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who's tried the hooters tour?

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wanting to try professional golf, need to know how much $$ t
I know about the $2000 membership fee, and the $850 a week entry fee, but other than typical travel expenses I'm looking to know what else to expect...Also, what should I expect from them as far as "paid pro-am's" where they pay you to play.

obviously the purse money is up to how I perform.

I just wonder how I could do if I went and tried it for a year where I did nothing but play golf and quit my job.

Looking strictly for responses from people who have tried it, or are closely connected with someone who has.
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I've played some of the winter series and to be honest you've covered all the expenses in fees, travel and accomodation. With regards to the pro-ams there weren't any in the winter but I would only expect the top 30 or so in the money list to be invited to play in these.

We even had to pay for practice rounds! Included in the summer though.

To break even for the week when all is included you should be looking for at least top 15, any less and the losses will soon add up.

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Didn't Lee Trevino once say something along the lines of, "If you want to play on tour, find the 10 hardest courses you know of, go play them and if you don't set a course record on at least 6 of them...don't bother!"


More seriously though, you will tee up every week with guys who are plenty good enough for the PGA Tour but didn't quite have it during the qualifying weeks. It's not an easy introduction to playing professionally, sink or swim would be more appropriate.


If however you look at any losses as payment for improvement and maybe the hit you need to take to make it next time, there's no other place like it!


Another lesson I learned. Never expect to be able to get by when you are changing your technique, Tiger might do it but not many others can!!

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Yeah, I have every expectation of getting my a** handed to me for a few months, but I feel like I can shoot a couple 67's anywhere at anytime if the putter gets a little warm...It's just hard to justify with a wife and kid on the way to try to seek sponsorships and try to achieve something that 3% of people ever achieve who try professional golf. I'm trying to get everything in front of me before I make a decision.

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Sponsors relieve a lot of the financial burden for sure, but depending on who they are, there can be a whole new set of pressures! :idhitit:


You just need to make a life changing choice. Do you give it a real go, never mind 1 year, give it 3 minimum...or.....do you live in the knowledge that you can look back and say, "I might have been good enough, but I'll never know"


My second tournament in the winter:


Forest Lake, 7300 yards, windy, 1 under through 1st round...11 shots off the pace. You gotta love it.

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That's spot on, your bad day needs to be even or just over combined with at least one silly low!


Maybe you should head over to England, play a bit of EuroPro, lower entry fees almost as good prize money, much less depth in competition!


Forgot to mention the cost of living $$$ or £££.


Good luck and Good night, need some beauty(swing) sleep

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Lee said something more along the lines of...


take your son to 4 different courses he's never seen and if he can't shoot par at each course the first time he sees them, he doesn't even have a stance.



I thought it was more like "stand a chance" not "have a stance." Every golfer has a stance, regardless of ability level. (just kidding :D ) just a friendly correction... :idhitit:

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I'm not speaking from personal experience, but know a few guys playing on mini tours and a couple on the Nationwide. Before going pro, they lit up the amateur tourneys in Florida, which has a very strong field of amateur players. One guy was FSGA Player of the Year a couple of times before going to Q-school and playing professionally. Another guy has made it to sectional qualifying for the US Open a couple of times.


The point I'm trying to make is that you need to test yourself at the best amateur level tournaments, and include US Amateur, US Open, etc. qualifiers and tourneys before you make the jump to professional golf. If you are finishing high or winning state events, and doing well nationally, then you can take it to the next level.


As pointed out earlier, it is expensive to foot the bill yourself, especially if you have a family to support.


If you feel you have the game, then do it. As someone once told me, "it's easier to deal with failure than not knowing what could have been."


Good luck!

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I'm a career 12 handicaper, so I can't give you any personal advice. But, I'm friends with a couple of guys on Tour and a few others who have played mini-tours and have seen alot of their struggles.


I could tell you all kinds of stories about the amount of talent there is out there, but I'm sure you've heard them all. That said, there is one story that really sticks in my mind that I'd hope you would think about.


