGA of America professionals are

tied to across the country in May toward

the beginning of the golf season for

such a large part of the country as

opposed to August we feel that the

television markets in general are

stronger in May and we're a hundred

percent confident that we can continue

to go to the great golf courses that we

bring this championship to and we spent

a lot of time determining and analyzing

that aspect of it and it opens up other

parts of the country it's more

comfortable in the southeast it's more

comfortable in Florida it's more

comfortable in Texas and this wasn't a

easy decision it certainly wasn't a

decision we took lightly our team made a

full-blown presentation to our Board of

Directors in March we went back in June

a couple of months ago and made the

formal recommendation to Paul to Suzy to

Jim and to the rest of our board of

directors that we think this is in the

best interest of the PGA of America and

the PGA Championship to make this move


to position us for the next hundred

years of the PGA Championship we also

had the added benefit that it was good

for golf it made sense for us and made

sense for the tour we think it makes

sense for the overall golf calendar and

there becomes an unbelievably powerful

and comfortable cadence with this change

when you think about the Players

Championship to the Masters to the PGA

to the US Open to the Open Championship

to the FedEx Cup in the playoffs and

then ending the year in such a fashion

depending on what year it is with the

Ryder Cup or the Presidents Cup so we

certainly think it's good for the PGA of

America and the PGA Championship Julis

but we're a hundred percent comfortable

that it's good for the game as well

thank you very much Jay I'm guessing as

you heard this was a process I'm

guessing you went through similar

analyses we did and I think we both

organizations are constantly going

through a similar type analysis and for

us going back several years you look at

what we're trying to accomplish for the

game and what we're trying to do is to

diversify and grow our fan base and

diversify and grow participation within

our game and the one way that we can

influence that is through our schedule

and through our players and through the

product that we put forward each week

and it was through that lens that we

began this exercise a long while ago and

will continue to to look at our schedule

in that way but we think that this

return to March for the players has been

done for a number of reasons that will

benefit virtually all of our

constituents the Players Championship

continues to grow in stature regardless

of its date it's clearly one of the

premier events and all the golf the best

players in the world playing a dynamic

and world-class venue in TPC Sawgrass

the stadium course an unmatched van

experience and obviously tremendous

impact that we've had in our home

community last year raising eight and a

half million dollars for charity and

roughly 85 million dollars since

inception but when you change dates

moving from from May to March you've got

to a different set of conditions that

you have to address and I think if you

look back over the

past several years you've seen firsthand

a number of the changes that we've made

and I'll point out a few in re recapping

all of our fairways regressing all of

our fairways and installing sub air and

improving our drainage systems in

regressing all of our greens we're in a

position to deliver the same first and

firm and fast conditions in March that

we've been delivering in May and that's

something that we're going to hold

ourselves accountable to because we

certainly want the standard of play to

stay to be at the same high level that

it is right now and we have made

significant investments to the property

we're gonna continue to do so but again

I think condition of the golf course is

one of the primary factors and we're

very comfortable with what we're going

to be able to deliver in 2019 I'd also

say that by moving back to to March you

see the sequence of events now having a

what is a Florida swing or reverting

back to what was a very strong portion

of the schedule is something that's

potentially appealing to us as we go

down the road and I think that as you

look at these overall schedules we're

thrilled with the moves because they're

really been done when you step back and

you think about what's in the best

interest of the game as you heard Pete

talk about they've been done in close

collaboration with the PGA of America we

used to be the same organization roughly

50 years ago and our strengthening

partnership today I think is reflected

in this announcement and we expect that

partnership to continue to grow as we go

forward as Pete talked about in terms of

seasonality we're excited to promote PGA

junior league golf we're also excited to

have the platform in March to help

accelerate into our season and create

some real energy off of that platform

for our players but overall to answer

your question Julius there was a ton of

analysis the basis for that analysis is

what's going to help us grow and we

think together that's what we're

announcing thank you thank you very much

Dave ladies and gentlemen the two most

handsome men in the leadership and dolf

are happy to take questions from you now

but questions specifically about the

news we just talked about the day as

specific information

about the 2017 PGA Championship will be

addressed tomorrow at the PGA

Championship news conference at 11

o'clock so we'll begin right over here

I'm Mike number two Bob thanks Jay

obviously there's a lot of dominoes now

that have to fall for you can you

address any of that at this time maybe

perhaps the FedEx Cup Playoffs moving up

and concluding earlier I'd love to be

