JAMES WHITE .... "Cost me £3,500 last year and that was getting only as far as Stage 2." Image by Cal Carson Golf Agency.
By COLIN FARQUHARSON
One of Scotland's most successful amateurs, James White (Lundin), the 2006 Scottish boys' champion and winner of the SGU Order of Merit last year, says he cannot afford to enter the European Tour Qualifying School process for a second year.
"It cost me £3,500 last year and I only got as far as Stage 2 in Spain last year. Just think what it would have cost if I had reached the Final Stage, also in Spain," said White, who graduated from Stirling University just over a year ago.
"I'm virtually a full-time amateur. I have a little job to give me some kind of income, but I just don't have the money," said the 23-year-old White whose father Jim White was a Tartan Tour player.
"The entry fee alone for the Tour School last year was around £1,400. It could be more this year. I just cannot afford to dig that deep again."
In my opinion the entry fees charged by tours worldwide, from the European Tour to the US PGA Tour and all the others in between, is the biggest rip-off in golf.
Charging £1,400 just to enter the European Tour Q School process is more than double what it costs a player to enter the OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP!
Undoubtedly, the world's tours see Q School entry fees as a simple way of boosting their coffers to pay their admin staffs' salaries for the year.
But they are penalising young golfers just at the time when they don't have that kind of money to spare.
What's your view? You can E-mail it to Colin@scottishgolfview.com