You could be forgiven for being unaware of the Symetra Tour. The Symetra is to the LPGA Tour what the Web.com Tour is to the PGA Tour. Unlike the Web.com Tour, however, which is widely broadcast on the Golf Channel, you can’t catch Symetra Tour action anywhere.
Fortunately, that’s going to change Sunday, March 12, when the stars of the “Road to the LPGA Tour” get their turn on air. Or rather, on Facebook Live. Without a TV deal, the Tour is doing a brilliant end-around to bring content to fans.
And perhaps even more exciting, no Johnny Miller or Gary McCord to be found! The entire broadcast team will be composed of women. What a revolutionary thought for women’s sport! This, however, will be a first in the world of golf media.
A portion of the final round of the Florida’s Natural Charity Classic will be streamed on Facebook Live from 4-6 p.m. via the LPGA’s Facebook page. We can only hope more of the same will follow.
“The Symetra Tour is growing rapidly both in the United States and internationally so we want to showcase these next generation talents to a worldwide audience. The Facebook Live platform has emerged as a viable way — both from a distribution and economic standpoint — for professional sports organizations like ours to attract a larger audience.This is really cutting edge. We’re excited about this broadcast, and are exploring longterm options to broadcast more events.”
Symetra Tour Chief Business Officer Mike Nichols told Golf Digest
VISTA Worldlink will have the entire back nine at Country Club of Winter Haven wired and ready to transmit top quality video with a professional production crew in place. Mike Freedman, known for his PGA Tour work with CBS, will lead the production.
Tournament sponsor Florida’s Natural, Visit Central Florida, Springer-Peterson, Duke Energy and Boeing are footing the cost of presenting the event.
The all-female coverage crew will be headed by Amy Rodgers, who is the managing editor of LPGA.com. Karen Stupples, a long-time LPGA player and current contributor to the Golf Channel, will sit in the analyst’s chair. Sara Brown, also a Golf Channel regular, will serve as a second analyst. And doing interviews: Bailey Chamblee (Mosier). You may know her husband..
“The LPGA Tour, both playing and announcing, has been a large part of my life for the past 18 years. I have witnessed the growth of the Symetra Tour and have seen first hand the quality of players it produces. It will be a huge honor to be part of the first-ever Symetra Tour broadcast on Facebook Live as it will give more people the opportunity to watch the players’ skills and witness the future stars of the LPGA.”