North Texas’ two PGA Tour events will no longer be held on back-to-back weekends.
The AT&T Byron Nelson will be moved up one week to May 9-12 in 2019, according to the schedule the PGA unveiled Tuesday. The Charles Schwab Challenge (formerly the Fort Worth Invitational) will continue to be held on the fourth weekend in May.
The Byron Nelson was moved forward to accommodate the PGA Championship, which moved from August to May. The change came because the PGA wanted to end its season before football season started.
Nelson officials hope golfers will want to play an event to get ready the week before a major or potentially grab a final qualifying spot. The Nelson field this year was widely considered one of the weakest in the tournament's history.
"Leading into the PGA Championship will create opportunities and excitement for the tournament," said tournament director Jon Drago.
2019 will mark the second year for the Nelson at its new home, Trinity Forest.
Officials with the Fort Worth tournament say that they don’t know how the change will affect their tournament, but remain optimistic.
“Events that follow majors generally have good fields,” tournament director Michel Tothe said. “It’s hard to tell until we look through it but I don’t see any drastic changes either way happening."
Tothe points out that the new schedule could give the tournament an exotic field. That’s because golf's European Tour will have a break that weekend instead of holding one of its major events the same time as Colonial.
“Those guys now have an opportunity to take a hard look at playing here,” Tothe said. “I think that’s what’s exciting.”
Last year's Fort Worth Invitational winner was Justin Rose, who is a member of the European Tour.