Major Winner Gets Fourth PGA Tour Signature Event Invite

At Glance

‣ The 2024 PGA Tour calendar introduces significant changes, notably through the introduction of Signature Events, which are pivotal for players aiming to climb the FedEx Cup standings. These events offer a $20 million purse and include various qualification routes, such as sponsor exemptions.

‣ Webb Simpson, a former US Open winner, has been granted a sponsor exemption to participate in the Wells Fargo Championship, marking his fourth invite to a Signature Event in 2024. Simpson’s involvement in these events, despite his current 143rd position in the FedEx Cup standings, highlights the impact of sponsor exemptions on players’ opportunities to compete in high-stake tournaments.

‣ Concerns have been raised regarding the fairness of sponsor exemptions, especially for Player Directors like Webb Simpson and Adam Scott. Dylan Wu, a fellow PGA Tour player, voiced his concerns over the perceived advantage given to Player Directors in receiving invites to elevated events, sparking a debate on the equity of such exemptions within the professional golf community.

Big news from the golf world! The 2024 PGA Tour’s calendar has undergone some pretty significant changes. And let me tell ya, those Signature Events are now the golden tickets for players eyeing a leap up the FedEx Cup standings.

So, how does one snag an invite to these swanky $20 million shindigs? Well, one route is through ‘Sponsor exemptions’. Yep, each Signature Event has a stash of these golden tickets to hand out to players not automatically in the running. It’s like getting the Willy Wonka golden ticket, but for golf.

Now, here’s where it gets juicy. For the sixth Signature Event, the Wells Fargo Championship, a familiar face has popped up. Webb Simpson, folks. He’s bagged himself a fourth invite to this high-stakes tournament. Remember him from the RBC Heritage? That’s the one.

Before hitting the Wells Fargo Championship, Simpson’s been a busy bee. He’s played in seven PGA Tour tournaments in 2024, with three of those being Signature Events. Not too shabby, right? But also, let’s not forget the Sony Open in Hawaii, Valspar Championship, and Valero Texas Open. Guy’s been everywhere.

But here’s the kicker – Simpson’s sitting at 143rd in the FedEx Cup standings. He’s racked up 93 points and pocketed just over $330,000 in prize money. Not exactly top of the charts, but hey, it’s something.

Word on the street is, Simpson will be joining Gary Woodland with an exemption at Quail Hollow. Fun fact: Simpson’s practically a fixture at Quail Hollow, living near the seventh tee and all. Plus, he’s not just a PGA Tour member; the dude’s a Player-Director. And get this – he’s been in the thick of it with the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia, thanks to some merger plans that popped up in 2023.

Now, not everyone’s thrilled about Simpson’s invites. Dylan Wu, for instance, is kinda side-eyeing the whole deal. Sitting just outside the top 100 of the FedEx Cup standings, Wu’s wondering why Player Directors like Adam Scott and Simpson are getting these sponsor exemptions into the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

Wu took to X/Twitter, dropping some thoughts. “Great players and major champions,” he said, giving props but also raising an eyebrow. “I can’t say much because I missed the cut hard this week but getting more than one sponsor exemption into elevated events doesn’t seem fair.” He’s got a point. It does seem a bit… suspect.

Oh, and before I forget – if you’re into golf, you might wanna subscribe to the Golf Monthly newsletter. It’s your ticket to all the latest tour news, gear reviews, and all that good stuff. Trust me, you don’t wanna miss out.

Elliott Mitchell
Elliott Mitchell
Elliott Mitchell is a Golf Glance Senior Writer. After earning a degree in Sports Journalism, he joined the club in 2021. Elliott is in charge of Golf Glance's news, features, and travel sections, as well as the courses.

Recent Golf News