'Churn' rate on pace with what officials expected at signature events

'Churn' rate on pace with what officials expected at signature events

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. – When the PGA Tour introduced this year’s signature events with limited fields, the concept faced immediate criticism.

Some claimed the smaller fields, which normally range between 70 to 80 players, would create a closed shop that wouldn’t allow the year-to-year turnover that’s defined the circuit. But early results from the season’s first four signature events suggest that turn over, or “churn,” is on pace with what officials anticipated.

“Early returns for 2024 show that field strength, player participation and access for full-field and signature events are strong and delivering on our expectations based on the modeled projections,” commissioner Jay Monahan said Tuesday at The Players Championship.

So far this season, 49 players who didn’t finish inside last year’s top 50 on the season-ending points list have played at least one signature event via the Aon Swing 5 or Next 10 categories. The countless models the Tour ran suggested that number would be around 70 for the season.

Perhaps more importantly for those who were skeptical of the Tour’s claim that the “churn” rate — the number of players who drop out and into the top 50 each season — would remain unchanged, are the current projections which have about 40 percent, or 20 players, currently set to drop out of the top 50.