ATP announce record-breaking Challenger Tour improvements | ATP Tour

ATP has announced significant upgrades to the ATP Challenger Tour, which starting in January 2023 will feature a record number of events, multi-million dollar prize money increases and an optimized tournament calendar. The reforms follow an in-depth review and strategy development conducted by ATP’s new Senior Challenger Tour team over the past eight months.

The most important changes include:

1) Category simplification:

The ATP will phase out the Challenger 90 and 110 categories and reduce the number of categories from six to four. As of 2023, the core categories are:

  • challenger 50
  • Challenger 75
  • Challenger 100
  • Challenger 125

Additionally, during the second week of the ATP Masters 1000 tournaments in Indian Wells, Rome and Madrid, ATP will introduce three new premium Challenger 175 events with a prize pool of $220,000.

2) Record prize money:

Total Challenger Tour prize money will grow from $13.2 million in 2022 to a record $21.1 million in 2023, an increase of 60 percent. These include notable increases in Challenger 100 tournaments ($106,240 to $130,000) and Challenger 75 tournaments ($53,120 to $80,000). In addition, round after round prize money distributions improve earnings in the earlier rounds of the tournament. Together, these improvements will help create a more sustainable player path for more players participating in the Challenger Tour.

3) Improved Calendar:

The 2023 Challenger Tour will deliver a record 195 events, up from 183 in 2022, creating more opportunities for players. Improvements to the calendar will also align it more closely with the ATP Tour and provide a better balance of tournaments in terms of surface types and regions. Additionally, a projected 170 percent increase in the number of Challenger 100 and 125 events will improve player flow and mobility, giving players more opportunities to climb the Pepperstone ATP Rankings.

Comment on the changes, ATP Chairman Andrea Gaudenzi said: “The Challenger Tour is the launch pad of men’s professional tennis. Today’s announcement is a crucial step forward for the entire ecosystem. The new plan increases the winning potential for players and improves the balance of tournament categories, surfaces and regions. It also puts a renewed focus on raising tournament standards. That too is just the beginning. Our team is committed to delivering further improvements over the coming months and years.”

ATP Challenger Tour Vice President Richard Glover said: “The health of the ATP Challenger Tour is critical to the future of our sport and our in-depth review has identified significant opportunities to strengthen this journey. While we are taking a long-term approach to growing the Challenger Tour, these changes will provide an immediate boost starting in 2023. We look forward to implementing these reforms over the next season and building on these advancements in the near future. There’s more to come, so keep an eye out for that area.”

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