able to address those Bob and I should

have mentioned this up front for today

you know we're making - announcement

announcements Pete made the announcement

on the PGA Championship we're making the

announcement on the players moving to

may in March respectively to your

question there are a number of dominoes

and there are a number of other

decisions that we need to make and as

you can imagine there's a fair amount of

complexity in that we've got a number of

constituents that we have to work with

so when we have more specifics we'll

come back and we will make those

announcement we're not just not far

enough along in our process to be able

to say definitively where we are but I

think we had the same conversation at

the players in May and I said when we

make that decision will come forward and

will tell you and here we are with an

important stumbling block in that effort

okay thank you

Mike number one yep Pete two questions

the date in May will it be the the

current week that the Players

Championship is played and then also

regarding golf courses you mentioned the

areas of the country you open up do you

have concerns though that other parts of

the country now cannot host the PGA

Championship Jeff thanks I would tell

you with our first question no we will

not play on the weekend of Mother's Day

will be playing after Mother's Day but

really it will that the PGA Championship

will conclude on the weekend prior to

Memorial Day weekend which based on the

calendar year can either be the third or

the fourth week of May more often than

not the third week of May we feel we

looked at the golf courses that we know

we have signed agreements so if you're

thinking about sitting here today when


about obviously Bellerive is not

effective because that will continue in

August but then you go Bethpage Harding

Park Kiowa Trump Bedminster and I'll

kill those are where we have our signed

agreements we are very comfortable that

the May date works for all of those

locations when you think about the major

metropolitan New York area the tri-state

area we did a long analysis of the bethe

pages and the Baltus rawls and other

great home sites for the PGA

Championship we actually feel and I

would say that more importantly people

from our side carry Hague but from those

championship sites there their PGA

Professionals the club the

superintendent they feel the

conditioning of the golf courses are

actually better in late May than in the

August months I think the weather

patterns have proven to be better so

we're excited by that and in terms of

other areas of the country we are taking

nothing off the table at this time

weather patterns change grasses become

more resilient will continue to have

great conversations with those clubs

that win courses that we have

historically gone to in all other

regions of the country question for each

of you Jay in looking at revamping the

schedule is there any talk of creating a

bonafide offseason for the players and

he is a non-us venue on the table at all

I would say going back to the advent of

the FedEx Cup the wrap-around season has

elevated all of our events and I think

when you look at 46 events over the

course of the season right now I don't

expect that to change I think that works

very well for our products and candidly

as a sport a true international sport

being on all the time and showcasing the

world's best players over that period of

time we think is very helpful I was

thinking about this because I've read

some some comments recently and you know

you look at the fact that there are 46

events you know a lot of players that

say you play in 25 weeks that's 21 weeks

you have off that's five

free time and the benefit of having

players a steady rhythm of players and

gosh we see how deep and how the depth

is across the game we think that serves

going back to the fan that serves our

fan base very well and I think that's

reflected in the demand we have from

sponsorship from tournament and the

support we're getting in all the

communities where we play so at this

point I don't I don't see that Karen and

I would tell you from an international

perspective I think it's no secret that

we've considered that in the past and

have analyzed that what's more important

for our organization when we put our

strategic plan together with our board

of directors a global growth for the PGA

of America is key to our success where

as we talked initially about potentially

having an international PGA Championship

our focus now in terms of global growth

is squarely on education and employment

our PGA of America professionals who are

the best trained professionals in the

world how do we bring them overseas to

help grow this game how do we bring them

overseas to help teach people how to

grow the game will we ever do an

International PGA Championship I think

the answer is we don't quite know yet

well we do want in the next decade I

think the safe answer is no but it is

something we always consider because I

think potentially at the right time for

the organization it could be an

interesting move thanks Mike number


John Pete this will have an impact on

the PGA could you give us an idea of the

reaction from what your impression is of

these feelings now that you've made this

announcement sure and I'll of course

invite Jay to answer this as well but

John I would tell you I've had several

conversations with Keith Pelle about

this move including one last night I

think Keith understands it I think he's

very positive about it I've also had

very positive and supportive

conversations with our friends at

Augusta National with our friends at the

RNA with our friends at the USGA and I

think across the board people understand

that it makes sense not just for the PGA

Championship but

