DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Dubai will host the world's richest golf tournament beginning in 2009 with a prize fund of $10 million.
The Dubai World Championship, to be held at the Jumeirah Golf Estates, would initially run for five years with the option of extending it for another five years, the European Tour said Monday.
The championship also would include an annual $10 million bonus pool.
The winner of the tournament will receive $1.66 million.
The Order of Merit will be renamed The Race to Dubai, with the player finishing No. 1 at the end of the season receiving $2 million.
If a player wins both the Dubai World Championship and the overall season title, he will earn a total of $3.66 million.
"The Race to Dubai will bring a new dimension to The European Tour, creating great drama and theater throughout the year as all the best players in the world are given the opportunity to compete in the world's richest tournament," European Tour chief executive George O'Grady said.
Currently, the U.S. Tour's Players Championship is the richest single event, offering prize money of $9 million.
The inaugural Dubai World Championship will take place at Jumeirah from Nov. 19-22, 2009, on either the Fire or Earth course. Both have been designed by Greg Norman.
The announcement was made at Dubai's Burj Al Arab, the world's most luxurious hotel built on a man-made island in the Persian Gulf.
"This deal is yet another step in Dubai's evolution as one of the most important golf centers anywhere in the world," said Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, chairman of Dubai World, the parent company of Leisurecorp.