Paul McGinley, the 2014 Ryder Cup-winning captain at Gleneagles, and former Scottish Open champion Barry Lane are among the European players setting out in Florida today in pursuit of Champions Tour cards.
Welsh duo Philip Price and Stephen Dodd, as well as 1999 Open Championship runner-up Jean Van de Velde, are also in the field for the circuit’s Qualifying School at Lake Buena Vista in Florida.
McGinley, who turns 50 on 16 December, finished eighth in a regional qualifier at the same venue, where Dodd, winner of the Italian Open on the European Senior Tour last month, tied for spot with Eduardo Herrera.
Price, who played on the same successful Ryder Cup team as McGinley at The Belfry in 2002, also progressed from that event, as did Dane Steen Tinning.
Lane, who won the Scottish Open at Gleneagles in 1988 before recording back-to-back wins in the Scottish Senior Open at Fairmont St Andrews in 2011 and 2011, won his qualifier in Texas while Van De Velde finished sixth in another one in California.
Other card hopefuls in the 72-hole event include Frenchman Jean-Francois Remesym Spaniard Miguel Angel Martin and Magnus P Atlevi, who tied for third behind Paul Broadhurst in this year’s Senior Open Championship at Carnoustie.
Russell Knox will make his Hero World Challenge debut on Thursday in the company of Argentina’s Emiliano Grillo.
The due are the last of the nine pairings for the first round at Albany Golf Club in the Bahamas, teeing off at 12.30pm local time.
Tournament host Tiger Woods makes his return to golf after a gap of 466 days with US Ryder Cup star Patrick Reed as his playing partner.
Open champion Henrik Stenson is out with Justin Rose while former SSE Scottish Hydro Challenge winner Brooks Koepka has US Open title holder Dustin Johnson in his pairing.
Aberdeen-born Michael Sim will share the honour of hitting the opening blow on the 2017 European Tour with Australian left-hander Richard Green.
Sim, who moved to Australia when he was five, gets the Australian PGA Championship underway at the 10th in a two-tee start at the RACV Royal Pines Resort in Queensland on Thursday while Green does likewise on the first.
Stephen Gallacher is in a group sandwiched between Aussie aces Adam Scott and Marc Leishman, the Lothians man playing with Jaco Van Zyl and Nick Cullen.
Duncan Stewart out with Darius Van Driel and Matthew Millar; Ross Kellett has former Amateur champion Jin Jeong and Ryan Lynch in his group while Bradley Neil has an early start in the company of Junsung Kim and Jarryd Felton.
A number of Scottish players earned recognition in Global Golf Post’s fourth annual All-Amateur team selections.
Grant Forrest, Connor Syme and Robert MacIntyre all made the men’s second team following a season that included them helping Scotland to retain the European Team Championship.
Englishman Scott Gregory, who beat MacIntyre in the final of the Amateur Championship at Royal Porthcawl, made the men’s first team, as did Ireland’s Jack Hume and Englishman Sam Horsfield.
It also included Bryson DeChambeau and Curtis Luck, the Australian who won both the US Amateur and Asia-Pacific Amateur Championships.
In the mid-amateur ranks, Euan McIntosh, Graeme Robertson and Barry Hume all made the first team while the second team included a fourth Scot, Matthew Clark.
England’s Bronte Law was named as the women’s Player of the Year while the men’s honour went to 62-year-old American Chip Lutz, winner of a third British Seniors Amateur Championship before finishing low amateur in the US Senior Open.
For the third consecutive year, the Ladies European Tour’s “rookie orientation days” will take place at the impressive Dénia Marriott La Sella Golf Resort and Spa just outside Alicante.
Those who earn their LET membership for the first time either through the Lalla Aicha Tour School or LET Access Series will be able to travel to Spain 18-21 January for an organised programme of workshops and education sessions.