I was playing in a two-man tournament a couple of years ago and was paired with a guy who designs golf courses and his guest. I got to talking to this gentleman who was much older than my partner and I (we're both in our 30's, this man was in his 70's). Anyway, we are standing on the first par 3 and this guy's partner mentions how many hole in ones the elder gentleman had made. When we inquire, the fairly quiet man replied "29". We were obviously astounded by this number and began asking questions.


This guy had won every local/regional tournament available back in the mid-50's and made a decent living from golf. He still needed another job, but he still managed to play in whatever tournament he could find. He got invited into a money game which happened to include Ben Hogan. He played very well that day and Mr. Hogan asked the man to come by his office the next day.


Well, Mr. Hogan offered to sponsor this then young-man if he would completely dedicate himself to golf. He went on the road, played some tournaments and even made a little money. The year ended and he took a job at a course for the "off-season".


As the time neared to hit the road again, Mr. Hogan called him for another meeting at his office. During this off-season, the man found out that he was a father-to-be as his wife was pregnant. Mr. Hogan asked about this and upon hearing this, congratulated the man. He also informed him that he would no longer be sponsoring him on the tour.


The man was obviously disappointed and confused. He asked Mr. Hogan why he had made this decision. The reply was very simple: "Out on the road is no-where to raise a family".


The man took the words to heart and had a very successful career, but it was in business, not golf.


As an expectant father-to-be, I understand that part of what you are going through. My only advice would be to do whatever is best for your family.


And while it sounds like you are a very talented golfer, I can tell you that we have 4 players at my club who shoot scores similar to yours on a very tough golf course, but also have the occasional 62 (in one case, more often than occasional). All are trying to make golf a career in some form or fashion, but haven't made it yet. Doesn't mean than they never will, but the odds are very against them.


If you still have your amatuer status, why not try for the US Am and other big amatuer tournaments? Competing on that level would tell you a great deal about your ability to compete on the next level.

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I do play a lot of amateur events, not so much on the national level, but...I guess the uncertainty comes from wondering, IF i dedicated my lifestyle to golf, and practiced daily, could I shoot the 61's, etc....whereas now, I practice one day a week, and play two rounds a week and average +/- scratch. I'm sure there have been a lot of people that asked themselves that question. thanks for the advice / info guys.

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Like Cowtown above, I am not at your playing level, but I have friends who were, and one in particular.


He obvisouly used to win the club championship as a youngster, then played well in some of the bigger amateur tournaments without actually winning one.


As an amateur he did moderatly well in the opening rounds of a major tournament (or at least major in Australia). He shot a 66, 68 or something and we were glued to the TV at the club when he teed off the final group on Saturday with two fairly successful international golfers.


Unfortunately, his 66 and 68 were the two best rounds he was capable of on these kind of courses, let alone under the pressure of TV. He faded badly and has never come close to competing again.


Now, 66 on a tough course (I played it on the Monday and had an 11 on a hole on which Norman had 7 trying to fly a 230 yard second shot across water) is very very good. I would give a testicle to be able to do that.


But it was patently obvious that my friend was playing the best he would ever play, whilst his opposition were not on their A games and still kicked his a** over four days.


He knocked around the Australian tour for a while, and what is now the Hooters, but eventually realised he was simply not good enough. Sure if a few putts had gone down he might have made more cuts and won a bit more (and if I could putt I'd be club champion) but if it takes your best rounds ever just to be mid-field it is time to bite the bullet.


Not to mention the 35-40K it costs just play, when you add in travel, hotels, cars, hookers etc


I have no idea how good the original poster is, but observing from afar it seems the very best players come through the amateur system and then play at college. If you don't play against and beat these guys, I can't see how you are going to make money on the Hooters tour.

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mike weir said "if you don't shoot 63 at your home course everytime you go out, don't bother"


Well, to be honest, given how Mike's played since winning the Masters, if I were him I'd probably be trying to discourage any more young ambitious players from trying their hand at professional golf too, but perhaps that's being a bit tough on Weir.


