Main Menu

PDGA Events Guide

PDGA Events Guide

Last updated: Saturday, December 21, 2019 - 17:30

There are several levels of sanctioned PDGA events and each level or tier has its own set of requirements and regulations based on the PDGA Tour Standards. The top levels of events, which include World Championships, PDGA Majors, Elite Series events, and A-Tier events require that competitors have a current PDGA membership to participate. PDGA Majors and Elite Series events also require that competitors passed the PDGA Certified Official Rules Exam. For B-Tier and C-Tier events, any player who is not a current PDGA member may participate by paying a per-event fee of $10.

Event Descriptions

PDGA Major (M)

PDGA Major events include World and National Championships with the competitors based on invitations and qualification. Qualification to World Championships and Majors are awarded according to previous year Tour Points and other qualifying criteria. Current members who do not earn an invitation to the World Championships may still gain entry if there is still room after the registration tiers for invitees.

  • Current PDGA membership required to compete.
  • Current status of Certified Rules Official required to compete.
  • Length, purse, number of holes and many other elements of these prestigious events are handled on a case-by-case basis.

PDGA Elite Series

PDGA “Elite Series” is the designation used for a tour of professional events approved as a PDGA Elite Series by the PDGA Board of Directors where points are earned by players towards crowning a tour champion.

These events and series are to promote the sport of disc golf and the PDGA in a positive light consistent with the PDGA mission, cater to the MPO and FPO divisions only (more specifically, those on the “Premier Pros” list), and bring a high level of exposure to the sport through national and international media coverage.  Simply put, Elite Series events provide an overall positive impact to the sport of disc golf and serve to enhance the PDGA mission.

For a series of events to be designated as a PDGA Elite Series, all events comprising the series, as well as the series itself, must show a track record of success to include the sustainability of the organization, both financially and in its execution with the ability to repeat each season. Each event in the series must be sanctioned as an A Tier (or above), and must consistently maintain or surpass the competition standards practiced at the National Tour level as defined by PDGA Tour Standards, as well as the individual event contracts with our Elite Series event hosts.

PDGA Elite Series Tours include:

National Tour (NT)

The National Tour Elite Series is an event series for the Open and Open Women's divisions developed by the PDGA and its marketing partners. The National Tour events showcase the sport, its leading events, and its top players, with the goal of increasing sponsorship and media coverage.

  • Current PDGA membership required to compete, minimum MPO rating of 900.
  • Current status of Certified Rules Official required to compete.
  • Length: 3-4 days
  • Holes: minimum of 54
  • Cash Added to Pro Purse: minimum of $10,000

Disc Golf Pro Tour (DGPT)

The Disc Golf Pro Tour is an event series developed for the Open and Open Women’s divisions, and was developed to unite a network of players, fans, events, manufacturers and commercial partners by presenting disc golf in its highest competitive environment. The criteria listed above under NT events also applies to DGPT events.

A Tier (A)

A-Tier events, previously referred to as the SuperTour, are regional events with strict requirements for the overall purse and payouts. These events typically bring in some of the best competitors in the sport, lasting between 2-3 days with a minimum of 54 holes to be
completed.

Each fall, after the full Major and National Tour schedule is known for the next year, the A-Tiers are then scheduled by the PDGA Office for that entire year. In late September, an online A-Tier Request Form is made available through both a story posted on pdga.com, as well as an email sent to the TDs of the A- Tiers from the past two years. The form is typically available for two weeks and TDs must provide at least three possible dates for their events in order for a conflict- free schedule to be produced.

To even be considered for A-Tier status, an event must have been run for at least several years as a successful B-Tier event that met all Tour Standards and was absent of player complaints. Because of their greater mileage restrictions, only a limited number of events can be A Tiers. Therefore, not all requests for A-Tier status will be approved. Once the A-Tier schedule has been set, it is released on pdga.com typically on or about Nov. 1 so that PDGA State/Provisional Coordinators can begin approving TDs' date requests for B- Tier and C-Tier events. At that time, the online event sanctioning form for the following year is also made available.

  • Current PDGA membership required to compete.
  • Length: 2-3 days
  • Holes: minimum of 54
  • Cash Added to Pro Purse: minimum of $3000

B Tier (B)

B-Tier events are considered state-level, often taking place over an entire weekend with the Tournament Director(s) providing a minimum of 100% payout to the professional and amateur divisions alike.

  • Current PDGA membership is not required to compete. Non-current members or non-members pay a $10 per-event fee when registering.
  • Length: 2-3 days
  • Holes: minimum of 36
  • Cash Added to Pro Purse: minimum of $750

C Tier (C)

These are local events that can easily be run in one day on one course with a minimal amount of staff and volunteers, but they do not have to be small or simple. There are many large C-Tier events around the world each year that bring in hundreds of players and provide very large payouts for the professional and amateur divisions.

  • Current PDGA membership is not required to compete. Non-current members or non- members pay a $10 per-event fee when registering.
  • Length: 1-2 days
  • Holes: minimum of 18 (36 preferred)
  • Cash Added to Pro Purse: optional

X Tier (XM, XA, XB, XC)

The "X" in an X Tier stands for experimental and can be added to the tier designation for a variety of reasons. If the event is a non-singles format (doubles, triples, team, match play, etc.) or uses non-standard rules deemed un-rateable (mulligans, overly punitive hole designs, etc.) the X means the event is not rated. The X can also be used for other non-ratings related items such as a charity event with limited payouts, or a restriction on who can register such as (Europeans-only, or collegiate-only.) An X-Tier event can be sanctioned at the A-Tier, B-Tier, or C-Tier level for the purposes of points allocation, depending on normal tier requirements.

L Tier - PDGA Leagues

PDGA Sanctioned Leagues are local events that run once a week on the same day of the week for a duration of 6-10 weeks. With many local clubs already offering leagues that meet that criteria, the PDGA wanted to give these clubs the opportunity to sanction their league in similar way to how many tournaments are sanctioned. The most appealing benefit of a PDGA League, arguably, is that PDGA members that compete receive PDGA Player Ratings from each round just as they would at a typical PDGA event.

  • Current PDGA membership is not required to compete and the $10 non-member fee is waived.
  • Leagues run once a week on the same day of the week for a duration of 6-10 weeks.
  • Leagues are run as normal singles play with all participants on the same layout.
  • PDGA members receive an official rating from each league round attended.
  • PDGA members will receive PDGA points, which is the primary criterion for earning an invitation to World Championship events.
  • Leagues do not report payout, so Amateurs can receive cash if a cash league.