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Pereira PGA TOUR Status Delayed

Mito Pereira PGA TOUR status continues into 2021

Mito Pereira wasn’t sure what his future held, but now he knows that the Mito Pereira PGA TOUR status pursuit continues into 2021.

After finishing tied for 41st at Final Stage of the Korn Ferry Tour Qualifying Tournament last fall—one stroke shy of guaranteed starts—the Chile native faced an uncertain early-season schedule, knowing he needed to maximize opportunities in order to play a full Korn Ferry Tour campaign in pursuit of his PGA TOUR status.

Pereira did just that at the Panama Championship in February, finishing tied for third. The next week, he took things a step further, making eagle on the 72nd hole to emerge victorious at the Country Club de Bogota Championship.

Suddenly, the 25-year-old was a full Korn Ferry Tour member, a PGA TOUR card seemingly on the doorstep.

“I didn’t know if I was going to play this year here on the Korn Ferry Tour,” Pereira said after his victory in Colombia. “I guess now that I’m a winner, I want to get to the PGA TOUR.”

A month later, the professional sports landscape—like the larger world—was flipped upside down as the COVID-19 pandemic forced postponements and cancellations across the globe. With a competitive hiatus of just over three months, the Korn Ferry Tour was forced to make adjustments.

Rather than the 2020 season leading to The 25 PGA TOUR cards awarded at the WinCo Foods Portland Open in August, and another 25 cards to follow via the three-event Korn Ferry Tour Finals, the schedule has been reconfigured to feature a 2020-21 combined season. This means the Mito Pereira PGA TOUR status chase, along with his other Korn Ferry Tour members, is delayed.

Korn Ferry Tour Points from all 2020 and 2021 Regular Season events will count toward the combined season’s Points List, with The 25 cards awarded in summer 2021, and another 25 cards via the 2021 Finals. No Qualifying Tournament will be held this fall—all 2020 members will maintain status through 2021—and the Three-Victory Promotion (most recently accomplished by Wesley Bryan in 2016) will serve as the most direct path to the TOUR.

Also Read: New PGA TOUR Season Guide for 2020

The top 10 players upon the conclusion of this year’s Korn Ferry Tour Championship presented by United Leasing & Finance in late August will gain access into a select group of PGA TOUR additional events in 2020-21.

For players like Pereira, although the reconfigured schedule may delay TOUR access in the short term, it provides further opportunity to prepare their games for TOUR rigors once membership is earned.

Pereira played full-time on the Korn Ferry Tour in 2017 and 2018, and although he attained modest success—highlighted by a third-place finish at the 2017 Nashville Golf Open Benefitting the Snedeker Foundation—he ended 2018 with eight consecutive missed cuts.

That fall, he suffered a broken collarbone in a bike accident. This was a slight blunder towards the Mito Pereira PGA TOUR status

“Obviously in that moment, it was terrible,” Pereira remembered. “But if I look back, it probably helped me a little bit. It was a month that I didn’t play. I cooled down and took all the bad things out.”

Pereira returned to PGA TOUR Latinoamérica for the 2019 season, recording 11 top-25s in 16 starts and finishing 10th on the Order of Merit. He maintained the momentum into the 2020 Korn Ferry Tour season, where he stood atop the Points List through the first eight events.

Also Read: New PGA TOUR Season Guide for 2020

As Pereira chases his first TOUR card via the 2020-21 combined season, he will be joined by the usual mix of up-and-comers and wily veterans in the quest for The 25. Through eight events, the top of the Points List carried a youthful vibe,  with first-year Korn Ferry Tour members Davis Riley (No. 2) and David Kocher (No. 3) joining Pereira in optimal position.

Other players high on the Points List seeking their first TOUR card include Andrew Novak (No. 4), Dylan Wu (No. 5) and Jared Wolfe (No. 6), while those seeking a TOUR return include John Chin, Tommy Gainey and Ben Kohles, Nos. 7-9 on the list respectively.

Also Read: Rahm Rejects European Tour Return

Due to the global pandemic, the much-anticipated Portland card ceremony will be put on hold for a year. For those who take the stage next summer, though, the wait will make the wait for the Mito Pereira PGA TOUR status all the sweeter. 

Also Read: PGA TOUR Champions 2020-21 Season Combined