The European Tour today unveiled the initial sector of The 2016 Race to Dubai, with the Tour’s growing global footprint highlighted by tournaments in nine different destinations across the world before the end of March.
Following on from the announcement earlier today that the second edition of the EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM will take place from January 15-17, 2016, at Glenmarie Golf and Country Club, in Kuala Lumpur, The European Tour will return to Malaysia from February 18-21 for the inaugural Maybank Championship Malaysia, at Royal Selangor Golf Club.
Both events underline The European Tour’s strong relationship with the Asian Tour following last month’s announcement of an innovative joint vision for the future of professional golf, and The European Tour returns to that continent again in March for the True Thailand Classic (March 10-13) and the Hero Indian Open (March 17-20).
In addition to the Maybank Championship Malaysia, another new event included in the 2016 initial sector is the Australian PGA Championship, which takes place at RACV Royal Pines Resort, on Australia’s Gold Coast, from December 3-6, 2015. The oldest and most prestigious tournament on the PGA Tour of Australasia features on The Race to Dubai for the first time following a co-sanctioning agreement between the two Tours, while the Perth International, which is tri-sanctioned with the PGA Tour of Australasia and the Asian Tour, also returns from February 25-28, having last been played in 2014.
The European Tour also enjoys a strong relationship with the Sunshine Tour, and five events on South African soil feature in the initial sector. The 2016 Race to Dubai begins with the Alfred Dunhill Championship from November 26-29, 2015, which takes place one week after the crowning of this year’s champion at the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai.
It continues with the Nedbank Golf Challenge (December 3-6), which features on The Race to Dubai for the third time, before the action resumes after the Christmas break with the South African Open, which launches the 2016 calendar year from January 7-10. Further trips to the country are planned for the Joburg Open (January 14-17) and the Tshwane Open (February 11-14).
Also featuring in the early season schedule is the traditional ‘Desert Swing’, which begins with the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship, at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, from January 21-24, followed by the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters, which returns to Doha Golf Club for a 20th consecutive year from January 27-30 and will once again have a Saturday finish. The three-tournament stretch in the Middle East once more concludes with the Omega Dubai Desert Classic at Emirates Golf Club, from February 4-7.
After the season’s first World Golf Championship event, the WGC-Cadillac Championship from March 3-6, the initial sector then concludes with another trip to the United States with the WGC-Dell Match Play Championship, which moves to Austin Country Club, in Texas, for the first time from March 23-27.
Keith Waters, The European Tour’s Chief Operating Officer and Director of International Policy, said: “Once again, we are delighted to announce a strong initial sector for The 2016 Race to Dubai which emphasises the global reach and appeal of The European Tour, and underlines the strength of our relationships with the Asian Tour, Sunshine Tour and the PGA Tour of Australasia.
“Having outlined our joint vision with the Asian Tour last month, the return of the EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM, plus three further co-sanctioned Race to Dubai events in Asia, reflects how closely we are already working together, and I would like to thank all of our Federation and co-sanctioning partners, sponsors and promoters for helping us to form such a strong opening to The 2016 Race to Dubai.”