CHARLOTTE, N.C. — PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan confirmed Wednesday that Rory McIlroy will lose $3 million of his Player Impact Program bonus from 2022 for missing a second designated event last month.
Last year, McIlroy finished second to Tiger Woods in the PIP program, which measures a player’s popularity and impact on tour. McIlroy was set to collect $12 million. Instead, he’ll get $9 million after forfeiting 25% of the bonus for not making a start in the RBC Heritage at Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.
It was the second time McIlroy opted out of a new designated event this season. He also skipped the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Hawaii in January. PGA Tour rules require players to compete in all but one this season.
“When we made the commitment to this schedule with the Player Impact Program, we adjusted for one opt-out,” Monahan said. “Then for any second opt-out, you forfeit the 25%, unless there was a medical issue. Based on that criteria, it’s actually fairly cut-and-dry.”
On Tuesday, McIlroy told reporters at the Wells Fargo Championship that he needed time to mentally recharge after missing the cut at the Masters. It was the ninth straight time he failed to win the green jacket that would complete his career grand slam. He said his “mind wouldn’t have been there” if he had played in the RBC Heritage the next week.
“As [McIlroy] laid it out, if a player is going to miss a second event to reset and to refresh, then he knew that and he knew, as he said, the consequences,” Monahan said. “First of all, a player should be able to make a decision not to play. I think that’s the beauty of our model. But he knows the consequences of that based on our criteria, and that’s our position.”
Some players have said they don’t like having to compete in a designated event the week after a major championship. The Travelers Championship, another designated event, will be played the week after the U.S. Open at Los Angeles Country Club in June.
Monahan didn’t sound as if he was ready to move the RBC Heritage to another week on the 2024 schedule.
“That event itself works so well in that week, so I see it continuing in that week,” Monahan said. “I think it performed very, very well across every single metric.”
Next season, the PGA Tour is eliminating the rule that requires players to compete in 11 of the 12 designated events, not including the four majors and the Players Championship. Monahan is hoping no-cut, limited-field events with $20 million purses will provide enough incentive to make elite players show up.
“When we announce the schedule itself and you look at the cadence, you look at the consequence in terms of FedEx Cup points, you look at what the purse sizes are going to be, you look at the concentration of top players and them having the ability to compete against each other in those field sizes, my confidence is high,” Monahan said. “Does that mean that every single week every single player is going to show up? I think in our model there will likely be things that happen — injuries and extenuating circumstances.”