for the overall golf calendar certainly

here in the US and I think potentially

around the globe as well but but perhaps

Jays better positioned to answer that

than I am well I would just say that

what you know we're constantly having

conversations with Keith the European

Tour and all the international tours as

you know we're partners in the

International Federation of PGA Tour's

and if I remember correctly key several

months ago came out and talked

specifically about this potential move

to the press and the options that that

creates for him and potentially some of

the challenges and I think we're

partners at the same time it's our job

to put forward the best schedule

possible that's what we're doing here I

think that's what Keith is doing and

it's going to continue to try and do and

I think that's healthy for the overall

game I really do but yeah we're I want

to stress that we've got you know a

really good working open relationship

and I don't think this I don't think

this announcement is a surprise to

anybody it's been well talked about for

a long period of time thank you Mike

number three Doug Jay when the players

previously was in March it was generally

two weeks before the Masters is that the

intention for nineteen and going forward

and then for Pete

if hypothetical the FedEx Cup ends

around Labor Day does that open up any

options for you in terms of movement of

the Ryder Cup I think in terms of in

terms of the impact to the schedule and

the specifics of it we're moving to

March we will announce our 19 schedule

obviously when we get 8 into 18 as we

typically do but the mid March timeframe

is exactly where we're targeting and I

would tell you Doug

I think it does I think it does open up

the door to potentially talk about

changing the date not significantly but

but a bit perhaps for the Ryder Cup down

the road when you think about where

we're going with Whistling Straits

obviously Paris in 18 Whistling Straits

in Rome and then Bethpage State Park

it's a conversation we'll have with

Keith Pelle it's a conversation we'll

have with our friends at the PGA GB and

I and obviously will include

J and the tour in those conversations as

well but a long winded way of saying yes

I think it does open the door for that

question over here I'm like - J you may

have answered this question what happens

to the tournament that is currently in

that week in March well I I guess I

answered the question by not answering

the question because I've said that

we're not going to get into the

specifics of anything other than the

move that we're making and again I if we

had made all the decisions and

everything was ready to go that's what

would be announcing today but we're not

there we have more work to do and we're

excited about the potential for all of

our tournaments we're an active dialogue

discussion with all of our partners and

it's complicated

but we're going to get to it and we're

on a path that we're very comfortable

with and very excited about and when we

have that we'll answer it for all of you

thank you microphone number two because

specifically why 2019 is that a 2020

2020 21 why did you choose that year to

start this it's a good question mark and

you're from Long Island so you know I

think the power of Bethpage but really

it came down to it's the if it works

weather-wise we think the condition of

Bethpage State Park the condition of

that black course year in and year out

is better in late May than it as in

August so we feel comfortable and

confident and then we like the story we

like the narrative it's it's the hundred

and first PGA Championship and as we

talked about it with our board we said

you know what if we're gonna do this

let's do it it's too late in the process

to make a date change with Bellerive

that's in the market whether it's ticket

or corporate hospitality sales so the

first realistic date that we could

change with this announcement was

Bethpage and we're like let's let's go

ahead and do it the state feels

comfortable about it Carrie Hague feels

comfortable about it and we just think

it's a great next chapter of the PGA


thank you Mike number two Pete have you

determined what kind of impact this has

on the professional championship and the

Senior PGA yeah I'm glad you asked the

question so I'll address both in terms

of the KitchenAid Senior PGA

Championship that at least for the next

three years will remain in its current

timeslot and I would tell you that we

like the fact that the PGA Championship

will be followed by the KitchenAid

Senior PGA Championship we think we can

continue to serve that event continue to

draw attention to that event with the

fact that our major championship is the

week prior we like that they'll be back

to fact we think there's great

continuity and quite frankly power in

that as many of you in this room know

one of the true important elements of

the PGA Championship part of the DNA of

the PGA Championship is that we have 20

of our PGA of America Club professionals

playing it every year 20 people that

will be here this year with us at Quail

Hollow so one of the key components of

figuring this out and putting the pieces

together was making sure that our PGA

professional championship worked from a

date wise and a schedule point of view

Kerry and his team took a long hard look

at that and starting in 2019 we will

move the date of the PGA professional

championship to roughly a month prior to

the PGA Championship and it will be

played in April thank you ladies and

gentlemen before we have our next player

interview come in we're gonna call that

for this news conference but Jay and

Pete will remain at the table here for

the next four and a half minutes and the

word media scrum is something that you

all like so thank you very much for

joining us today