Epson Tour announces another record-breaking season in 2023 with $4.9 million in prize money

Klara Spilkova. (Epson Tour)
Klara Spilkova. (Epson Tour)

The 2023 season will be another record-breaker for the Epson Tour. In 2013, players competed for $1.6 million in purses across 15 events. This season, they’ll play for $4.915 million in 22 tournaments, the tour announced on Thursday.

Two events will boast the largest prize fund in Epson Tour history as both the Carlisle Arizona Women’s Golf Classic and the French Lick Charity Classic moved to $335,000. That’s more than double what the highest purse was a decade ago.

“I think our best sales people are our existing events,” said Tim Kramer, vice president of tournament business affairs for the Epson Tour, on what has kept momentum flowing in recent years.

Longstanding events on the tour’s schedule include the Twin Bridges Championship (39 years), the Florida’s Natural Charity Classic (14 years), the Island Resort Championship (12 years), the Four Winds Invitational (12 years) and the IOA Championship (11 years).

This year, the IOA Golf Classic and the FireKeepers Casino Hotel Championship celebrate 10 years on the Epson Tour schedule.

“We are so thrilled to be celebrating our 10th year of the IOA Classic,” said IOA Golf Classic Tournament Director John Ritenour in a release. “This has been one of the best events that we do to entertain our customers and our insurance company partners. Playing with these young ladies is the most fun that any of our guests have playing golf. Every year our invited guests ask if they can play in it the following year.”

The average purse size this season will be $223,000, up from $210,000 in 2022. The tour graduates the top 10 players on the money list each season to the LPGA.

It’s been a year of transition for the Epson Tour, with more change on the way.

Mike Nichols, who joined the LPGA staff in 2006 and was named chief business officer of what was then known as the Symetra Tour in July 2012, left the LPGA last summer. It was Nichols who transformed the LPGA’s official qualifying tour in substantial ways over the course of a decade before leaving to become the Chief of Sponsorship Strategy and Activation for Group 1001.

The LPGA is expected to announce his replacement Monday, Jan. 9.

2022 Epson Tour Championship
2022 Epson Tour Championship

Xiaowen Yin, Gabriella Then, Yan Liu, Kiira Riihijarvi, Linnea Strom, Gina Kim, Celine Borge, Grace Kim and Hyo Joon Jang celebrate receiving their LPGA cards following the 2022 Epson Tour Championship at LPGA International in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo: Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

The tour will welcome three new stops in 2023.

The Hartford HealthCare Women’s Championship will be held July 13-16 at Great River Golf Club in Milford, Connecticut. There will also be a second stop added in Utah with the addition of the Black Desert Resort Championship in September, where players will compete for $300,000, the second-largest purse of the season.

The tour will also return to North Carolina in 2023, with more details coming at a later date.

Date

Tournament

Course

Location

Purse

Feb. 27-March 5

Florida’s Natural Charity Classic

Country Club of Winter Haven

Winter Haven, Florida

$200,000

March 13-19

Carlisle Arizona Women’s Golf Classic

Longbow Golf Club

Mesa, Arizona

$335,000

March 20-26

IOA Championship presented by Morongo Casino Resort & Spa

Morongo Golf Club at Tukwet Canyon

Beaumont, California

$200,000

March 27-April 2

Casino Del Sol Golf Classic

Sewailo Golf Club

Tucson, Arizona

$200,000

April 24-30*

Copper Rock Championship presented by KSLSPORTS.com

Copper Rock Golf Course

Hurricane, Utah

$220,000

May 1-7

Garden City Charity Classic at Buffalo Dunes

Buffalo Dunes Golf Club

Garden City, Kansas

$200,000

May 15-21

IOA Golf Classic presented by LPT Realty

Alaqua Country Club

Longwood, Florida

$200,000

May 22-28

Inova Mission Inn Resort & Club Championship

El Campeon Golf Course

Howey-In-The-Hills, Florida

$200,000

May 29-June 4

TBA

TBA

TBA, North Carolina

$200,000

June 5-11

FireKeepers Casino Hotel Championship

Battle Creek Country Club

Battle Creek, Michigan

$200,000

June 19-25

Island Resort Championship

Sweetgrass Golf Club

Harris, Michigan

$225,000

July 10-16

Hartford HealthCare Women’s Championship

Great River Golf Club

Milford, Connecticut

$200,000

July 17-23

Twin Bridges Championship

Pinehaven Country Club

Guilderland, New York

$200,000

July 31-Aug. 6

French Lick Charity Classic

The Pete Dye Golf Course at French Lick

French Lick, Indiana

$335,000

Aug. 7-13*

Four Winds Invitational

South Bend Country Club

South Bend, Indiana

$200,000

Aug. 14-20

Wildhorse Ladies Golf Classic

Wildhorse Golf Course

Pendleton, Oregon

$200,000

Aug. 21-27

Circling Raven Championship

Circling Raven Golf Club

Worley, Idaho

$225,000

Sept. 4-9*

Black Desert Resort Championship

TBA

Salt Lake City, Utah

$300,000

Sept. 11-17

Guardian Championship

RTJ Golf Trail at Capitol Hill Golf Club

Prattville, Alabama

$200,000

Sept. 18-24

Murphy USA El Dorado Shootout

Mystic Creek Golf Club

El Dorado, Arkansas

$225,000

Sept. 25-Oct. 1

Tuscaloosa Classic

Ol’ Colony Golf Course

Tuscaloosa, Alabama

$200,000

Oct. 2-8

Epson Tour Championship

LPGA International – Jones Course

Daytona Beach, Florida

$250,000

List

Meet the 10 Epson Tour players who earned LPGA cards for 2023

Story originally appeared on GolfWeek