Martin Laird, 2011 Arnold Palmer Invitational winner
The answer is yes. It’s all set up to be so easy here. You fly into the airport, there are guys waiting there with your name, your car is pulled up to the curb, they get your bags and you’re in your hotel 20 minutes later. There are so many things that tournaments do, which are nice, but if they didn’t do them, it wouldn’t change my thinking about whether or not I’m going to play. I’m not going to play a tournament because they give you a nice gift or do your dry cleaning for you. The real perk on the PGA Tour is how much money you’re playing for. That alone is enough—you don’t need everything else. You always hear some players moaning about something or other, and sometimes you just want to slap them and say, “Seriously?” We’re definitely taken care of very well out here.
Hunter Mahan, runner-up, 2011 Tour Championship
I don’t think we’re overly coddled. The way I think about it, if people weren’t making that much money off of us, then I would say that we didn’t need much, because we’re not really generating that much income for anybody else. But we’re generating income for charities and each city we go to, and the networks, too. You also have to think about our lifestyle—we travel 32 weeks a year, and we appreciate everything we get. It helps out immensely, especially for the guys traveling with families. To go through everything we have to go through each week, if we didn’t have the perks that we do it would be very difficult, and you might see guys play less. We’re also footing the bill in a lot of areas that other athletes don’t even think about, so compared to other sports organizations, we’re not even close to being coddled.
This article first appeared in the February 2012 issue of Golf Magazine. The February issue is on newsstands and the tablet version is available for free for magazine subscribers on iPad, Kindle Fire, Nook Tablet, Nook Color and Samsung Galaxy Tab. Learn more