History will be made this week at Royal Golf Dar Es Salam when the European Tour and the Ladies European Tour both stage tournaments at the stunning venue in Rabat.
The men will be teeing it up on the Red Course in the Trophée Hassan II, whilst over on the Blue Course the women will be competing in the Lalla Meryem Cup as the two Tours come together at the same venue for the first time.
This will not be the last time that the men and the women share the same venue this season, as they will all be brought together in Rio de Janeiro in August, when golf returns to the Olympic Games for the first time in 112 years.
While the men’s and women’s events will be played in different weeks in Brazil, the two events this week are running simultaneously in Morocco.
Both Keith Pelley, the European Tour’s Chief Executive, and Ivan Khodabakhsh, his counterpart from the Ladies European Tour, are open to the idea of staging more concurrent events in the future.
One already confirmed is the inaugural European Championships at Gleneagles in 2018, when medals will be awarded in the men’s, women’s and mixed team events over the PGA Centenary Course.
“It’s terrific to be here alongside the LET to stage the men’s and women’s tournaments just three months prior to the Olympics. There are many Olympic hopefuls competing in both tournaments, so it’s a great opportunity to showcase the strength of the men’s and the women’s games,” said Keith Pelley, Chief Executive of the European Tour.
“I hope it’s the start of an increased collaboration to come between the two Tours. We can grow and get stronger together. It’s an innovative approach and we’re keen to see how it works this week before deciding on the next steps,” he continued. “We have a number of ambitious ideas which we will be announcing in the coming months, but this week we’re focused on the start of a partnership which we hope can grow over time.”
“We need to look beyond the borders of golf and in other sports we can see the best practices. We can see in tennis and in other sports, actually having both genders side by side in a great event competing gives so much more colour, provides so much more for the fans and hopefully we can gain new fans coming to the sport,” Ivan Khodabakhsh, Chief Executive of the Ladies European Tour responded. “It’s not just about satisfying our current fans, we need more fans, we need to grow the game and this is another means. It’s not the ultimate means, but it’s another means to do so.”
European Tour www.europeantour.com
Ladies European Tour http://ladieseuropeantour.com/