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How Much Prize Money Did The Best Golfers Earn in 2023

By: | Wed 20 Dec 2023

This is a very good time to be one of the world’s leading professional golfers. If you doubt it, you should take a look at how much money the top 10 players on the PGA Tour managed to pocket during the 2022-23 season.

Let’s start by looking at the money list, which only tells part of the story.

Scottie Scheffler finished on top of the pile for the second year in a row. He played in 23 events, won twice, had 16 top 10s, a scoring average of 68.3 and collected $21,014,342 in official prize money.

Surprisingly, Jon Rahm was a distant second despite winning four times. The Spaniard started 20 events, had 10 top 10s and earned $16,522,608, with a stroke average of 68.8.

Then came Norway's Viktor Hovland on $14,112,234. He had two victories and eight top 10s in 23 tournaments and a stroke average of 68.9.

Rory McIlroy was fourth with $13,921,008. McIlroy also had two victories, 12 top 10s and a stroke average of 68.9 from just 18 starts.

But the overall top earner was Hovland. His two victories came at exactly the right time of the season, winning two FedEx Cup Playoff events, including the Tour Championship. And that meant he collected an astonishing $18m FedEx Cup bonus, taking his on-course earnings beyond $32m.

To put this in some sort of perspective, 18-time major champion Jack Nicklaus won just $5,734,031 during his entire career!

Viktor Hovland

(Image Credit: Kevin Diss Photography)

In total, 130 PGA Tour players earned at least $1m during the 2022-23 season. And remember that all of the figures above do not include sponsorship deals. These guys are good. They are also seriously wealthy.

And then there is LIV Golf. Talor Gooch won three times and earned $17m in 13 starts. Cameron Smith was second with $13.9m, just ahead of third-placed Brooks Koepka on $13.4m.

It goes without saying that the rewards on the DP World Tour fall some way short but are certainly not to be sniffed at.

McIlroy won the Race to Dubai with more than 5m euros, followed by DP World Tour Championship winner Nicolai Hojgaard on 3.9m euros and Jon Rahm on 3.5m euros.

McIlroy also picked up another $4m as a results of his play in the playoffs, meaning he finished the year with almost $18m in the bank.

McIlroy may not have added to his major tally or won the FedEx Cup but he also found himself $15m richer after beating Tiger Woods to the PGA Tour’s prize for generating the most media interest in 2023.

Northern Ireland's McIlroy pipped the 15-time major winner to top spot on the tour's 'Player Impact Programme' (PIP). Woods won it in 2021 and 2022 despite his injury-hit playing schedule.

McIlroy takes top spot for the first time two weeks after resigning from the tour's Policy Board.

The PIP, introduced in 2021, was designed to reward players who generate the most interest in the PGA Tour, with metrics such as Google searches, news article mentions and social media reach taken into account.

Woods, who has spent almost the entire year on the sidelines recovering from injury, earns $12m for finishing second.

Masters winner Rahm earns $9m for finishing third, with three-time major winner Jordan Spieth and world number one Scheffler rounding out the top five.

England's Tommy Fleetwood collects $5m for finishing tied seventh alongside Hovland, Justin Thomas and Max Homa.

Next year, the Player Impact Programme's bonus pool will be $50m (£39.9m) between the top 10 players, a change from the $100m (£79.8m) that was awarded to the top 20 this year.

There is an interesting footnote to this. Since PIP was introduced in 2021, Woods has pocketed $35m from the programme while playing in just five official worldwide tournaments. It is proof, if ever it was needed, that this man still moves the needle when it comes to social media.

I have to say that I believe this is money for old rope. The top players are handsomely enough rewarded without it, so let’s see this money pumped back into the grass roots - or diverted towards the women’s game.

Celine Boutier won the Ladies European Tour money list with winnings of 1,335,931 euros - a sum that wouldn’t have been enough to retain playing rights on the PGA Tour. On the LPGA Tour, Lilia Vu topped the money list with $3,502,303. But $1,350,000 of that came when she won the Women’s Open.

To my way of thinking, the balance doesn’t seem right, or make sense.

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Tags: PGA Tour LIV Golf FedEx Cup european tour dp world tour daily picks

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