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PGA Tour Latinoamerica in works

10/20/2011 - Golf

The PGA Tour is developing a new golf tour in Latin America that will give playing opportunities to golfers in the region, with the top performers gaining access to the developmental Nationwide Tour.

The tour, called PGA Tour Latinoamerica, will consist of 11 events that begin in September of 2012. The plan is to have up to 14 events in 2013, to be played in places such as Mexico, Colombia, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Argentina, Chili and Peru.

"We see this as an opportunity to help in the further development of elite players across the region," said PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem. "The timing is right, with South America hosting its first ever Olympic Games (2016), which includes golf's return to the competition for the first time in more than 100 years. The Latin American market has already produced several PGA Tour stars, and one of our goals for this tour is to help develop the Latin American stars of the future."

Tournaments will consist of 72 holes of stroke play with 144-player fields. The Tour said fields will consist primarily of players from the region and the top money earners will advance to the Nationwide Tour the following season. The details are still being worked out, the Tour said.

The Nationwide Tour provides access to the PGA Tour by granting spots to the top 25 money winners each year.

Bob Harig is the golf writer for ESPN.com.