Take a look at the Gateway/Grey Goose Tour out in Scottsdale/Phoenix. They recently acquired the GoldenBear tour, so now they have three series. The Summer Series is just starting, first event this week at Talking Stick. This is a pretty competitive series, with a lot of top notch talent trying to eek out a living while Monday qualifying or looking for the rare sponsor's exemption. It's tough to make a decent check, but the events are in one locale, so you don't have to travel all over the country, and you can probably find a few like minded people to offset the rent in Phoenix.

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Depending upon where you live, there are a bunch of mini-tours out there:

Pepsi Tour in Cali, Cleveland Golf Tour in the North East, Adams Golf Tour in Texas, the Golden Bear in Florida, etc...


The one thing is amazingly consistent: all those players have excellent short games...being to hit a wide variety of shots with your PW thru 60* is your bread and butter...

There are a bunch of guys out there that are amazingly average with the driver, but their iron and wedge is something that the average amateur dreams of having...

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I didn't read all the replies but I will give you my 2 cents. I played in 25 or so Hooters events, some I didn't make the qualifier some I did. Chad Campbell and Vaugh Taylor were out there when I was giving this a run.


I have shot the 63's and 64's and once played 22 rounds straight below 70. These guys are good. Most of them are in great shape and just trying to get some more competitive golf in before they move up to the Nationwide.


I say go for your dream but don't put yourself in a tough spot financially...I was lucky enough to have to have several doctors and 2 attorneys foot my bill. It's a lot of fun and very tiring at the same time.


I am much like you today, I shoot even par and shoot a 69 every now and then with only practicing once a week and playing once or twice on average.


Whatever you choose good luck!

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I don't want to make it sound worst than what it is here.


Al I can say is that you need to be realistic on looking at the whole thing, not only skill or money wise, but also physically and mentally. I'm not saying that you aren't, but i've seen quite a lot of them over rated them self and end up going no where but down. A lot of them w/ a very awesome record when they were amateur and fall apart when they turn pro because they've expected themself to far.


I would just suggest you to hand pick a "quality" local event that is close enough for you to travel without burden your self. Check your self up against those guys and see where you stacks up. Make sure you play enough event to gauge your self up for the next level whether you are ready or not for it. Sharpen your killer instinct and be cocky inside and show more action than talk.


Make a lot of friends and be friendly at the same time, show and push your skill as good as possible out there without killing your self, hopefully there are local rich guy who are willing to sponsor you. Sell your self out there to be a good guy who know how to play the game and i'm sure one of those rich guy will sponsor you if you are in the level where you should be. You have to treat them as a job when you do make a full commitment. Set you goals to a point that you know you can reach it, this way you are looking at the whole thing realistically. Discipline w/ your practise and life style habit.


I've been lucky enough to get to know and play w/ some players from George Archer all the way to a young stud w/ an amazing amateur records, I hate to say but i can see why they made to where they are and why the can't make it to where they are suppose to be, Honestly speaking...It's not only how they played, it's the whole package thing. I've played w/ a guy who broke a few course records, but he is just not going any where and now playing poker 5 nights a week and drink lots of beer.


I wish you the best of luck in your carrier!



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i have a friend who plays on the grey-goose golden bear tour. He makes a ton of cash there, hits it as good as any one on the pga tour but has had bad luck and that has kept him out of the big show. he even shot 63-65 in the first stage of q school. He says his attitute is as long as he can pay the bills and keep getting better, then he will allways be happy. Playing golf for a living how sweet would that be. Just dont join the mavrick tour lol. Good luck with ur dream.

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I played on the Hooters Tour years ago. Almost nobody can make a living on the Hooters Tour but it is a good startup tour if you want to make it to the big show. Score a low but courses are not that difficult. About 10% of the players will make money at the end of the year, traveling is always costly.


Cost wise count $1,600 to $2,000 per tournament.

