NAIROBI, Kenya, March 8 – The pro winner of the 2019 Magical Kenya Open Golf Championship presented by Absa will walk away with Sh20.5m (Euros 183,330), the tournament’s prize fund breakdown released on Friday confirms.
The prize money, the biggest payout to the winning pro since the tournament’s inception in 1967, is more than double what Lorenzo Gagli, winner of the 2018 Kenya Open Golf Championship, took home (Euros 80,000); and is in line with the tournament’s prize kitty increase following its admission to the European Tour.
This year’s tournament’s total prize kitty was more than doubled from Euros 500,000 to Euros 1.1 million; signifying the enhanced stature of the tournament.
Runner-up pro golfer at the tournament will walk away with Sh13.6m (Euros 122,220) while a third-place finish for a pro will earn them Sh7.7m (Euros 68,860).
A pro finishing in the top ten at the tournament is guaranteed of walking away with at least Euros 22,000 (KShs 2.5 million) while the least prize fund payout to a pro is, this year, set at Euros 2,010 (equivalent to KShs 224,000) for the pro finishing in 70th place.
Commenting on the prize fund breakdown, Kenya Open Golf Limited’s Tournament Director, Patrick Obath, said the increase will be a great incentive for players to up their game at the tournament
“The increase in prize money will enhance competition on the course among players, with the main objective for all being first to make the cut, then proceed to try and finish as high up as possible on the leaderboard. The prize fund breakdown will be particularly a great incentive for our local pro players who have been training hard through the Safari Tour Golf Series,” he said.
Only two Kenyan pros, Windsor’s Riz Charania (who finished T69) and Sigona’s Mohit Mediratta (who finished in 71st) made the cut at last year’s Kenya Open Golf Championship taking home Euros 1,075 and Euros 1,000 respectively.
Meanwhile, the European Tour has revised its Race to Dubai points system to separate the identity of the Race to Dubai from prize money allowing it to create a more equitable performance-based Race to Dubai whilst protecting its integrity from future shifts in prize money and schedule.
Announcing the change, the European Tour has said:
“There is a very significant discrepancy between the number of Race to Dubai points awarded for the high prize fund events versus the lower prize fund events. This discrepancy has a significant impact on those who finish towards the top of the Race to Dubai, but also on determining who keeps their Tour card for the following year.”
To correct the existing discrepancy, the European Tour has assessed a series of methodologies to determine the future of the ranking system and has determined a banding system as most appropriate with the smaller events being raised to 2000 points and the largest events capped at 10000 points.
This new system is as follows:
|Band||Lower Prize fund (US$)||Upper Prize fund (US$)||New Points|
|7||5,500,000||No limit||No adjustment|
The 2019 Magical Kenya Open Golf Championship falls into band one, meaning the pro winner of the tournament, who is a European Tour member, will earn 2,000 points towards their Road to Dubai ranking.