Golf Boosts Champions Tour Schedule


The Golf Channel has picked up even more coverage of the Senior PGA Tour in 2003.

When the circuit, now known as the Champions Tour, tees off next year, Golf will present 17 tournaments in their entirety, including its first major championship, the Jeld-Wen Tradition, Aug. 28 through 31.

In addition to the three-day coverage of these tourneys, Golf will provide Friday action of nine other events that will be televised by CNBC on the weekends.

The cable part of the Champions Tour represents a major revamping from the 2002 season, when CNBC televised 29 events on the weekends. Pax Net supplied Friday coverage for 28 of those tourneys.

This July, Golf reached a deal with the Senior PGA, under which it was slated to provide three-round coverage of 10 to 15 events and pick up the balance of the Friday presentations from Pax.

However, discussions in recent weeks resulted in the additional tournaments and the major tournament, according to a spokesman. Contract terms were not disclosed.

The Golf spokesman said the network, owned by Comcast Corp., is interested in expanding its relationship with the Champions Tour beyond 2003. He did not know when the parties would discuss an extension.

CNBC and Champions Tour officials were not immediately available for comment.