Pro-am's spot are reserve for the top players.


Go for it because you will always regret if you don't.

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With my index and experience I would never dare to sa you aren't good enough, but the jum from am to pro is very hard.

For an exampel at our homecourse the is every year a playing ability test for guys who want to become a teaching pro. This is pretty much the final stage of their instruction, after that they would become professionals. And I who played under nearly the same conditions played better that almost half of them. This shows how big the pressure is.

If you are in europe you can try the EPD Tour it's one stage under teh Challenge Tour which equals the nationwide.

- excuse writing faults, im just a dumb kraut^^


Good look and best wishes.

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I can play with any of the college boys who play local tourneys, and I play with a lot of mid-am guys too. do I kill them?...No, but I can play just as well as they can and play/practice 1/3 as much, so that's what gets my curiosity going....what if I put in the time. Sorry guys, just trying to do some thinking out loud and get some info...

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Hello everyone,


I’ve been keeping up with this thread because I thought it was very interesting and I have the same questions about trying to play golf professionally. I have no experience playing, nor do I know anyone who has. I too want to play professional golf and one day be a top player on the PGA Tour. I know I am nowhere near good enough right now to even consider entering a tournament, but I know I can be one day.


In no way am I saying that it is easy or that the guys playing in the tournaments are not awesome. They are, like others have said…a lot of the guys on the Hooters Tour are good enough to be on the PGA, they just haven’t had the luck when they needed it most. However, the idea that you have to shoot 61, 63, or even 66 all the time is a total myth, and I’ll prove it. Granted, the courses and the pressures of playing in a tournament are very difficult. Yet, if a golfer scratches out par on all the 3’s and 4’s, and birdies the 5’s, he’ll be the best golfer in the world. That’s what Tiger does and that’s what he is, the best golfer in the world.


The magic number at any level of golf is 68 (or – 4 depending on what par is), and the number to make cuts on the PGA is 70 (or – 2), and even par on the Hooter’s. Here are some facts:


PGA Tour


If a person were to shoot 4 under par in every round (-16 for the tournament) so far for this year (beginning with the Sony Open), he would have played in 20 tournaments, had all top 10 finishes, won 11 times (including the Player’s and Master’s), and made approximately $14,909,900.


In terms of cuts made, there were too many tournaments and too much time to look them all up with my dial up connection. However, 2 under for the first two days would make a lot of cuts.


Hooter’s Tour


If a person were to shoot even par for the first two rounds of every tournament this year, he would have made 6 of 9 cuts.


If a person were to shoot 4 under par in every round so far for this year, he would have played in 9 tournaments, had all top 10 finishes, won 5 times, and made approximately $166,752.67.



Finally, regarding how good you have to be and what kind of scores you have to shoot at your home course. 63 every time you go out?? Yeah right, not even close. Right now I am looking at my copy of How I Play Golf by Tiger Woods. Located on page 46 is a copy of Tiger’s USGA Handicap card thru 10/23/2000. As we all know, this was during Tiger’s unbelievable run of wins. His handicap index was +8.1. His highest score was 72, which occurred two times. His average score for the best 10 out of the 20 on the card is 65.3.


I don’t know about the courses you guys play, but my home course is Valley Landing in Courtland, AL. A +8.1 handicap at my course would equal a score of 63.39 from the pro tees (rating 73.1, slope 130). Remember, that 63.39 is the best 10 of 20 rounds. I assume is takes a solid +5 handicap to be competitive at a high level of professional golf. At Valley Landing, that’s an average score of 67.1 for the best 10 out of 20. So, 67 for your best rounds…that’s not even close to 63 every time you go out.


I say if you think you can shoot under par, you have the money, and the wife is on board…go for it. Don’t live life thinking what if. The idea that you have to shoot crazy low scores is not correct. I hope whatever you choose works out for the best, and if you take a shot at golf…maybe we’ll be paired together in the Master’s one day.


Best of luck,

John Howard

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