Crusade benefits from Ryder Cup Challenge

Crusade benefits from Ryder Cup Challenge

The WHAS Crusade for Children benefits from the Captains Challenge charity golf tournament at Hurstbourne Country Club.

Read this article from the Thursday, September 20 edition of the Louisville Courier-Journal

Hurstbourne site of some easy Rydin’Charities biggest winners at reunion of Cup skippers

By Derek Poore

Former Ryder Cup captain Hal Sutton spent yesterday morning playing in the Captains Challenge charity golf tournament at Hurstbourne Country Club. He was so-so on his own performance, but he felt good about the United States’ chances this weekend.

“I don’t have a pick, but let me tell you, I am optimistic and I’m hopeful that the Americans will play well,” said Sutton, who steered the 2004 U.S. team. “I think we have a nice mix of youth, so it’s kind of a changing of the guard that has taken place.”

A gaggle of former American Ryder Cup captains took to the links at Hurstbourne to raise money for the WHAS Crusade for Children and the PGA Foundation. The Captains Challenge, which started in 2004, brings former captains back to the Ryder Cup.

“When the PGA of America brings an event to a community, we try to leave something behind,” said PGA president Brian Whitcomb.

The tournament matched local amateurs with Dow Finsterwald (1977 captain), Billy Casper (1979), Lee Trevino (1985), Lanny Wadkins (1995), Tom Kite (1997), Curtis Strange (2002), Sutton and Tom Lehman (2006).

During a reception and award ceremony after the tournament, Whitcomb said the amateurs who were part of the event should feel inspired.

“I wanted to be like them. I looked up to them” as a young player, he said, adding that the captains have “left the game better than you found it.”

The 18-hole tournament was played by the rules of the three Ryder Cup formats, with alternate shot, four-ball and singles used on six holes each.

Trevino’s team won the tournament, but participants also received prizes for superlatives such as longest drive and closest to the hole. One prize was an autographed Ryder Cup golf bag signed by current captain Paul Azinger.

Bill Lamb, general manager at Fox 41, was on Trevino’s team.

“This was the most special golf event I’ve ever been to,” Lamb said, adding that Trevino was good for a few laughs and acted “like he’s a member of your club.”

Sutton said he played OK — about even par.

“But more important, it was about having a good time and laughing and joking with a few of the fellows we were playing with,” said Sutton, who won the 1983 PGA Championship. “Maybe we gave them a tip or two to make them one shot better.”

He added that the real beneficiary was the Crusade: “The children won big this week.”

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