The Masters Tournament badge, one of the toughest tickets to obtain in sports, will cost slightly more in 2009.
The price of a series badge will cost $200, an increase of $25, an Augusta National Golf Club spokesman confirmed this week. A series badge covers admission for all four tournament rounds.
It is the first increase for a Masters badge since 2004, when the price went up to $175 from $125.
Application forms to tournament patrons are expected to be mailed out by the end of this month or in early January, the spokesman said.
Earlier this year, Augusta National announced that the price of tickets to the 2009 practice rounds would go up by $5. Tickets for Monday and Tuesday practice rounds cost $36 each. A ticket to Wednesday's practice round, which also includes the popular Par-3 Contest, will cost $41.
Compared with other major sporting events and golf's other major tournaments, the face value of a Masters badge is still considered a bargain. The U.S. Open costs $400, the British Open is $266, and the PGA Championship charges $300.
All of those prices are for a badge that includes admission for all practice and tournament rounds.
The Masters will continue with its Junior Pass Program, which was implemented in 2008. The program allows accredited patrons to bring a child (age 8-16) to each of the four tournament days.
A Masters badge has long been considered one of the toughest tickets in sports.
A waiting list for series badges was established in 1972 and closed in 1978 when demand far exceeded the club's supply.
The waiting list briefly reopened in 2000 and individuals who applied for practice-round tickets from 1998-2000 were added by random selection. No applications for series badges are currently being taken.
The 2009 Masters will be held April 6-12.
Reach John Boyette at (706) 823-3337 or email@example.com.