A new pro golf mini-tour series has been announced with a mid-May kickoff. It will feature 11 events across Northern Ohio, running as far east as Boulder Creek GC in Streetsboro, as far south as The Quarry in Canton, and as far west as Maumee Bay GC in Oregon.
Kent Prine announced the launch of the Buckeye Tour last Thursday in the following press release, but there are still a number of unanswered questions:
The inaugural season of the Buckeye Tour begins May 17, 2012 at Red Hawk Run GC in Findlay, Ohio. This is the first of ten events plus a “Tour Championship” finale concluding in late September, 2012.
Events will be held all over Northern Ohio and are professionally run, tour quality events at some of the best clubs in the state. Many of these facilities have earned not only local but national awards from leading golf publications.
Stone Ridge GC ““ Bowling Green, OH
The Quarry GC ““ Akron/Canton, OH
Medina CC ““ Medina, OH
Eagle Creek GC ““ Norwalk, OH
Eagle’s Landing ““ Oregon, OH
Boulder Creek GC ““ Streetsboro, OH
Maumee Bay ““ Oregon, OH
Riverby Hills GC ““ Bowling Green, OH
The Legacy at Sweetbriar ““ Avon Lake, OH
Membership and entry information is available at www.buckeyetour.com.
The Buckeye Tour website provides no information at all about the founders of the new tour venture, Prine and his partner Jeff Beatty — actually, their names are not even listed on any page.
And only a brief outline about the tour rules is posted, and no details about event prize payouts are listed.
Northeast Ohio Golf exchanged some emails in early February with both men after they emailed in to ask about promotions on this website. Since their first-generation web site had only a couple of pages and very little detail, most of those emails asked them about their experience in running golf events and a tour. Based on that exchange, it was suggested that a highly-detailed “About Us” page was an absolute requirement to build any trust at all with local players.
Then after a simple web search, some unappealing legal information from 2003 was discovered by NEOHgolf.com about one of the founders. It was discussed in detail in a multi-part email exchange, and a moderately plausible explanation was provided. The pair said they would continue to work on the website to provide detailed information to players about themselves, outlining their experience in running professional events before the tour was officially announced. That’s where the conversation was left in mid-February.
But those details still do not exist on BuckeyeTour.com today.
After receiving the above launch press release email last Thursday, the following questions were asked in reply — but no response was provided even six days later, after multiple requests:
Hey Kent and Jeff —
I’m trying to get a handle on the details guys would want to have beyond what you have outlined on your website.
So can you provide a response to the following questions?
– What specific tournament management experience do you each have? Are there any other people in tour management with you?
– What differentiates your offering from the Lake Erie Golf Tour?
– Do you have any worthwhile sponsors/sponsorship dollars in-hand?
– I see the payout page references a first place prize based on 100 players. Is that the number of players do you anticipate to sign up for each event?
Northeast Ohio Golf
If Prine and Beatty hope to convince players that the venture they are trying to start is a viable one, they’ll need to create that “About Us” bio page on their website. Tomorrow. And it should be a really detailed one with their pictures and addresses and lots of golf event management history.
They should also address some important questions on their web site that immediately come to mind, like:
– with a pricey entry fee of $195 for members (after a $139 annual membership) or $225 for non-members, what are their expected field sizes?
– how will they market to players to generate those field numbers?
– when will highly detailed per-event payout information be posted to the website to justify the entry fee amounts?
– when will a full set of event and tour rules be posted?
– and why do they think players will drive most of the width of the state to compete in events without a guaranteed purse?
The Buckeye Tour founders have a large amount of work ahead of them to get the ship out of the harbor. It will be interesting to see how they respond.