The USGA announced yesterday (April 11) the introduction of the Celebration of Champions event, a four-hole public exhibition honoring the winners of all 2017 USGA championships and celebrating their distinguished achievements in the game of golf.
The exhibition, which will pair 2017 championships as two-player mixed teams, will be held on Tuesday June 12.
The event will fall during the week of the 118th U.S. Open Championship at the iconic Shinnecock Hills Golf Club in Southampton, N.Y.
“Our championships are open to all players who have the dream and desire to compete at the highest level,” said Mike Davis, CEO of the USGA.
Inaugural Celebration of Champions event
Mr Davis saw hosting the inaugural Celebration of Champions at the 118th U.S. Open as a fitting way to celebrate each champion’s “incredible achievement”.
Eight-time USGA champion Jack Nicklaus will help launch the inaugural festivities, which are set to become an annual tradition.
“I am honored to be part of the Celebration of Champions and the USGA’s enduring commitment to celebrate the game and its legacy,” said Nicklaus, who won USGA championships in five different decades.
He added: “Since I was a junior, they have always been the ultimate examinations of a golfer.
“I always felt the USGA did the best job of preparing a golf course that will completely test you and every part of your game.”
Nicklaus explained it made it all the more important to compete in and win a championship on home turf.
Golf’s “ultimate test”
He went on to state how the U.S. Open was widely considered as golf’s “ultimate test” making it the ideal setting for an event designed to applaud each 2017 USGA champion.
FS1 will broadcast the foursomes (alternate-shot) exhibition, which will feature amateurs and professional from multiple generations and all walks of life playing hole 10-13.
The 4:45pm EDT shotgun start event will be open to all fans attending Tuesday’s U.S. Open practice round.
Tickets can be purchased at usopen.com.
Prior to defense of his title, 2017 U.S. Open champion Brooks Koepka will be on-site to welcome all participants and recognize them for all their accomplishments.
Rolex and the USGA will extend this celebration by telling the stories of these champions and chronicling the crowing of new champions this year, the FOX’s broadcast of the USGA championships, presented by Rolex.
The Celebration of Champions was officially launched at a New York City event for the 2018 U.S. Open Trophy Tour, presented by Lexus.