The Treasure Coast has some of the nation’s top golf courses and plenty of the world’s best golfers who are members of these clubs.
This weekend, our area gets back to its roots, so to speak, when the 34th Treasure Coast Amateur Championship is held at Sandridge Golf Club in Vero Beach. The 36-hole event runs Saturday and Sunday on the Dunes Course.
“If it’s not the oldest tournament on the Treasure Coast, it’s one of the oldest,” said Bela Nagy, Sandridge’s director of golf. “It’s what I call one of our three majors, along with the Father-Son and the Dick Bird Team Championship.”
The Treasure Coast Amateur Championship was started in 1988 when Bob Komarinetz was hired as head professional at Sandridge. Komarinetz, now the Golf Pro Emeritus who serves on the tournament rules committee, saw a need for such an event and no doubt a way to publicize Sandridge.
Craig Dolch's previous three columns:
The tournament has stood the test of time. It used to be held in October, but after it was delayed one year by a hurricane, the event was moved to December and combined with the Indian River County Championship and the Indian River County Senior Championship. This weekend’s event is again a sellout at 84 players.
The beauty of this event — besides the nominal entry fee of $125 — is it attracts the best amateur players on the Treasure Coast along with the rest of us weekend hackers. The Championship Division will be based on the low 10 scores after the first round, with everyone else competing in their age groups from different tees for scratch and net prizes.
Bottom line: Everyone has a chance to win something with a couple of good rounds. But it’s never easy to set up a course that caters to such a wide skill set.
“That’s the challenge,” said Nagy, who said the course will be set up at 6,500 yards for the best players. “We’ve got a lot of really good players — some plus-handicaps. But you have to be cognizant of the entire field, so you don’t want to set it up too hard. I try to vary the pins with six easy, six medium and six hard each day.”
There have been some notable winners, especially in the Indian River County Championship. The inaugural event was won by Ed Barenborg (Jackie Stoelting’s father), then Sal Spallone (who played professional golf) and Steve Owen (Jake’s father) twice. Tim Kelly has won the event five times, Jamie Hall thrice.
Kelly will attempt to defend his Senior Championship this year, as will defending champions Jon Cross (Treasure Coast Amateur) and Tim Gavrich (Indian River County Championship) in what’s expected to be Chamber of Commerce weather.
Because of the tournament setup, there will be more than three winners walking away from Sandridge Golf Club.
Along with the game of golf.
Anniversary at PGA Golf Club: The PGA Tournament Series returns to PGA Golf Club this week, marking the 25th anniversary of when the first PGA of America-run event was held at the club in 1996.
The PGA Tournament Series draws most of the top-playing PGA Professionals from across the country, some of whom have gone on to play on the PGA Tour and PGA Tour Champions. They play six 36-hole events with the winner receiving $5,000.
In January, the PGA also holds its Winter Championships at PGA Golf Club that consists of six tournaments, including a pair of team events.
Once again, Marie-Claire De Bortoli of Club Med Sandpiper in Port St. Lucie was named among the LPGA Top 50 Teacher List … Patrick Capozzi and David Jatlow were named Course Rating Volunteers of the Year by the Florida State Golf Association. Capozzi and Jatlow co-captain the course rating team in the Vero Beach area … The PGA Golf Club will hold its annual Red, White & You charity tournament on Sunday with the money raised benefitting PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere) and PGA REACH. The event is sold out. There also will be a Fairway 5K run/walk on Sunday.
This article originally appeared on Treasure Coast Newspapers: Treasure Coast Amateur Championship begins Saturday in Vero Beach
Source : https://news.yahoo.com/dolch-treasure-coast-amateur-championship-175426181.html960